Songwriting with EZdrummer 2

Lesson 8 of 12

EZMix 2, EZKeys, and Beatstation

 

Songwriting with EZdrummer 2

Lesson 8 of 12

EZMix 2, EZKeys, and Beatstation

 

Lesson Info

EZMix 2, EZKeys, and Beatstation

Right now we're going to leave the groove and easy drummer too, and I'm going to put you on the spot drew real quick to remember the chords in the course that you play, yeah, one five for those e b a I like it, okay? And I'm asking these questions about the chords because if, if drone I had been working on our masterpiece and indifference narrow, it would still be kind of presented from my standpoint as a writer this way, so the next thing that I would do is I would kind of go in and I could spend probably an hour talking about easy mix to and why it's super cool, but when I'm going to do is kind of show you the purpose behind easy mix too, so if we take a step back and tune tracks philosophy, which hopefully has been really obvious to folks is about writing music, it's about writing great songs and having tools that make processes that are normally really not fun, muchmore exciting and much easier easy mix too is no different, so I'm going to seoul the guitar track and I'm gonna open ...

easy mix too now easy mixed too is a plug in that we developed a few years ago it's obviously the next tuesday there was an easy mix and the idea really stemmed from the guys in our corporate office on the development team spending a lot of times still writing music and configuring these, you know, if you go in and you work with your songs, you plugging effects and re verbs and delays, and you create the signal chains that give you great sounding production. I mean, that's, that's, no secret, but how to configure those things and what order they go in and how they work. That could be daunting. So we decided to come up with easy mix too easy mixed to kind of picks up where the original easy mixed left off and introduces a whole slew of features. So what, you essentially have an easy mix, too, is almost every single kind of effects processor you could ever want behind the scenes. And we go to great producers, and we even have some grading house producers, and we say, ok, let's, put together a bunch of signal chains that make this sound better, or that sound better, or things that you would use in a regular sort of mixing environment. So when you look at the easy mixed two window, you'll notice right now the instrument group that I have selected same kind of filters, by the way, as you see, and he's a drummer, two guitars. Electric guitars and then there's a number of effects I don't really have any selected because I wanted the most options, but I haven't selected by pack and we have a pac called classic amps, so drew was playing through the desk into the apogee straight into pro tools and what we were hearing was just whatever and I had selected, but what super cool now is we could just come in and as his track is playing, we can change this anyway, one way could just start putting through a different environment and right now that's just classic camps I can come in just like every amplifier wait, I know so we have a sound and am sound a cabinet sound, an emulator sound for every kind of or style music there really is that you could deal with so again there's no right or wrong is the matter of having the option to scroll through, but that's just one facet of easy mix too easy mixed two is also a multi effects process or so for instance, if we wanted to open an instance of easy mix too and we will and you'll kind of see the difference, so let me close this on the guitar track let's, come over here and let's put an instance of easy mix two on easy drummer let's come in pick easy mix so now this is going to affect the drum sounds that we have so we can go through and there's actually a couple of packs that are great for this, but for instance, we have the drums toolbox, and we've got another one back here, the mixed toolbox, and these packs have these pre configured effects chains that basically help you dial you're sounding and the only thing you ever have control over and easy mix of these two knobs, because it's easy mix so it's not about tweaking or going in and said it's about really just wanted to say to pick the two most important factors of a sound and dialled in so for instance, let's, let's, let's, kind of do some some filtering here let's select drums and then kind of let's come over here. Well, symbols, modern rockingham effect, you know, and we can go in and we can kind of change what it is we're looking for is well, but I want to add I want to add the producer, which is kind of cool, and I want to add the type so again some of the same menu functions as you can see in the type, so check this out so let's, go back to our original scenario let's go toe to drums. And the type I want a group of us so it's going affect all the drums. So that means that the actual preset was designed to affect the drum kit as opposed to just a kicker snare. And then maybe I want to start toe, toe work through producers like I mean, this is jason suk off amazing metal producer he's got some drum bus plugging so let's, bypass this let's bypass this and let's hear the drums again by themselves without any easy mixed two. Yeah, uh, ok, now, let's put these next two on. Those are extreme variances, and clearly, we knew when we were going with something metal is going to be a metal. But maybe randy stout let's see some drum room compression changes the sound you mentioned, and again, you can see that we're clipping coming in. So we kind of dial that back now back going out, and we can see from the graphic representation on this side that there's an e q and a compressor involved in this present now know what level or what degree that's up to the person design the preset, but this just gives you options to dial through and dial you're sounding so easy. Mixed, too, is kind of a crucial part of the song the tune tracks long running process I don't think our drums actually need any enhancement I think they sound great coming out of these mixed message over to someone to leave him so that would be how we