Saturday, May 6, 2017

Neat use of the AFTER command

I wanted to play a nice little song "Maria Bonita" written in the 1940s by Agustin Lara. Copied out a chart from a fake book and then transfered this to MMA. Simple ... until I realized that the time signature was 6/8. Ouch ... and this is not really the "normal" duple time; it's a waltz. So, each bar sounds like 2 bars of 3/4.

What to do?

A first I was going to write a new LatinWaltz groove. But, I'm feeling a bit lazy today and figured there should be an easier way. Yeah, right.

The LatinWaltz groove really doesn't work for 6/8. The timing is just wrong. Hmmm, off to work:

1. In the MMA file split each bar in two. Essentially, we now have a 3/4 file. A minor result of this is that I now have bars which look like:

1  Am
    Fm
2  Gm
    Am
 
I don't like un-numbered bars, but going with 1,2,3,etc. isn't right either. So, we'll leave the un-numbered alone.

The 3/4 groove works okay. But, it's not quite right. So, a bit of playing around.

2. To make the difference between the first and second bars in each pair I created a little sequence which sounds a triangle at the start of the odd numbered bars:

Begin Drum-Solo-Triangle
     Sticky On
     Tone OpenTriangle
     Volume m
     Sequence D1 z
End
Cool, that was easy.

3.  Now, I found the bass beats at the start of each bar needed to lighten up on the even numbered bars. So, right before bar one I did:
Begin After Repeat=2   // for bars 3,5,7...
   Bass Accent    /// no accent
   Walk Accent
End
and, right after bar one (right before the original 2nd half of the bar):

Begin After Repeat=2   // This is done on bars 2,4,6
   Bass Accent 1 -40
   Walk Accent 1 -40
End
And ... that's it.

Only problem is that bar 1/2 still has the original accents. I could play around and fix that, but it's not worthwhile.

I did learn something: AFTER is really neat and powerful!

Python 2.x support

There will be one more (or two) python 2.x releases, probably this year or early 2020. I'm thinking we should remove 2.x support for MM...