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Musical Mr Potato Head

I got a new iMac recently (what do they build into Macs that causes them to automatically slow to a crawl exactly three years after you buy them?), and it came with a program called Garage Band, which does music recording, mixing, and editing. It comes with digitized instruments built in and also a lot of music snippets. They are called "Apple Loops."

I began playing with Garage Band and I decided it is like a musical Mr Potato Head (do they still make that? If not then people younger than me might not know what I'm talking about), because all you have to do is drag loops to the track area, and they automatically change to the key and tempo you've specified, so they more or less automatically sound good together.

You can also play on an onscreen keyboard, which is terribly awkward, or record into the program using a microphone or plugging an instrument into the computer.

Anyway, I put together a little piece of music, about 1.5 minutes and 1-2 MB, that I am pretty happy with as a first attempt:
http://www369.pair.com/jonesqn3/gb/song.mp3

Comments

( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
treacle_well
Dec. 14th, 2004 01:05 am (UTC)
Ooooh. I like it.
firecat
Dec. 14th, 2004 01:11 am (UTC)
Thanks!
cjsmith
Dec. 14th, 2004 01:19 am (UTC)
What fun -- both the creative process and the piece itself!
bobbylevi
Dec. 14th, 2004 10:12 am (UTC)
That sounds like lots of fun... and the result was good too!! :-)
firecat
Dec. 14th, 2004 05:20 pm (UTC)
Thanks!
sashajwolf
Dec. 14th, 2004 11:19 am (UTC)
My eldest loves Garage Band - and he knows what Mr Potato Head is, because it features in the Toy Story movies! The toy itself was on sale around the time the movies came out, but I don't know whether it's still available now.
epi_lj
Dec. 14th, 2004 12:37 pm (UTC)
That's a fun tune! :) I've only played with GarageBand in stores. I didn't immediately "get" the interface, but I think it's because I've got too many assumptions from other music apps and I expect it to work kind of the same.

I had heard from others using it that you can actually change the note structure of their loops -- how much flexibility do you have with that? Does it sound decent when you do it?

Logic Pro 7 support Apple Loops (the loop type from GB), actually, but I'm still uding 6. I'm not sure that I'd use them much (I don't really like working with loops of that sort), but I could see them being fun jumping-off points, and really useful for people doing commercial music (jingles and such) who need catchy, royalty-free elements they can quickly drop in.
firecat
Dec. 14th, 2004 04:43 pm (UTC)
Thanks! With the software instrument loops, you can transpose, edit notes, modulation, pitchblend, sustain. What they are calling the "real instrument" loops can be transposed (if you don't transpose them too much they still sound good) and you can cut and paste in the waveforms. You can also import your own sounds and make them loops or not.
( 8 comments — Leave a comment )

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