Online Courses

Music Technology for Guitarists

Authored by Anthony Marvuglio

|

Course Code: OGUIT-110

Next Term Starts January 8

Level 1

Level 1

3-Credit Tuition

$1,479

Non-Credit Tuition

$1,229

This is an introductory course for the guitarist who needs to understand and use computer-based technologies applicable to performance and recording. This course will cover many aspects of digital music technology but is directly focused on guitar-related innovations. While Berklee Online offers other advanced courses in music production and mastering, this course is meant to support the student as a performer to succeed in completing the Online Guitar Major. 

Read More

The instructor will present the material with examples, video clips, audio, and personal insights gained from years in the industry. The course will begin with a brief history of twentieth century recording technology, before exploring modern digital audio workstations and guitar modeling software. We’ll also delve into microphone techniques and how artists within different musical genres are using software environments to create music. By the end of the course, students will demonstrate a mastery of basic digital audio workstation (DAW) functionality and creative use of guitar amplifier modeling and effects processing. 

By the end of the course, you will be able to:

  • Explain the similarities and differences between analog and digital recording 
  • Assemble the hardware that comprises a digital audio workstation (DAW) 
  • Incorporate digital technology into guitar practice routines
  • Record guitar-related music projects using software and hardware
  • Utilize digital guitar technology in live performance
  • Use digital effects and amplifier modeling technology to enhance your guitar sound
  • Collaborate with other musicians remotely on recording projects
Read Less

Syllabus

Lesson 1: Introduction and Concepts

  • Analog vs. Digital recording; a Look Back and Comparisons
  • Tape Recording
  • SMPTE
  • MIDI Hardware Instruments
  • Microphones or Line Level Instruments
  • Assignment: Analog vs Digital

Lesson 2: Essential DAW Components

  • DAW Components
  • Input Impedance
  • Types of Interfaces and Options
  • Sample Rates
  • Speakers, Listening Environment, and Ergonomics
  • Hardware Requirement Authorizations
  • Guitar Modeling Software Installation
  • Assignment: Your DAW Environment

Lesson 3: Recording

  • The Recording Environment
  • Buffer sizes
  • Bars and Beats
  • Markers or Locators
  • MIDI tracks
  • Inserts
  • Recording Stereo and Mono tracks 
  • Assignment: Recording to Backing Tracks

Lesson 4: Plug-ins, Inserts, Latency and CPU Considerations

  • Plug-in Categories
  • Guitar Modeling Software
  • Amp/Effects (stomp boxes etc.)
  • Playing Live
  • Rehearsing
  • Recording
  • Assignment: Plug-Ins and Stand-Alone Application Usage

Lesson 5: Applying Concepts to Different Software Applications

  • Concepts for Using Multiple/Different Software Applications
  • Guitar Modeling User Interface
  • Tuner
  • Using Presets
  • Panning and Layering Textures
  • Assignment: Recording with Various Applications

Lesson 6: Backing Tracks, Transcription Software, and File Management

  • Transcribing and Learning Tunes
  • Playing Live
  • Modifying the Tempo of Backing Tracks 
  • File Saving Options
  • Assignment: Transcribe, Import, and Record

Lesson 7: MIDI

  • MIDI vs. Audio: What is the Difference?
  • MIDI Tracks and Assigning Software Instruments
  • Editing MIDI Data
  • Quantization
  • Pitch
  • Duration
  • Velocity
  • Control Messages for Changing Parameters
  • Assignment: Assign Software Instruments to the MIDI Tracks 

Lesson 8: Additional DAW Functions

  • Other DAW Functions
  • MIDI Loops
  • Punching In/Out
  • Re-amping
  • Editing
  • Assignment: Audio Loops as a Starting Point

Lesson 9: Mixing

  • Mixer Environment
  • I/O, Faders, Pan, Solo, Mute
  • Sends and Returns
  • Setting Levels and Groups of Instruments
  • Mixing Techniques Explored
  • Compressors, Limiters and Meters
  • Rendering tracks 
  • The Final Mix
  • Assignment: Mixing

