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Author Topic: Automation Suggestion  (Read 8827 times)

Tomd100

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Re: Automation Suggestion
« Reply #15 on: February 10, 2016, 01:29:57 PM »
Here is an example of what I am talking about (in another IOS app) - it allows the move between song parts but I don't think it allows you to do so via midi. But the video shows the advantages of the approach. You can imagine the SLM automation sequence being linked to the song parts which would repeat any midi presets associated with the song part. Overall it allows you a bit more freedom when playing live against a backing track.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gMGYTdqH9Jc

arlo

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Re: Automation Suggestion
« Reply #16 on: February 10, 2016, 02:24:51 PM »
I want to clarify that Tomd100's recent proposal of jumping around in an automation track (which then controls audio from an external player like a BeatBuddy pedal) would be a lot easier than jumping around in an audio track playing in my app, or simultaneously in an automation track and an audio track. If you want to control audio playing from my app, as in the app demo you posted, I think that would require a different approach, with something "above" both the automation track and the audio track, that controls both. However, if you were able to slice up your audio track into separate files and attach all those files to the song, then controlling everything from the automation track would make sense again (and the main issue would be how fast the device could start playing each file).

Pongo

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Re: Automation Suggestion
« Reply #17 on: February 10, 2016, 03:17:32 PM »
Here is an example of what I am talking about (in another IOS app) - it allows the move between song parts but I don't think it allows you to do so via midi. But the video shows the advantages of the approach. You can imagine the SLM automation sequence being linked to the song parts which would repeat any midi presets associated with the song part. Overall it allows you a bit more freedom when playing live against a backing track.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gMGYTdqH9Jc

Now that might be something for me to consider, if I can figure out how to use it in tandem with SLM.

Off the top of my head, I don't know how I could use Trax for playback of a backing track, while using SLM for lyrics and automation for things like MIDI patch changes.

Any ideas how this would work?

arlo

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Re: Automation Suggestion
« Reply #18 on: February 10, 2016, 04:43:43 PM »
iPad Pro with split screen (or two iPads, which is about the same cost)?

Tomd100

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Re: Automation Suggestion
« Reply #19 on: February 11, 2016, 03:44:08 AM »
I think a really good solution would if the TRAX developer could implement midi to allow you to select tracks, start / stop and jump to markers etc. using midi commands from an external midi controller. Then the backing tracks could be controlled from within SLM and if SLM had the ability to implement markers in the automation sequence and jump between them, an easier option for SLM as Arlo mentioned, this would make for some really exciting possibilities.

I downloaded the TRAX app and tested it with a Neil Young song I had in iTunes. It is a little basic at the moment but setting up the markers and moving between song parts really works: I set a maker at the beginning of each verse and then was able to jump from the intro to the second verse, missing the first, without a noticeable skip in the playback. As I mentioned, MainStage has a similar capability in the playback plugin. I imagine the scenario during a live performance where you start a song with a a repeating opening riff, with the backing track playing and looping round the opening sequence, such as a simple drum sequence. As it's playing, you introduce the song and get the audience going, and then when ready, kick off the rest of the song with one stomp on a midi foot controller. The backing track kicks off with the rest of the song (and the BB, if used moves to the next song part). You could have song parts that included other instruments that you could introduce on the fly if you wanted. Definitely worth exploring.

Pongo

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Re: Automation Suggestion
« Reply #20 on: February 11, 2016, 07:37:13 AM »
iPad Pro with split screen (or two iPads, which is about the same cost)?

How could I sync SLM and TRAX, so that the SLM automation responds to the changes being made in real-time to a backing track [recording] in TRAX?

I suppose SLM would need to be the slave? If so, would SLM be driven by the plack back (time) of the recording in TRAX?

For songs where a recording is not used, would/could SLM work alone, without needing TRAX to initiate anything?



I realize that these questions are probably pie in the sky, but...it would be great to be able to do this, eventually.


If there's a way to do this, it will be `lights out' for the competition!
« Last Edit: February 11, 2016, 08:05:43 AM by Pongo »

Tomd100

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Re: Automation Suggestion
« Reply #21 on: February 11, 2016, 08:28:05 AM »
Assuming Arlo made the changes to the automation file with the ability to include markers (in the fashion of midi presets) with commands to jump back or forward to a marker and assuming the TRAX developer allowed the jump to markers in his app to be controlled by midi, the setup would work as follows:

