I've started a project to recreate W. Carlos's Switched on Bach album playlist using the Atari8 as a sound source. A goal on my bucket list is to finish it. I intend to use the MIDI Music System to send data to other Ataris that will act as sound synthesizers. My original thought was to have the ability to play the songs in real time; something Carlos couldn't do in 1968 when the album was published. Then I thought of something else that lead me to something else until I asked, "Am I ever going to play any of this music in front of anyone?"
The use of multitrack recording software (Audacity) could make this whole operation a lot easier. How much easier? I wanted to test it by recording a music file created using Advanced Music System(AMS). Record a track for each of the 4 voices, Pan the voices left or right to create a stereo effect, sync the tracks using timing marks, and then export as an MP3 file.
I chose PRELUDE1.AMS, a bit of classical music. Sounds like it could be Bach but I am guessing. It took about 3.5 hours to produce the recording on my second try. Once I relearned the AMS v1 commands it started to come back rather quickly. The Prelude1.AMS file was loaded and a measure to help sync the tracks was inserted at the beginning of each voice.
The mono recording is of all 4 voices recorded on a single track. The stereo recording had each voice recorded on a separate track and each track was panned left or right of center. You should be able to hear the difference.
The first attempt was recorded without the timing measure and the FX processer on the mixer was set for each voice. The results sounded like crap and there was no way to fix it without starting over. You should be glad I did.
Since I had to get the manual for AMS out of the folder, I decided to make a command summary sheet much like the MIDI Music System Command Summary sheet. If you think you might use AMS once ever few years you may want a copy of this.
And…. Within the manual there was a section on how to sink your multi track
tape machine. After reading that section, I developed a greater appreciation for digital recording software and a much higher regard for Carlos's contributions to electronic music.
Then….This turned into a longer term project when my son got me a small delta 3D printer for my birthday. After I learn how to use 3D design software, I plan to use the 5hrs it takes to print an object to complete the Carlos project.