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Re: I really need some advice for Senior Project

I was about to suggest you investigate something like Reason but it would seem you already have a decent set of instruments and tools. 10 years of piano would also seem sufficient for a workable set of 'chops'. The question now becomes "what are you missing?" 'Electronic music' is a fairly broad term these days but it has its roots in computer generated sounds, melodies (such as they were!) and arrangements. If you had started sooner I could have connected you with one of Merrell Ellis' grad students who worked with him at UNT(NTSU) back in the heyday of EM. I saw a number of their 'concerts' and it was quite fascinating at the time. The equipment was impressive, walls of synthesizers, tape decks, sequencers, etc. but you really had to have a wide open mindset to consider it much more than just noise. Is something along these more historic lines appealing to you? If so you may need to develop some programming skills and learn how to control the instruments you have by means of an original 'composer/player' program. More currently I think the trend is more towards interaction between a human performer and a machine(s). This approach allows the human to create some basic rules and guidelines (rhythmic, melodic, chordal, etc.) and then allow the machine to 'play along' in some (hopefully) meaningful way. I am currently experimenting with a program called Jamstix which is an interactive 'drummer'. In theory it can accept MIDI and audio input as a reference and compose an appropriate drum part. There are also programs like Jammer Pro that can compose complete songs with little more than a sketchy outline. But creating something along these lines may be beyond the scope of your project and would probably require far more time than you're planning to invest. And I guess they're not really what you would call EM either so there are probably better choices.


Since folks on this forum generally use loopers as a tool you might consider becoming familiar with some looping techniques. One concept is to create long dreamy phrases and let them play against themselves in an (often) unsynchronized way which results in an everchanging musical landscape. Along the way the phrase(s) can be manipulated/mangled, other parts added and subtracted, etc. You can search the archives here to find examples of this and many other looping techniques. This also lends itself to eventual 'live' performances too once you have a handle on the processes involved.


Anyway, I'm hoping a few other folks will chime in with an idea or two. Can you give us any more clues about what you have in mind based on your current knowledge and experience with EM? Maybe I'm way off the track here!