FIND OUT MOREDismissUnsupported browserThis site was designed for modern browsers and tested with Internet Explorer version 10 and later. This particularly useful if you want to remix or redo a pop or rock song that's normally played on a guitar or piano and you can find the chord sheet online in or in a book. Before you redo a song you need to analyze the chords so that you know what you're working with. What we are going to do is put the whole chord progression into a single FL Studio pattern since the progression won't change later. With the Maj suffix now selected, find the note D-3 and left click using your draw tool (looks like a pencil) to create your first chord.
Now that you know how to put chords in using this tool just fill in the rest of the chords, each being a bar long. You now have recreated one of the most popular chord progressions in music history quickly and efficiently. Mike ElliottHaving graduated with a bachelors and masters in audio and music, Mike is a well versed audio engineer, musician, and educator.
Go to the Operator 1 module and select Square as the oscillator shape (right click on the Shape Preview Window to open the shape selection menu). First, disable the Operator 1 going to Main Output by right clicking the Mix knob in the row 1, column OUT.
Now, as this is going to be a patch where a chord is programmed straight into it, we need to change the pitch of the Operators. Now, in order to create a chord patch that sounds musically right, we need to be able to change the pitch of the Operators in semitones. Next, head to the Operator 3 and again, select Square as the oscillator type and paste the volume envelope state. At this point you may want to drop the master volume a little in the Main module as three oscillators mixed together naturally increases the amplitude of the patch.
There’s a Scheme Selection section where you can set how the equalizer is processed in the synth mixing chain. Just an idea: for developing the sound a bit further, set loop points to the filter envelope (in the Filter 1 module) and edit the envelope into all kinds of different shapes.
One more thing: if you want to create the chords in the Piano Roll instead, just disable Portamento and Monophonic modes and disable Operators 2, 3 and 4 in the Modulation Matrix leaving only the root note Operator (OP1) enabled. The downside of this method is that the pitch envelope of the Operator is in use now so you cant use it for other pitch envelope tasks. In the Operator module, make sure the Editor target is set to PITCH again and set the Articulator as KEY M (Key Mapping). So now, when you play C for example, you’ll hear C Minor 7 which consists of notes C, D#, G and A#.
Do you have your music making software and gear all set, but wonder where to start the actual song making process?
I go to the Piano Roll view in FL Studio and choose a root note and  I layer one ore two more notes on top of it and experiment till I find a note combination that sounds good. Now, the strings chord pattern I have just created is very very basic, but it’ll give me a guideline what melodies I should add next. I simply just copy the root notes of the strings chord pattern and paste them to the bass instrument track. So basically what I just created here is the chorus for my song (or the “hook” as it’s often called). When I’m making a song, I need to listen it as in whole, over and over and over again, countless of times, just to get a hang of the feel and to hear the bigger picture. If I make a song using the common structure – intro-verse-chorus-verse-chorus-bridge-chorus-outro, I usually try to create the verses in a way that they make the chorus stand out. Ironically, the chords to Pachelbel's Cannon in D is the basis for some of the most popular rock and pop songs of the 20th century. Thankfully for us, the chords are simple major or minor chords with either the maj or min suffix. First pick out your favorite synthesizer and choose a nice pad sound since these will be chords not melody; ill be using the Sytrus synth with the "Fairy" preset under pads.
Click on the arrow button in the top left corner of the piano roll window and scroll down until you get to the chord drop down menu.

