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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.
The Arrange window is the central hub mission control of a Logic project. It is where you will be spending most of your time in the program. And as the name suggests, it is a place where you can arrange all of the elements for your song while maintaining a global point of view. With the use of handy collapsible side and bottom panes, you're also able to view and control a variety of different parameters for your song. Let's dive into the Arrange window and understand what all of these areas do and how we can use them to manage our project as efficiently as possible. The center area of the Arrange window is the Arrange area.
In here you get to see all of your tracks horizontally laid out in a timeline fashion. Tracks are individual lanes where the sounds live for your project. Audio tracks contain audio regions. Audio regions are rectangular objects that can be freely edited at start and end points, and they are associated with the corresponding audio file on the hard drive. Bass.2 is an example of an audio region on the audio track called Bass. Software instrument tracks contains MIDI regions.
MIDI regions are rectangular objects that contain MIDI events or individual notes or commands that control a software instrument in Logic. These objects called Ultrabeat are examples of MIDI regions in the software instrument track Beat 1. Let's use the Spacebar to hit Play and hear the tune. You'll notice the vertical line scrolls across the screen from left to right. This is called our playhead. (Music playing.) Use the Spacebar again to stop playback.
You can use Return to send the playhead back to the beginning of the song. Zooming horizontally and vertically can be managed with the Zoomer controls in the lower right of the Arrange window. To zoom in and out horizontally, you can control this slider. To the right, you zoom in. To the left, you zoom out. To zoom in and out vertically, you can use this slider. Moving it up zooms you out. Moving it down zooms you in. You can also manage zooming with some key commands. Use Ctrl+Option+Right- Arrow to zoom in horizontally. Ctrl+Option+Left-Arrow to zoom out horizontally.
Ctrl+Option+Up-Arrow zooms you out vertically. Ctrl+Option+Down-Arrow zooms you in vertically. Tracks may be selected only one at a time in the Arrange window. To select a track, click on what's called the track header, this area of our Arrange window. Once a track is selected, parameters associated with the track and its contents will show up in the Inspector column on the left-hand side of the Arrange window. So if I select Beat 1, I see parameters associated with that track in the Inspector column on a left- hand side of the Arrange window.
The topmost box is called a region parameter box. We can close it by closing the disclosure triangle. Below that we have the track parameter box. We can close that. And then we see the channel strip where we can see real-time processing inserts and we can also control the volume and left or right panning of the selected track. Remember the selected track is Beat 1. Let's hit Play and see how we can control the volume of the drumbeat from Beat.1 on this song. (Music playing.) Hit the Spacebar to stop playback.
When I move the fader down, the drumbeat gets quieter. When I move the fader up, we hear the drumbeat louder. To the right of the channel strip, you have the main output. This is essentially a master volume control for all tracks together. When we hit Play, we can control them all together as a master volume control. (Music playing.) We can show or hide the Inspector by clicking on the Inspector icon in the top toolbar.
That hides it from view. Click it again to show it. You can also use the I button on your keyboard to do this. Speaking of this toolbar across the top, on the right-hand side we have some buttons that activate the right windowpane. Click on Media to see access to files and loops on our hard drive that we might use in the song. Next to that we have lists. This is a text list type view of important events in our song. Next to that we have Notes. This lets us write info about tracks or songs for later use. You can click right in here and type stuff.
To close this window, click on Notes again and it goes away. Finally, across the bottom of the Arrange window, we have the Editors. These offer more close-up views of audio. For example, if I select the Rhodes track, I can show the Sample Editor that shows us a close-up view of audio for that track. It can also show us MIDI, if I select the Synth track and turn on the Piano Roll Editor. You also have access here to a view of the Mixer where we can see all channel strips together at one time. We can see the Score window, where we can view musical notation for our project.
And also there is the Hyper Editor, which is another way we can view and edit MIDI in our project. Now that we're familiar with the Arrange window, we'll have a better understanding of this main window we will been working in, in Logic. Of course, we just scratched the surface and we now know where everything is. In the coming chapters, we'll dive deeper into how to use all of these important areas to make great music in Logic.
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