MikeRobinson wrote:Here's a thought ... "initially, just use Drummer to create a guide track, or tracks." This is an easy-to-get-to computer simulation of common moves that human drummers use when accompanying a piece of music.
Now, put that "classical music background" to good use! The (only ...) difference being that the various instruments in your repertoire are only capable of producing one sound. Therefore, the only tool in your compositional arsenal is time. However, "you could write a sheet-music score for that!" (And no doubt you already have, to accompany your melodic compositions.)
"Beats" actually obey the same fundamental rules of song-structure and therefore composition that melodic music does, with one important difference: they don't appear to. Unlike classical melodic composition, where the various parts align in time, the structures often overlap, and do not coincide with each other. (Yes, you might spot a "3/4 time" beat running beside "4/4.") And this overlap might change – apparently without warning – throughout the piece.
As I listen to "beats," I often think that what I'm really hearing is "strips." Except that the content of these strips consists only of rhythm. Are the "strips," themselves being used as some kind of "notes of a meta-melody?" I wonder sometimes if this might be the actual trick.