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Topic: Virtual Instrumentation & Sequencing

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  1. #1

    Question Virtual Instrumentation & Sequencing

    I would like to hear from forum members on their experiences from traditional (non-technical) musicians regarding their opinion/s on virtual instruments and sequencing. I have found many reactions over the years and it can be frustrating at times. Below are some examples.

    1. "It's just digital."
    2. “It’s not real.”
    3. “The tracks are too perfect.”
    4. “The tracks aren’t perfect enough.”
    5. “If virtual instruments are sampled, how can you play them?”
    6. “Sequencing and/or Playing virtual instruments is cheating.”
    7. "Why can't you play all of the sounds at once?" (non-musician)

  2. #2

    Re: Virtual Instrumentation & Sequencing

    The most frustating opinion I often hear voiced is that if you use a computer to create notation or demo, then it is really easy - i.e. "oh, you just got a computer to do it".

    It's difficult to get across how time and effort consuming this stuff is.
    Richard N.

    Finale 2003 to 2007 ~ Garritan GPO, JABB & Strad ~ Sonar 6PE ~ Kontakt 2 ~ WinXP Home SP2

    Athlon XP 2200 ~ 1.5 Gb RAM ~ M-Audio Sound Card ~ M-Audio 88ES MIDI keyboard ~ Evolution MK-461C

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  3. #3
    Member
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    Oct 2005
    Location
    London / Uzes (France)
    Posts
    46

    Re: Virtual Instrumentation & Sequencing

    Quote Originally Posted by DanE
    7. "Why can't you play all of the sounds at once?" (non-musician)
    Don't get me started on that one....!!!

    I often hear grumbles about how sampling technology is putting musicians out of business, which I personally think is a bit of a credulous attitude to take. How many projects which overlay live musicians with a sequence would not even have got off the ground because the composer/producer could not have paid for a 40-piece string section for a session?

    I realise I'm oversimplifying the situation, but I believe the point still holds.

    Looking at it from a "live performance" standpoint, take Les Misérables here in the UK, which has been using the "Sinfonia" virtual orchestra for a year or so now. The union was up in arms, but if you take the view that the show was losing money, HAD to move to a smaller theatre and cut the size of the orchestra down. If the Sinfonia and the related sampling technology was not available, the producer may well have had to close the show - which would have put 21 musicians out of work, not 11...

    (I personally feel the Sinfonia sounds absolutely terrible, and there are many better sampling options available, but again the point holds )

    It's a tricky area, but the march of technology is inevitable - in both studio work and live performance. As a conductor I want the largest possible orchestra whatever project I do, but I can appreciate the flip side of the argument - even if it is (as it is in many cases) financially driven...



    Martin

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Salisbury, UK
    Posts
    312

    Re: Virtual Instrumentation & Sequencing

    It's true though. The computer makes it up as it goes along. Beethoven's piano used to improvise fantastically. Bach's quill used to get up secretly in the night, take a bath in an inkwell, then polish off a toccata or two on a handy piece of paper. It is a well established fact that Shakespeare could not have written Shakespeare. Need I go on. This is why superstars are so humble. They know they will get lynched if they don't say anyone could have done if they hadn't got to get up in the morning and do a real job.

  5. #5

    Re: Virtual Instrumentation & Sequencing

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard N.
    The most frustating opinion I often hear voiced is that if you use a computer to create notation or demo, then it is really easy - i.e. "oh, you just got a computer to do it".

    It's difficult to get across how time and effort consuming this stuff is.
    I'm starting to realize how this misconception drives the sale of technology. It could possibly be responible for the entire 'dot bomb' collape in the stock market. Alot of people seem to think that these boxes and the internet are 'magic.'

    It seems, all across corporate america, that there are a great deal of higher level mangers who are not very versed in the inner workings of computers and thier capabilties. Yet, these very same people are involved in spearheading the modernization of their companies. They get sold on a promise of reduction of personel costs, streamlined operations, greater reliability in operations performance. In the end, more jobs get created to fill the needs of the system, more complicated protocals of operation are created and the product developer ends up moving in and taking residence for months, like an unanticipated house guest, baby sitting their limping product, which was really just betaware in the first place!!!

    But rest assured. I know it as 'fact,' that any one of these 'new fangled' wonder systems could easily write a sonata with one dockable hard drive tied behind 'its back!'

  6. #6

    Re: Virtual Instrumentation & Sequencing

    Hi,

    funny topic. I made three experiences:

    - "That's not real." (non-technical)

    - "Our music lives on its dynamic. We don't have to take that stuff or computers." (non-technical)

    - "If I had that computer stuff I'm able to make music like you do!" (non-musician) I think he would like to say: "...make better music like you do!"

    Regards

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