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    What is the key? What is the BPM?


    I`m always amazed at the quality and variety of samples on thefreesoundproject. I am always grateful for the hard work and generosity of the contributors.

    BUT......

    As someone who has released several albums but still considers himself musically inept, I find it VERY frustrating that almost all of these wonderful musical pieces uploaded by talented musicians don`t list the key of the music -- and almost as often the BPM.

    I have many pieces of excellent guitar and string phrases downloaded, but can`t use them because, try as I may, I struggle to find the key in which they were played. Therefore I can`t add my own parts to form a whole.

    OK -- some of you are now muttering, `If he`s that useless he shouldn`t be here.`

    I love music. Making music is a real joy in my life. Hence my frustration that vital bits of information are missing.

    PLEASE contributors: List the key and the BPM!!

    Many thanks, Art

    :wink:

    .

    **
  • avatar
    103 sounds
    195 posts


    hi Art
    I too think it could be useful to tag samples with key and bmp
    but...
    "Freesound focusses only on sound, not songs"
    but...
    Freesound actually host many beautiful little pieces of music and rhythms.
    imho this is a metamorphoses from the original FS project ( http://www.freesound.org/whatIsFreesound.php ), thought as a database for sound exploration and not as a resource for musicians. this appear to me as a natural evolution, as in any web project: one push an idea to the public, the public pull the idea to their needs (sorry for my weird english). actually FS may be the greatest database for soundtrack in indie movies, games and everything that need "that strange sound" or sounds with a CClicense (zero budget).

    making "music" is now so easy, we don't even have to play an instruments: download some samples, mix, edit and play it - this is what I'm currently doing (and sometimes I have to identify key and bpm). the Freesound radio http://radio.freesound.org is a smart step in erasing the frontier between sound and music - and between "my stuff" and "your stuff" = a collective free playground. but I would also like a place in FS where to host and share mixing experiments made with more precise tools than FS radio editing. experiments... music? sounds? does it fit in FS? don't know, but it's fun! and I believe many people are doing it here in Freesound grin

    your logical request is one piece added to the metamorphoses: to not hide the musical side of Freesound. we of course don't need a clone of ccmixter or similar - imo a collettive attention to these basic musical features, key and bpm, could improve Freesound without loosing the original objective.

    btw, to find the key of a sample I use a cheap little tuning machine: I listen to the sample and change the machine tone until I find the key. bpm are harder to identify: I usually search FS for the right match, or bend the mix to what I've found, or build some d&b line in Ableton Live

    listening and making music is a real joy in my life too wink

  • avatar
    121 sounds
    1545 posts


    many people have used the tab 120-bpm (or another number) before.
    keel free to invent one for key!

    key-bflat

    - bram

    Warning: if you break the rules, see my avatar. Freesound Admin, Moderator, Ex-Freesound-Coder & Benevolent Dictator For Life.
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    Many thanks to both above for your comments.

    Hopefully it is not too much to ask to request that when uploading a musical sample that, where possible or appropriate, the key is listed.

    As I`ve said:it is vital -- to some of us -- in utilising that sample into a piece of music. Something really wonderful happens when you find a sample that fits and enhances a composition. As I`ve also said: thefreesoundproject is a valuable resource for all musicians and sound sculptors. In my humble opinion it could be so much better by making it an essential part of the uploading process to list both key and bpm. But, hey! What do I know?

    Interested in the use of the tuner in identifying the key. More please...

    Thankyou again to all of those who contribute to this site and make it such a treasure trove for the rest of us.

    ERH and HAMMERKLAVIER special thanks to you.

    Art

    .

