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Topic: A free Kalimba for my Garritan friends -an instrument for Aria!

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  1. #1

    A free Kalimba for my Garritan friends -an instrument for Aria!

    UPDATE - NEW IMPROVED KALIMBA NOW ON LINK



    I'm sure all of us are looking forward to the upcoming release of The Garritan World Instrument Library.

    As a way of getting us even more in the mood for that great collection coming your way, I've created a Kalimba SFZ file which works in Aria.

    I had fun sampling an Alto Kalimba from South Africa which I've had since around 1970, and putting together an SFZ file using the samples.

    Each of the instrument's 15 tines were sampled twice, in all their slightly-out-of-tune glory. That makes for two velocity layers, switching depending on your velocity values. There are also release samples for a natural sounding decay.

    This Alto Kalimba, pictured above, was made by the Hugh Tracey African Musical Instruments company in South Africa. The box is of a beautiful medium tone wood, and the metal tines, six painted blue, are all slightly oxidized now, giving the instrument a nice aged look. You can hear plenty of body resonance as the tone of the tines reverberates in the approximately 6" X 8" body.

    The link below is to a small 5.7 meg Zip file. Just download it and unzip it to a logical instrument folder. You'll have the set of samples plus an SFZ file.

    In Aria, click Import, and select the SFZ file. - Instant Aria Kalimba.

    THE ALTO KALIMBA*

    Gary's World Library has a very nice set of Kalimba samples. My humble offering gives you a hint at the kind of new sounds you'll soon have in your Aria players.

    Have fun with it!

    Randy

    *UPDATE - A major error in the first version of the file has been corrected. If you've downloaded the first version, delete that file and start over, just to make it error-proof. MARCE improved the SFZ file with volume control via CC1, and I corrected part of the script which was ignoring the second layer of samples! Trust me - just do it again, and you'll have a much more expressive Kalimba.

  2. #2

    Re: A free Kalimba for my Garritan friends -an instrument for Aria!

    Randy! This very cool, but I cannot find the Aria "import" button!

    EDIT: nevermind - found it. Duh.
    In theory there is no difference between theory and practice, but in practice there is.

    http://reberclark.blogspot.com http://reberclark.bandcamp.com http://www.youtube.com/reberclark

  3. #3

    Re: A free Kalimba for my Garritan friends -an instrument for Aria!

    Quote Originally Posted by reberclark View Post
    Randy! This very cool, but I cannot find the Aria "import" button!

    EDIT: nevermind - found it. Duh.
    AH--You already found it. I came here to answer your question, but you've edited your post. I could have been a bit more specific in my first post.

    Y'all - when you click an empty slot in Aria, the second choice on the menu list is "Import." With that you can bring in any SFZ file. There'll be limitations about how an instrument behaves, depending on its programming. My Kalimba is simple enough, so it works as programmed in Aria. And you'll notice the Aria volume slider stays at the bottom and doesn't effect the instrument. Volume needs to be controlled in your music software.

    Let me know if it works for you, Chip - and thanks for the post.

    Randy

  4. #4

    Re: A free Kalimba for my Garritan friends -an instrument for Aria!

    Quote Originally Posted by rbowser- View Post
    Let me know if it works for you, Chip - and thanks for the post.

    Randy
    It works great! I put the folder in my 64bit Garritan folder. It works in 32bit ARIA as well as 64bit ARIA. Great sounds - Ab to Ab chromatic! Never heard a chromatic kalimba. It's fun to play with. I tried making a short recording but they all turned out kind of lame. The two layers of volume you decided on work really well.

    Have you ever seen (heard) the kalimbas with little aluminum tubes (1/4" long or so) near the mounted ends of the tines? Gives the whole thing a nice buzz effect.

    Great job.

    P. S. So...how do I go about sampling and assembling my own SFZ files?
    In theory there is no difference between theory and practice, but in practice there is.

    http://reberclark.blogspot.com http://reberclark.bandcamp.com http://www.youtube.com/reberclark

  5. #5

    Re: A free Kalimba for my Garritan friends -an instrument for Aria!

    Quote Originally Posted by reberclark View Post
    It works great! I put the folder in my 64bit Garritan folder. It works in 32bit ARIA as well as 64bit ARIA. Great sounds - Ab to Ab chromatic! Never heard a chromatic kalimba. It's fun to play with. I tried making a short recording but they all turned out kind of lame. The two layers of volume you decided on work really well.

