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Topic: Suggestions for Learning to Write for the Trap Set?

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  1. #1

    Suggestions for Learning to Write for the Trap Set?

    So, I am an orchestral composer, however I want to do work with my church. Unfortunately, my curch uses a trap set as part of its core rhythm (the other two parts are teh piano and bass guitar) along with orchestral instruments. When I write / arrange / orchestrate I do not traditionally do so with a trap set--percussion yes, but not a trap set.

    I would like to learn to incorporate the trap set into my writing, but I'm not sure if I need to learn how to notate for the trap (from what understand and see in most drum players they don't look at notation at all!) or simply find a plugin for Finale and my DAW that would auto-generate trap lines for audio purposes only (using just the standard hash-marks in the score for he drums).

    Any suggestions on this? Is it imporant to learn how to write for a drummr, or is tfe composer supposed to simply trust him to come up with his own stuff?

    If I do start to use some sort of plug or auto-generator, does anyone know a good one I can use that may not be professional grade, but will get the idea of trap set rhythms across?

  2. #2

    Re: Suggestions for Learning to Write for the Trap Set?

    Hi, Fossman

    I've gone through a similar thing, wrestling with drums. But it was easier for me, because by the time I was supposed to have sheet music for a drummer, I'd been working with MIDI drum lines off and on for quite awhile.

    Bottom line - You're right: Drummers tend to not pay much or any attention to sheet music. They listen to something, find the groove, start playing. And the type of music they're used to playing it usually very easy to figure out, so it's really not a terrible situation for the drummer to just ad-lib his part, as long as he's a decent drummer. - Not wanting to read scores is also true of most guitar players, and a lot of bass players. If they've been in a rock band, and most have at some point, what they're accustomed to is figuring out a way They want to play a tune, based on a bare bones lead sheet which has just the melody line and chords.

    BUT - when I've written out scores of my material, I've still included much of the drum line, because my preference would be for some specific phrases to be played - I spent time writing them, it Would be nice if they were actually played! hehe-- What I figured was even if a drummer who never looks at music plays the music, it Is there for reference - maybe a conductor will point out some nice bits in the score that the drummer can try.

    You said you have both DAW software and a notation program.--- Do you have any drum modules in the DAW, like Session Drummer that comes with Sonar? The MIDI patterns that come with that drum set, and others like it, are very instructional. Open them up, get a feel for what's possible and not possible on a drum set. Looking at the notes in a Piano Roll View shows the logic clearly - like when there's a Toms roll involved, the hats and snare can't be playing at the same time, since the drummer only has two hands!

    Looking at existing MIDI patterns is the key - Let me know if you have some in your software some place or not.

    BY THE WAY --- I produced a demonstration of the overlays for you on the other thread back on Dec. 10th---Did you notice?

    Randy

  3. #3

    Re: Suggestions for Learning to Write for the Trap Set?

    Quote Originally Posted by rbowser- View Post
    BY THE WAY --- I produced a demonstration of the overlays for you on the other thread back on Dec. 10th---Did you notice?

    Randy
    Wowsers... I thought I replied to that. I did really appreciate the demonstration you gave me. It give me a good feel for what you were trying to tell me. Well, now I have Finale 2012 and I've ugraded to GPO4 (yeah, Christmas monies!) so I should be able to start experiementing.

    Thanks, as well, for your thoughts on the drums. You're the first peron, so far, to seem to understand what I'm going through. I've downloaded REAPER (haven't learned it yet, but I have it!), but I don't know if it comes with any drum modules. I undrstand Finale has some decent drum plugins that I'll look at here shortly.

    Thanks for all your efforts!

  4. #4

    Re: Suggestions for Learning to Write for the Trap Set?

    Quote Originally Posted by FossMaNo1 View Post
    Wowsers... I thought I replied to that. I did really appreciate the demonstration you gave me. It give me a good feel for what you were trying to tell me. Well, now I have Finale 2012 and I've ugraded to GPO4 (yeah, Christmas monies!) so I should be able to start experiementing.

    Thanks, as well, for your thoughts on the drums. You're the first peron, so far, to seem to understand what I'm going through. I've downloaded REAPER (haven't learned it yet, but I have it!), but I don't know if it comes with any drum modules. I undrstand Finale has some decent drum plugins that I'll look at here shortly.

    Thanks for all your efforts!
    hehe, that's OK - I wanted to make sure you had seen the overlay demo, glad you did. Keep in mind I work in Sonar, not notation. How one does MIDI production in Finale the way I do in Sonar is still pretty much a mystery to me. I know it's not as straight forward, so swooping in an overlay's track volume has to be more programmed than played. Well, with some experimenting, I bet you'll conquer all that.

    I COME BEARING GIFTS - Christmas isn't over yet. I have what you need for studying drum patterns like I was talking about in the earlier post. These are both freebies - You just need to grab them and use them in a sequencer program like Reaper.

    First - FREE drum patterns from Groove Monkee. These are great, originally recorded by live drummers, so they're very instructive. Go to the link below and investigate the links - PC download, Mac download - or the GM download may be even better suited for you:

    http://www.groovemonkee.com/en/free-midi

    And now, for a FREE drum module to play them in. This is pretty amazing that these guys make this plug-in freely available. It doesn't have as many slots as things like EZDrummer and Session Drummer, but it has the basic parts of a trap kit, and good sounding samples are included:

    http://www.gtgsynths.com/plugins.htm

    Go to the 11th download on the list - "GTG DPC 3"--you'll see the picture of the drums. Grab that.

    That's everything you need, all free - the drum kit is a standard VST plug-in, the files will play through it.

    Randy

  5. #5

    Re: Suggestions for Learning to Write for the Trap Set?

    That rocks. Thanks, Randy!

  6. #6

    Re: Suggestions for Learning to Write for the Trap Set?

    What is a trap set?

    Raymond

  7. #7

    Re: Suggestions for Learning to Write for the Trap Set?

    It's also known as a fusion drum kit or simply drum set.

  8. #8

  9. #9

    Re: Suggestions for Learning to Write for the Trap Set?

    You orch dork!!!!!


    Raymond

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