Music Sequencer Tutorial

What is a Music Sequencer?

A music sequencer is an electronic device that generates data used to control musical devices such as sound modules, effects units and processors. Traditionally these were ‘boxes’ containing sliding faders and LEDs that flashed in sequence i.e. one after another. These were used to activate a corresponding fader and each fader sent out a voltage to control for example a voltage controlled oscillator or VCO, the result created a melody or base line which was commonly used in electronic music during the early 1970’s right through until the 1980’s when computers became powerful enough to take over the role.

Here’s a demo of a classic ARP sequencer controlling an Oberheim Synthesizer Sound Module

Computer Music Sequencers

Computer Music Sequencers  use a software application such as Cubase, Logic, Pro Tools, Sonar and many similar programs. Back in the 1980’s computers created MIDI or Musical Instrument Digital Interface data which, similar to the original sequencers, controlled external sound modules, effects and processors, however they had far more control capability than the earlier devices.

As computers have continued to evolve and are now far more powerful, they can now record and play back real audio as well as MIDI data. Therefore if you are a guitarist. keyboard player or whatever and you play real musical instruments your computer which can be either PC or Mac, desktop or Laptop and now even portable devices such as the iPad are capable to recording your performance. You can create a complete song consisting of many instrumental and vocal parts all performed by yourself if you wish, or with others using computer music sequencers.

To give you an idea of a music sequencer in use here’s a demo of Cubase

How to get Started with Music Sequencers?

No matter which software or computer platform you chose, learning how to use a computer music sequencer can be very time consuming and sometimes frustrating when trying to teach yourself through books or videos, especially when things do not work out the way they say they should.

Here at the Recording Workshop, we offer courses and tutorials of the 4 following computer sequencer packages:

Click on each link to find out more about each music sequencer tutorial.

Cubase Tutorial

Logic Studio Tutorial

Pro Tools tutorial

Reason Tutorial

Each tutorial is limited to a maximum of 2 people per workstation giving you full opportunity to really master the music sequencer software package of your choice and you receive almost personal tuition as the total number of attendees is no more that 12 people altogether.