Join Skye Lewin for an in-depth discussion in this video Using a MIDI keyboard to play and edit notes, part of Melodyne Studio Essential Training.
Now that we have our MIDI keyboard connected, we can use that MIDI keyboard to alter and edit the pitch of our melody by playing the desired notes on our keyboard. Let's take a look at this. First let's open our Editor window, and I should note that you can also do this directly from the Arrangement window, but just for the purposes of being able to follow along visually I want to show you this in our Editor window. I'm going to select this section of our melody here. What we can do now is play each segment of our melody, and each segment is indicated by the note separation lines that we've made, or that Melodyne has automatically made.
So every time we play a note on our MIDI keyboard, we'll be affecting the next segment in the line, and we can also move from one to the next or move backwards from one to the previous by using the Left and Right Arrow keys on our keyboard. (music playing) Now first let's go up to our MIDI menu, and you can see that there are several MIDI options here. The first option is No MIDI In to Tracks, and with this selected the MIDI keyboard will have no effect. Now if we choose MIDI In Plays Notes, we're essentially setting Melodyne to perform the melody that we play on the keyboard using the audio from our performance.
Essentially, what this does is Melodyne treats each section as a sample that you can playback in real time using your MIDI keyboard. So let's take a look by pressing any key on the MIDI keyboard. We will trigger the next note at the pitch of the MIDI key we press. (music playing) So you can see that just by walking downwards we're playing those notes as we press the key. Now if I wanted to backup, I can just press the arrow key to go back to where we started, and I can attempt to play my own melody on this.
(music playing) But you'll notice that this is stepping through in real time from one note to the next. So when you're not actually playing back and using this feature, it's more just about an auditioning stage. If you actually wanted to use this in real time, we can actually play our arrangement and play the MIDI keyboard as the arrangement is playing. So let's take a look at that. (music playing) So what we just heard is that Melodyne will play each word or syllable through the note that I played on the MIDI keyboard as we play back our arrangement.
Now when I let my finger off of the keyboard it will default back to the original melody or whatever is set in Melodyne. So let's take a look at that real quick one more time. I'm going to play a melody on the first phrase, and then remove my hand from the keyboard in the second phrase so that we can hear what's already in Melodyne. (music playing) So you can hear that I was stepping down the keyboard during the first phrase--essentially butchering the performance--and then I let the second phrase play without me touching it at all.
Now under the MIDI menu the second option is MIDI In Edits Notes, and this is a really handy and powerful way to actually edit the audio and change the pitch in your Arrangement or Editor window without actually having to move the notes with the Edit Pitch tool. So if we're not playing back, it's going to act just like it did during the Plays Notes. But it's actually going to visibly change the pitch. So anytime I press a key. (music playing) We can see that Melodyne shifts the pitch to the note that I played on the keyboard.
So I'm going to undo that real quick, and we'll do the same thing but in real time while playing back so we can essentially play our new melody and record it and have it affect our audio once we're done. (music playing) This isn't the best musical example obviously, but you can at least see how it functions. Under the MIDI menu the next option is MIDI In Transposes Globally from C3=0.
When we've MIDI In Transposes Globally from C3=0 selected, C3 equals our current key. So if we were to play C#3, that note would now become our new key, and it would transpose globally our entire arrangement to the new key. Likewise, MIDI In Transposes Track will select and operate on our track, using the same technique. Under MIDI Portamento Time, we can choose Fast, Medium, or Slow so that using Portamento on our keyboard will alter the pitch in real time making a transition from one note to the next either Fast, Medium, or Slow.
One thing I want to point out, though, is that this is just for a performance, as this does not actually record or affect our audio. So if we were to play and change our notes-- and I'm going to put us back in Plays Notes so we're not actually editing-- if I play a melody in real time and alter the Portamento, we can hear the effect. (music playing) Now what we're actually hearing is the MIDI change that I did with Transpose Globally from C3=0. So I've actually transposed the entire pitch up. It sounds like an octave or more.
So I'm going to undo that before we go on. (music playing) Okay, so now we're back to my badly edited MIDI version. Let's try this again with a new performance in Portamento. (music playing) So essentially we have at this point a medium transition between the notes when I change notes on the MIDI keyboard.
We can make the slower to make it more noticeable. (music playing) So now you can hear it's starting to slide between the notes a little more slowly. Again, this is just a performance change, not something that affects the audio that we have recorded. The last few options under the MIDI menu allow us to open our Show Audio-to-MIDI Parameters, in which case we can show the Velocity, Pitch Bend, and Envelope and edit those things right in our window.
We can also open our MIDI Ports Preferences or our Remote Control Preferences right from the menu without having to first go into the Preferences and select the related tab. One last really cool thing about using MIDI to control our audio is that we can choose to have separate MIDI channels control separate tracks. As you can see, right now we have All MIDI Channels to Selected Tracks enabled, which means that whenever I send a MIDI signal on any channel, it's only going to alter the selected track.
However, if we change the selection to MIDI Channels to Track Numbers, we now have separate channels controlling separate track numbers. In other words, MIDI Channel 1 will only alter the audio on track 1 and MIDI channel 2 will only alter the audio on track 2.
- Understanding the Melodyne variants: Editor, Assistant, Essential, and Studio
- Creating, moving, and deleting tracks
- Setting the tone scale, meter, and tempo in a session
- Working with multiple tracks (in Melodyne Studio)
- Working with Direct Note Access to edit polyphonic audio (in Melodyne Editor)
- Using the various editing tools in Melodyne
- Correcting pitch and time automatically
- Adjusting pitch and time manually with the Melodyne tools
- Setting hardware, plug-in, and MIDI preferences
- Editing audio with MIDI
- The Mixer in Melodyne
- Using Melodyne plug-in, Melodyne Bridge and ReWire
- Exporting with Spot to Pro Tools