Running ReBirth on Linux made me want to run Reason too

September 11, 2011

Last weekend I learned how to get Propellerhead’s ReBirth RB-338 to run on Ubuntu Linux using Wine.

It was great, and I’m quite happy to finally use my new-to-me used portable computer to make music instead of just using it for the typical online life bullshit. After all, I once had a very nice mobile music setup until I fried my laptop five years ago trying to run Linux and Palm Visor PDA on it, and I haven’t had any mobile music since.

Since I got my netbook, I considered it only lightweight enough for web surfing and such. Then one day, I Googled “run rebirth on linux’’ and found a post describing how to do it from a cool blog that I now follow. After about an hour of learning new things, like mounting ISOs, I got ReBirth RB-338 running on Linux, and it made me a happier camper at work that week. Now I’m older and wiser and more patient to learn its not-too-intuitive ReBirth’s interface. It was perfect because ReBirth is designed for small screens, which translates very well to a netbook.

Later that week, I got zelous and wanted to run Reason on this netbook and recreate the good ol’ days of me making beats on the go. All week all I could really think about was how to get Reason to run because this installation process wasn’t as easy as ReBirth because uses several CDs. By Saturday night, I learned more about a corner of Linux that I wondered when would I ever learn about it (i.e. directories other than home/, var/, and etc/), and then I messed up my netbook so badly that I had to re-install the operating system today, never getting Reason to work.

The silver lining was that during this installation of the OS, I documented all the installation steps that I’ve completed so far. If I had a real optical drive on the netbook, then it possibly could have been easier to get Reason to run because the trick to it is to get Wine to believe one is loading real CDs, which happen to be simply ISOs in my case. People have gotten newer versions than mine to work, and other’s have documented the need to mount the ISOs, which I never successfully executed despite some unenthusiastic assistance from the Wine community.

I wonder if the problem was with my old version of Reason, version 2.5. I could bypass the whole issue regarding loading of CDs by using cracked software, but apparently my old version is not so easily available, and I insist on running the same version on the netbook as I do on my DAW, so that the same files could be played in both places. I insist on running legal software on my DAW.

Rearranged someone’s finished recording

July 2, 2011

A while back, a friend needed some help cutting a song for a friend’s wedding. The bride wanted the some parts extended and some cut out. So, the other day, my buddy came over with the song, and we knocked it out in one evening.

I learned that iTunes is the best way to convert its m4a files to WAV files, in which I can work. Then, I learned that nothing is simple. My friend explained the song manipulation that sounded like two or three cuts, which ultimately became over 20 cuts. This is a big deal on an already recorded song when you have to work with the final 2-channel stereo mix (yes redundant description) because in stereo mixes, cuts can easily sound way more obvious than on a individual channels. I also learned that I do not fully understand file handling within Cubase, so I’ll have to focus on learning that. I guess things have a changed a bit in the concept of files and audio regions since the days of Logic 5 (which I proudly used on a PC but then became a Mac-only product forcing me to do what I should have done a long time ago, started and stayed with Steinberg Cubase back in 1995 when I purchased Logic 3).

The funny thing about editing a song like this for a wedding is that I’ve worked a part-time job as custodian for probably 50 weddings, so I am familiar with the entire process of the processional and was able to suggest one thing, such as when he preacher should tell the congregation to rise for the bride. I guess that makes me a good candidate for an engineer for wedding music. Hopefully our final product works out for the bride in practice because we didn’t have enough cycles left to make further changes. Ah, methodologies of project management!