I’ve been quiet lately, but that’s not a bad thing. It only means I’ve been super busy, which is a good thing.
While I was listening to one of the latest songs I have composed, I realized that listening to my compositions over and over not only heals me, but it actually sounds DIFFERENT every time I listen. Thanks to the latest in sequencing sampler technology, the music I compose starts off as a capture of my performance with every instrument in the song. That’s what a sequencer does: it captures exactly how I played the keyboard for each particular “take” or recording. So when I compose, I’m not actually recording anything, except when I struck keys in order along a timeline, along with how hard I struck them, how long I held them down, whether I pushed on the keys while holding them down (and if so, how hard), and the moment I let go of any key. There may be additional performance controls recorded simultaneously, or as a second or third pass; controls which affect the live performance of tweak-able parameters of the sound.
Behind the scenes, inside the computer, sophisticated playback devices are triggered with the playback of my performance, much in the same way player pianos were triggered in the 19th century saloons. There’s a maturity of those playback devices which have added several layers of realism to my performance, to help your ears believe that real instruments were being played by real people, rather than synthesized instruments being manipulated by a keyboard player. That technology allows for mildly human characteristics to be applied to my performance, such that each time it is played back, every instrument being triggered has multiple layers of sounds to evoke at random so that humanistic-flaws can be artificially introduced into the resulting mix of instrumentation.
The outcome is truely inspiring while sitting here in the studio listening back to 27 instrument tracks being played back, each one loyally playing exactly as I performed it originally, but with a slightly different nuance each time the same piece is heard over again.
Seriously, that’s some really cool shit right there. My peformance, as though being played back by real people, just a little bit differently each time I play it back, every instrument combining up to 5 or more variations of every particular note, with mildly different inflections.
The bottom line is that I’ve been fighting an up-hill battle with technology to get it to perform to the level of my expectations, and it seems that I’m making incredible gains across all fronts in the level of productivity I’m now able to achieve across the boards with all the latest, greatest technology I have invested in within my studio. That includes my Phantom/GoPro aerial multi-rotor high-definition camera rig, as well as the 12-core super-computer which powers an entire orchestra beneath the muscle-memory perambulations of my narrow fingers across a piano keyboard. Amazing Technology, ALL of it!