1) Set up a song in SLM with automation (but no backing track).
2) Add a midi preset to the song that would send a command to TRAX to start playing the backing track. (assuming you already have the backing track setup in TRAX as you need it with all the markers required etc.)
3) Run automation record from SLM which will kick off the backing track (because of step 2) in TRAX and as it's playing through you place markers in SLM at the same places you have them in TRAX. If the markers are not accurate enough when you place them the first time you can tweak the timing in SLM later.
4) Once you have the markers in SLM you could send simultaneous commands to SLM and TRAX when you want a change - remember that it is not important for these commands to be sent at exactly the same time because both system will only jump to the designated marker when they reach the next marker. So if during a verse you want to repeat the verse rather than go through to the chorus you would send a command to SLM to return the automation to the beginning of the verse (whatever marker that is) 
and likewise another command to TRAX to do the same with the backing track. Both systems will only jump when the end of the verse marker is reached. Of course this assumes that the 2 systems stay in sync during playback - but I think they would - the timing of the backing track should be the same each time it is played. Another variation of this is to send one command to SLM to go to specific marker and for SLM to pass it on to TRAX to do the same. That would probably be the better option (this assumes that both systems would allow you to map the specific midi command that indicates a jump to a marker.

I am assuming here that the all of this is controlled via an external midi controller such as the Blueboard.
« Last Edit: February 11, 2016, 08:48:08 AM by Tomd100 »

arlo

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Re: Automation Suggestion
« Reply #22 on: February 11, 2016, 10:03:20 AM »
If TRAX supported MIDI input, then you could also do this without an automation track at all ... just set up a MIDI preset for each section of the song, which includes a marker message to TRAX and also any other MIDI you want to send to other devices. Then you could have real-time control just by pressing the MIDI preset buttons in Set List Maker.

If you wanted the advance control like TRAX has (to select the next section any time during the current section), then that would require the automation track functionality, with the updates discussed above.

I'm willing to take a look at jumping around in the audio in my app. With the new audio engine I added a few months ago, performance might be good enough. That would eliminate the need for a separate app. I am just focused on other parts of my apps currently.

The part that I still can't wrap my head around is whether the automation track should control the recording (which would allow you to jump around in the recording using automation track markers) or whether the recording should control the automation track (which would allow you to play the recording straight through without any jumping). Allowing both scenarios seems very confusing. If the automation track controlled the recording and you let it play straight through, the automation track would be telling the recording to jump to the spot where it already is. I guess that wouldn't hurt anything if the timing is as accurate as it would need to be. It seems weird though.

On the plus side, this would allow someone to rearrange their backing tracks using only the automation track. For example, I could add a single automation event at the end of the last chorus that jumps to the start of the last verse. Then every time I played the song, it would be extended by one extra verse and chorus. I could see that being useful even to people who don't need the manual control that you guys are looking for.

Pongo

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Re: Automation Suggestion
« Reply #23 on: February 11, 2016, 10:45:08 AM »
If the TRAX developer did add MIDI support, what about using a MIDI merge box (similar to an A/B/Y box for audio?

With that, we could connect it to a controller, that would then send the same MIDI data to each iPad or app, simultaneously. In theory, SLM and TRAX would not need to be connected.

Would that scenario make this easier?

arlo

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Re: Automation Suggestion
« Reply #24 on: February 11, 2016, 10:55:01 AM »
I don't think that would help. Sending MIDI between apps shouldn't be a problem if both apps support it.

Tomd100

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Re: Automation Suggestion
« Reply #25 on: February 11, 2016, 02:57:23 PM »
In my example the reason I didn't suggest tht SLM automation control the backing track in TRAX is because I was thinking about using the automation to control live presets and effects for the guitar as well. I use a Voicelive 3 for vocal and guitar effects and currently I use SLM automation to turn guitar and vocal effects on and off on the VL3. During playback. So my approach was to see if I could still maintain those midi presets in line with the song parts as I jumped from one part to another.

In a different config perhaps, there is the BeatBuddy: the BB has song parts too (in drum format of course) and the way it works is by manually transitioning between them using the pedal. Typically you would start a transition just before the end of the measure and the BB will start the transition fill and move to the next song part at the end of the measure. It takes care of the timing so you don't need to worry too much if you are a little early or late with the transition. Unlike a backing track the BB just keeps going if you let it. I was thinking that with the same setup in SLM the automation could send out midi commands to effect transitions on the BB either by simply letting the automation play all the way through or by jumping between sections as with the backing track. In this case however you would set each marker in the SLM automation a couple of seconds before the actual change. That way the marker could be followed immediately by the transition command and the BB would complete the transition at the end of the measure. The BB can sync to the midi clock from SLM. I suppose it would be possible to have both BB and backing track running at the same time if the two could remain in sync.

Pongo

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Re: Automation Suggestion
« Reply #26 on: February 13, 2016, 11:13:20 AM »
I don't think that would help. Sending MIDI between apps shouldn't be a problem if both apps support it.

I just wondered if using the MIDI merge for 2 iPads would, in essence, act as a master sync device.

arlo

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Re: Automation Suggestion
« Reply #27 on: April 17, 2018, 02:17:43 PM »
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http://forum.arlomedia.com/index.php/topic,1509.msg8041.html#msg8041