What we’re trying to do
Make a composition using both MIDI and audio tracks in Digital Performer.
The requirements are listed below.
What to turn in
- One Digital Performer project folder, with “final project”
and your login as part of the folder name. Keep this project in your
account on the MAC 304 computer.
- One Digital Performer project that has just one quad track containing
the mixdown of your piece. Follow the
to create this project. Copy the project onto a flash drive, and bring
it with you to the last regular Tuesday class meeting.
- A program note, including the title of your piece. The
note should describe the basic musical ideas of the piece and any
techniques you’d especially like us to notice. You must provide
a complete list of any sound sources borrowed from others. Bring enough
copies for everyone to see when we play the project in class.
After you turn it in
Late projects will be accepted only with a valid medical excuse from a doctor,
stating that you were incapable of completing the work. Loss of materials is
not an acceptable excuse, so back up your data to at least two different places
(e.g., thumb drive and CECM server)!
- We will play your compositions during the last regular class meeting.
- These projects will receive letter grades. A portion of the grade
for the project will depend on you making regular progress, as
demonstrated during tutorials. So don’t leave this all to the
last minute — it won’t work!
- Grades will be based on overall conception and execution, the quality
of the source recordings, your sonic imagination, attention to detail,
sensitivity to spatial (panning, reverberation) and spectral (EQ)
qualities, following the instructions (including submission requirements),
and completion of the program note.
- There are no style constraints for the project.
- Your piece must be at least 4 minutes in length, but no more than 6
minutes. We’d rather hear something of modest length that
you’ve wrestled with and thought deeply about than something very
long that seems thrown together casually. Plus, we have to be able to
play back all these pieces on the final day.
- Include at least a few MIDI tracks, playing Absynth, Battery,
FM8, and/or DP virtual instruments, etc.
- Include some audio tracks, containing recordings you make yourself.
- Your piece must be an original composition, not an arrangement of other
music, or even an arrangement of an earlier piece of yours. Avoid using
sound made by others if you have not received permission to use it.
(Keep in mind that a recording of old music that is in the public domain
— any Baroque piece, for example — still carries the
copyright of the people who made the recording. You would have to get
their permission to use the recording in a derivative work.)
Even if you have received permission, be careful that you’re not
using their sound as a shortcut. This applies also if you incorporate a
recording of one of your acoustic pieces. If you try to use this as a
quick way out, it will show.
- We strongly discourage you from making use of copyrighted sources for
which you have no permission. If you want to release your music on a CD
some day, this will cause you no end of trouble.
- Your piece — both the MIDI and audio portions — must be
thoroughly and thoughtfully mixed for 4 channels
(i.e., “quad”). Read the
instructions for setting up your project
for quad mixing.
- Your sequence must use some MIDI continuous data — such as pitch
bend, aftertouch, controllers — in addition to the volume and pan
- Your piece should sound like you worked it over and tweaked things until
it seemed just right to you. That doesn’t mean that your piece has
to sound smooth — it can sound noisy and rough, as long as these
qualities aren’t the result of negligence. But listen for clicks at
the edges of soundbites. These happen because of discontinuities in the
waveform that can arise when a soundbite starts or ends abruptly. They
can be very distracting. You can eliminate clicks by using fades.