My name is John. I recently purchased Garritan Jazz & Big Band and am studying the manual on creating realistic sounding brass arrangements and the like. My desire is to create Tower of Power and Chicago type horn lick and bluesy stuff.
Now, the bad news which I hope somebody here can help me convert to good news.
I have limited gear. For example, my MIDI controller is a Yamaha PSR295 keyboard. It has no modulation wheel of pitch bend wheel.
I have two sequencer/recorders-Samplitude (Magix) Music Studio 2008 and Mixcraft 5. As I said, the keyboard has no mod wheel, but the sequencers do have Automated mixdown features with MIDI controller data that I can "pencil" in with a mouse. Please do not bother to suggest I buy another keyboard controller or sequencer program. For as much as I'd like to and how sweet that idea sounds to me, spending anymore money is out of the question at this time. I simply MUST make do with what I have, so I would appreciate any suggestions anybody could give me to help me achieve my goals with what I have.
Thank you ever so much and I look forward to making many friends here.
A MIDI controller/keyboard is strictly only necessary for live performance, I think.
If you are aiming to create saved sequencer files for subsequent playback then such a keyboard can be helpful though is not strictly necessary ... it can let you record notes and (some) MIDI data into your sequencer, though you are likely to spend much time away from the controller editing your MIDI and audio data using the normal computer keyboard and mouse, which can be used to input any data from scratch.
From what I've seen on another thread, Samplitude seem to give you full control over the editing of MIDI data, so I don't see that you'll need another sequencer just yet, though as with all things there may come a point when you feel you have reached its limitations.
I'd certainly encourage you to get the most use/value out of what you have at any stage and only consider another purchase when you feel you have fully understood your existing products capabilities, reached its limitations and have a reasonable basis for making a sound decision, knowing better what you can do and want you might to achieve.
So your setup seems fine to me for know ... and I think you'll find that even though you might outgrow some of your other hardware and software, your Garritan software will serve you well for many years to come.