Some tutorials about "How to compose music in MPT"

Started by Apocalyptiq, September 22, 2007, 17:54:03

Previous topic - Next topic


I search for some advices about how to compose music in MPT (rock genre songs: with chugs, electric guitars, cool drums etc.). I don't know how to cooperate all the instruments - sometimes, in my demos, or guitar doesn't fit in to rest insts, or drums, or something else  :oops:

Saga Musix

Two tutorials that you can't download: Listening and Lerning. Listen to rock songs, pay attention at every single not. Listen to tunes several times to hear how they are built up (verses, chors, bridge, etc.), pay attention to every single instrument (ie drum patterns, guitar riffs). Then try to make a module out of this new knowledge. Of course, you also need proper samples. Drum samples are easy to find, but finding a fitting guitar is a hard task imho, but it's a lot easier if you play the guitar yourself...
» No support, bug reports, feature requests via private messages - they will not be answered. Use the forums and the issue tracker so that everyone can benefit from your post.


Listening to results of composing is very important indeed.
But with tracker modules it's also possible to learn from things inside the process of composing.
Because in MPT you have the complete score, and all the instruments of the band seperately.
So you can learn from modules made by others by checking the patterns, the codes, etc. How was something done ?
You can play with the material by changing a code, and find out what happens. You can listen to single channels.
Don't just play the whole song, but set a certain pattern in a loop, and check out what's going on.
QuoteI don't know how to cooperate all the instruments - sometimes, in my demos, or guitar doesn't fit in to rest insts
I guess you'll have to tune the volume of each instrument to find a good balance in the first place.
Then, taking care of the panning of each instrument can help too.

Learning how to compose is something you have to do yourself.
But check the forum. It has a lot of links to information, data, tips, samples, songs.


Thanx for good advices guys!  :wink:

What you think about VST instruments? Are they better than normal instruments with samples? It is worth to use them both in one song (for example drums from samples, and guitars from VSTi's)?


That really depends on what sound you want to accomplish, and what the VSTi you're gonna use offer.

Normal drum samples can be very good to use, but if you look for Native Instruments Battery VSTi, then you see that it offers a big sound library with samples and techniques in it to vary the hit so you get a more realistic sound. Yet, this plugin is quite expensive, so if you use others, it probably is better to use samples.

Samples usually give you more freedom because you can choose what sound you want where in your pattern editor, but a VSTi can sometimes get to that same result in a much easier way.

Basically its not an easy to answer question because it very much rely on the samples and VSTi's you have, but also what goal you want to accomplish.

If you're aiming for a trance sound, you probably are better of using a VSTi, as most synths can easilly generate one and have a trance preset. When it comes to an electric guitar, most VSTi's are not realistic enough or way too exensive.

Do note that you can also try to recreate a real situation.

I hear you saying: huh? how?

A real electric guitar, isn't just the guitar. It also has an amplifier on it. There are plenty of VST effects that do amplifying. Putting a normal guitar (preferabelly a steel guitar) as instrument, and add an AMP VST effect after the sound, will allow you to realisiticly create an electric guitar. Quality relies both on the plugin and the samples, but it can get you alot of different sounds. To give you a headstart, try G-Amp Classic and Voxengo Boogex. I use both VST's as amps, and I've gotten a very good result with them. G-Amp Classic is very easy plugin to start with.

To answer your final question: sure, you can use both in your song at the same time.
"Heh, maybe I should've joined the compo only because it would've meant I wouldn't have had to worry about a damn EQ or compressor for a change. " - Atlantis
"yes.. I think in this case it was wishful thinking: MPT is makng my life hard so it must be wrong" - Rewbs


If you're looking for an inexpensive sample-based solution, here are a few thoughts:

(1) drum samples typically sound fine and are available for free all over the web.  Google "meanbeats drum samples" and you will find some free acoustic drum samples that sound pretty good.  If you don't mind electronic drum sounds, there are literally thousands of TR-808 and 909 samples available for free on the web.  (Check out the free sample site lists here, at, and -- modarchive has a huge bittorrent sample archive available.  Do a google search for hyperreal music machines and you will pull up some free drum machine samples.)

(2) Guitars are tough.  You can either record your own guitar notes to get exactly what you want, or, if the authors don't mind, rip them from other mods.

(3) Getting an actual guitar sound out of samples requires a fair amount of tracking technique, and, like Sam Zen said, the best way to learn is to see how others have done it.  Use of pitch slide effects, etc. is crucial to getting that rock guitar sound and some people are very good at it. has mods by category, so you can check some out there.

Wow, that's way too much typing.  Good luck.