Reaper/Beat Buddy Help

I’m trying to do more with Reaper and Beat Buddy. I’ve got a couple of questions with one Beat Buddy Specific.

I’m able to get sound by opening “Route” going to “Midi Hardware Output” and selecting “Microsoft GS Wavetable Synth”. That’s the only option and it comes up as all percussion. My questions:

  1. I need to go through this process each time. Is there anyway to save it as a default?
  2. If I want to edit a song that has “with Bass”, how can I alter reaper to make it sound like the tracks with Bass?

Any help would be appreciated! This may be one of the few opportunities where I have an extended time to learn Reaper during our social distancing phase in the US.

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You can save it to a REAPER project template (File / Project templates) and load the template every time you create a new project. It will save the track settings (MIDI Output, others)

What I usually do is split the BB MIDI file to 2 tracks in REAPER:

  • Bass Track - set MIDI Channel to 2, Program Change to Bass Instrument
  • Drum Track - set MIDI Channel to 10

These 2 tracks are under a folder track that has the “Route / MIDI Hardware Ouput” setting, see below for the screenshot of my template project. To export the REAPER MIDI tracks to BB MIDI file , click “File / Export Project MIDI”. I’ll be happy to share my project file if interested. Hope this helps!

image

Thanks - I’d live your template. I couldn’t figure out how to get the GS Wavetable Synth to look like yours.

Another question, I re-editted High and Dry as the middle was a little off in what I had. I want to export it to the NP StdBass 63-91 kit. How do I do that? The midi file I exported is all weird.

Figured it out. I had to “transpose” the track where the bass files were up to the right midi numbers. If there’s an easier way, let me know. Lot of work but proud that it’s accomplished!

You’re on the right track Bootsy. If I have lots of tinkering to do with a mixed BB MIDI file I usually ‘Save As’ then delete everything from the file except for one instrument (for instance saving as just the bass) then reopen the original file and do the same for the other instruments.

Some downloads will parse themselves when you open them in REAPER I think. I created .txt files for the main kits I use from what the creator had provided or by opening the drum kit in BBMgr and noting each channel. The .txt file can be opened in the piano roll view in REAPER (File>Note/CC Names>Load Note/CC Names from File and open from wherever you stored the .txt).

This way you can see where the bass notes are and whether they fit the kit you chose. Select all by sweeping the pointer across the field (or using select all if this is single instrument file) then put your mouse in the channel label for the lowest note and the box top left will tell you what the channel number. You can simply transpose that amount up or down.

Sometimes if notes don’t fit I transpose them separately or delete them as needed for a good outcome.

I’m getting there…slowly but surely and one step at a time.

@Cygnus49 - if you’re still willing to share that template , it might help

New question: I went to add bass notes to Can’t You See. There weren’t any before. I took an existing bass track from another song. Then just moved the notes to where I wanted them and the length. Questions:

  1. Is there a more efficient way?
  2. The first note when it cycles back sounds muddy. Almost as if two notes are playing at the same time. Any idea as to what happened? EDIT: I was able to fix the muddy note by eliminating a “C” note before the D in the last beat of the last measure.

Here’s the 9 templates I structured. A few I use only on a song or two but the others are indispensable now. Bose Jazz and 2164 Hammond for keys mostly and my hybrid drums+bass kit using Ottawa Joe’s modifications of the lower drums and Phil Flood’s rework of the PBass (from my favorite 2164 kit) shown as Std_JVPFBass_MPB.

I learned about crafting these kit lists from Persist’s tutorial. The lists are tedious to build - easy to get careless after mindlessly overwriting a long file - but indispensable.

I play bass and flute on our take of Can’t You See so we just use stock drums (Pop 10 @ 87 bpm with my hybrid kit - delete the intro and start on the 2nd x through octave up with the flute with pedal push) and that works well once I practiced and got comfortable with pausing/unpausing. The part is pretty easy and repetitive so should be a good one to start with. Sometimes the end of exported loops (REAPER>BB) get a bit off so make sure you expand the end of the loop in REAPER and see that it ends where you think it does.

When in doubt do as I do - call on Persist.

