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Project guide: Creating a short musical piece using iPad and GarageBand, part two

GarageBand on iPad is a great app for music and podcast creation, and you can use it in the classroom to bring all manner of lessons to life. In part one of this guide, we explored GarageBand and looked at how to record loops of your narration. Now, we’re going to show you how to create background music with Live Loops and record your final project.

 

Conal Siddall
Step one: Record an audio track of your narration

You should now have a row of audio loops that looks similar to the image below.

 

At the top right of the screen you will see a small square that says ‘1 Bar’. Press this and change the setting to off – this means the next loop will play as soon as you press it, rather than waiting for one bar to pass. Now everything is all set up, you can record your narration. Hit the record button at the top of the app and trigger the loops one after another, then press stop when you’re finished.

You’ve now created a recorded audio track of your narration. If you press the tracks view button in the top row, you’ll now see the audio track.

 

Step two: Add Live Loops and live instruments to create a song

For the background music, you’ll need to add Live Loops to create the backing music. Make sure you are in grid view, then press the + icon in the instruments column and select loops. Because your narration is recorded in loops, you can trigger different parts while browsing loops to find one that fits each section. Match the mood of the music to the tone of the story as much as possible for the greatest effect.

 

If you need a reminder on how to add Live Loops, go to Page 9 of Everyone Can Create Music for some more information. You can hit the help button in the top right at any time to get more information on the controls.

Start by adding drums and a bass instrument, then add in melodic instruments afterwards such as piano or guitar. Adjust the volume of each one so the narration can still be heard clearly. Dedicate the loops in each column to a certain section of the story.

 

Try having a practice run of triggering your loops alongside the narration. When you’re happy, press and hold the icon for your narration loops and hit delete. Don’t worry, this will not affect your recorded audio track – it just means you’ll not trigger the loops during the recording.

 

Step three: Record and share your music and narration

When you hit record, you’ll hear the narration playing automatically, so just play each column in time with the words. If you make a mistake, stop the recording and press back to delete the audio tracks, or switch to tracks view and double tap the audio track you want and select delete. In tracks view, you can also make adjustments to the timing of your audio tracks by selecting and dragging the track along the row.

 

When you’re done editing, listen back to it a couple of times and make any final adjustments before you export your finished piece. Your masterpiece is now finished! Page 8 of the Everyone Can Create Music guide has information on the different ways you can export and share your songs.

 

Use Everyone Can Create Music for other lessons

Creating music for stories is just one way you can use the tips in Everyone Can Create Music to integrate music into lessons. If you download the free Teacher Guide, it features a list of integration ideas with tips on how you can use the app to add music to other subjects.

 

Share your musical creations with us on Twitter

If you’ve used GarageBand to make lessons more creative with your class, we’d love to see it! Share what you did with us on Twitter (@Jigsaw24Edu) and we’ll give you a retweet.

 

Ask us for help

As experts in Apple for education with a team of former teachers on hand, we can help you use iPad and creative apps like GarageBand to get more out of your lessons. We can even recommend and supply audio software from the likes of Avid and Adobe, too. Get in touch and ask about the latest and greatest creative software for schools!

 

If you want to know more about using iPad and Everyone Can Create, get in touch with our team on 03332 409 290 or email education@Jigsaw24.com. For the latest news, follow us on LinkedInFacebook and Twitter.

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