started again with the guitar tone, so again we can go in and we could we could go with guitar tones constantly all day and just sort of audition different things but let's stick with it now here's work it's really cool so we've got everything that we need for the structure of our song and this would be that point in time where you could do a number of things but in true to attract fashion, I think what we want to do is add some other instrumentation I think maybe there's something's missing so this is where we're going to bring ourselves to a segment called easy keys and easy drummer too I don't know who is or who isn't familiar with are easy keys program, but easy keys is essentially a song writers best friend, so I've opened easy keys in pro tools and we're good here we're going to rewind it you notice our song tracked down at the bottom also follow host is down at the bottom so we're good to go and what you see obviously is a view from the work that instrument but it's a piano now what's cool about easy keys is that it is the component too easy drummer to that you need to fully sort of dive into the immersive world of writing rhythm and melody I'm going to show you how so what's talked about the plug in real quick this was released in two thousand twelve it's been a very popular plug in it's based on a number of different sound libraries just like easy drummer to show for instance right now I have the upright piano loaded I could go in and select an electric piano electric grand a mark one a grand piano there's a number of different pianos but for this exercise I really thought it upright with sound great it works with your many controllers so if you actually are a piano player which I'm not but if you are you could sit down and actually work with a piano many controller and just use it as a sound library you can go in and you can affect the tuning off the piano just like you would on a regular actually more than one of our regular panel you can actually also go in and affect the dynamics when you're playing of what the softest velocities and the hardest velocities are when you play which is also nice all the petals work which is fantastic as well so you have full control over the actual instrument just like you would a regular piano now here's what's cool right now this program should look fairly familiar it should have some of the same essence survivors he's, a drummer to hopefully everybody's getting that. So we've got this groove, and we're not piano players. Why did we open a piano plug in? Well, one of the really cool features of easy keys is that now everybody can play piano, so check this out, just like we recorded eighty five thousand drum many files. We've also started recording ridiculous and copious amounts of piano, maybe files, so if we were to click this button here, the browser button, it would take us into our libraries that we have for easy keys, and we would go in. And for instance, let's say, we went into this blues library, same sort of lay out again when you go through the columns and then here's a verse and let's play that. Okay? It's not very inspiring, but here's what's really cool. First of all, we can check, weaken, go ahead and check to make sure we're even in the same key is the song we're recording and little me hold. We're not are we were and see, I would say what we've recorded was and e so we can actually go in, we could change that, um, anyway, we want to so what it gives you is if we're in e major for instance it also will give you the relative minor if you just click on major minor which is kind of nice same time signature is locked in the host so now here's a really cool function in easy keys we have some dialogue boxes over here clearly we have our sister box to add it like we had we have a number of things that look familiar zoom in zoom out let's just add some courts let's not do that but let's add some courts so this button here will an accord so he's down in a court of the timeline so we go back I'm going to mute um the drones because they're loud and let's see where we're at let's come back here. Okay, so our e u meeting itself way simple enough so we could go ahead and we could drop another e here what's at the court record, right? So we got three courts, so let me solo easy keys and let's listen to what that sounds like because it's very unimpressive right now so come back on nothing. Okay? So we know that the next chord I believe from our list was the genii a right so what's ahead of the one we can shorten this cord because it was so this will be a g look what I can do I can actually go in here and change things which is kind of nice and then let's add another court we're going to talk about that a little bit more the minute this is also going to be in a oh fantastic now let's see if we're so the ai needs to be here the genius to be a little longer so that's our basic rhythm everyone with me it's really boring but this the chords we need so what you can have and when I kind of showed you a little bit earlier would be if you click on the actual cord, the coordination you get what we call our court wheel and this allows you to change the structure of the court and harmonic color changed the way that the court is voice. So for instance, right now this is an e if we went into the details tab will see that the third in the fifth or being played and the kind of the regular inversion right in the middle we could make it go up an inversion called with keyboard come all the way down with different inversions way can actually make it an ease us for at the seventh, making a major seventh seven I mean, we can go on basically voice the cord anyway a piano player would voice the court in real time so that's kind of cool let's reset it so it's just kind of the same so again that's on any particular you just kind of click on it the box lights up and you have access to that so what's really cool again ok, so we've got that but there's really not a lot going on that would lead you to believe it's a real piano I mean it's just it's not working so the next step is really simple we've got our piano in place and we've got our court progression in