Saturday, June 30, 2018

Synclavier 3 Allows MIDI Routing to Virtual Ports From the Mac

With just the physical Synclavier, there are eight MIDI outputs with sixteen channels each. That was astonishing in 1985, but this is 2018. Those physical outputs are still available, but now there are virtual outputs as well. In the screenshot below, I have highlighted six tracks to record, one for each string of the guitar. In the box above the virtual control knob - so much better than the physical one! - you see MIDI: V[1 ] C[6 ]. That means the track most recently selected, track 6, routes to VIRTUAL output 1, and CHANEL number 6. Tracks 1 through 5 are V[1] C[1-5 ]. This is just as I have them set up in Encore. What I haven't been able to figure out yet - sure is nice to know the guy who wrote the program! - is how to get the External Sync set to MIDI, so I'll have to ask him about that. Slow but sure progress.

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Synclavier 3 and Core MIDI Allow Encore to Be the Sequencer

Core MIDI now allows me to record MIDI sequences directly from the Encore music processor into the Synclavier's Digital Memory Recorder in real time. This allows me to capture all of the tempos, tempo changes, dynamics and dynamic changes I program into the sequences within Encore. Those elements are lost if I just export a Type 1 MIDI file from Encore and drop that into the Synclavier. This is a great advance!

I do however wish I had been able to get Encore's VST player to work with Arturia's Synclavier V virtual instrument, but sadly, I have not been able to get that to function. Huge disappointment, as Synclavier V would allow me to eliminate the Synclavier hardware entirely and never be outside of the Encore environment. IOW, the ultimate dream come true for me. Oh well.

I would note that I really only need thirty-two tracks, though. Two-hundred-eight is overkill. ;^)

Monday, April 30, 2018

Synclavier Studio 1 Complete

Took a little sorting out - doesn't it always? - but I now have my first Synclavier 3 Studio set up.

I decided on an older 24" monitor for the larger size at any given resolution, and the fact that it gives me more space on the keyboard for a music/document stand. I will be transcribing a lot of music into the Synclavier!

I use both a Magic Trackpad 2 and an old optical trackball because the trackball is better for entering music notation.

I have a 63" Panasonic plasma TV for monitor two. Having the button panel very large is a huge help.

The virtual control knob is far superior to the physical one with the +/- 1, 10, 100 buttons

It also doubles as my home theater now. The Turbosound live sound monitors and Bryston amp sound killer.

The GEO is George Clinton of Parliament/Funkadelic. It's a Synclavier monitor case.

Saturday, March 31, 2018

Synclavier 3: A Thirty Year Dream Comes True!

You may have noticed I haven't been posting much about music the past year or so. Problem was, I was stuck trying to interface 80's technology into my twenty-first century workflow, and it just was't happening. Too many things go wrong with the old hardware, and I can't get into a groove with recording if I'm constantly interrupted by gear failures. Well, all of that has been addressed by the Synclavier 3 interface and hardware. It completely eliminates all the original Synclavier computer, memory, drive, and monitor hardware, and allows for the original voices - very reliable and I have spares - to be directly controlled by a Thunderbolt Mac! This means no more floppy drives, no more Winchester hard drives, and no more VT-640 or Pericom dumb monitors! Even the Synclavier keyboard and Digital Guitar Interface are optional now!

Not only that, but all of my Encore scores can be transferred into the Synclavier sequencer directly within Mac OS! At long last my workflow will be completely integrated within my Macs! This changes everything, and I'm seriously psyched.

My old friend Mitch set me up. We hadn't seen each other for thirty years!

So, I have one album in the can which I'll release within a few weeks, and that's nine tracks from the 80's I did, and then I have an album of synth guitar music all scored up in Encore that I'll begin working on. That's classical guitar music I'm going to realize with the Virtual Synclavier Guitar I developed with Encore. The Synclavier version of Fuga Electronica and the second album of guitar music will have to wait, as the first Synclavier 3 system is 32 stereo voices, and I'll need the 64 voice system to do those - Sonata Two is for two guitars - but I'm off and running finally. Very wound up!

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Remodern Review Interview

Remodernism is a back-to-basics movement among libertarian and conservative artists in the fine arts realm. I've been following it for quite a while, and have voiced my support to Richard Bledsoe, even though I'm not in fine arts and even though I'm not a conservative (Small-l libertarian, maybe). So, he did an email interview with me.

MUSIC: Remodernism Resonates with Composer George Pepper

EDIT: Linked at Instapundit! I'm infamous! lol

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

The Haight: Love, Rock and Revolution

The Photography of Jim Marshall

Jim Marshall, who died in 2010.

With last summer being the fiftieth anniversary of the 1967 Summer of Love in San Fransisco, I decided to get a retrospective from this astonishing coffee table book about the topic. I have read other takes in Rolling Stone magazine and the like, but this photo essay with minimalist storytelling is very engrossing. You can go through the book in a dedicated evening of reading. The historic photos are amazing: Jerry Garcia, David Crosby, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Bob Dylan, and The Who, to name but a few.

I was much too young to participate in the Summer of Love - only nine years old that summer - but the twenty-somethings of the time were very swept up in it, and of course, the music revolution of the mid sixties continues to reverberate today. Jimi Hendrix was and always will be my all time favorite rock guitarist, and The Who my favorite "British Invasion" band - I listened to Quadrophenia just about every day when I was in high school - so these early and very candid photos astonished me. I had seen a few of them before, but most were entirely new to me.

So, if you are interested in the music of the sixties, this is a great place to learn the background of how it all came to be.

An interesting bit of trivia is that Marshall was the inspiration for Dennis Hopper's photographer character in Apocalypse Now.

Now I have to watch that again!

Saturday, December 16, 2017


Do I look sixty? I don't feel sixty! Music must keep you young.