Stagelight Tips and Tricks – Getting Started – Part 2
Welcome back to Stagelight Tips and Tricks. This blog post is Getting Started in Stagelight, Part 2. In this column, Open Labs will walk Stagelight users through a demonstration of the Stagelight interface using a Demo Song. There will be descriptions and analysis of the Stagelight Main Menu, the Transport section of the interface and onscreen touch tools and instruments.
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The “Home” button returns the Stagelight user to the app’s Main Menu. “Song” will allow the Stagelight musician to begin a new song, open a pre-existing track or save the song (or song template) currently being worked on. The option marked “Share” lets users mix down their tracks directly to SoundCloud, mix down the song to a stereo track, or output every track separately for the purpose of preserving them for a future remix. To adjust general settings inside the app, click on the “Options” button. Audio device selection, MIDI inputs and outputs and the third party VST plug-in directory can all be managed through “Options.” The “Store” option will take users to the Stagelight In-App Store, without having to return to the Home screen. “Help” opens a quick start guide and a link to the Stagelight forum for users who have questions about a process or feature. Finally, the “Undo” button erases the most recent programming move by the Stagelight musician.
Music can be created in two different ways on Stagelight. Musicians can switch back and forth between the Timeline view of their song and the LoopBuilder view. Timeline is a more linear and traditional music recording interface; it will be familiar to any Stagelight user who has experience with other music creation software. LoopBuilder, which is one of Stagelight’s innovative creation tools, will allow the musician to easily record and sequence the performance of their audio and MIDI loops. When toggled back into the Timeline view, songs recorded with LoopBuilder are presented as multi-track audio. This contributes to additional mixing and mastering of the song.
The top section of Stagelight’s interface is known as the Transport. The buttons inside the Transport allow the Stagelight user to play, pause, record, control return and stop. To the right of the Transport is the metronome; clicking on the metronome will adjust functions such as playback, recording, pre-roll and volume. Next to the metronome is the BPM (Beats Per Minute). Users can change their song’s time signature manually, adjust the BPM or find the right pace for their song with Stagelight’s special “Tap a Tempo” tool.
The grid allows Stagelight users to customize how the notes in their song “snap to the grid” in their projects. Clicking and dragging will adjust the resolution of the grid. Another groundbreaking Stagelight tool, Key Lock, makes music creation even easier by allowing Stagelight musicians to use on a piano that cannot play wrong notes. Key Lock can be activated by clicking the key icon. Note how the onscreen keyboard changes appearance when Key Lock is engaged. Stagelight also comes with One Touch Save; to activate the one-touch, Stagelight users can just click on the title.
The Track Inspector is located to the left of the song display. Clicking the green arrow will toggle between making the Inspector visible and hiding it off-screen. The Track Inspector allows Stagelight musicians to adjust track volume, pan stereo sound and utilize the Quick Filter in order to EQ a track’s frequencies. Stagelight users can use the Track Inspector to tweak and customize their songs’ dynamics and structure.
Further down on the Stagelight interface is the “Change Instrument” option. This is where Stagelight musicians can change what instrument they’re recording with or add effects.
The on-screen touch tools along the right side of the Stagelight interface can be used to select, lasso, copy, cut, paste, split, breakup, duplicate and/or discard any of a track’s sounds in either the Timeline and LoopBuilder display view. And in the bottom right-hand corner, the onscreen instrument icon will allow Stagelight users to activate the onscreen piano, Stagelight keyboard or Stagelight drum pads.
Now Stagelight musicians are familiar with the Easy Way to Create Music’s main menu, transport and on-screen touch tools. The time to begin creating music is now.
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