Technical Prerequisites And Music

A friend of mine who makes much better music than I do whined to me today about needing samples. This was not the first time either, and instead of repeating the old, more practical advice, I thought of something more important to say. Maybe it’s obvious, maybe it’s entirely false. Nevertheless, it follows below.

It doesn’t matter what kind of samples you have or which tracker you use (I wish it were so!). Because you either make good music or you don’t. Anyone can learn to be a good musician through hard work (that’s how good musicians become good), but when you restrict your thinking to any particular moment in time, no technical prerequisite or resource can make anyone a good musician - and conversely, lack of such resources can never make anyone a bad musician. A musician who claims he can’t make good music because of the lack of technical resources is only using it as an excuse. I have learned this time and again. I learn it again at steady intervals, when I listen to those songs I used to adore years ago, and fall in love with them again. I learn that I am still nothing when compared to the people who made those songs, even though I have Renoise and effects and VSTs and the whole nine yards. I am truly nothing compared to them. So I can only keep trying, enjoying what I do, and remember that I am not bound by technical prerequisites and there is no use for better resources. You can hear good music and a talented musician beyound technical resources very plainly. It becomes very obvious when listening to certain modules from the 20th century.

I enjoy what Renoise gives me, but I am still what I am. Renoise only made me slightly less irritating, not better.

Love your music, Saboteur!


Saboteur, I agree with what you said, even though I am guilty of complaining myself. I complain about using samples because my computer is too slow for most vst synths. I hear all the cool stuff people do with vst stuff. When I feel like that I listen to “Point of Departure” by Necros. I see that tecnology never stoped him from creating perfection. :rolleyes:

I totally agree with you… but like to add another often forgotten side of the matter…
namely, when keeping at it, with devotion, you will develop your own style and this will flavour whatever you do… so, noone can do what you do… yeah, they can copy it… maybe do what you’ve Done before and even do it better but they can never do it the way you do because as soon as they try they start to add their own flavour…
so, what I’m trying to say here is that we’re all originals… music-making is a creative process and each individual brings different facets based on his/her total sum of experiences and knowledge.

I think you are wrong. people need the tools to make proper music, their tools. when the tools are not there (samples, musicsoftware, the works) you have nothing to create something with. it would be like painting with a brush and two colours, you cant do something very impressive with this set of tools, only something “basic”.

I think the term you are referring to is composing, thinking up lines of notes to work together using different instruments, and meanwhile there is alot of music out there which does not need “composing” in the exact term. aphex twin is not composing in the old-style way, still his music is great and innovative.

I miss my C64. :(

I couldnt do any good music on c64. too less voices, too less option to make sounds and no samples … renoise fits me quite perfect.

Then buy this card ( )
I have the quatro PCI and it 0wns bigtime.
4 SID chips = 4 x 3 channels of PURE SID sound !!!
You can use it with Renoise aswell and use the MidiCCDevice to use the internal effects of the SID chip. :)
The software is very configurable. Uses the MIDI interface.

And NO I’m not one of the creators of the card to do a commercial here. ;)
I’m just very pleased with this card because I’m a very big C64 fan myself.


are these cards avaiable again ? I heard sometime ago there were not because the manufacturer couldnt get SID chips to put into the cards …

He sells them always with one SID chip, but I bought it with no SIDs at all, because I allready owned alot.
SID chips are not hard to find. Just go to a junkmarket and buy a cheap C64. (even if he’s broken, the SID will always work)

My point to all is that I would definatly die without being creative at all. Well opinion is even if you have crappy samples or else you can still do some good stuff. As Saboteur says it is just how are you practised/ing. The other hand you should have really have a nice software to realize all that stuff (i.e Renoise :) ). And then you´re able to get the best from crappy stuff you´re imagine I think.

So sharing saboteurs and loozas meaning both at least :)

(Hey did you realized??? I practised my english ability! Nice eh?)

O.K., I guess I do agree with You since I got my new computer :P I also think that if You are inspired enough, You can use basic tools to create complex music. Some of my favorite songs were done on a C64. I am not saying I could do it though.

Speaking of the C64, I am not sure which route to take. The Quadrasid or Hardsid card? I will have to look into them more. If I had allot of money I would buy a SidStation :)

The SIDstation is cool, but the hardsid card has a few advantages (i’am a lucky person owning both). First of all it can have 4 SID’s installed. This means 12 voices you can map in -any way you want-. You could assign each voice to a different MIDI channel (and thus, play 12 different sounds (using one voice for each)) if you want or all the 12 voices to 1 channel, which means lots of polyphony.

The default configuration is 3 voices (one whole SID) per channel. In this configuration you can play four, three channel patches (3 layer monophonic or 3-voice polyphonic) at once, which is nice for most stuff. The software (patch editor/channel mapper) is really great and flexible to work with.

The sidstation is excellent for what it’s designed for, but it only listens to one midi channel. You can create either a 3-layer monophonic patch, or a patch with 3-voice polyphony.

Unfortunally it misses the flexible mapping system the hardsid card has. So with the sidstation, you can use only patch at the time. On the other hand, i really love the interface, and having hands-on control is really awesome. The LFO’s and such can also be synced to the MIDI clock (something the hardsid cannot do).

Both have advantages of their own (check the specs/manuals…there is more to look at before buying either of them), but i think the hardsid card gives you more bang for the buck. It’s fairly cheap as well compared to the Sidstation.

The hardsid currently costs $189 with one chip installed, so you would have to add 3 yourself to use it’s full potential. The last sidstations now cost $950 :( They used to be cheaper :(

It’s totally off-topic. Sorry about that :D