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†† Dynamics 101




†††† Band in A Box basically is a backing band for your compositions. Depending on what version you buy, you have an almost unlimited number of styles to pick from ranging from country to classical, from modern jazz to modern pop, from 80ís rock to 50ís rock and roll. The great thing is that they come up with new styles with every release along with new melodists and soloists to accompany your compositions.


†††† In order to understand what BiAB does, I have to explain some of the features. Firstly, it takes a progression that you input and comes up with a backing arrangement based on the style you choose. So if you decide to do a 12 bar blues and do it in the style of Mozart, it will write an arrangement in that style and so on. Secondly, once you decide on a style you like, you can compose a melody based on different melodists styles that go along with your chord progression. There are tons of options you can choose to come up with exactly what you want but weíll get into that later when we focus on the melodist function.


††† Thirdly, the soloist feature will compose a solo using the style of famous soloists. In all the features you have ultimate control on how the rhythm progresses, change notes in the melody or solo, mix and match styles, substitute chords for a more jazzy feel, leave instruments out for a section and so on. For the most part, your options are unlimited.


††† Over the next several newsletters, Iím going to go through all the features and walk you through composing a song complete with melody, solo and humanization so that it sounds like a person rather than a computer composed it.


Next month† - inputting the chords for the verse

††† One of my secret weapons in composing and arranging is Band in A Box. Itís produced by PG Music and is in its 12 or 13th iteration. In my opinion, itís the preeminent auto-accompaniment software. As the years have come and gone, the software has become more sophisticated and incorporates live drum patterns, solos and humanized melodies.


†††† I canít tell you how it does what it does but I can tell you what it does and how to use it to your advantage. You have to have a little bit of music theory in order to get the most of it but if youíve been reading the newsletters, youíve got all you need to get started.


†††† What exactly is auto-accompaniment software and how can you use it to produce and arrange music? In the upcoming articles, weíll explore how to use all the features of the software to do just that.



PG Music Band-in-a-Box UltraPAK (PC)
PG Music Band-in-a-Box UltraPAK (PC)