Mega Man 2 - Intro
Updated: Apr 9, 2020
"Alright, how long can this take? It's only 42 seconds!"
And right away I bump into not knowing how to get MIDI note input from my controller. The dropdown menus were empty so I couldn't select my MIDI input. Online had no solutions but I ran into a similar problem at work before, plugged in my headphones, restarted the program, and it worked! Hardware. It's wild. One day I'll understand why...
Now that I'm all connected... I quickly learn, using the controller is pretty much the same as using keys ABCDEFG but I don't need to use the Up/Down arrow keys for accidentals. That's not ideal. And then I found this function:
Once again, YouTube saves the day.
Alright, that third bar seems strange... Not gonna lie, I had no idea how to make it a full 4-beat bar again and straight-up just deleted it.
So it turns out this is pretty neat to figure it out rhythmically in my head as I go. There's a metronome tick to the note duration that's selected up top and it automatically starts the minute I press a key on my keyboard controller.
This melody took me about 15 minutes to transcribe with this method. That's pretty slow for 19 bars but let's give it some more time and see. I'm not sure if I like the choice of note value in bar 2 (i.e. dotted quarter note vs. quarter and eighth notes) in the syncopated rhythm but I think it could be worth looking into especially when polyphony comes into play.
And the accompaniment comes 20 minutes later. I kind of cheated here and ended up using the Step-Time (Default) input method instead of the Real-Time. Every metronome increment was just taking way too long for something as regular as the harmony's eighth notes.
There is a way to change it to be faster though, which I tried next:
And yup! I changed the Delay between notes from 750 ms to 400 ms and it took about 5 minutes to get the bass-line (although, there are less notes to input in the bass-line...).
Time Taken To Transcribe (T.T.T.T. in minutes): 15 (Melody) + 20 (Harmony) + 5 (Bass-line) = #TTTT 40 minutes!
Yeah, 40 minutes to transcribe 42 seconds of material. There are definitely percussion hits in there too but I think this is pretty good. Now, there are zero dynamics, articulation, phrasing... just notes. I'm thinking maybe I'll leave these transcriptions this way so I can experiment with those #musical #details separately if/when I arrange them into something more... musical?
And now that I know how to set up the tech (or so I think...), hopefully next time is faster!
Until next time!
(Oh yes, I finally figured out how to remove that dotted title box and make it look much prettier. Doesn't it just make you feel like you can breathe more easily now? Thanks Musescore Forums!)
And if you want to hear the transcription with a piano:
Next up: Mega Man 2 - Title Screen!