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01GarageBand can help with iffy timing. Choose Track » Configure
Track Header (or hit Alt-T and tick the Groove Track box). Mouse over the left edge of your drum track and click the yellow star to make it the ‘groove master’. All other tracks now have checkboxes in their headers – tick the dodgy ones and they should now follow the timing of the drums more closely.
02Available with GarageBand 10.2,
Drummer Loops are essentially Drummer performances captured as Apple Loops and stored in the loop library with regular audio and MIDI loops. The advantage is that you can flick through the parts with your project running and only drag in the ones you like, after which they can be edited in the Drummer Editor the same as regular Drummer regions.
03GarageBand contains a hidden sampler called AUSampler, a basic sampler that you can drag and drop audio files into to build new instruments. Create a Software Instrument track and click the Smart Controls button, then open the Plug-ins pane to the left of the control panel. You’ll find AUSampler, (which can also load EXS24 files) in the popup plugin menu.
04If you have an iOS device, you can use Apple’s free Logic Remote iOS app to control GarageBand remotely. You can navigate and mix projects, record new tracks, and even play software instruments, all from a device connected to the same wireless network as your computer. The Download Logic Remote option in the GarageBand menu will take you to the app’s iTunes Store page.
05When mixing your projects, you can display the Master track in the main window so that you can add effects and automation to the master stereo bus. Select the Show Master Track option in the Track menu, and access the plugin slots by clicking the Output tab in the Smart Controls pane. The automation lanes for all tracks can be revealed by pressing the A key.
06If you find yourself restricted to only one key because you only have one version of a particular Apple loop, select Show
Transposition Track from the Track menu, and you can transpose whole sections of your project simply by plotting points on the curve. This will affect Software Instrument tracks, pitched Apple Loops and audio tracks with the
Follow Tempo and Pitch box checked.
07GarageBand’s Arrangement Track is useful for trying out new arrangements of existing projects (reveal it by selecting Show
Arrangement Track from the Track menu), but if you set up an array of arrangement markers at the start of a project, then add a Drummer Track, the Drummer Track will automatically populate your arrangement with different regions for each section. Very cool!
08The Quick Help button, marked with a question mark in the top left corner of the transport bar, enables GarageBand’s ‘self-help’ mode, offering helpful yellow text boxes that explain the function of a particular object when you hover your cursor over it. If you hover over the Quick Help button itself when enabled, it displays a set of tips for the app’s main working areas.
09If you start a project on GarageBand for iOS, you can use the iOS app’s Smart Touch instruments to quickly get down some ideas on the move, then import your iOS songs into GarageBand for OS X via the
File » iCloud menu. This is a one-way deal though — songs won’t go from Mac to iOS, because the Mac app has capabilities that just aren’t possible yet on an iPad or iPhone.
10If you have a suitable audio interface connected, you can record audio onto multiple tracks simultaneously. With the Smart Controls pane open, click on the header of each track and select the required input channel in the Recording Settings panel. Then press Alt-T to configure the track headers and tick the Record Enable checkbox. Then enable each track and hit Record!
12GarageBand for OS X is an incredibly powerful music-making tool. The latest update – version 10.2 – brings three new percussion players to the Drummer track menu, opening up a plethora of professionally-played percussion grooves with which to enhance your rhythm tracks. The Drummer interface has been slightly redesigned, so you’ll find the new players in the Library pane to the left.
13GarageBand’s colour-coding of regions is based on the type of material they contain. MIDI regions are green, Drummer regions are mustard yellow, recorded audio regions are blue, and imported audio regions are brown. But here’s a nifty trick - pressing Ctrl-Alt-G converts all brown regions to blue ones, allowing you to adjust their tuning and timing via the Follow
Tempo and Pitch feature. 14 Make sure that your mixes are loud enough to compete with other people’s tracks by checking the Auto Normalize checkbox ( Preferences » Advanced » Auto Normalize). This will ensure that your projects are exported at full loudness when you mix down. A range of export options are available from the Share menu, including sharing to Soundcloud, iTunes or bouncing to disc or CD.
15The Smart Controls pane provides quick and easy-to-navigate access to the parameters of the currently selected instrument or plugin that you’re most likely to need to get to grips with. The layout depends on the kind of instrument or effect you have loaded up, and you can use the buttons at at the top of the pane to switch between the Smart Controls and the Channel EQ.
16GarageBand ships with loads of Apple Loops, but making your own is simplicity itself. Just record a part that you think would make a good loop, trim it to the right length and give it a suitable name. Then select File > Add Region
to Loop Library. Your loop will then be accessible via the Loop Browser within any other project, and will follow the tempo like any other Apple Loop.
17 18Using the factory templates to start a project can save you a lot of settingup time. However, you could save even more time when inspiration strikes by creating your own customised project templates. Set up your template, save it and drag it into the dock, then click to launch it. GarageBand has a built-in tuner, accessed via the button to the right of the LCD display in the transport bar. This examines the incoming audio signal, whether it’s from a connected mic or guitar input, and displays the pitch on a circular readout, so you can use it to check whether your instrument is in tune before you record it.
19On Software Instrument tracks, in the top-right corner of the Smart Controls panel, there’s a button whose icon looks a bit like the flying saucer from a Space Invaders video game. Click this to enable a hidden, preset-based arpeggiator. A generous library of presets is accessed via an adjacent popup menu, from which you can also edit note order, rate and octave range.
The Configure Track Header panel determines which buttons are visible for each track
GarageBand 10.2’s Drummer interface has a bold new look
GarageBand’s got a hidden arpeggiator that comes with a ton of useful preset riffs