Lesson 10: Microphones and Direct Boxes

  • Types of Microphones
  • Dynamic, Condenser, Ribbon
  • Polar Patterns and What they Mean
  • Frequency Response
  • Microphone Techniques for Recording and Live Performance
  • How to Mic Amps when Recording Multiple Musicians
  • Preamps (Analog and Digital Connections to the Interface)
  • Analog, S/PDIF and ADAT
  • Direct Boxes (DI)
  • Assignment: Putting it All Together

Lesson 11: Collaboration

  • Collaboration
  • Creating a Shareable Workflow
  • Cloud Sharing
  • Remote Recording Sessions
  • Assignment: On-the-Clock Recording Project 

Lesson 12: Controllers and Accessories

  • Hardware Options
  • Hardware Pedals 
  • MIDI and Hardware Controllers
  • Recording MIDI Control Messages
  • Recording Workflow
  • Assignment: Assigning MIDI control 

Requirements

Prerequisites

Completion of Music Foundations or Music Theory 101 or equivalent knowledge and experience is required. Students should be able to:

  • Play and manipulate electric guitar tones through an amplifier 
  • Demonstrate basic acoustic guitar tones and techniques
  • Have the basic ability to read music and/or tablature in common time signatures

No Recommended Textbooks


Software Requirements

  • AmpliTube 4 Deluxe*
  • GTR3*
  • POD Farm
  • Guitar Rig 5 Player (free download
  • Transcription software: Transcribe! or Amazing Slowdowner (Demo versions are acceptable)
  • DAW: (must support third party plug-ins) Pro Tools, Digital Performer, Reaper, Cubase, Ableton Live (Intro, Std, or Suite), PreSonus Studio One Professional, Logic Pro

*Discounts available for AmpliTube 4 Deluxe and GTR3 upon enrolling in the course. A special offer from Line 6 is available for POD Farm.

Mac Users

  • OS X 10.9 Mavericks or higher (click here for system requirements)
  • Latest version of Google Chrome

Windows Users

  • Windows 7 or higher (click here for system requirements)
  • Latest version of Google Chrome

Hardware Requirements

Electric guitar highly recommended. Students have taken the course successfully with acoustic/electrics or acoustic guitars with pickups mounted in the sound hole or under the saddle. You will need a way to connect your guitar directly to your computer in order to record with AmpliTube. Examples include the IK Multimedia Stealthplug, Focusrite Scarlett 2i2, PreSonus AudioBox range, etc. See the Student Deals page for discounts.

  • Audio/MIDI interface
  • Speakers and headphones
  • Microphone(s) with boom stand and cables
  • 2 GB RAM (4 GB recommended)
  • 500 MB hard drive space
  • Speakers or headphones
  • Webcam
  • Internet connection with at least 4 Mbps download speed ( http://www.speedtest.net to verify or download the Speedtest by Ookla app from your mobile app store)

Instructors

Author & Instructor

Tony Marvuglio is Assistant Vice President for Academic Technology at Berklee College of Music, where he develops and implements strategies for supporting the academic mission of the college through the creative use of technology. An expert in information and music technologies, Tony works with deans, chairs, and faculty to support the college curriculum with appropriate hardware and software. He leads the Faculty Technology Services department that is responsible for faculty development in using technology through the Center for Technology in Music Instruction, and the Student Technology Services department that provides technical support services to students through the Student Computer Support Center.

Read More

Tony is a professional guitarist and recording engineer, recently serving as mix engineer for legendary bassist, Eddie Gomez on his CD Per Sempre. Tony was an early user of computer and music technologies, and has presented on the use of technology in music education at MacWorld, the Technology Institute for Music Educators (TI:ME), the National Association for Music Education (NAfME) and the International Association for Jazz Education (IAJE) conferences. He continues to perform professionally as a guitarist in a variety of venues, almost always incorporating the use of available technologies. Read Less

What's Next?

When taken for credit, Music Technology for Guitarists can be applied towards these associated programs:

Associated Degree Major

Questions?

Contact our Academic Advisors by phone at 1-866-BERKLEE (U.S.), 1-617-747-2146 (INT'L), or by email at advisors@online.berklee.edu.

We can also answer basic questions in the comments below. Please note that all comments are public.

Comments