Tags: posts polarity-music Chords Note-FX Transposer Mixing Synthesis Tips-Tricks

How to Create Non-Diatonic Chord Progressions with the Diatronic Transposer

Tutorial | Wed Dec 15 2021 00:00:00 GMT+0000 (Coordinated Universal Time)

In this video, I share some tips and tricks for using the diatronic transposer in Bitwig Studio to create jazzy chord progressions. I show how to use a multi note device in combination with a key filter and transposer to create a chord brush. I also demonstrate how to use a pitch 12 to modulate multi notes between major and minor chords. Lastly, I show how to create chord gradients by stacking notes in seven semitone steps.

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Questions & Answers

Maybe you dont watch the video, here are some important takeaways:

What is a diatronic transposer and how can it be used to create chord progressions?

A diatronic transposer is a device that can be used to transpose notes within a given scale. It is generally used to create chord progressions that are non-diatonic, meaning that they don't follow the typical diatonic scale of the root note. To use the diatronic transposer, one can set the root note of the scale and then adjust the transposition of each note within the scale. This can be done by adding a second note with a pitch shift of five semitones down and then activating the second one to pitch everything five semitones down. This creates a jazzy chord that can be added to the beat.

What is a multi note device and how can it be used to generate songs?

A multi note device is a device that can be used to play multiple notes or chords at once. It can be used to generate entire songs by manipulating the notes within the scale. For example, one can use a multi note device to create a minor chord and then use automation to change the mode from mixoly


This is what im talking about in this video. The text is transcribed by AI, so it might not be perfect. If you find any mistakes, please let me know.
You can also click on the timestamps to jump to the right part of the video, which should be helpful.

