Project Genesis – Criteria Ci

What is the goal for your assignment?
My goal for this assignment is to gain more knowledge about creating mashups by speeding up or slowing down songs, so they have a common BPM. This way, the songs will sound more put together and the timing will be correct. My final piece of audio should include tracks of songs with different styles and expressions.  Despite the style difference, the mashup should flow well and it shouldn’t sound like individual songs played right after each other.
Why this project?
 I would like to create a mashup because I enjoy listening to many genres of songs and I would like to listen a few of them in one. I think it would be interesting to listen to a mashup from different artists and how their different tones and styles compliment each other.
Outline/Process (Steps) to Achieve Goal.
To create a mashup, I will need to select my songs. I will select songs that their styles are not too similar because I think a good mashup is a combination of different tones and pitches. I will consider picking songs from a few different genres because they feature different instruments and artists. After my songs are chosen, I will use a youtube to mp3 converter to download my songs. This step ensures that I download these files safely without any registration needed. When this step is completed, I will create a new garage band project. Afterward,  I will use the information I have learned during the research process to start my mashup. I will drag my songs into the project and convert them all to have the same bpm.
What do you hope to learn?
  This project can help me develop as a learner and widen my knowledge about the difference in styles and genres in music. I would like to learn more skills in Garageband that could help tracks flow smoothly.
What are the criteria you will use to self assess the success of your product?
By the end of this project, I should be able to successfully create a mashup that will consist of 4 songs. Those 4 songs should have different styles or are in different genres. The transition between songs should be clear but should flow smoothly. The entire track will have the same tempo for easy editing and transitioning. The different pieces of audio in the song shouldn’t be similar but have a similar beat.

Sounds of CDNIS

Please listen to my Sounds of CDNIS piece of music below:

Describe the process of this assignment. *
This unit is called sounds of CDNIS, it is about using software instruments and apple loops to create a piece of music. We learned how to play different software instruments, how to use apple loops, and use different plugins. This assignment was not as difficult as I envisioned. I thought that we were going to learn something completely knew that I have no prior knowledge of. With all of the prior knowledge, I gained last year, this was not very hard to complete. I was extending my knowledge and learned various skills that can be very useful. Last year, we learnt how to create pieces of music using an instrument and garage band. However, we didn’t use apple loops and plugins. For this assignment, we had to transform sounds at our school into ones that sound completely different.  We had to use our new knowledge about plugins to make it unrecognisable. After transforming our original sounds, we were expected to use apple loops, different plugins and play software instruments to create a song. I have done this assignment to the best of my ability and it was an enjoyable learning experience.
Discuss your CDNIS sounds and how useful they were for your end product. *
The first sound I transformed was a teacher talking, specifically Ms. Clarke. She was saying a phrase and I tried to make it unrecognizable. For this piece of audio, I used bit crusher, ambiance, and reverb. I wanted it to sound electronic, instead of someone talking. To make a beat and rhythm, I had cut and pasted the parts where she was talking the loudest. I used reverb and ambiance to make the environment of the recording more apparent. To create my second sound, I recorded 2nd graders having lunch in the 6/F cafeteria. There was this boy yelling “oh” at the background, I wanted to emphasize that part for more expression. I cleared out the background noise with all the rest of the children using a noise gate. I used exciter to make it more upbeat and positive. I used bit crusher to make it unrecognizable. My third sound was a boy screaming and saying the word “idiot”. This piece of audio has a negative message, so I was trying to make it sound positive. I cut and pasted the parts where the boy was loudest to make a beat, but at the same time I wanted it to match the first one I made, so it would be easier when creating the song. I used bit crusher to make it sound a little distorted, a noise gate to quiet down background noises and used overdrive for an echo. For my fourth and final piece of audio, I recorded myself drawing smiley faces on a whiteboard in a classroom. I didn’t want to change that much of it because I thought that the original sound was already different. This was recorded in a math classroom, so I removed the background noise using a noise gate. I also used a bit crusher to make it sound more electronic. A pattern that I recognized was that I used a lot of bit crusher. Bit crusher made my sounds very different compared to the original. I liked how it made it sound electronic and distorted.
Evaluate your learning and new skills acquired. *
For this assignment I think that I have done well, I have learned a lot of skills and gained a lot of knowledge that could be helpful in the future. Throughout this entire unit, I learned how to use plugins, each plugin’s usage, how to use apple loops, and how to play the piano as a software instrument. I am confident to say that I can understand these skills and how they can affect my piece of music. Again, I have extended my knowledge about garage band and is very interested in this topic.
What challenges did you face and overcome? *
There weren’t as many challenges I had to overcome as I thought I would. This assignment was not easy, but not very difficult too. Most of my challenges were based on understanding and time pressure. At first, I didn’t understand what the task was and how I should complete it. As a result, I had to ask Mr. O’toole and peers for another explanation. I didn’t understand how to use my plugins and where to find them in garage band. With the help of google, I could successfully use my plugins. Another challenge I had to face was the time pressure. With my lack of understanding and prior knowledge about these new skills, I found it hard to complete things on time. We were given 4 classes in total for the entire project. I spent 2 classes perfecting the culminating assessment video even though making the song was harder. If I were to improve, I would manage my time better and work efficiently and effectively.