place so let's go and let's kind of last so all these courts here like so now let's click this button called used browser many so we're in the browser okay used browser many what just happened was really cool you didn't see it happen or hear it happened when it happened and it's our core progression just assume the playing style that was performed for this many groove and then I said it so that it wouldn't play just to see if you guys were paying attention so back now way but the problem is we picked a really boring playing style so if we were to come back in for instance and go to country because why wouldn't wait and we can come to country and straight time a modern ballot let's hear this pre course that's not gonna work either way you know the best the best way to check anything obviously is to play against the track so it's played against the track oh wait, I'm over here already overnight sometimes these things happen folks it's too fast so we could go back to normal here with that clinker is that's pretty cool because we can fix that but let's bring the drums in and see if we're even remotely where we need to be rhythmically and this is again part of that process of just having all the tools available in real time. The guitar sounded like it was pretty close, though there was some space there but nice simple enough I'm actually going to grab a preset because we also have pre sets an easy keys where you can actually affect the way that the piano sounds and because we're using a lot of really, really overpowering instruments. One of the things I like to do is apply an instance of easy mix too easy keys because we have some pretty cool piano sort of effects in there you can actually go uneasy mix just type in the word piano and then everything you have it's a piano effect is going to kind of come up and present itself so that you can try him out so for instance, nice because it's the final sound you'd ever want to use because it cuts through so now you can kind of hear what you're doing and now if you bring that guitar back in way just went from having nothing having a drummer in a piano player play with our track and again we're just in the infantile stages of putting everything together clearly there are things we can do to make it more convincing and more realistic, but one of the things that you can do here again is as you find a mini groove that you know let's try this maker of here so that's kind of cool again just used browser many it's applied to your groove replace your groove with it and then let's see if that works against the track it's too busy so that would have to be half time so you'd use the browser many again you cut it the halftime replace it and again you're right there you're making adjustments with fun clicks on again if you're not familiar and we should probably showed what a piano roll editor actually looks like and what this type of energy and effort would cost in the piano roll editor it is so complicated and so complex sometimes especially to get playing styles and that's the brilliant thing about mitty is that the many information that's captured isn't just no it's it's how the person is applying the plains again it's the movement of the piano player so when you work in this sort of this medium you just went from nowhere than the melody to it to programs with locked together. The great thing about this, too with easy keys is you can go ahead and open it up and it's the same sort of principle azizi drummer obviously we know that it does that twice, so we can copy this and then we could just paste it easy keys and easy drummer were designed to work together and what's really cool about easy keys as well just kind of is a reminder we started this project in pro tools, so we knew this is what we're going to do. You can open easy keys and stand alone mode as well, just like easy drummer too, and start to work with your melody before you were there. I mean, you could start to do all of these things without your dog put things together, save projects, changed cords and I mean again, you could make subtle changes, simple things that ultimately affect the way the song sounds and then apply this many in real time as you're tweaking things. So again, every single one of these instances of our programs is designed to eat up a really little footprint in your dog to not use a lot of memory if it doesn't have to and to really give you creative tools and empower you to make decisions in real time where you can effect and drive the music accordingly now if we were still sitting here with drew and he had his guitar the minute we play an easy keys patch that he digs and conforms to the court progression he'll be inspired to go back and say I won't then I can add this I mean it's this process were again the technology in the two programs really helps you to communicate organically with your song writing partner here your process so now you're talking to your keyboard player and your drummer and neither one of them exist which is pretty cool it's it's a very, very cool world we live in where this is the kind of technology available to us to write music so I just threw a lot at everybody and I attend because I'm so familiar with it I'm not always necessarily as intricately detailed is maybe I could be and then there was that whole I broke my audio feed things. So is there any questions of any kind about easy keys? I mean, we just kind of threw up a new curveball into the equation he's aki's anyone concerns comments? I think people have tracking people online tracking good that's what we want on again every time you pick the mic up you know what I love about you will decide everything is you literally are teetering but I'm gonna ask I'm not going to ask um I'm gonna ask him and then slowly fade out because you you keep asking my questions before I get a market easy keys and he's drummer this one package or those is two different programs. Ok, so that's a great question. So huh? How did that just happen? Did you just hear me make that popping sounds awesome. Easy keys is its own package. So and again, the price points for all three products for the same. So here in