[00:00.000] Welcome back to another video guys, today I want to show you some tips and tricks for
[00:04.600] the diatronic transposer in the movie note, how you can utilize these devices to create
[00:09.200] also non-diatonic chord progressions, some small little ideas and tips and tricks, how
[00:14.600] I use these devices and yeah, of course some inspiration.
[00:18.720] So have some fun and see you later.
[00:21.720] So we have this nice beat here and we probably want to add some jazzy chords to it, so I'm
[00:31.560] using here a violizer which is a bit quick preset and create an old clip here, maybe
[00:40.560] start at C, right so we need to chord, maybe start with the main chord, maybe start with
[00:51.480] the major chord, 7 in the bass, dance a bit boring, but now comes the trick, we use
[01:14.160] a second moody note here and we use here the first note to let all these notes pass unchanged
[01:24.920] and then we activate your second one and pitch everything with five simitones down, we
[01:30.280] have this chord here and then the same chord on top but only five simitones lower, sounds
[01:39.000] like this, right, sounds a bit more jazzy.
[01:44.120] Maybe you can bring it
[02:14.040] the strum here. Or maybe transpose everything up one semi tone, one octave.
[02:44.040] So nice for creating some easy jazzy chords just, you know, using the same
[03:00.800] chord and stack the same chord on top, just five semi tones lower. So here
[03:09.920] this is an EDM example and I showed this recently on my Instagram. I have like
[03:16.420] here a pretty simple setup with a multi note playing here. What's that? That's a
[03:23.620] minor chord and also here a suspended note in there. And then using just your
[03:32.580] automation to change from mixellodian to lydian or some of these notes. Super
[03:39.060] straightforward to get out of the scale notes. And yeah, that's okay I think.
[04:09.060] I'm also getting here. I think the notes from this chord track here also for the
[04:24.020] bass. Just extracting the bass note here, playing this bass sound. You can
[04:33.740] generate basically a whole song just from these chord progressions. So yeah,
[04:38.720] another way of doing this pretty simple setup. Just to move the note here, one
[04:43.160] chord type, and then changing here to key filter from mixellodian to lydian.
[04:48.300] And that's it. Okay, so we have here a multi note that plays a major chord.
[04:57.740] Pretty simple. And then we use here a second note that plays also major chord.
[05:09.080] But what if if we want to have for every note we play in here or every key we
[05:15.820] want to have a different multi note device. You can do that by just grouping
[05:21.260] here this multi note device into a note of x layer right clicking that convert to
[05:25.460] note fx selector. And then maybe adding here also key filter and the
[05:34.100] transpositor to the layer. And we can close this down and then duplicate this
[05:44.460] multiple times as many as you want. Selecting this device and then we can go
[05:50.860] here to keyswitches. And keyswitches is basically you have a second note
[05:56.780] that you can use to switch between the layers right instead of just having
[06:01.540] here one note. But place a note you use then c minus I don't know c sharp minus
[06:11.460] two here to select the second layer as you can see now this one is selected
[06:16.260] player c minus 1 or c minus 2 the first one is selected right. So but this is a
[06:24.420] bit tedious here to have basically two notes apart. So what I'm doing most
[06:30.340] of the times is using in front of the fx selector here transpose. Put this into
[06:39.420] a note of x layer and this is just here to letting the note pass basically untouched
[06:46.460] duplicating this and this is the key switch now here. The key switch is exactly
[06:53.060] five octaves lower so three and two right. This one triggers here the layer and
[07:02.060] this one triggers the note. So when we play now this we have this note playing the
[07:09.740] diatonic transposer in layer one and this is in layer two. So now we can step in
[07:23.900] here and change for each note the multi note differently and say we want to
[07:30.220] have your suspended chord. Oh we want to switch it to a different mode right.
[07:39.940] It doesn't it doesn't matter here because that's not not a note playing that's
[07:46.220] offset here to the second scale but you get the deal right you can now do this
[07:52.780] here for every note and create a chord brush this way and you can step in here
[08:01.860] and change every chord to a liking.
[08:31.860] So maybe sometimes this is easier to tweak complex chords than having just
[08:46.780] here you know 20,000 notes in the note editor and moving the stuff around. So
[08:54.020] just as a small hint you can use here a note of x layer in front just
[08:58.820] pitching the initial note down here by five octaves and you can trigger then
[09:04.060] different layers here by switching this to key switches and adding here layer
[09:10.740] for each note easy peasy. Another interesting way is here to use for instance the
[09:18.540] pitch 12 to modify the mode. So let's create the chain device here inside the
[09:26.060] chain device we need a multi note to create the chords and the diatronic
[09:30.980] transposer and let's say we want to start and see majors we let this here at
[09:36.540] C major and introduce here a pitch 12 and this time we say every time we press
[09:46.540] a black key on the keyboard which is out of the scale of C major we switch to
[09:53.300] a different mode for instance to Lydian here right so we modulate all the
[10:00.880] black keys, black notes here for exactly four steps higher one two three four
[10:18.140] right and also go to mix a lot if you want to what sounds best to you and here
[10:24.580] we create some kind of major chord seven and now we can basically stay in C major
[10:37.420] by just using the white keys here or go to Lydian by switching here to a black
[10:49.460] key
[11:16.180] so in this example you have exactly as the same before but instead of using
[11:38.300] a diatronic transposer I just completely removed the transposer here and I'm
[11:44.180] using the pitch 12 to modulate the multi note directly and only for the
[11:49.440] black keys and all of the black keys here are switching this multi note from a
[11:54.260] major seven chord to a minus seven chord so I can mix and match now on the
[12:01.100] piano earlier between a major seven chord and a minor seven chord and yeah
[12:11.300] can mix and match basically these two completely free independently from
[12:18.700] the scale I'm using so we are on the scale of C major and sometimes I bring in a
[12:26.700] major chord where there should be a minor chord and sometimes I bring in a
[12:30.380] minor chord where it should be a major chord
[12:50.380] okay so let's stack some fifth we have your note played by Cynthia the
[12:58.040] policent and when we take this note and go seven semitones up we get the fifth
[13:04.380] so one two fifth right and sound it sounds nice together and also go here fifth
[13:15.780] up again so we get kind of chords out of this right just by adding notes in
[13:29.200] seven seven tone steps we can utilize this by using a multi note here
[13:36.420] dialing in seven semitones and now we have here two notes instead of one but now we
[13:45.300] can combine two notes and get four notes and now you can create maybe chord
[13:56.700] gradients with this for instance it's nice to just change on each step on each
[14:02.540] step only one note right so you can create some kind of moods with this just
[14:22.180] just by using here the simple setup and yeah using two notes you create four
[14:28.860] notes actually that's it for the day guys if you have some tips and tricks to
[14:32.660] share for using the diatronic transposer and the mood you know inside bit
[14:37.340] studio then please let me know in the discord or under this video in the
[14:41.260] comments I'm interested in that if you like the video then please if you like
[14:45.900] subscribe to the channel and I'll see you in the next video thanks for watching
[14:49.740] and bye