Yesterday I talked for a bit about the mid-nineties device call the PMA-5 by Roland. The program on that little gadget is similar to what someone working with “Band in a Box” might experience today. Band in a Box is essentially a musical engine that generates music based on what you specify for the style, instruments, and chord changes. It’s a great way to find out what your chord changes will sound like in multiple styles and it’s easy to sub in instruments for experimentation. It only takes a few minutes of messing around with it to get hooked. Let’s say you want to practice playing lead guitar over a certain guitar style, with Band in a Box it is very simple and quick to create an accompaniment.
Band-in-a-Box is the one of the most popular software programs for musicians, composers, and educators. It’s basically an intelligent automatic accompaniment program for your computer. You can hear and play along to many song ideas in a very short period of time with Band-in-a-Box as your “on demand” backup band. Just type in the chords for any song using standard chord symbols (like C, Fm7, or C13b9), choose the style you’d like, and Band-in-a-Box does the rest, automatically generating a complete professional-quality arrangement of piano, bass, drums, guitar, and strings or horns in a wide variety of popular styles. You can print out your finished creation with lyrics, chords, repeats and endings, DC markings and codas, or save it as a graphics file for web publication or e-mail to a friend. And when you’re ready to let others hear your composition, you can burn it directly to an audio CD. New features for the 2011 edition include big improvements to the sounds of RealTracks, with better sound over a much wider range of tempos. The RealTracks are now 70% smaller in size – and you can reclaim lots of existing hard drive space by shrinking your existing RealTracks without losing quality. We’ve also added a new Mixer window, allowing you to quickly set volumes,panning, reverb, tone and patches. The Mixer floats on top of the current window, so you can place it wherever it’s convenient to make quick and easy adjustments to your Band-in-a-Box track settings. This is just the beginning of the over 50 features added!
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Posted by Grosse Pointe Music Academy Staff