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Some Tips and Tricks for Creating Digital Music

Dear World,

I've been experiementing with digital music creation in my class for a few years now and the children really get into it. All you have to do is drag loops into the work space and play. I run workshops with and have students play with about 6 different versions of this software. They are all so easy and so much fun!

digital music production
Techno Ejay music creation software interface

Here are some ideas for integrating digital music production into the classroom:

* Compose a 3 minute piece that you and your friends would stay on the dance floor for at a school social.

* Compose a moody 1 minute piece that will accompany a photostory.

* Compose a 10 second stinger for a podcast segment.

* Compose a piece with no 'traditional instruments' ie no bass, drums or guitar.

* Compose a piece of music to accompany a dance, aerobics or Jump Rope for Heart session.

* Compose a piece of music to be played with the reading of a piece of poetry. The music must reflect the mood of the poetry.

Tips and Tricks:

* Try looking for this software on Ebay. You can often find it cheap.

* Try looking for this software in 'throw out' bin in major retailer shops. You can often find it for around $10

* Have the students place all one type of sound on one or two lines ie all the drums on tracks 1 & 2, all the bass on 3, etc

* Look for this sort of software on music magazine cover disks but make sure you read the user agreement.

* When sitting side by side working on a computer have the children take the headphone off one of their ears so they don't yell at each other.

* Demonstrate using an older version of the software and have the students make their music in a newer version so they 'transfer' their learning from one application to another.

Test out the demo of versions of Ejay 6 or 7
here and have a listen to some of the music you can create.

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