In this lesson we will be picking up where we left off about controlling virtual instruments.

We will be talking about using articulations, namely:
  • The REASON behind the various articulations, and why you should use several types
  • Sustains (different attacks) tremolo, trills, etc. 
    • Trills, tremolos 
    • Attacks: slow VS fast 
  • Legato 
    • Legato speeds 
  • Using short to mid length articulations in combination to create compelling lines  (pizz, spicc, stac, marc, sfzorzando, etc.)
  • FX - cresendos, clusters, risers, etc. 
We also talk some about:
  • Loops and time stretching
  • Using recorded performances (action strings, hollywood winds)
  • Phrasing and breaths
  • Tempo tracks
  • The grid 
  • Quantizing 

Play around with the different articulations you have in your sample libraries. Go through the library and take every articulation for a "test drive, " or better yet, write a 30 second piece of music featuring that one articulation.

Take a few minutes to read up on that articulation online or to watch a short video about it. This will help give you some real-life context for how the performers create that sound, and it should help you to remember that the articulation is a creative option in your composing toolkit. 

Refer to the instructional materials from the sample developers to see how the instruments are intended to be used. Edit velocity and controller codes as necessary to adjust the expression or attack (or whatever) of the instrument. 

How To Compose with MIDI and Virtual Instruments

Learn how to set up a composing workstation, control Virtual Instruments like a pro, and create realistic and compelling music on your computer. 

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