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Thread: Would this be a good invention, or is there another solution?

  1. #1

    Default Would this be a good invention, or is there another solution?

    I want a gadget with 4 pedals. 1 with a root chord, one with a 4, and one with a 5 chord. The forth would be more configurable. Possibly a minor 2. Simply select a key, and a voice, maybe a bpm, or a sort of tremolo in a selectable meter.
    I seriously shy away from one man band stuff, but it's driving me crazy having nobody within a hours drive to play music with. I ve tried loopers. I've tried multitrack recording. I've tried backing tracks. They all have limitations. What do you think?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Would this be a good invention, or is there another solution?

    Play with other instruments. Guitar - easy to find, piano, even easier to find, violin, etc.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Would this be a good invention, or is there another solution?

    Strum Macine is a great play-along resource. There is a cost, but it’s very low, compared to driving a long way. If you are looking for more advanced play alongs that simulate other players, there are options; but this was my playing partner when I had none. Playing alone sucks. StrumMachine is a great metronome to play along, but there’s no real substitute to playing with others. I play bass for pay most of all, and I’ve thought of and seen a similar machine for stomping bass lines; but it’s not the same as a real bass; and my bandmates don’t love the iterations I’ve found so far. I have to think that applies to all instruments.

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  5. #4
    working musician Jim Bevan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Would this be a good invention, or is there another solution?

    I've been playing mostly Irish Trad guitar these days with my whistle-playing wife, who not only is excellent, but pretty much the only other player locally. Since I practise a lot more than she does (as pianist Walter Gieseking said, about practising, "only dirty people need to bathe"), I write out her parts in Sibelius (using the piano sound instead of the flute or recorder sounds), and play along with that. I can control the groove (it's easy to specify how much swing I'd like, and I can sort of batch-specify rhythmic accents/phrasing), I can write in decent-sounding click/percussion parts where needed, and I can vary the tempos when practising. With Sibelius filling in for her, it's a handy alternative to working on my parts by myself (which I of course also do).

    That said, it's (a) an expensive play-along tool if you don't already own it, and (b) I use it for practising – Sibelius isn't quite up to jammin'.
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  6. #5
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    Default Re: Would this be a good invention, or is there another solution?

    I think you are proposing to re invent the fotdella. Yo are certainly straying into oneman-band territory but you will be in good company:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uBME_J0pf3o
    another version:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-2lo5Iz3gRY
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  7. #6

    Default Re: Would this be a good invention, or is there another solution?

    https://youtu.be/a2wz876pUnc?si=0__JA762mz0J_jVa
    Obviously I'm not a proud man. Those footella vids got me thinking. Sometimes when all you have Is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.
    I've got a hundred different comp styles, at infinite tempos. I think I'll add an E, for the key of A. Many Thanks!

  8. #7

    Default Re: Would this be a good invention, or is there another solution?

    Don Julin recommended iRealPro and I like it quite a bit. It's very easy to use, there are files you can upload and you can write your own chord progressions, adjust the tempo, etc. It has several different styles of backup, though they sound fairly artificial. It's is inexpensive as well. https://www.irealpro.com

  9. #8

    Default Re: Would this be a good invention, or is there another solution?

    There is no substitute for real people.

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  11. #9

    Default Re: Would this be a good invention, or is there another solution?

    I’ve already liked it; but CarlM is spot on - there is no substitute for real people in playing.

  12. #10

    Default Re: Would this be a good invention, or is there another solution?

    Quote Originally Posted by CarlM View Post
    There is no substitute for real people.
    Obviously. I live an hour from the next capable musician. $30 round trip.

  13. #11
    The Amateur Mandolinist Mark Gunter's Avatar
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    Default Re: Would this be a good invention, or is there another solution?

    I did strummachine for 2 years, opted for the annual payments. Was a great tool.

    Then I tried Chordpulse for a few weeks and bought the full version. Works great for me.

    There are a bunch more, including Band in a Box. Many others. Just have to find one you’re happy with. I routinely gig with others, occasionally jam with others. It is just not feasible, though, to have someone to back me while I’m practicing or just working on creating my own stuff.
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  15. #12

    Default Re: Would this be a good invention, or is there another solution?

    Have you tried the Tyler Grant jams on YouTube? It's just him & a guitar, and he picks the tunes, but it's more than just backing tracks, it's a real person playing and singing songs.

    He does slow, medium, and fast jams. And he's a great picker of course.

  16. #13

    Default Re: Would this be a good invention, or is there another solution?

    There's also a YT channel called Bluegrass Backing Tracks. Not all tunes are hard-core Bluegrass. And there are many tunes in many bpm's.
    I can and have made my own backing tracks via multitrack recording. I also have a looper. It's close but still sketchy. When I sit down to play, I don't know what I'm going to play ahead of time. Alot of prep looses the vibe. Unfortunately, this keyboard doesn't store your settings. Turn it off and back on, and it's just as stupid as the last time you turned it on. About the only thing you can do is jot down the 3 digit setting you had last. Or have a list of favorite settings. I don't recon it'll be for prime time, at no time, but one never knows?

  17. #14

    Default Re: Would this be a good invention, or is there another solution?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tighthead View Post
    Have you tried the Tyler Grant jams on YouTube? It's just him & a guitar, and he picks the tunes, but it's more than just backing tracks, it's a real person playing and singing songs.

    He does slow, medium, and fast jams. And he's a great picker of course.
    Tyler's a great resource. Since it's recorded, if you hear a new song, you can loop it a few times to work it up, and he's got a pretty good song list out there-- if I hear something new at the jam, I've frequently been able to find a version to try to work out on his site. I still stink at learning by ear, but it's helped me at noodling over the right chords and sometimes accidentally finding some melody.

  18. #15
    The Amateur Mandolinist Mark Gunter's Avatar
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    Default Re: Would this be a good invention, or is there another solution?

    I’m not sure what Mr. Jones is looking for, still.

    You ask about four pedals. Sounds like you’re looking for accompaniment while performing, rather than just something for practicing or writing?
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  19. #16

    Default Re: Would this be a good invention, or is there another solution?

    Mark, I think I found a solution up at post #6. I just thought the thread drifted into folks looking for accompaniment solutions otherwise.
    As I said at post #16, I don't intend to gig with my solution. But it does semi-replace live accompaniment. I can work on improv. Fills, leads, melodic ideas. Haven't you ever wanted to play mandolin or fiddle & guitar or bass at the same?

  20. #17
    The Amateur Mandolinist Mark Gunter's Avatar
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    Default Re: Would this be a good invention, or is there another solution?

    Not in performance, I’ve always done the troubador thing when performing solo. But yeah, like you I’ve made my own backing tracks by multitracking, and I’ve used some of the different softwares for practicing and for creating.
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