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MX Study: Programming with the VycroMX Performance Editor

MX Study: Programming with the VycroMX Performance Editor
MX Study: PERFORMANCE Programming with the VycroMX Performance Editor (free download)

FusionGtrsIn the Editor you can build PERFORMANCES with as many PARTS as you desire by changing the MIDI CHANNEL (shown above). Parts 1-4 are set to receive on MIDI channel 1 – this will allow you to play all four PARTS simultaneously when PART [1] is selected.

In this article we will discuss putting together your own PERFORMANCES in the MX using the free VycroMX PERFORMANCE Editor.

MX PERFORMANCE Study: "Fusion Guitars"
Inspired by one of my favorite guitarist, John McLaughlin (of Mahavishnu Orchestra fame) this Performance combines two Electro-Acoustic Guitars, an Analog synth pad, Velo Bass and Drums... it is more reminiscent of his work just pre-Mahavishnu but post-Miles. With the PERFORMANCE Editor you can build a PERFORMANCE with as many PARTS as you desire. This is quite different from what you can do from the front panel... where you can simply create Single, Layer (2), or Split (2) plus Drums in PART 10. So right away, an advantage of the Editor is you can build bigger Performances with multiple Parts.

Here is the layout of FUSION GUITARS.

"Clean Elec & Acou 1"
"Clean Elec & Acou 1"
"Velo Bass"
"Analog Sweep"
Rhythm Part: "Break Kit"

How the PERFORMANCE came about:
I began by experimenting with the single Guitar Voice: "ClnElc&Ac1". It's the first Voice in the "E. Clean Guitar" guitar Category.

You can recall this Voice on your MX as follows:

Press [SHIFT] + [SELECT] to do a QUICK RESET (Always a good idea when wishing to start building your PERFORMNACE fresh!)
Press the [GUITAR] Category button - this action will recall the very first Acoustic Guitar (Classical). You can either advance one at a time to reach the "ClnElc&Ac1" or you can ...


This will "jump" to the Electro-Acoustic Sub-Category. Nice shortcut: SHIFT + the Category button will advance you to the next instrument Type in the current Category. Acoustic Guitars > Electric Clean Guitars > Electric Distortion Guitars > etc., etc...

And because I was exploring the [SHIFT] button functions at the moment - I discovered you can create a quick unison PERFORMANCE with the MX by HOLDING [SHIFT] + [LAYER]

The screen will briefly read: "Unison"

This will duplicate the VOICE in PART 1 in PART 2, giving it a thicker, richer tone... this works well for these particular guitar sounds, I thought.

I then opened the Editor to see what I could do to build this into a four PART Performance, similar to what you might find in the MOXF or Motif XF Performances.

Adding Bass and Pad
A fundamental of MIDI communication has to do with MIDI Channel assignments. When multiple tone generator PARTS are assigned to the same MIDI channel you can play them simultaneously. The PERFORMANCE EDITOR allows you to freely assign the MIDI channel of each of the sixteen PARTS.

The "Velo Bass" (slap bass) was added and the MIDI Channel set to Channel 1 in the Editor along with the "Analog Sweep" Voice.

The Bass' Note Range was set to top out at "E2" so it will only sound in the left hand and the Velocity Range was set so that it only plays when you exceed a velocity of 85 (you can edit this as you desire), while the other PARTS play across the entire range. If you have an MX49 you may wish to activate the [–OCT] button to lower the keyboard one octave.

Controlling the Drums
HOLD [STOP] + [>] - this places your "drummer" (the Rhythm Part, Part 10) in "Key-On Start" - this means it will begin playing as soon as you touch the keyboard. There is no count-in.

Download the following VycroMX file: FusionGtrs.SQS (the ZIPPED Download link appears at the bottom of the article)
The "FusionGtrs.SQS" file is in a ZIPPED file - unzip it and launch it with your VycroMX Performance Editor while connected via USB to your MX.

This file can be opened by the VycroMX PERFORMANCE Editor and will be sent to the Edit Buffer of your MX. You can decide then to keep it or not. In other words, it does not initially overwrite anything in your MX. It only exists in the Edit Buffer where you can play it, explore it, learn from it, customize it, rename it and then STORE it to your MX, if you'd like. Or you can simply capture it in your EDITOR using the "COLLECT" feature. 

Additionally, any PERFORMANCES you create with your VycroMX PERFORMANCE EDITOR can be stored in the MX. Simply press the [STORE] button and select to overwrite one of the 128 PERFORMANCE locations. All Performances are in USER programmable memory locations and if you would like to rewrite your internal PERFORMANCES - please do - they are designed to be customized as you like. Use a USB stick for long term storage and easy recall. The Factory PERFORMANCES can easily be restored at any time by performing a FACTORY SET - so please feel free to overwrite any or all of them!!!

After you open the .SQS file - the PERFORMANCE will be rendered in your MX's Edit Buffer.
Explore the various tabs of the VycroMX Performance Editor to see the [MIX], the [NOTE RANGE], the [VELOCITY RANGE], and [MIDI] tabs to view the basic edits applied.

Explore - try choosing your own Rhythm Pattern and Drum Kit and alter things as you desire.

Extra Credit:
With the VycroMX PERFORMANCE Editor you can freely assign PARTS to MIDI Channel 1 to create big Performances... you can also assign additional PARTS to MIDI Channel 2. For example, I added one of my favorite Synth Lead Voices, "Wind Synth" to PART 5 (and set it to MIDI channel 2).

Now, because the [LAYER] button automatically layers the Channel 1 Voices with those assigned to Channel 2, when I press the [LAYER] button it layers the four PARTS on Channel 1 with the Synth Lead on MIDI Channel 2... think of the possibilities!!!

Synth 101 - Lesson 3: Methods of Synthesis
Connecting MONTAGE and Logic Pro X

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