Ableton Live + Avid Pro Tools = My Divorce from Cakewalk Sonar

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on February 25, 2014 by Maskerade

As a longtime supporter of Cakewalk products, this has been hard for me to do.  I’ve been using Sonar since 2005 when Sonar 5 was out.  Since then, they have really stepped their game up and making it better and better with each version.  The support, however, leaves something to be desired.  Also, there just aren’t enough 3rd party collaborations that I personally like.

Three weeks ago, I decided to pick up a new midi keyboard controller for Sonar X2.  I bought the newly released M-Audio Axiom Air 49.  Long story short, using it in Sonar made it out to be just an expensive midi-keyboard with now useless knobs and faders.  I did some research and it turns out that hardly any of the midi controller manufactures care about their units working with Sonar. 

At first, I was going to take it back and make something work with Sonar. Then I thought, why? If Cakewalk doesn’t care enough to fight for controller compatibility, why should I?  When I went to Winter NAMM, there was no one (and I mean NO ONE) at the Cakewalk Sonar X2 set.  There was just no interest or excitement at all.  M-Audio, Akai, Ableton, NI, etc., all have big booths and lots of fans.  Cakewalk was just a lonely step-child.

It was then that I decided to divorce Sonar and learn these other DAW’s.  I had two criteria. One, it had to be available on both Mac and PC. Two, it had to be common in the industry, because I deal with a lot of industry cats these days.  If I could pass along my session to someone, that would make it a lot easier.

So I chose to try Ableton Live for my music production and Avid Pro Tools to record new songs.  Bad news for Cakewalk, because I could be happier.  Not only are these DAW’s more commonly used, but they’re just better. They sound better and they work better.  There’s still a bit of a learning curve for me, but its worth the hours of tutorials that I’ve been watching.  

In the beginning, I didn’t want to conform to what everybody else thought. I think that blinded me from actually trying other programs and just sticking to what I know best.  That was a bad move.  My advise to anyone from hear on out is to trying out a few things.  When you’re shopping for a car, you don’t just test drive one, you test many.  Find the one that works for you.  Make sure there’s a lot of support and video help to make your learning curve easy.  

Most of my life I’ve been very stubborn.  That stubbornness has prevented me, in a lot of ways, from achieving more success than I have in the past.  But, now I refused to be an old dog. I’m going to force myself to learn new tricks.

Back Again!!

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on August 28, 2013 by Maskerade

I know that not too many people read my blog. It’s still kind of fun just to get on here and blog anyway.

So it’s been a while since my last post. I was working out with Insanity and I stopped around 7 weeks. That’s too bad, because I was making headway.

This time, I’ve started again. I’ve booked a temporary gig in Temecula, California. I haven’t performed in sometime, but I really miss it. So, I’m working out to look better for this performance. I’ve got some ideas on how to market the performance. Hopefully, this goes well. The worst thing though is that I don’t have the funds to purchase the promo materials. I’m really cutting it close.

So, I’ve got to come up with some clever ways to promote this show and my music. I have to keep it cost effective. Wish me luck!!

Week 7

Posted in Uncategorized on September 5, 2012 by Maskerade

I missed 3 days last week, because my body was just so worn out from all the exercise. When people say INSANITY is hard, it’s the truth.  Since that I’d only missed one day.  Today, I continued on the day I was supposed to be on.  I just don’t believe people are perfect.  There are those rare cases when someone has so much self-discipline that they can complete anything they put their mind to.  I just don’t believe I’m one of those people yet.

I figured though, that if I could do this program for 3 weeks in a row, that I could make it a habit and finish the rest.  After 3 days of missing, I could tell that my body needed to get back to doing it.  Having that time off though, gave my body time to rest and heal.  The results, I must say are very noticeable and I’m very pleased.

I just wanted to look better in 60 days and I’ve already achieved that in less.  Still, I have 2 more weeks to go, plus 4 make-up days.  I will get it done.  For me, it’s not about being perfect.  It’s about knowing that you’ll mess up from time to time and still not giving up.  Just get back on the horse and continue on.

If you’re in a long distance race and you fall down, are you going to go back to the beginning and start over.  No. You get back up and you continue on.  Winning the race is not the victory.  Finishing the race is. Second, third, or second to last, just finish!

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Week 6 Is a Monster!

Posted in Uncategorized with tags on August 30, 2012 by Maskerade

This exercise program is a real mountain to climb.  Every day I want to quit and just eat whatever I want, but that’s not going to help me.  At the beginning I just told myself I want to look better in 60 days.  And it hasn’t been 60 days yet.  After that I want to start on another program.

The first one that I’m doing in Insanity.  It’s tough stuff.  I’ve never sweat like this before.  After that I want to do P90X.  I figure that I could be done with everything by Christmas and look amazing.  All I need is a budget of about $2500 and I can turn this new album into something nice.

I just finished recording my 4th song.  As it turns out, I’m not just good at writing, but I can produce a few tracks too.  I’ll keep you update.

Lastly, I got tired of taking my pics in bad light.  Here’s week 6 shot for you.

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Slow progress is going to be the death of me!

Week 5 Update

Posted in Uncategorized on August 23, 2012 by Maskerade

I ran into a little depression lately. I started to digress a little and I missed Monday’s workout. I figured I’ll just have to do double duty on Friday or Saturday or make it up on Sunday. (That’s going to make my life hell!)

One thing I realize is that we are never perfect. Sometimes life hits us right on the back of the head. But, you just have to snap out of it, pick yourself up, and continue the mission.

Failure is certain. Success can only be achieved after a series of failures. If this stuff were easy, everyone would be doing it!!Image

I also started working on the album.  I’m just going to be me and have a ton of fun.  Lots of tutorials and sessions to come on my youtube account!!

Week 4

Posted in Uncategorized on August 7, 2012 by Maskerade

Week 4

Progress is slow and steady. Insanity is a monster! A mountain to climb. It feels like this 9 weeks is taking forever. I just want to look good with my shirt off. But already you can see the changes.

After this course, I’m going to P90X. I’ve already got my pull up bar, weights and push up bars! Leeggoo!

Another Week 1 Pic

Posted in Uncategorized on July 31, 2012 by Maskerade

Another Week 1 Pic

This is that belly shot I was telling you about. This is what I’m trying to get rid of. Shaun T please help!!

(HATE IT!)