Ukulele song- “Somewhere over the rainbow”

 Please listen to my recording below:

Ci

Identify an artistic intention.

Cii

Identify alternatives and perspectives

Di

Identify connections between art forms, art, and context, or art and prior learning.

Dii

Recognize that the world contains inspiration or influence for art.
How is your recording the same as the original song? Why did you do this? 
My recording had a few things that were the same as the original song, but at the same time, I adjusted some factors that would make it easier to learn and record. But at the same time, I also wanted it to sound like the original song. In order to do that, I used the same lyrics, key, time signature, and chords as the original version.

How is your recording different compared to the original song? What were your reasons behind your decisions? 
Like I said before, I also wanted to make it easier to learn for me and record, but also, I also wanted to do something different that could also sound great. Something that I did do differently is that I sped the tempo up to 120BPM. The song “Somewhere over the Rainbow” is a hopeful, relaxing, and peaceful song, so the original version had a slower tempo to show it’s beautiful meaning. But at the same time, when I thought of the lyrics in the song, I thought of how the artist’s intention was to think of happy thoughts and great things. Listening to the original song made me feel joyful, so I wanted to make the song a little more upbeat because I wanted my audience to feel that too. Also, I struggled to strum on the beat, so this was also a reason why I decided to change the tempo.

Ukulele Skills… 
I haven’t gained as much knowledge of playing the ukulele in comparison to when I started because I have gotten used to the basic skills I have learned from the previous project. But apart from that, I have learned a new strum pattern. It took me a while to get used to it, but now it’s the best of my ability. Because of the requirements of this project, I had to use digital instruments and use a drum track. I have learned how to use the keyboard when recording bass for my song, also I have learned how to create and adjust the drum’s playing style to fit the mood and the intention of this song.

Garageband editing – digital instrument, drum use… 
I have found editing on garage band very helpful also with the digital instruments that have come along with it. I have used the same editing tools I have used in the previous assignment, such as trimming and expanding. This is my first time playing a digital instrument and using them, it took me a while to figure out the keyboard and I have watched youtube tutorials for help. I have found the youtube tutorials very helpful and it has given me some basic information on how to use the keyboard for bass. However, in my final recording, the timing of the bass was a bit off. To solve that, I had to move and even expanded the ones with the shorter notes. Another thing that I had issues with was finding the drum kit/playing style that could fit my song best. Most of the drum kits I found were very upbeat and it didn’t go very well with the vibe of the song. So it took me a while to look for the best preset. Even though there wasn’t a perfect preset, I found a good option, however, I had to take out the shakers and make it sound softer. I think if I didn’t take the time and effort to solve these issues, then it would be a big problem that would stand out. Overall, I think that this project’s requirements and editing were much more difficult than the previous project.

