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Logical Transcribing

May has been a month of blues – first the Tory victory in the UK General Election and then the death of elder statesman of the blues guitar, BB King. I suggested that The String Project might like to add a BB King cover to the set for the next gig or two (we won’t be marking the election results!) and so now I’ve got the job of producing some parts for Tuesday’s rehearsal.

Since I’ve recently installed Logic, Apple’s professional digital audio workstation software, I decided to see how it worked for the purpose of transcribing and the answer seems to be very well indeed. Firstly, I was able to import the audio track and use the BPM meter to figure out the approximate tempo. It turns out that the tempo is rather fluid, around rather than dead on 87 BPM but that isn’t a problem – I’ve been able to produce a beat mapping track and tell Logic exactly where each bar starts and it accomplishes mapping the ebb and flow of tempo to bar markers meaning everything lines up.

Now I’m working on filling in some of the lines. As well as being able cycle round sections, I can fill in parts using software instruments, listening back to ensure that pitches and rhythms fit. As well as providing an extra check, that produces a scored line which I can then work up for the instruments that need it (probably viola and one of the violins, which will be filling in the horn parts from the original).

Time to get back to work. When can you hear the results, if it comes together well enough at the rehearsal to push forward on? Bristol, at Cafe Kino on Friday 29 May will be your first opportunity and then we’ve got one or two things lining up round Oxford during June.