The distance in semi-tones between keys

Hi Kenny, Just saw your latest blog on "Keys"......Question! The distance in semi tones between keys.... ie if key is A.... Is it 1 semi tone down to get Ab and 1 more to get G likewise is it 1 semi tone up to get Bb... and if so is it consistantly 1 up or down over the entire range???? I was at a friends Karaoke the other night and he asked the question. I couldn't answer!!!!  Gordon Hi Gordon Yes, that's correct - each key on a keyboard represents a semi-tone. The notes follow the alphabet from A up to G# but after G# instead of the next note being H, you repeat the notes again (i.e. A, A#, B, C, C#, D, D#, E, F, F#, G, G#). By the [more]

Clicktrack and bass guitar tracks

Hi Kenny I have read almost all off your articles, but couldnt find any about my spesific question. What I wonder is how to send the drum track to the drummers headphones amplifire and the bass track straight to the PA system. If I have to pan those tracks, how do I do that? You see we are three in the band, guitar, keyboard and drums, and need only the bass track into the PA system. What equipment and software do we need? With regards  Mira Hi Mira It's very easy to route the stereo from a backing track to two different destinations. You don't need any special software to do this (although you will probably need some sort of headphone amplifier for your drummer if you want [more]

Intro clicks on backing tracks

Thanks to Bill for bringing up this question about intro clicks at the beginning of backing tracks... Kenny, I want to say "Thanks" for your response and the information provided. I am certain that it will be very useful. I started using customizable Backing Tracks exclusively for these arrangements and I really appreciate the quality and effort that is but into your company's recordings. For several reasons we began 3 months ago to downsize from a 5 piece band to 2 players... so, without having to burn up a lot of our time creating our own backing tracks and still cover tunes with a full sound, I was fortunate to find your company online. Admittedly I am learning my way to make this work. The Audacity software [more]

Will a full iPod charge last a gig?

There are no silly questions in this world - only questions you haven't heard answered yet. It was a pleasure to help out our customer Paul with his transition from Minidisc to iPod...  i am a solo singer, until now i have used minidisc backing tracks, i want to move forward and use ipod to mixer board. i have just found your website and it is an extremely valuable source of information, it has helped me tremendously particularly the helpful hints regarding hook up, volume settings and silent tracks for pausing etc, however, i can't find an answer to my question, i am not familiar with ipod, i am yet to buy one, i'm not familiar with an ipods physical connection layout and i do not [more]

Buying exclusive rights to a song

A good customer of ours asked me about something that's very different to exclusive rights to using a backing track - he asked about obtaining sole rights to the use of a song from the original songwriter/author (i.e. so that no-one else can sing or perform that particular song). The process of doing this is a minefield and incredibly expensive and that's if you can get a songwriter to sign away his rights to his song in the first place - getting a songwriter to sign away his songs is like asking him for his firstborn LOL...! Hi Kenny, after you have pointed out all the pitfalls I think we are going to have to make up our own songs. It is so expensive to get the [more]

Minidisc to PC via the mic socket

June 17, 2012
I wrote an article some time ago about transferring songs from a Minidisc on to a PC (see That article still sparks interest...

Muting tracks in Audacity

June 11, 2012
Jeff wants to know how to mute previously recorded tracks in Audacity… Kenny, how do record voice to a new track without the previously recorded...

What’s the best soundcard for audio recording?

June 5, 2012
This question from one of our customers ranks as one of the shortest questions I’ve ever received! Nevertheless, it’s a question many people ask…...

Cursor problems in Audacity

May 30, 2012
This is a first – I haven’t heard of anyone having a problem with the cursor while using Audacity. My guess is that it’s...

iPod freezes during playback

May 23, 2012
This question was a most unusual one. Normally iPod’s are not prone to freezing (well, not the iPod Classics anyway). But, like all tech...

Embed lyrics in to a backing track

May 16, 2012
Here’s a question about embedding the lyrics of a song in to your backing track so that the words display as the backing track...

Picking a good song to sing in a competition

May 10, 2012
We produced a custom track for one of our customers which she used in a singing competition. I emailed her after the competition to...

Get good advice before you buy musical equipment

May 4, 2012
Buying musical equipment can be a minefield if you don’t know what you’re doing. One of our customers came a little unstuck – I...

Boosting the output of your mp3 player

April 30, 2012
All mp3 players have differing output volumes. Normally this isn’t a problem if you’re putting your mp3 player through a professional mixing desk. But...

Using an iPad for backing tracks

April 24, 2012
Is using an iPad for backing tracks really all it’s cracked up to be? One of our customers, Kevin, has an entertainer pal who...
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