A 2016 Project

The magical software commonly called DAW offers opportunities for beginners and intermediate (as well as big time producers and musicians) to compose original songs or covers along with all elements of the song into various audio files that can be played from any website on any computer, android device or on You Tube. I have been experimenting with the DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) Mixcraft. DAW is nothing new. DAW hardware and software has evolved from programs with limited features into magnificent canvases on which a composer can create a variety of musical genre and minor sketches. Jazz, Classical, Film, Blues, Rock & Country, Hip Hop, and many others form the pallet from which a composer can paint. As a beginner (going on four years now) my interest in DAW as a self teaching and experimental medium has lead to a growing number of examples or mixdown files that represent the focus of various studies.

For example, listening to You Tube lessons by Quaverbox, a student can practice some improvisations taught by Terrance. The work, chord and melody tracks, can be played by the student into the DAW, mixed down to an mp3 file and made available on a website, Facebook or You Tube to invite comments, criticism or suggestions from fellow students. The files that will populate this page are of my own creation with, guitar, harmonica, piano along with the many instruments in the vast Mixcraft and Native Instrument libraries. To clarify, notes of a simple song like Yankee Doodle Dandy can be placed upon the DAW canvas. One can easily assign a small flute or the full Vienna Orchestra to play the song on the DAW canvas; a truly exciting proposition. The mp3 files will be posted below starting with "Foggy Dew" a song about the Irish Revolution of 1919. Each file will have some audio track or tracks of my playing, guitar, piano, or blues harp.

Foggy Dew I created this version of Foggy Dew by listening to several versions of the song on You Tube. My first DAW piece, I worked out the notes on keyboard and with the midi keyboard played them into Mixcraft, my Digital Audio Workstation. Building the basic tune in A minor different instruments, percussion and sound effects tracks, the bells and birds, were inserted. Foggy Dew, written by Father P. O'Neill, is about the failed Easter revolt of 1916 against the British that went very badly but ended in steps toward an Independent Ireland in the years that followed. The Oboe solo is in memory of Vic, a good father, and friend and Oboe master, a truly fine fellow and mentor who I came to know as a young Marine long, long ago.

Malaguena Finally, right? I've inserted several bars of Malaguena and recorded a response in an audio track. Sort of like dueling DAW. I'll expand this exercise on through the whole song, with correct notes played digitally followed by a live audio of my guitar. It took many takes until correct, thus learning happened. Listen carefully and you can hear the difference.
The first of film score track sketches. This is done with Mixcraft 8 and VSTs in that library plus nice string VSTs out of Garritan Personal Orchestra. The results of the 'orchestral sketch' is quite nice. Oboe, Strings and Piano in B major. The idea is to match a situation or action with a musical expression. Here, Pensive, resolve.

Next sketch here soon.