Playback w/ First & Second Endings, Bridges, Etc

Another performance / playback question. Actually, two questions:

  1. I’m trying to sequence patterns for playback. It seems you have to create separate patterns for first and second endings. In songs that have verses, choruses, and bridges, all those distinct endings can sometimes exceed Scaler’s limit of 7 patterns. Is there a workaround or a best practice?

  2. Maybe the same problem: I have a pad of patterns, including a bunch of first and second endings for verses and choruses. If I create all these as individual patterns, in performance mode I can’t loop them together and play through them sequentially, because the first and second endings will often conflict. In sheet music, that’s dealt with by written conventions indicating first endings, second endings, codas, tags, etc., so that a song that might be 68 bars when performed can be written on a 32-bar page (with maybe a 4-bar tag).

Is there a way to sequence playbacks in Scaler 2 similarly? So that I don’t exceed the 7 pattern limit and - importantly - can listen to the song sequences properly?

Hi @GoliathGrouper

Just to clarify are you using binding and playing from a keyboard or are you just relying on Scaler to playback the patterns?

My approach to this issue is to think a bit laterally and as you will be repeating chords for the verses, except for the endings, put these common chords into a pattern and then put the different endings into another pattern (or patterns).

In the song below I have two verses consisting of six chords. Each verse will be 12 bars long because each chord will play for 8 measures = two bars.

The first verse consists of the chords in the first pattern and the first two chords from the second pattern. The second verse will be the chords in the first pattern and the last two chords from the second pattern.

I play the chords using the bound keys.

If I do not want to play a keyboard I can trigger the blocks using midi clips in my DAW.

Hope this gives you some thoughts about how you may achieve your arrangements within the constraints of 56 chords.

Thanks, @ed66! I’m actually not binding and playing, but trying to use Scaler to drive.

I think it’s simple enough to do in the DAW. As you say, you can just clip or drop into the DAW track itself whatever it is you need at that part in the song. And Scaler’s pretty great for that.

But I was wondering whether you could use Scaler to drive a work in process without having to “commit” to the DAW. I’ve been spending the whole day reading tips on this forum - a luxurious way to spend a day! - and I’m suspecting I just need to get up to speed on playback controls.

1 Like

As Scaler is a plugin it has to be hosted in either a vst host or a DAW: my preference is a DAW. Just to clarify my approach here is an example of a simple configuration in Ableton Live where Scaler is providing a harmony based on chords and the midi output from Scaler is driving ChordPotion which is generating a midi output to AAS player for a melody.
Scaler driving CP driving Synth

I have bound keys on Scaler so that I can play the chord blocks as from my Oxygen 49 midi keyboard.

Hence I can play the verse and have different endings on the verse by playing the key switches (green keys) at the appropriate time. Instead of the keyboard I could also drive Scaler from a midi clip.

With this configuration, having created the chords in Scaler I can play each chord for as long as I hold down a key, and also play them in any order as they are triggered by the bound keys: so I can jam on Scaler.

Very helpful! I’ve been trying to be lazy snd automate everything I can, without relying on the keyboard. But for some tunes, it might just be the best way.

Or you could write midi clips to drives Scaler. These can include notes for key switching between patterns, and the clips override the Scaler default durations: the length of each note in the clip is the duration for the chord in Scaler (see Using Midi Clips to Control Scaler if you are not familiar with using midi clips in Scaler).

Here is an example of the Scaler State with two patterns and a simple midi file to control it. Note that the default duration for each chord is 4 beats, but the chords in the ending play for 8 beats because that is the length of the bind notes in the midi clip.

Midi_Control_Ex.mid (186 Bytes)
Midi_Control_Ex.xml (20.4 KB)

Hope this helps

Ed, i think I get it, but I was using different terminology. Check me to see if I’ve got this right:

  1. I put my sections of chord progressions into distinct patterns (chorus, verse, bridge, etc.)
  2. I bind the chords in each pattern to specific trigger notes.
  3. I use key switches so I don’t run out of trigger notes! That is, if I’ve got a four-chord, 8-bar verse followed by a chorus of that’s a different four chords over 8 bars, I can still use C-D-E-F as triggers for those chords, as long as I key-switch between the verse and the chorus.
  4. I set up one pattern with (for example) both the first and second endings to the verse, each of which is (say) two bars.
  5. I write the trigger notes and the key switches into the DAW’s piano roll.

If I got this right, this allows me to:

A. Use Scaler for first and second endings for verses and choruses without exhausting the 7-pattern limit
B. Continue to go back into Scaler to edit expressions, articulations, chords, and even 3rd-party instrument links, without having to make changes to the MIDI roll in the DAW.

Did I miss anything? (Even if I did, thank you!!!)

1 Like

That sounds about right.