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Struggling with arrangement? I found my answer
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Production Techniques  
Author Struggling with arrangement? I found my answer
Hey wiggler,

I dont know about you all but one of the biggest problems I have had with making tracks is finishing them off after compiling a bunch of loops I have made in Ableton. Of around 300 tracks I have only about 40 are fully arranged and finished, the rest have bits here are there done which I come back to once in a while.

I have found the answer! External hardware sequencers.

After getting my MPC60 last months I have been more productive with my tracks than I have even been. Having to commit to a track in one sessions means I work so much faster and have to develop the other parts there are then as once everything is off and the modular, mixing desk etc changed, I cant go back and change it.

If you struggle with what I used to, definately consider getting one; a Yamaha QY700, Akai SQ etc

Here is a track I started and completed yesterday afternoon with the MPC-60
Seems to be working. Nice track.

This has come up elsewhere as well on Muffs. The ability to tinker around and change stuff forever and ever is both a pansy way to make music and an incredibly difficult way to make music. Recording audio -- with effects and everything -- is oddly freeing. Decisions have to be made and work has to get done.

Sequencers rule. w00t
Oh yeah, here's a thread that explored the same territory. Five pages of good readin'.
I've had much the same issue.. and just went with a MPC2000xl for various reasons.. for drums and I like samples. I don't write well in ableton although I use it for sketching and will eventually use it live in some instances. But yeah I feel ya.
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xiiln wrote:
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Da fuq?
another fun combo is to combine two machines, for example the arp function on the rs7000 into mv8000 to then have fun with dialing in various swing settings.
Nice Track, thanks for sharing! I've had the same problem recently, so I think I might try an external sequencer soon.
After a few years of infrequently dabbling into controllers and the DAW world I thought what's the best way to learn how to make electronic music....I know I'll do a sound production course!!

After about 3 months into a 12 month Diploma course I quickly realised that making music inside a computer with a mouse was just not for me and knowing this kick started my adventure into the world of hardware & in turn hardware sequencers.

For me now I feel like I have found the avenue that is best suited to how I want to make music and since then I have nearly decided on a workflow that I am happy with and the rest is experimentation and discovery!!
absolutely! i use my eyes far too often when using the DAW for arrangement. almost becomes more about how it looks than sounds!

i bough the octatrack a few months ago and it changed everything for the better
I just picked up an Octatrack for this very reason. As much as I like what Ableton can do, at times, it seems to suck the creativity out of me.

Thanks for posting
I make myself record at least 4 minutes of my loops with quick arrangement. It is always lame. I make myself listen to it. I grow. Even if make arrangements are always the same tricks I find I eventually start to make better songs when I make myself go through the process.
MrBiggs wrote:
Oh yeah, here's a thread that explored the same territory. Five pages of good readin'.

Nice, thanks for that link.

Sound and loop creation comes easily to me, but I struggle so much with arrangement. I didn't always - when I had nothing but a sampler and Logic 3 or something, I just banged tracks out.

I've spent a while learning the AR, but I will be jumping in to the OT next, I think it may be what I need.

One thing I've been thinking about recently is that creating sounds and short loops is really about creating something from nothing. Arrangement however, is about creating something from something - the raw material already exists in the form of loops or sequences or riffs. And it's the creation-from-nothing that I love so much.

So I think I need to either:

- Find a method of arranging that incorporates the creation-from-scratch aspect, which I think the OT may allow.

- Change my mindset and focus on finding ways to appreciate the creativity in building something from existing pieces. That's probably harder, but seems like it would really broaden my abilities in useful ways.

If only I had unlimited time smile
This is making the thread look like an OT commercial but that's exactly what's happened to me when I got mine recently. I finished a whole track in just a few hours over the course of a week, and I'm now well into another since I started it last night. This also happened when I got the Nanoloop app on my phone a while ago, though that was much more limited. Not having the opportunities to scrutinize everything you do is a very liberating thing.
it basically has to do with your way to compose and store/save your work.
i can work with ableton like with a cirklon - but i don't. ableton really shines when it come to an instrument. as i master DAW it leads directly into the ever-editing-never-finish graveyard. mostly because you got all those build-in fx, soundsources and libraries (if you got suite version, then with max4live a wast amount of free plug-ins more...). one has to be very restrictive with himself there to avoid drowning in possibilities, i think even in post-production on bare audiotracks it still an issue in live. it's just me and my workflow, but yeah, hardware sequencer rule. wink
Same issue, I got a Digitakt for exact the same reason and it has helped in that respect.

The Digitakt handles all the sequencing, desktop synths and the modular via Yarns plus its own samples, its a very powerfull and versatile machine. Can't wait for overbridge to be able to send its 8 individual tracks via usb
Been saving up for an MPC60. Love the vintage sampler sound and workflow. Miss my SP-12 dearly.
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