    **
  • avatar
    103 sounds
    195 posts


    no battery required: grin
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tuning_fork
    timmgabel.jpg" rel="nofollow">http://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fileweirdtimmgabel.jpg

    energy wasting:
    http://www.dolphinmusic.co.uk/shop/browse-product/category_id/3eb4ba21483bb012e97580ae94e7daae

    the problem is to identify the tonic note, not just the first note of a sample.
    example: http://www.freesound.org/samplesViewSingle.php?id=66718
    here the guitar start with a A, but this phrase and the whole "Acoustic Guitar" pack is in D, as labeled by ERH

  • avatar
    371 sounds
    254 posts


    cajo writes...
    "The problem is to identify the tonic note, not just the first note of a sample".
    I agree!.
    I also wonder how many of us who mess around with instruments or create sounds on computers know what key we are playing in?These days a lot of musico's i know just play and mix sound by ear.
    ........You can pitch up or down(say 3 notes either way)without much loss in quality.
    I haven't tried it but i have heard there's a software programme called MIXINKEY which either reads the key of soundfiles or selects files that are in key.
    There are many hardware/software devices(including hand-held)for tracking the bpm.
    Sorry this is a bit vague :?

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    103 sounds
    195 posts


    vague but interesting, juskiddink
    a quick MIXINKEY search returned:
    a free Java applet, Rapid Evolution http://www.mixshare.com/wiki/doku.php?id=rapid_evolution
    a $58 USDollars Mac/Win sw, Mixed In Key http://www.mixedinkey.com/
    a $50 up to 300 USDollars hardware, MixMeister http://mixmeister.com/

    you're right about pitch bending: Audacity does it well, without changing tempo (different pitch, same duration). my little advice is to try to pitch-bend a sample "by ear", regardless of notation: this way I often discovered special correspondences between samples - maybe out of tune but with a meaning. non-pitagoric, Master Hammerklavier would say wink

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    CAJO WRITES:
    **
    http://www.dolphinmusic.co.uk/shop/browse-product/category_id/3eb4ba21483bb012e97580ae94e7daae

    the problem is to identify the tonic note, not just the first note of a sample. **

    Thanks for that. Which tuner do you use or can recommend?

    How DO you define the tonic root of a piece...?

    Is there anything in Cubase that can identify the key of a sample?

    This is getting interesting. grin

    **
  • avatar
    546 sounds
    351 posts


    Fascinating thread!

    I admit finding the root key of a snippet of music is not usually a problem for me, but how to explain how to do it ?? LOL

    Have you watched the film "The Sound Of Music"? The children are taught to sing using "Tonic Sol-fa" in which notes are identified not absolutely, but relative to the root note or chord.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tonic_sol-fa
    This is how I was taught 60 years ago (gulp!).

    The "major" notes of a scale are Do, Me, So, Do - in fact these are the notes obtained by blowing into a harmonica, the remaining notes being obtained by sucking.

    When I want to identify the key of a snippet of music, such as ERH's guitar snippet, http://www.freesound.org/samplesViewSingle.php?id=66718
    I continue humming or whistling a made up tune in similar vogue, and can soon identify the Do, Me, So, Do notes, and, bingo, Do is the root note or key. Indeed, a Major chord on the root note consists of the Do, Me and So notes.

    In most "simple" music, the last chord is the root chord. Look at guitar chords written for popular songs.
    e.g. http://winterstein.me.uk/misc/happy-birthday.htm
    In Happy Birthday, both the last chord and last note are "C" which is the key of the piece. It's usually more useful to look at the last chord and note than the first.

    In ERH's guitar snippet, are you able to detect the last note of the "melody"? It starts at 3.5 seconds into the file. This is in fact a "D" - and is the root note of the snippet. Having identified that note as "Do" in Tonic Sol-fa, I then used a piano / electronic keyboard to identify the absolute note (no, I don't have perfect pitch!).

    Basically, it just needs practice, and I suppose some sort of musical ear.

    If you would like to point me at other melodic snippets for which you want to know the key, I'll gladly have a go!

    Mike

    Freesound Moderator "Close your eyes, and you're almost there!"
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    Many thanks again for latest contributions.

    My method is to bang around on my keyboard until a common note
    pops out at me whilst listening to the sample. This works about one time in ten. The
    other nine are the problem.

    I am also of a great age -- and deaf in one ear after ten years in a band in the
    60s. But music is still the love of my life -- after the missus, of course. (Had
    to add that in case she looks over my shoulder.)

