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Wow! That was a lot of theory to take in. Now we're ready to dig into using the program that does it all: DirectMusic Producer. DirectMusic Producer is a complex program with a steep learning curve. While this section is not meant to be artistic, it demonstrates DirectMusic's basics, as well as the fundamentals required to use the program in a production environment. We also revisit some basic ideas key to using DirectMusic, including variation, styles, and chord changes. Our goal is to create a simple blues that uses DirectMusic's recomposition features to follow chord changes.
Insert the CD included with this book into your CD-ROM drive, as we refer to MIDI files on this CD for the note data in this chapter. Open DirectMusic Producer and create a new project by selecting File>New from the menu and selecting a project in the dialog box. Name your project, and choose a storage location for its data on your hard drive. Select File>Import File into Project>MIDI File as Segment from the menu. Navigate to the Unit I\Chapter 5\Tutorial Part One directory on the CD and select the file Tutorial_Bass_Melody.mid. The Segment opens automatically in the main screen of DirectMusic Producer.
Figure 5-1: A DirectMusic Segment file, created from a MIDI sequence.
This Segment has several tracks of data in it. The first is a Tempo Track, which controls the speed of playback. The second track is a Chord Track, which controls how DirectMusic transposes other Segments over this Segment. The next two tracks are Sequence Tracks containing note data. The final track is a Band Track, which controls the instrument patching.
Often, when importing data from sequencing programs, the data requires some amount of cleanup. In this case, there are several problems; first, the Segment is two bars long, yet the music in the Sequence Tracks is only one bar long. To fix this problem, right-click on the title bar of the window and select Properties.
Figure 5-2: The properties dialog box.
Almost everything in DirectMusic has a properties dialog; our Segment itself has one, as well as each track and each piece of data in each track.
Click on the button next to Length, and set the number of measures to one.