the states easy, mixed too easy. Keys and he's drummer are all one hundred forty nine ninety nine dollars a piece and then each one of those programs has an entire line of expansion. Pack so easy keys like I showed you weaken him let's, get out of the department! I just can't believe I just popped my lips like that that's that's funny. Um what get out of the browser so we could go on and you can buy with easy keys. It's kind of cool. You can buy any one of these packs that you want. So for instance, you could just buy the grand piano, which is considered without her than the upright. You could buy any one of these a standalone instrument and then add the libraries to it. So for instance, it's not that way with easy drummer too with easy drummer to you by an easy drummer too and you get the modern and the vintage library with it and that's where you start you couldn't buy easy drum or two and it would come with national I mean that's a different pack with this let's say you wanted the upright you could buy the upright and then you could add all the other pacs or you can kind of configure easy keys anyway want to easy mix too is the same thing we we released different kind of genre or producer based packs on a regular basis and the packs for the most part tend to have a little bit of everything. So let me some vocal effects some guitar amps, some bass and drum if I mean it's not it's not uncommon for us to do a themed pack like this is the drum pack or that, but we generally try to have a little bit of everything in each pack and then have it john were driven or style driven so that you kind of have the tools you need and we work with the same producers for easy mix too that we were with easy drummer too so you're getting a lot of the big name guys taking our interface and creating, you know, signal chains that they use on world class records how many easy packs do you have altogether easy drummer programs three easy programs great question so he's drummer too easy keys and easy mix too then we have a couple of other programs we have a program called beat station that I'm going to show you in a minute and then we have a program called superior drummer which is kind of what we're known for it's our it's the industry standard sort of flagship massive drum production tool it takes easy drummer and kind of moves it to another level with the options and functions and features so very cool stuff I think for going okay so the last piece of this puzzle for may would be a baseline and now I just told you we have three easy products easy keys easy drummer too and m easy mix saying something but we have another program that we released a few years back called beat station beat station is an interesting program because it's it's very unique for tune track and then it was designed and sort of built from the ground up to accommodate very unique needs now it's also very unique needs in a very competitive market so we were trying to ultimately a songwriter's create a tool that filled in the spaces in the gaps for all our other tools we knew at the time that easy drummer was very very popular program and we knew we were going to be doing something with these the keys but we needed something that could sort of facilitate the rest of the song process. So what? I'm going to show you, we're going to talk a little bit more about in the next segment, but I want to close with sort of just kind of a preview here with beat stations, so I'm in this pro jewel session and just to be clear, this is all I've got going on. We've got drew's guitar, which we tracked you guys sauce recorded, and we have one instance of easy mix. We've got easy drummer too, where we create in our group, we just put some basic piano down it's going to super loud now someone pull that down on dh, then we've got beat station were kind of so to me I have beat station loaded because this is what I would use if I were writing a song or finishing a song to complete the base and it's really simple. So what I do a lot of times when I'm mocking up a song or demo ing a song, maybe this will be useful to you may be alone, but I would go and too easy keys and I would go ahead and because its keyboard in his many and I would take this stuff right now, for instance, that we have and I would copy this all, and then I would drag it to the pro tools timeline so there it is now we're in the piano roll editor okay on lee were uneasy drummer and we don't want it there, so we're just gonna move it up too easy keys we went to the beginning of our track and you can see from the piano roll over and I'm actually going to get rid of it in the time line here because I'm done editing it. Someone remove that so let's, go ahead and take a look at the piano roll editor so if I double click on this and easy keys, this is the piano roll under the dreaded piano, right? So you see, like it's, like an advocate's like docks and things and here's your keyboard and here's the different octaves that correspond to the keyboard, and it could be just really daunting. I'm not saying it's impossible, complicated because this is the onley way. You could do a lot of what we're doing up until a few years ago, but our programs seek to alleviate this to me when I look at this as a songwriter it's like, ok, I know this isn't song writing anymore. It's math it's no fun it's like excel, so when you play this what's up, okay, let's, close this because I am a piano way simple you can hear of course didn't record, of course, but what I was talking about what beats station is what I would normally do is I would come into my easy keys many track this is cheating right to this how that's, how my mind works and I would come down to the lowest notes and the reason I would come down to the lowest notes is, why can anyone guess anyone there's three people in this room someone better guess something even if it's wrong because I'm trying to build a base track, right? So if I'm pulling the lowest notes from accord, I'm pulling this note well, I'm deleting that now because it's pro tools so I'll do that, but well, go ahead and let's grab these these lower notes and let's see what we can do, so