Back at you again, another Real Newsletter. For those of you who are new, the Real Newsletter Gets sent out every Tuesday, and has a ton of valuable content for you to read.
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In Today's Real Newsletter
1. Band of the Week: Tomahawk
2. Projects: What's in the works?
3. Article: How To Create Accurate Tablature
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1. Band of the Week: Tomahawk
One more Mike Patton band (he has about 20). The band often uses indian type sounds, although has much "Mainstream" sounding stuff as well. Also, Mike Patton uses a Gas Mask Microphone when performing God hates a Coward, which is sufficiently awesome.
You can check their Page Here and their song, "God hates A Coward" here.
2. Projects: What's in the Works?
De-loused In The Comatorium E-book: It is coming along well. So far I'm getting through Roulette Dares nicely, and the entire project has reached over 37 pages so far! Think about all that Mars Volta Interpretation Goodness!
3. Article: How to Create Accurate Tablature
Creating Accurate tabs is not a skill you are born with. Just like anything else, it's something you learn, and the more you do it the better you get.
The Super-Accurate Supermassive Black Hole Guitar Tab
The Benefits of Creating Accurate Tabs
As opposed to crappy, inaccurate tablature. Some benefits of choosing the Accuracy route are:
- Will help you when writing your own music.
- Will strengthen your ear to hear things that you couldn't hear before.
- This would be useful of course when you are writing tabs, but also if you are in a Mixing situation, or any time you need to use your ear basically.
- Will help to learn the theory behind other peoples music.
- Will learn a bit....A lot about rhythms.
- Will learn about chord progressions in the type of music you listen to.
What is better about creating inaccurate tabs?
- It takes a considerable amount of time to make your tabs
perfect (Doesn't anything that is of good quality?)
- If a piece is particularly well mixed, it can be frustrating to have to make it perfect when you can't figure out a certain part. The hardest thing is not just putting down what you think it is, but to actually listen to it over and over again until it is perfect.
Getting an audience
The best way to get in the mindset of doing something well instead of average is to Have an Audience.
Because if you have an audience, then you have people who you have to live up to. You have people expecting to see the best quality tablature come from you, and you don't want to disappoint them.
I have that easy, because I have to fulfill the needs of everyone who visits this site.
Some ideas for Your audience would be:
- Show your friends
- Submit them to a site like Ultimate Guitar (Although I will mention that you may not be as pressured to create your tabs accurately, as most of the other tabs don't live up to the expectations we're talking about).
- Send them to me (This would probably be your best option because of the incredibly high standards I hold for tabs).
Programs to write with
You will be needing a program to write all your transcriptions down on. This is basically what you will use as your pen and paper, but on the computer.
These types of programs can be used for your own compositions, and for transcribing others compositions as well.
The First option is a free program called power tabs. I have used this program in the past, but no longer do because I bought Guitar Pro.
Power tabs is a very decent program, but it has no support for drums and once you start to add more than 2 or 3 guitar tracks it becomes very complicated.
I would recommend it only if you don't have the $60 for Guitar Pro.
Guitar pro is a Multi-Instrument and Multi-Track composition program. With it you can write music for almost every instrument imaginable, and hear it played back to you.
I personally use Guitar Pro when writing all of my own music, and when transcribing tabs for this site.
To see a video of Guitar Pro in action, Click Here
Finale is the weapon of choice when working with large orchestral compositions.
Most of the people who use it are band conductors and such, and although it does have a place among us Quote "Rockers" I hate using it.
I wouldn't really recommend it for writing the type of music you find on this site, but in case you really wanted to use it, I'll let you know that Finale Notepad is a Free, Downgraded version of the Full Finale, while Finale runs into the hundreds of dollars in price.
Programs to assist transcription
Sometimes when you just can't quite hear what is happening in a song, or something is too fast, you may want to use an external program to help you narrow down that drum beat or guitar riff.
The following are some programs that I have used to help assist you in your transcribing efforts.
So far, Transcribe! is the best program I have used for finding beats and such.
It has capabilities to slow down songs, without changing the pitch. It also has an equalizer and FX to cut out certain frequencies in a song, and to play only the left or right speakers.
You can also highlight an area and have it play over and over again.
I highly recommend it, although I would like it if the program could show the beat markers and lock onto them, so selecting certain areas of a song would be easier.
I will mention that it is not free, although it isn't expensive either.
Windows Media Player
I'll bet you didn't expect this one on the list! But Windows Media Player is useful if you don't have any other programs to use, as it can slow down songs (To 50%) and you can mess with the equalizer a bit.
Other than that, it can't do much, but it came with your PC (If you're on a PC that is) and it's better than nothing.
I have also tried some other programs such as RiffMaster Pro, but just didn't find they were very well suited for this practice.
The best thing that you can do for your Transcriptions is to take your time. Don't rush through it, and if you get frustrated, don't just write it badly, skip the part and do it later.
If you haven't done so already:
(That's A Clue!)
-Andrew Muller, Editor (Monday May 25th, 2009.)
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