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From The Boiler Room: Bass Line Sprint

broomstickWith the end of the holidays fast approaching, I was able to take some time to get some actual recording done.  Serial bass line recording was where I started.  I’ve got drum parts down for most of the tracks using the EZ Drummer libraries, but my efforts to generate acceptable basslines from Broomstick Bass’ internal library were (almost) going nowhere, so I abandoned that as an idea and reverted to playing them in off a keyboard.  In the space of a couple of hours, I had bass parts for 4 songs recorded and ready for editing and a second session yielded seven more – sometimes, you just have to go with what you know.  I’ve uploaded videos showing how I’ve gone about editing them to the YouTube channel.  Why almost?  Well, as you might expect, there was the exception that proved the rule – the bass line for “A Winter’s Blues” is, as it stands, what was generated by Broomstick Bass from the Chord Track.

Taking stock

As I’m now started with pretty much all of the songs, it’s time to see what works and what doesn’t.  As you might expect, there have been some successes and some failures.  “Sweet Loving” was written around a triggered monophonic synth line, but the addition of a stompy beat from the EZX Americana library and the right patch from Cubase’s own Retrologue, just following the Chord Track, has added punch to what was always a very rhythmic song.  Now I’ve added a bass line, it’s beginning to come together nicely and, like a few others, I can now hear what’s needed to round out the arrangement.

“Time For Me To Go”, on the other hand, continues to be a challenge.  One of the issues I’ve come across with EZKeys is that some styles in the EZKeys MIDI Library expect extended chords and find they have too many notes when presented with a more straightforward and poppy sequence.  TFMTG is one such song and when you try to use some of the extended styles, you get some quite discordant notes, as it tries to squash all the notes in.  I think for some songs, I’ll end up taking the EZKeys part and editing the extra notes out, but for some songs, it’s making me rethink them, not as piano ballads, but looking at how I can approach them afresh.

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