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Here’s a copy of the template, see description below. Track 2 (Bass) is set up to match with the BB Bass notes 63-91, no need to transpose. I’ve also included some MIDI items in the project. Let me know if you have any questions.

  • Track 1 - GS Wavetable Synth, Route to Microsoft GS Synth, track folder
  • Track 2 - Bass, set to MIDI Channel 1, transpose to -36 for Bass 63-91, Electric Bass
  • Track 3 - Drums, set to MIDI Channel 10

REAPER Template - GS WSynth for BB-v1.zip (2.4 KB)

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@Fled - thank you for the template. I finally had time to start playing with it. Which of course brings up a new set of questions.
1 - I imported a midi file. The entire midi track shows up on #1. For the track. Bass was in 62 - 93, drums below that. Is there an easier way to just split the initial mid track so it goes in to the bass track and drum track? (I just copied and pasted them into the right tracks)
2 - Once I created a drum and bass track, when ever I “split” the track, it would add a pause. What am I doing wrong?
3 - When trying to play the track, is there anyway to isolate the bass and drum track? I can’t solo or mute the lower two tracks as it only “plays” from the top track.
4 - Alternatively, is this set up to import a drum track and then add a bass track? I know that was the original thing I was looking to do. If so, would I import drums, then add bass and would it automatically map to the 1st track?

Thanks - I’m trying to take existing OPB songs, edit them down to a few key parts so I can have verse/chorus/bridge. With the Midi Maestro (I think), I’ll be able to just select the part I want.

Reaper has a big learning curve but I can now easily transpose songs! So my to do list is now:

  • Being able to add bass lines (2 ways I’ve been doing this is modifying pre-existing bass lines or just programming in the computer. I don’t have a USB Audio Interface so I can just play one, can I?
  • Split songs in to sections

Hey @Bootsy - See my reply below:

Unfortunately, I have not found an easy to do this. I do the same thing that you do, copy the track to Bass and Drum tracks and remove MIDI events that are not needed. There is a track split functionality in REAPER but it only works if Bass and Drums MIDI events are using different MIDI channels (say Drums is channel 10 and Bass another channel). Most of the OPBs that I’ve seen are only using MIDI channel 10 for both Bass and Drums tracks so it won’t work.

I may need some more information on this. When you say ‘it would add a pause’, does it add empty MIDI item (with no MIDI events in it)? Are you splitting MIDI item to create parts for BB? If you attach a sample of REAPER project, I could take a look and see what’s happening.

Yes, you can solo/mute Bass and Drum tracks by using the Solo and Mute buttons of the individual tracks (these are tracks 2 and 3 from the template). This is the main reason why I split them into 2 tracks so I can isolate each instrument.

Yes you can. As long as you import the bass and drum MIDI to their specific tracks (track 2 for Bass, track 3 for Drums), it should map to the right MIDI channel and will route to Track 1 where you have the Microsoft GS Module playing the actual bass and drum sounds.

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Thanks so much - Learning a lot and guidance is helpful!

Ok - I’m back looking at the next level (I hope) of development. All the help has been awesome.

What I’d like to do at this point is to add bass lines but not so I have to click the notes within Reaper. I want to use my keyboard (Casio Px5s) to play a line, record it in Reaper as a midi file. I do have a Focusrite Scarlett Solo if that is needed. Any advice or help for that?

OR am I better off using a virtual piano or something else? It would be simple bass lines.

Or am I better off just getting a midi to USB cable and use some of my kids’ old 61 note basic keyboards and go to computer (Windows 10) to Reaper?

You should be able to use the Casio Px5s and record midi to REAPER. You will need to connect the Px5s USB Out to the computer USB Port and enable it in REAPER (under Preferences / Audio / MIDI Devices / MIDI Inputs). Then in your REAPER track (if you’re using my template, it is track 2), enable the track input to Px5s, record arm the track and hit the Record button. Then play bass on the keyboard and it should record it to track. Hope this helps!

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I’ll give it a shot. Actually found one of my kids beginner keyboard that had a USB so I’ll give it a try when time permits. Thanks again for the help! I’ll let you know how I make out.