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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.
You may have noticed that our cursor changes its shape depending on where it is physically located in Logic's windows. In this lesson, we'll explore the toolbox and learn how to quickly select the right tool for the job. The default Pointer tool is a multifunctional tool. This means it can change its function depending on where it is relative to a region in the Arrange window. On the bottom right-hand side of our region it turn into a trimmer. On the top, right-hand side it turns into a loop. In the middle it turns into a pointer which you can use to select or move a region. The Pointer is cool but there are other tools we will need.
You can choose them with the menu on the upper right of the Arrange window, here the list of all the tools we have at our disposal. If I choose the Eraser tool, my cursor is now the Eraser tool. I'll go back and choose the Pointer tool. The menu to the right is our alternate tool. That's a tool that'll show up whenever we hit Command in the Arrange window. Notice right now it's currently selected as the Marquee tool. When I hit Command in the Arrange window, my cursor turns automatically into the Marquee tool. So you can change either your primary tool or your alternate tool at any time, to give you access to two tools at once.
It is tiring and time-consuming to constantly go up to the top right to change your tools. If you're working intensely for hours on end, you have spent a large amount of time dragging the mouse up there. There is got to be a faster way. There is. It's the Escape key. Any time you hit the Escape key it pops up a toolbox wherever your mouse is and you get a list of your primary tools from there. So at any time I can hit Escape and choose for example the Eraser tool. Now that's my tool. Hit Escape again. Choose the Pointer tool. Even faster are the numbers we see next to the tools when we hit Escape.
Notice that every tool has a number associated with it. If I hit Escape and then the number 3, I automatically get the Eraser tool. Escape+1 takes me back to the Pointer tool. These are fast and useful ways to change your tools. One last point, be aware that the list changes slightly and the tools will do different things depending on what window we are in. If I select the Dark Pad ModW region and open the piano roll, I can see by the list of tools that they are different in this window. For example, I've a Finger tool, but I didn't have a Finger tool in the Arrange window. Also they do different things.
For example, the Pencil tool actually creates a MIDI event. (Music playing.) If I close this window and go back to the Arrange window, you'll see,by hitting Escape, and choosing the Pencil tool, that in this window it actually makes an empty region, something totally different. It may sound trivial and unnecessary to master quick selection of your tools, but you'll be astounded down the road how much difference it makes to quickly get the right tool when you need to perform a specific task in Logic. The faster you can make the move, the less likely that creative impulse you have will be forgotten.
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