    Have you ever seen (heard) the kalimbas with little aluminum tubes (1/4" long or so) near the mounted ends of the tines? Gives the whole thing a nice buzz effect.

    Great job.

    P. S. So...how do I go about sampling and assembling my own SFZ files?
    Nice! Thanks for letting me know you got it running and that you like it, Chip. Playing the SFZ really sounds just like playing the actual instrument.

    The Kalimba is of course a pitched percussion instrument, but even though it plays that scale, I think the emphasis is on Percussion when it comes to playing it characteristically. When you listen to recordings featuring Kalimbas, they're basically playing rhythmic little phrases that use just a few notes and keep repeating. If you try to play a more traditional melody line on it, the results are odd. I think you need to think simple, primitive, and rhythmic when you play it.

    MARCE is one of the Forum's prime SFZ wizards. I hope he sees this thread and chimes in. Awhile back he was encouraging me to work with SFZ - but I have to admit that while I have fun toying with programming and sampling once in awhile, it's not really my thing. I'm not technically oriented enough. It can be so time consuming and "fiddley"--I'd rather leave that work to people who enjoy it, and I just have fun using what they come up with.

    BUT here's the free SFZ editor which seems to be the standard:

    sfZed

    It's a nifty app, logically laid out. The basic process is to make/collect your samples, then assemble them in a logical way across a keyboard, and cook up your SFZ. As you can see from looking at the Garritan Aria files, all SFZ instruments consist of two components - the SFZ itself is a text file giving instructions for how the second element, the folder of samples, is to be played in an SFZ capable app. Aria uses SFZ, and Sonar's Dimension and Rapture synths play SFZs. Of course the standard, free SFZ player uses them - and the download for that is also on that link above. The editor needs the SFZ player so the user can test out his work.

    I made a Dimension version of this Kalimba also, but posted the Aria version because I meant it as a gift to the users here. One improvement with the Dimension version is that using editing tools in Dim, I added a Tremolo on notes as they're held. A Kalimba has two holes in the back which are played with the fingers as you grip the instrument, giving notes Trem when wanted. Being a newbie with SFZ, I didn't manage to program that in the Aria version.

    Getting decent recordings and trimming those to length was the first step of course. You can do that in any sound app you have.

    Thanks for responding, Chip!

    Randy

  6. #6

    Re: A free Kalimba for my Garritan friends -an instrument for Aria!

    Randy, this is just crying out for a do it yourself SFZ tutorial

  7. #7

    Re: A free Kalimba for my Garritan friends -an instrument for Aria!

    Quote Originally Posted by Tony Monaghan View Post
    Randy, this is just crying out for a do it yourself SFZ tutorial
    Oooh no, I've done it now - might have created more work for myself. Well!--I'm going to write to Marce, who really is a whiz at this stuff. I'll see if he could put together a good little tute, or help me with one, - or point out a good one that already exists.

    Because it really is a nifty thing for us to be able to cook up our own instruments/sounds to move into Aria alongside the Garritan instruments.

    I'll see what we can do!

    Randy

  8. #8
    Senior Member Heckler's Avatar
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    Re: A free Kalimba for my Garritan friends -an instrument for Aria!

    I'm from SA by the way.
    Real nice looking Kalimba! I still play mine from time to time.
    I remember when I was small, my grandparents used to teach me how to play it. Fun!

    I would play on these things till my fingers bled...

    Thanks for this...Brings back very fond memories.

  9. #9

    Re: A free Kalimba for my Garritan friends -an instrument for Aria!

    Quote Originally Posted by rbowser- View Post
    Oooh no, I've done it now - might have created more work for myself. Well!--I'm going to write to Marce, who really is a whiz at this stuff. I'll see if he could put together a good little tute, or help me with one, - or point out a good one that already exists.

    Because it really is a nifty thing for us to be able to cook up our own instruments/sounds to move into Aria alongside the Garritan instruments.

    I'll see what we can do!

    Randy
    Thanks Randy, this would be one very useful tutorial - imagine the tenor banjo lib I could come up with! All those velocity layers for that required subtle expression...

  10. #10

    Re: A free Kalimba for my Garritan friends -an instrument for Aria!

    Nice, Heckler! What a fun memory, whacking your fingers on Kalimbas when you were growing up in South Africa. Try mine out, see how it sounds to you!

    YEeeeah, Tony - now that's very good motivation to get a tute together - we could have a special Banjo SFZ from you!

    OK --I've written to Marce. Give us some time, something should eventually emerge.

    Randy

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