    I`ve attempted to install the `Rapid Evolution` program that CAJO mentioned. Looks
    like the perfect program for me, but installation is proving impossible.

    Keep `em comin`! :lol:

    Art

    .

    **
  • avatar
    103 sounds
    195 posts


    nothing to add to acclivity's very clear words grin

    I installed and quickly tested Rapid Evolution.

    http://www.mixshare.com it's really well done, there are many helps and a forum.
    installation worked well, no bugs no crashes. better close other programs to have more free memory.

    in this page I've downloaded re2launcher.zip (23.9MB),:
    http://www.mixshare.com/wiki/doku.php?id=installation

    "extract the contents of re2launcher.zip to a temporary directory and run “setup.exe”. This will only run on Windows machines, however, the advantage of this install is that it does not require Java, or rather, it will automatically install it for you if it does not exist."

    at the end of installation, a prompt ask for Max memory used by Rapid Evolution:
    it suggest 200 MB - it could be too much: try a lower value, I choosed 100.
    (it depends on your system configuration - too long to explain it here. I use WinXP-sp3 with 1.60 GHz, 512 MB ram)

    the program opens up.
    the email input at the first start of the program is optional - just close the little window.

    basic steps from online guide:
    http://www.mixshare.com/wiki/doku.php?id=quick_easy_guide

    Step 1: Add Your Songs
    The simplest way to add songs is to drag and drop the folder/directory containing your music onto Rapid Evolution's search window. This will bring up the “add song(s)” dialog. Here, select “add all” and wait until all the songs have been processed (a dialog summarizing the results will be displayed at the end). You can also import songs directly from a variety of sources.

    Step 2: Detect Keys/BPMs
    In the search table, highlight all of your songs (either via CTRL-A or by holding SHIFT), then right/option click and select detect→all (or you could select detect→bpm or detect→key specifically). Wait for this process to finish.

    I've tried detect→all with a whole song in mp3, duration 4:47 - the analisys is long and memory consumpting: wait.
    the result was astonishing: key and bpm perfectly found!
    and the found key is not the first one but the true tonic

    in the edit window there's a piano button that open a useful midi keyboard to manually detect key while playing the file.
    I did not succes in using the tap button to manually detect bmp... but the automatic detection work!

    many other features are related to Dj mixing: info on the site

    Art, let me know if installation was ok, either here or in PM

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    I`m using Vista Home Premium.

    I downloaded the re2launcher.zip zip file. Unzipped it with JZip.

    Double click on re2_launcher.jar / Error message
    "This directory can`t be written. Choose another directory"
    But choosing another directory doesn`t work.

    Double click on setup.exe / Error message
    "The configuration file `launcher.ini` does not contain a jar file entry."

    Java Version 6 is installed.

    Any help you can give would be much appreciated as this is the programme I`ve been in need of for sometime. I need to indentify he keys of various samples.

    Many thanks, Art Miller

    **I posted this on the Revolution site. No advice yet...

    Very frustrating as this looks like the Program Of My Dreams!!!

    Art

    PS: Hey -- thanks for your Italian time, Cajo.

    .



    .

    **
  • avatar
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    artmiller
    I`m using Vista Home Premium.

    I downloaded the re2launcher.zip zip file. Unzipped it with JZip.

    Double click on re2_launcher.jar / Error message
    "This directory can`t be written. Choose another directory"
    But choosing another directory doesn`t work.

    Double click on setup.exe / Error message
    "The configuration file `launcher.ini` does not contain a jar file entry."

    Java Version 6 is installed.

    Any help you can give would be much appreciated as this is the programme I`ve been in need of for sometime. I need to indentify he keys of various samples.

