Help with this slightly unusual scenario

Hi all. I don’t have a beat buddy yet, but I’ve started experimenting with the BB manager software to see if it is going to be useful for me. I am trying to set up a song which consists of:

  • an intro (4/4)

  • a verse (4/4 but with a 5/4 bar in the middle). I have implemented the 5/4 bar as a fill. It seems to work fine. So far so good…

  • a chorus (4/4 but with a 7/4 bar at the end)
    That last item is the problem.
    The problem is that I want the chorus to play (as a loop), followed by a single 7/4 bar and then straight back into the verse loop. If I play the 7/4 bar as a fill, it then starts back on the chorus loop which I don’t want.
    I hope that is clearer than mud. Any ideas/suggestions?

  • soakes

With your unusual rhythm structure, one solution might be to rewrite the song in a 1/4 time signature. This way you could accommodate both the 5/4 and 7/4 measures.

That sounds like far too much trouble than it’s worth!

Not at all, BBmanager is a big part of the BB and taking the time to re do beats / songs is we’ll worth it. Considering the experience you will gain after you are done. Really getting to know the BB manager will give you the ability to make this pedal do amazing things as far as drum rhythms go.

If I understand you correctly, you have a few options. You should be able to create a 7/4 “Transition Fill” after the chorus. When you tap out of the chorus into the verse, it will play that transition, so again, you have to time it carefully. If you hold the pedal down, BB will repeat the 7/4 transition until you release the pedal.

Alternatively, you could make the 7/4 transition another section following the chorus. One long tap will take you into the transition. Don’t do anything and the transition will repeat. Another long tap will take you back into the verse.

Thanks Gabriel. Your understanding is quite correct. Indeed I have thought of and tried both of those options. I am unimpressed with transition fills as they only play while you are pressing the pedal. As you say, you have to time it very carefully!
The second option seems to work, but again it is tricky. I can easily end up getting the 7/4 bar repeated … which would be disastrous!
I think this is the only way realistically to do it.

Sure, but programming a song in 1/4? It would require that I programme the entire song which defeats the purpose of having loops… or am I missing something?

You don’t have to keep your foot on the pedal during the transitions. You only need to do that if you want to repeat the transition indefinitely. How many measures are in your chorus? Another option is to split the chorus into two sections with the last one being something like a 23/4 section. (4 x 4/4) + 7/4. It’s not that hard to create a 23/4 pattern by duplicating a 4/4 pattern.

um… unless the actual BB pedal is different from the BB Manager software - yes you do. Otherwise it cuts the transition short. It doesn’t play the full 7 beats (in my case) but jumps to the next stage when I release the pedal. ??

“Long Tap” (as opposed to tap), but don’t hold the pedal when you want to play the first beat of the transition, not at the end of the measure before the transition. When you long-tap (not hold) the BeatBuddy, it assumes that THE CURRENT MEASURE is the transition. If you do that on the second beat of the measure, then it will finish out the transition from there. If you do that on the last beat of the current measure, then it will finish out the transition from that beat and transition to the next section. You can test this behavior in BB Manager.

For example, you should do this:

[FONT=Courier New][code]Last Measure Before Transition Transition
1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 5 6 7
Long Tap


Last Measure Before Transition Transition
1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 5 6 7
Long Tap[/code][/FONT]

If you do the second, BB will finish out the transition fill IN THE CURRENT MEASURE starting on beat 3.

So, if your chorus is 32 measures: 31 regular measures plus one long 7/4 measure, you want to do a long tap on the first beat of the long 7/4 measure, not the middle of the 31st measure. When you release inside the long transition measure, it will finish the rest of it.

From their FAQ:

Do I have to press the pedal exactly at the beginning of a drum fill or release it exactly at the end of a transition fill?

No. The BeatBuddy always ends song parts at the end of the bar, keeping you in time. For example, if you trigger a fill too early, it will start at the right time. If you trigger it too late, the remainder of the fill plays and ends with the bar, keeping you in time. Likewise, transitions only need to be held for a moment before you can release and the transition will begin and end exactly on time, leaving you with plenty of time to press your other pedals.

You’re missing something. You can still loop whatever you want to loop. The 1/4 just allows what were previously mixed beats per measure. Really, depending upon your DAW, it should be as simple as changing the time signature in the song to 1/4. What Is the complete structure of the song, so I can better explain this.

The BB manager does respond differently from the actual pedal with respect to transitions and fills. The pedal has adjustments on how to handle transitions/fills, which BB manager software does not have. Stil, I find it better to come up with a programming that works in BB manager since then I know it will work in the pedal.

Sorry. There is also this in the settings for the pedal itself. You need to experiment.

Main Pedal > Cue Fill Period

This allows you to set the amount of the measure that has been played before the fill is played in the next measure, rather than in the current one. So if the setting is at 75%, and you tap the pedal before 75% of the measure has been played, then the fill will start immediately and end in the current measure. If you tap the pedal after 75% of the measure has been played, it will wait until the next measure to play the fill.

Thanks for the reply, but this does not make sense.
I cannot do a long tap on the first beat of the 7/4 bar because I cannot even get to the 7/4 bar until I do a long tap somewhere in the 4/4 loop. That is if I have implemented the 4/4 bar as the main loop and the 7/4 bar as the transition fill.


Actually, it’s a bit counter-intuitive, but when you do the long tap, the CURRENT BAR becomes the transition fill. Even then there is still a problem. The problem is that the Transition Fill takes its time signature from the Main Loop. If you create a 7/4 Transition Fill, only the first four beats will be used if the Main Loop is 4/4. So, that messes up this plan.

What you need to do is create a separate 7/4 Main Loop for the Transition Fill and transition out of it as soon as you go into it with a long tap. So, that’s a long tap to get into the 7/4 Main Loop, and another tap once your in it to transition back to the verse. Like this.

[FONT=Courier New]Intro: Intro Loop

Verse: Main Loop in 4/4 Drum Fill in 5/4 Transition Fill in 4/4

Chorus: Main Loop in 4/4 Drum Fill in 4/4

Transition: Main Loop in 7/4

Outro: Outro Fill in 4/4
Play the intro and verse as normal using the Drum Fill to give you the 5/4. Transition to the chorus as normal. When you’re ready to exit the chorus, long-tap into the “Transition” which is a separate part that contains only a single 7/4 measure as the Main Loop. As soon as you enter the 7/4 transition measure, long-tap to transition back to the verse. You don’t need to hold the long taps down. The current measure will finish playing as-is if there is no Transition Fill. In other words, if you long tap and release in the first beat of the 7/4 “Transition” Main Loop, that single measure will finish playing and then transition directly back to the verse.

Yep, that makes more sense. I couldn’t work out what the transition fill was doing. This would be much easier if that transition fill played in its entirety (in this case 7 beats!), but it works as an extra section… I just have to be ready to transit quickly!