You'll see you now have notes on D-3, F#-3 and A-3 which happens to make up a D major chord.
You either alternate between maj or min in the chord menu or do all the major chords on their corresponding bars and then go back and do the minor chords. From working with Grammy award winning engineers down to small start up studios, he has seen all sides of the industry, and what it takes to get the job done right. Next, in the row F1 (which represents the Filter module 1), column 1, dial the Mix knob all the way to right. We are going to program a Major 7 chord which is pretty common in deep house (alongside with Minor 7) and we need four oscillators (Operators) for that. I’ll show you how to do it by using the Frequency Ratio (check the end of this tutorial for two other methods).
Gladly, there’s a conversion formula available that can convert cents to Frequency Ratios. If you use other values such as 1.0000 then you need to calculate the correct Frequency Ratios again. First, decrease the filter cutoff frequency value to make the patch sound a bit softer as it is a kind of harsh right now.
Set the Delay Mode to Ping-Pong, Delay Time to 5:00 and Delay Time stereo offset to around 12 ms right (or left) for a wider stereo panorama of the delay effect. Use the Reverb Low Cut to avoid unnecessary rumble appearing in the reverberation (Reverb Low Cut removes low frequencies from the input signal before reverb is added).
As a final touch, activate the portamento and monophonic modes in the Sytrus Channel Settings box. Just like the Major 7 chord, the Minor 7 chord consists of the root note, the 3rd, the 5th and the 7th, but in the minor scale. He has been producing music with computers over a decade on such styles as trance, downtempo, ambient & experimental electronic using FL Studio.
Music making software I’m using is FL Studio and musical style here is something like downtempo with soundtrack kind of elements.
At this point I have to say that I don’t have a lot of music theory knowledge (seriously, I can’t even read the notes), but I do have a bit of musical ear so I can pretty much tell what chords, chord combinations and melodies work together. Miroslav Philharmonik has some nice sounding strings and strings are good for experimenting with different kind of chords. I copy and paste the first chord and try different notes in it to find a combination that plays well with the first chord. There’s a tons of possibilities and different kind of combinations and it may take a while before I come up something catchy.
I load an instrument which I’m going to use to play a melody that works with the strings chord pattern. I’ll keep adding and testing different notes until I find a melody that plays along nicely with the strings chord pattern.
I copy the root notes of strings chord pattern and build a bassline according to those root notes. I choose a kickdrum, snare and hihat and create a basic drum pattern that fits to the style of bassline and melodies.
I load a kickdrum, snare and hihats to FL Studio’s Sampler channels and create a drum pattern via Step Sequencer that plays along nicely with the bassline and melodies. I try to keep the verse simple (simpler melodies) and go with less sounds (fewer drums sounds for example) than the chorus so that chorus really makes an impact to the listener.
I usually use a “mini-chorus” here which could be something simple like an instrument playing the chorus melody. Another one I use a lot is that I create a drum groove, start to play bassline on top of it with my MIDI keyboard, compose the melodies and then maybe chords.
The chord progression for Cannon in D is D major, A major, B minor, F# minor, G major, D major, G major, and A major. From here it gives you all of the suffixes for most all chords (albeit a few may be missing).
If you want to turn off the chord tool, go back into the chord menu and at the very top should be "none".
Here is what I came up with using DMaj7, Amaj7b5, Bmin, Fmin11, Gmaj7, Dmaj#11, Gmaj7b5, and Amaj, in addition to my own melody.

Make sure to stop by his blog Lean Audio, which covers the bare necessities and how to do audio on the cheap. First, select VOL (volume) as the Editor target (from the upper row) and ENV (envelope) as the Articulator (from the lower row) if not already selected.
This way we can paste the exact same editor settings and envelope curve to other Operator modules as well (in total, there’s going to be four Operators in this patch so this will speed things up). As we are creating a Major 7 chord, we need to transpose the Operator 2 pitch so that it corresponds 3rd note in the Major scale. This transposes the pitch up by 7 semitones and corresponds the 5th note in the Major scale. Next, select CUT (Filter cutoff frequency) as the Editor target (and Envelope as the articulator if not already selected) and enable the envelope. This will define how much of the signal from the Filter 1 module will be send to the FX module. When I was making this patch I set the Low Cut value by ear and ended up to around 750-800Hz so that some of the mid frequencies got rolled off as well and it sounded pretty nice. Use the EQ band 1 (which default setting is low shelf filter at 90Hz and below) to attenuate the low frequencies. So, next task is to load up another instrument and start to design a melody that works together with the strings chord pattern. I usually start with something very basic and blend in more percussion elements (or loops) as I move on. Song must be coherent as in whole so the chorus works like a guideline giving me directions on what kind of melodies the verses should have as they must be in a style of chorus. This way I’m able to decide what sounds or melodies REALLY needs to be tweaked, taken out or added so that there arent any inconsistencies. OR one method is that I just start building a song from the intro, without a clue what the chorus is going to be and keep adding elements as I move on and usually I come up with some nice ideas for the chorus at some point.
Reading a chord name is relatively easy but knowing which notes go into the chord is not something everyone knows. Since the first chord of Cannon in D is a Dmaj chord, pick the Maj suffix from the drop down menu.
For some ideas on what song's use the Cannon in D progression I would recommend watching the "Pachelbel Rant" on YouTube. And lastly, in the row F1, column OUT, tweak the Mix knob all the way to right to hear the audio again. The Operator 2 is going to be transposed up by four semitones, Operator 3 by seven semitones and Operator 4 by eleven semitones.
This transposes the pitch up by 11 semitones and corresponds the 7th note in the Major scale. Use the EQ band 3 (which default is high shelf filter at 8kHz and above) to add a bit of brightness to the sound.
Bassline can be created from scratch, but in this example I use the root notes of the strings chord pattern and build the bassline based on those root notes. I usually use the basic strings and oboe sounds just for designing the melodies and after I come up with something decent, I start to test how the melodies work with different kind of instruments and sounds. After that, we have a root note (OP1), the 3rd (OP2), the 5th (OP3) and the 7th (OP4) in the Major scale.
I’m personally using this technique (alongside with many others) when I’m out of musical ideas. So everything usually changes and the finished song will sound much more different than this. As long as you know how to read the chord name you can easily insert chords into a piano roll with the chord tool. Check out Envato Studio's servicesGrow your online music business with audio players, album management, event landing pages and more! This will kind of soften the attack part of the filter envelope as the Envelope amount controls how much the filter envelope actually have an influence on the cutoff.

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