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In Logic Pro 9 Essential Training, Scott Hirsch explains how to harness the power and flexibility of Logic Pro, Apple’s popular songwriting software, to record, edit, and mix music. The course includes instruction on how to compose in Logic Pro, and spend more time being creative and less time dealing with technical uncertainties. Scott focuses on setting up a workspace, recording with both live performers and digital instruments, editing and arranging, and mixing and mastering a composition. Exercise files accompany the course.
One of the most powerful features of the Score Editor is that it allows you to compose multi-instrumental parts as MIDI and then prepare them for a real session. In this video, we'll learn how to take a MIDI mockup of a string part and transcribe it successfully in the Score Editor. Here's a section of a song, where a string part, using Violin and Viola was sketched out via MIDI. Let's take a listen. (Music playing.) We want to prepare these parts, using the Score Editor, for a real session with 3 Violins and 3 Viola players.
Right now, these MIDI regions in the song use the EXS24 sampler for their sounds. Before doing anything else in the Score Editor, we should quantize the regions. This will make sure that note durations are solid in the score. So let's click on Violins 2 region and go up to the Region parameters box and we'll quantize to 16th note. I'll do the same for the Violas region. Okay, now let's look at the parts in the Score window. Select the Violins 2 region and hit Command+3 to open the Score Editor. Let's go back to the beginning of the song.
The timing looks good, but there sure are a lot of accidentals. The key signature isn't always something you think of or set when you are composing with MIDI. But when you look at notation, you should make sure you are writing in the right key. To change key signature, click on the Parts Box icon with four flats in it. Now we'll drag out F# Major, which is the key of this song, into the clef. Logic automatically adjusted the key signature and the accidentals accordingly. Now let's look at Major 7. Logic interpreted this note as D-Natural.
While this would work, in the key of F#, this note should really be written as C double sharp, since there's no D in F# Major scale. Logic is smart, but it's not that smart. No problem. We can fix this by right- clicking on the note itself and choosing Accidentals > Enharmonic Shift #. There. We've now turned this note into a C double sharp. This is technically more correct. Let's close this window, click on the Violas region, and hit Command+3 to open the Score Editor for that region. Let's also change the D-Natural to a C double sharp in this region as well.
Viola players like to view their staff on an alto clef. We can change that here too. Notice the alto clef is down in our Parts Box. Just drag it into the clef and it replaces the G clef to an alto clef. This is how Viola players like to view. Okay, now what if we want to try out this part in a different key? Do we have to transpose everything manually? Nope. Logic will do that for us. Let's try it in the key of G. Close the Score window, and go up to the Global Tracks on the top of our Arrange window. Let's open the Signature Lane and we'll double-click where it says F#.
Now we can change to the key of G Major. Hit OK and let's select the Violins region again to go back into the Score window. As you can see, Logic automatically adjusted the key signature to G and all the notes and accidentals accordingly. That's how easy it is to transpose your parts in Logic. Using the Score Editor to transcribe MIDI sketches into usable notation is a useful skill to have in Logic. Also, trying your arrangements in different keys has never been easier.
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