    Many thanks, Art Miller

    Maybe this may help:
    Note: If you are using Windows Vista you should choose to install Rapid Evolution to a directory outside of the default “Program Files” (for example, choose “C:\Rapid Evolution”), otherwise you might have problems saving your database. This is due to an incompatibility with the way Rapid Evolution and Vista function, which might be fixed in the future. Furthermore, it is sometimes necessary to install using the re2launcher.zip method, which will properly set file permissions when the other install options fail. If for any reason the install process itself fails, the other option for Vista users is to download re.zip, and use the pre-installed directory. :wink:

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    OK -- thanks to all.

    Created a new directory and Revolution installed.

    Been trying it out. Have set the detection to maximum
    as I have a Quad core PC that should be able to handle
    most tasks I throw at it.

    Have tried key detection on some pieces where I know
    the key already. Odd results. Sometimes it gets it --
    other times it comes up with odd results. But plenty
    to work with here. Will persevere.

    Huge thanks to CAJO for pointing me in the right
    direction. I owe you a Cinzano when I come to Rome.

    Keep on truckin`

    Art

    :lol: .

    **
  • avatar
    103 sounds
    195 posts


    artmiller
    I owe you a Cinzano when I come to Rome.
    my thirst will never be drenched... I live in Milano weirdhock:
    I too needed that chunk of Java, Art, I'm already using it :wink:
    about odd results: I think these are related to short duration and complex structure of sample - even a skilled human could have troubles to understand the tonality of an instrumental riff if cutted out of the context. you're right, "persevere" is the tonic key.
    if you find other interesting features in RapidEvolution please share it...
    */*
    cajo

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    Like you say: results can be confusing. Longer shifting soundscapes
    produce the most inaccurate results. But I`ve found even shorter
    samples where the key is known don`t always produce the correct
    answer.

    If you go to the options/audio scetion you can set the key detector
    for actual keys or codes. Results with both appear to match. But
    I wasn`t sure why the choice of keys is flat or sharp. Why wouldn`t
    major be included. Which is the correct setting...?

    I owe you a Cinzano with an umberella swizzle stick, a cherry and
    a pineapple chunk in Milano!

    Art

    cool

    **
  • avatar
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    254 posts


    ......."why the choice of keys is flat or sharp. Why wouldn`t
    major be included. Which is the correct setting...? "

    I'm pretty sure that "major" keys have sharps,"minor" keys have flats.
    It was a long time ago I learned some music theory....(just after Acclivity!)

    btw Mike,big thanks for that Tonic sol-fa how-to.I never heard of it like that and i've been been trying it out a bit since and it works!and it's fun!

    I'm now looking for a piano. smile

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    546 sounds
    351 posts


    Oh no, you can have a key like Bb Major

    in a Minor key (going back to Tonic Sol-fa), the Me note is flattened (i.e. lowered by a semi-tone), as is the La (and also the Te, but usually only when descending down the scale).

    A key like Bb Major is called that rather than A# Major, because it allows each note of the scale to have a different letter - i.e. each letter A through G should appear once in any and every scale. As the second note of the Bb Major scale is C, if we called the first note A#, then the letter B would be omitted from the scale - a total no-no.

    Whether a key is Major or Minor depends on the interval between successive notes of the scale.
    A Major key has intervals like those obtained playing up all the white notes of a piano starting with C.
    A Minor key has intervals like those obtained playing up all the white notes of a piano starting with A.

    Then of course you can have "modal" scales, e.g. Dorian - play up all the white notes starting with "D" (used in Sea Shanties like "What shall we do with the drunken sailor"wink; and the beautiful Mixolydian scale (play up all the white notes starting with "G"wink used in some Irish folk music such as "She Moved Through The Fair" - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cWHo7syTQOo

    End of today's lesson ^^

    Mike

    Freesound Moderator "Close your eyes, and you're almost there!"
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    My head aches!!

    **
  • avatar
    371 sounds
    254 posts


    [/quote Acclivity,

    Whether a key is Major or Minor depends on the interval between successive notes of the scale.
    A Major key has intervals like those obtained playing up all the white notes of a piano starting with C.
    A Minor key has intervals like those obtained playing up all the white notes of a piano starting with A.

    ....Thanks teach!
    Very interesting,and a helpful reminder of things forgotten.

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