I'm gonna copy these grab those too right there um and then I'm gonna copy those and I'm going to close and I've come up to beat station and I'm gonna paste those notes and the reason I'm going apace. Those notes is because unbeknownst to you, I already have an instance of beat station loaded where I've created let me open the station I know rightly that that's my snakeskin, one of these bobby stations, you can re skin it, this is clearly the snake skin as you get so it's like a play on words it's pretty awesome right crazy buddha beats no it's going so I've got a couple of base pads loaded so what I've got is I've got a split active keyboard right and at the top I have a different base so in in this particular library I've loaded a fender bass being picked and in the lower library I've a fender bass being played with your fingers because for me that I could switch between the two instruments and won many tracks sonically I just have it there so this doesn't even really begin to scratch the surface of what this program can dio and it's funny because the skins of that let me just give you the kind of the standard beat station default there so you're not freaking out about my snakeskin but we also have a metal skin because we are metal company and we have one called roll the bones very literal bones being ruled amazed me do you see the plan words this is good stuff people this is what you pay for it to track instrument is good it's stuff let's go to the default all that's gonna camouflage mmm that's manly is there's nothing is green there's no camouflage to be seen here there is all right so we're going to go ahead and let me close this so in this particular groove that I grabbed here now we've just got some bass notes now it doesn't always line up as I told you I support the keyboard so the first active is this fingered base but that doesn't necessarily mean that the piano notes fall into that octopuses sometimes you've got to move the notes around is everyone following me as kind of a cheap so one of the things you can do is is solo the base so let's go back to the beginning see if see we're not even in the ballpark we're not getting any of the tones that we want and let's see yeah so we can grab these which is what I always do always always always grab these and then we can drag him lower so let's come back over right it's our first note so our first note right there is that he could just drag our stuff lower until we hit the base till we're looking for that's kind of a high way one these were gonna go here ok? So now we've I'm not saying it's going to sound great but I'm saying we've got a semblance of where we're at the track it's on mute my point is really simple there's a workaround for everything we have options available with our programs where you never need to leave the two track environment to do everything you want to do see now these fall out of the range so you could simply transpose these back up to where you want and you could create with that piano many all the kind of place markers and things you need to build up a bass track and or you could just pick up a bass guitar would be way easier and record the bass track. My point at this juncture is that again we as a company have sort of put together all the things we need from a song writing standpoint to be self contained and that's a cool thing and he's a drummer too is kind of the crown in that process it's putting together a rhythm track, putting together a great groove, putting together ah great song building tool that empowers these other tools that have been out there easy keys again has been out since two thousand twelve b six has been out since two thousand ten, so it's sort of brings everything back together. The original version of easy mix also came out in two thousand ten, so easy mixed two in two thousand and twelve so again new products being kind of reborn, if you will, just because we took the time to say ok, what is everybody asking for? How is that the easiest? The best way to use this program? What is it that what's the experience we want people to have? And I think we've kind of captured that I think again we just showed you in this this segment that within an hour's time if we weren't talking if I wasn't explaining everything, it would've been a half of what we would have been done it would have been we would have kept playing until he got something we needed to make real life decisions and we could have had a track down a demo for a guy to sing two hours later way live in a time where that's a reality and it's pretty cool to be a part of that process got a question from here from online? Oswald wants to know the upright and grand are different he wants to know if they're different from different libraries they are ok every single easy keys library is its own library, so the grand piano is one particular library that up right then we have to libraries that have multiple instruments one is retro electrics and one is classic electrics so each easy keys kind of libraries its own thing the reason the grand and the upright were different and there was much debate over this was because just because you want one doesn't necessarily mean you want or used the other. So we wanted to give people the choice to say, you know, some people prefer that upright sound and they are very different sounds some people love grand and we didn't want one to be tethered to the other we wanted you to be able to choose

Class Description

EZdrummer 2 is the second generation of the world’s leading drum production software, adding a host of new features focused on making it an indispensable songwriting tool and breaking down the technical barriers between you and your creative vision.

In this one day event hosted by Toontrack’s North American President Rikk Currence, you’ll learn how to make the most of EZdrummer 2’s groundbreaking new features: it’s remodeled interface, it’s all-new mixer and effects chains, and how to create and modify grooves.

At the end of this class, you’ll have all the tools you need to create realistic, versatile drum parts to fit any song.

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