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In this course, author and musician Garrick Chow reviews GarageBand for the Apple iPad—an inexpensive yet powerful app that allows you to record and edit music with both real and virtual instruments. The course begins with a tour around the interface, examining the instrument and track views. Garrick demonstrates how to play both touch instruments and Smart Instruments, as well as how to connect and use real instruments and microphones. Garrick then explains how to build, record, and edit a song from scratch, and how to then export and share your music with iTunes, Facebook, YouTube, SoundCloud, email, and with other devices.
Let's continue our tour of the Smart Instruments by looking at the Smart Guitar and the Smart Bass. And the Smart Guitar especially is just a great and fun tool to have on hand when you are trying to flesh out parts or come up with a demo. It's very easy to learn. You don't even necessarily need to know how to play guitar to come up with some great sounding guitar parts. So let's start by taking a look at the Smart Guitar. So right now we are seeing a representation of an acoustic guitar. If you tap the Acoustic name, you see I have access to three other guitars you can play around with; you've got the Classic Clean, Hard Rock, you can see these all have different looks, and the Roots Rock.
So four distinct guitar sounds to choose from here. Let's go back and start with the acoustic. Now there are couple of ways you can play the Smart Guitar. At its default state here you can tap the top of these chord strips, you can see that each have a chord name at the top and simply by tapping one, you play that chord. (music playing) Another way to play it is just to simply tapping the notes on the chord strips. (music playing) Or you can also strum it like a real guitar.
(music playing) You can even do a combination of tapping notes and strumming. (music playing) Now you might have been noticing I have been muting the chords simply by holding down in one of the blank areas on the end of the fretboard here. You can do that on either end. You can actually hold that down while you play your strum-- (music playing) to get the muted guitar sound. Now the chords that we are seeing right now are based on the key of the song.
If you recall we go to Settings, and you can see the key currently is C major. So GarageBand selects the chords that are most common for the key you've selected. If you want to change a key, let's go back into Settings, and if I choose say A minor, you can see I get a different set of chords, and change that back to C major. Now there may be cases where you want to keep the current key of the song, but you want to use a different chord, maybe one that doesn't appear here. In that case all you do is go back to Settings and tap Edit Chords.
From here select the chord strip that you want to change. So maybe in this case I want to start with the B-flat and I want to change that to a B-flat Diminished, 7th, and you even get the choice here of changing the bass note of the chord. So right now it's an A#, I could make that an A, or a B, and so on. Maybe I'll just make that an F. So right now I have a B-flat Diminished 7th with an F bass. (music playing) Sounds like that.
Once you change a chord strip, it's going to stay that way no matter which guitar you select, so if I switched over to say the Hard Rock Guitar, I still have that same chord. (music playing) Now if you change your mind and you want to set the chord back to the way it was, just go back to your Settings > Edit Chords, select it and then tap Revert. So now we are back to the B-flat major. So you can see there are many ways to play the Smart Guitar. Now these methods I have shown you so far, still require a sense of rhythm and some knowledge about the way notes work.
Now if you want GarageBand to do more of the heavy-lifting for you, you can use the Autoplay feature. You can see, we have an Autoplay dial here it has four positions. I can simply move that to one of the four positions and you can see the strings have now disappeared from the fretboard, all I have to do now is tap a chord strip to play it. (music playing) Look ma, no hands! (music playing) You can choose one of the other positions. You have some finger-picking going on there.
(music playing) Now another really cool thing about this is there are actually two more hidden patterns within each one of these chord strips. When you tap with one finger, you get one chord pattern, if you tap with two you've got a slightly different one, and if you tap with three, you get yet another one. (music playing) And that's the case for each one of these four different Autoplay positions.
(music playing) There is the basic, and slightly more aggressive. (music playing) So those are the different Autoplay positions you can play around with. It really adds a lot of variety to the music you are trying to compose, and that holds the same no matter which guitar you select. If I go back to the Hard Rock Guitar for instance, we have different Autoplay patterns here as well. (music playing) Three fingers, or go back to two.
(music playing) Now yet another way to play the Smart Guitar is to switch from chords to notes. Each guitar has a switch where you can go from chords to notes and that gives you a fretboard for that particular guitar. So here instead of strumming chord strips, you'd tap out the notes you want to play. (music playing) You can even bend the strings. You can play multiple notes together. (music playing) And as we saw with the regular Touch instruments, you also have access to the Scale button so you can choose what type of scale you want to play in.
So for instance if I chose Minor Blues, all the notes I play will be in that particular scale. (music playing) Now you notice that we have certain frets that are lighter than the others. (music playing) Those are all the roots in a particular scale. So this makes it very easily to solo in the scale that you selected. I am going to switch out back to the Off position, so I have access to the full fretboard again. Now you maybe noticed that the electric guitars also have two effects pedals associated with each one.
So in this case with the Hard Rock I have Vintage Drive and Robo Flanger, and you simply turn them on by tapping their foot switches there and then you can hear the effects. (music playing) Each guitar has its own set of two pedals, but you can't change them when you're working with the Smart Guitar, the only time you can swap pedals in and out are if you're working with the actual guitar amp instrument. So just so you can get an idea of how these pedals sound, I am just going to switch back to Chords, I'll turn on Autoplay and I'll just tap the pedals on and off.
(music playing) Nice little echo effect there. Try on the Classic Clean. (music playing) Here is the Chorus. (music playing) So you can get some great additional sounds by adding the stomp boxes to your Smart Guitar.
All right, now let's take a look at the Smart Bass. Select Instruments, switch over to Smart Bass. So the Smart Bass layout is very similar to the Smart Guitar. We have the same types of chord strips. Only with the Smart Bass we can't tap the top of the Chord Strips to play chords because you generally don't play chords on a bass, but you can tap out bass patterns by either strumming the chords like this or just tap out a rhythm. (music playing) The bass also has its own Autoplay patterns. Each one has four positions again.
(music playing) And you have the same hidden patterns by tapping with two or three fingers. (music playing) You can select from three models of electric basses: Liverpool, Muted, and Picked, and Upright bass as well. This is cool if you want an upright bass sound. (music playing) Especially cool if you want a fretless sound, you can switch over to Notes, again we see the fretboard here, but you can do slides and bends on the bass here as well.
(music playing) And that holds true again for whichever bass you pick. You get the fretboard when we have notes selected. Incidentally, if you want to play the open notes of any of these strings, just play behind the nut here, that will give you the E here for example. (music playing) GarageBand also includes four synth basses in here as well, for instance Exoplanet and they make it very easy for you to play this instrument if you're used to playing the bass fretboard, but it sounds very different from a regular bass.
(music playing) You've got controls for Cut-Off and in this case, FM--actually let me pick a different bass that holds out a little bit longer. This changes to Resonance in this case, we could start playing with sounds here. (music playing) Or of course you can also switch back to Chords where you can tap Autoplay Chords-- (music playing) or just again, tap out specific notes on the chord strips.
So for the most part, Smart Bass and Smart Guitar are very similar to each other and you shouldn't have much trouble playing them once you get a little hands-on time playing both of those instruments.
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