How do you approach FILLs in song mode?
My typical work/play flow is to create a bunch of clips in song view and "perform" them by launching/muting/tweaking clips during playback. One thing I haven't quite figured out is how to handle drum fills in this scenario.
I'm coming from and Elektron (digitakt) workflow where there's a "FILL" trigger condition and a fill button you could press and hold to activate all the fill triggers in any of your tracks. While it had some limitations, you could at least get easy stuff like snare fills at the end of a bar or crashes and fx at the start of the bar to trigger without dedicating an entire pattern to the fill.
How do y'all approach this on Deluge? It's obviously pretty easy to knock out in arranger view with white clips, but any tips on a more performance-oriented way to do this?
If your typical workflow is to launch / mute clips during playback AND you say you know how to handle white clips, then why not simply create set of drum clips which are drum fills in song view (by either cloning clips, dragging white clips from arranger, making patterns from scratch, etc) and then either mute / launch or shift-mute / shift-launch ?There are so many options. There is nothing special about a drum fill, it's just a variation of a clip.
Snare at the end of four bars is easy: that's the 4 of 4 pattern option. Hold the grid note and turn the select knob clockwise.
A workflow I've been enjoying: build a one-bar loop up to the point that it's overflowing, and then thin it back down using the X of N modifiers until you've got something tasteful and dynamic. Since I naturally over-program anyway, it's just playing to my personal flaws. It's also just nice to have something that signals the turnaround -- and that's where X of N shines.
There isn't a not-X of N, though, so if you need stuff to drop out as well, you're stuck with another pattern or a mute or whatever. You can also get some out of manually muting a single drum kit lane -- drop out the toms for the fill? But if you do too many of these, you run out of fingers.
I feel like the "three bars of A, one bar of B" style drum programming is slightly old fashioned, and these days people aim to distribute more variety along the pattern, either with continuous variations like this or with polymeter, or modulation FX, or... But if you're making 909-style house music, of course, it's part of the style and you need another pattern for the fill. Them's the breaks.
Good thoughts and comments!
The X of N can totally work, and I should really use probability variation a bit more as well. I love the idea of "not-x of N", as I do find myself wishing I could do "play this in bars 1, 2, 3, but not 4". Doable with extra lanes within the pattern.
Totally valid point. It's funny - I don't really do 909-style house/techno, but I decided to take a run at it as a learning exercise, and that's totally where this came up.
Totally viable options, but I run into 2 issues: 1. Vertical space. I already get lost in my tracks trying to remember which row of colored LED's is the one with the conga's vs hats, etc. Color-shifting helps, but without single-color-per-row, I still find it easy to get lost once I start scrolling vertically. 2. If I'm "performing" clips in song mode, I'm often tweaking stuff as I go - volume, cutoff, etc. If you have your "fill" in a whole separate track, those settings don't carry over, so you can have an abrupt volume/filter/etc shift in your "fill" clip. I posted this question as I was looking for fills to help cover some of those clip transitions.
Oh - and if it's not clear, I'm not complaining. Just looking for tips. Thanks!
Weird thought as I was typing the previous response: can you expose/learn a parameter for a specific kit lane to song mode? (e.g. map volume of a snare lane to Cstm 1)? That'd totally do it. I don't think you can, but maybe I missed something sneaky.
Haha! Caught in the act. Still, it's a nice way to sequence sometimes.
It's easy enough to do with alternate clips, but I hear you about the vertical real-estate and the color confusion. Maybe if you always order them main / fill, main / fill? Or use the section/variation colors as a marker? Like assign all/only fills to yellow?
If it's just a question of dropping some parts out, you can totally sneak into the kit and mute a couple lanes on the fly.
You can even map individual kit element's mute/audition pad via MIDI, and fire them all off from a keyboard, one per note. That can make the selection/deselection of multiple kit rows at a time as easy as hitting a "chord" on a controller. Maybe you can do your A/B fills this way?
(This is especially powerful for kits filled with sample loops, but I'm getting far afield now.)