Using MPC in a live situation

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Using MPC in a live situation

Postby sequentialsoftshock » Mon May 07, 2012 10:31 pm

I'm curious as to how any of you may use your MPC's live. Especially to substitute a drummer onstage. I would like to make better use of it, much like The Kills do using their 60 & 2000. Tips ? Couldn't find much on using it in a rock situation.
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Re: Using MPC in a live situation

Postby th0mas » Tue May 08, 2012 1:18 am

I did exactly this for a year+ with an MPC1000.

I polished my "setup" for quite some time, eventually it was:

I made each song a single "pattern" on the MPC that would be 200+ bars. I would write the track in Reason and export the MIDI file to the MPC. I set up the MIDI notes on my MPC sets so that they matched the Reason drum machines, and then had a Blofeld set up to play the other synth parts that I wasn't playing live. Here and there in some songs I'd mess with the FX on the MPC. I'd start every song with a 4-count intro. Along with the blofeld I had it controlling an MFB-503 which sounded AWESOME (analog bass drum > everything else) and used one of the aux outs to send to an mini-kaosspad.

I now have bought and sold almost everything at least once, gone software->hardware->in the middle, and kinda long for that setup again. It was super productive and it all fit in a gator case so I could pop the top, plug into a PA and AC, and was setup in ~2 minutes.
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Re: Using MPC in a live situation

Postby Stab Frenzy » Tue May 08, 2012 4:46 am

I used a 1000 live for a few years and then a 2500 for about a year until I got the Octatrack.

The 1000 I used to just program the beats for my band into it in one sequence, so ~100 bars long or whatever. I also had a few samples on it that I used to trigger, one of the aux outputs went through a Sonic Alienator, a pair went through the Evolver. I also used it to sequence the Evolver and the Microkorg we used to use for a vocoder in a couple of tracks so the singer could sing vocoder without having to play it too, which looked cool. I also had a couple of programs set up where the pads where set to a scale so I could play basslines on the Evo with the pads.

The 2500 was pretty much the same but I would do stuff in 4-8 bar loops and do more muting and unmuting of tracks to get the different parts of the song, rather than have the whole thing programmed linearly.

MPCs are great tools that you can use for pretty much any type of music in a whole lot of different ways. If you want to use it for rock stuff just use rock-style samples and program a rock beat into it, it just plays back what you put into it.
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Re: Using MPC in a live situation

Postby Alex E » Tue May 08, 2012 9:19 am

Watch on youtube.com


Thought of this.
soundcloud.com/vectron

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Re: Using MPC in a live situation

Postby th0mas » Tue May 08, 2012 5:23 pm

Saw him live a year+ ago and it blew my mind. He had the audience eating out of the palm of his hand, we were all losing it
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Re: Using MPC in a live situation

Postby sequentialsoftshock » Wed May 09, 2012 12:06 am

Thanks for the replies. I guess I'm on somewhat the same path. I think I may do more of the muting and unmuting. I use at least a four bar intro to separate tracks and also give me time to change effects / synth settings etc. Right now, I've just been stringing together really long patterns.
While I'm using in a rock sort of way, I'm definitely still going for an electric feel / quantization. I use a lot of Roland TR samples as well as acoustic jazz kits & SCI / LINN / Oberheim machines.
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Re: Using MPC in a live situation

Postby th0mas » Wed May 09, 2012 12:19 am

On a PA, with synths, a bassist, and singer/guitarist it was unbelievable how much of a difference it was when I switched to a analog bass drum from an MFB from samples. Night and day punch.
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Re: Using MPC in a live situation

Postby sequentialsoftshock » Wed May 09, 2012 4:12 pm

One more question so I'm not starting another thread. How can I load multiple programs and midi patterns and have the midi patterns automatically assign the right program for it ? Or is this not possible ?
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Re: Using MPC in a live situation

Postby th0mas » Wed May 09, 2012 5:56 pm

Each MIDI file will be imported as a multi-track program with sequencer data and no (or the default) program selected.

You have to then go in and assign the programs to each track by hand, or configure the MIDI outs per hand, etc. Just make sure you make your MIDI notes match your drum program's MIDI notes and it shouldn't take more than a minute per pattern once you have that program built up. I would then copy that program when changing drum samples so it already had the right midi notes for bassdrum, snare, etc.
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Re: Using MPC in a live situation

Postby sequentialsoftshock » Wed May 09, 2012 6:33 pm

Thanks again for the help. That's pretty much what I figured and had been doing. Since the program # can be different each time, the pattern may not automatically select it.

Here's a photo of my live setup with this project-

Image
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Re: Using MPC in a live situation

Postby cgren72 » Wed May 09, 2012 7:21 pm

I don't know if you did this on purpose or not, but nice water bottle lol. For some reason like half the pictures I take end up having water bottles in them, so this is probably the case here too
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Re: Using MPC in a live situation

Postby ninja6485 » Wed May 09, 2012 7:37 pm

cgren72 wrote:I don't know if you did this on purpose or not, but nice water bottle lol. For some reason like half the pictures I take end up having water bottles in them, so this is probably the case here too
:lol:

Zayne accidentally places a Fiji water bottle in every shot ;)
This looks like a psychotropic reaction. No wonder it's so popular...
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Re: Using MPC in a live situation

Postby skunk3 » Mon Feb 25, 2013 5:35 pm

This is basically how I use a MPC. I always start with drums, which I'm sure is the case for most people. I then decide if the drums are going to be static and playing in a loop, or if I am going to want to mute/unmute parts on the fly. If they are going to be static, I just record them for a certain number of bars on one track. If I plan on muting/unmuting, I'll record different drum parts on different tracks. I then move on to sequencing external gear. I usually start with a bassline, then I'll do chords, then little noodles/phrases. I then repeat the whole process (you can copy + paste stuff if need be) on another sequence for variations, fills, etc. I then chain the sequences together and voila! Done. From there I jam on top of the sequence playing by muting/unmuting, twiddling knobs, playing with effects, playing solo keyboard parts, etc. I have JJOS 4.99 on my MPC 1000 but I haven't really dug into it much. I just read that it is possible to assign sequences to pads that can be played live, which is fantastic... there's a lot of live performance stuff that I haven't even begun to touch. I'd really like to learn the possibilities of JJOS to their fullest in the future. I started off with the 2000XL myself, and the general work flow that I picked up while using that has transferred over to my use of the MPC 1000... so I guess I need to get with the times and learn some of the new tips and tricks!
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