Time management for your project… 
Before recording, I focused a lot on perfecting my first song. My first choice was the song “cups”, however, I wanted to do something different and apart from the class and I felt like that was a great challenge for me. I had to learn “Somewhere over the rainbow” in a very limited amount of time and I regret changing my song earlier. But at the same time, I’m grateful that I have changed my song because I like challenging myself and taking risks. Apart from that, I have missed some lessons and I think that if I didn’t I make better use of it and turn it in before the due date. There were also a lot of things that I didn’t understand about garage band and I have spent a while on watching tutorial videos, so that took up a handful of my time. I feel like my final recording is done to the best of my ability, but there are some things that could be improved upon, such as the things that I have mentioned earlier in this post.

Independent learning… (responsibility of getting things done on time) 
During the whole process, I think that I did a pretty good job of learning how to use garage band and the ukulele independently. I found information online and also from my friends to broaden my knowledge. However, I also struggled with learning independently too. I am a slow learner I like to work with others to see different perspectives and I could refer to someone. Whenever I’m working alone, I feel insecure about my work because I would like to have an example to refer to, so I know what my goals are and what I should be doing. But I feel like this independent project could benefit me for my future. In the future, I won’t have to rely on someone and there are some challenges that I will have to face alone.

It’s Uke to Me! Ukulele Summative (Amazing Grace)

Here is a recording of my final product:
What is the key of your tune? Time Signature? 
The key of my Tune is C major and the Time Signature is 3/4.
What sort of rhythms are used in your song? 
 There are half notes, eighth notes, dotted half notes and quarter notes that are used in my song. 
Discuss your note accuracy and rhythm accuracy in regards to your strumming and melodic playing… 
This is my first time playing the ukulele, I had no experience with playing the it and didn’t know much about musical terminology. After watching some videos on youtube, I finally understood how music terminology is used and how to play the ukulele properly. At the beginning, my notes weren’t accurate. But as I practiced more, I have gotten better at it and now my note accuracy in my final product is the best of my ability. My rhythm’s accuracy was not as bad as I expected it to be, however there were some notes that were played for too long or some were too short. My rhythm’s accuracy was a little better than my note accuracy, because I am familiar with the song and I know how it goes. In terms of strumming, it wasn’t the best. I struggled with strumming on time because my song was at a slower tempo. I also struggled with changing my finger coordination every time I changed a note. As an result, I had to split my song into three parts and play each part separately, so I could be more aware of what I am doing.
What Ukulele skills have you acquired? 
I have learned how to hold the ukulele properly,  strum up and down, create strum patterns, learn how to play new notes such as C, F, G7, and the finger coordination of them. I had issues with learning switching the finger coordination of the new notes when playing, I found it difficult to switch notes while recording. As I would mess up the rhythm and the timing of the song.
How did you decide your tempo to match your song and style? 
The song that I chose was Amazing grace. Amazing Grace is quite slow, serious, calm and solemn church hymn. So, I decided that my tempo should 72 beats a minute to keep it at a calming place and to show to the peaceful meaning of the song. Also, I was new to the ukulele and I couldn’t play the song at a faster tempo. 
 How did you use the editing tools in Garageband? Editing, cutting, flex-time, trimming… 
Garageband was very helpful and helped me made my song sound a little better. At first, I was new to garageband , I didn’t know what the editing tools were and how to use them. So, I watched some tutorials that were included in the task sheet and explored around. Eventually, I knew what to do and now I understand how to use the editing tools properly. I used the trimming tool to trim out some noises that were accidental. I also used it to trim some notes that were too long in the melody, so my melody’s rhythm was on time. I also expanded the notes that were too short.  My strumming was too loud, I wanted to make the melody a bit louder, so I adjusted the strumming to become more quiet and the melody to be more loud, so that there could be a better balance of the two. 
Discuss the recording process; did you have any concerns or issues? 
During the recording process, it was very rushed. I spent the majority of the given recording time trying to perfect my song and was exploring garageband, so I could make sure that I am doing things properly and my song could be as good as it can be. During the recording and the editing process, I had many minor issues. One of them were that I always messed up while strumming the cords. The biggest issue, however, was my time management. I spent a lot of the given time to perfect or learn how to use garageband. I ended up recording on the last day right before we ended the lesson. To improve, I will plan what I am going to do ahead and use my time more effectively. I think my usage of garageband and my knowledge that I have gained over these couple of lessons could help me next time.