Using GP as arranger keyboard

Hi. Its very simple really. The main vsts I use have built in loops. Strike 2, Ujam Virtual bass and Ujam guitars all have built in loop engines. I don’t record at all, but I play live using Gig Performer. My main instrument is Music Labs Real Guitar, and I use it in joystick mode with a PS 3 Guitar Hero wireless controller. This controller allows realistic picking and strumming with all the plugins they produce. The Nektar 49 keyboard is only used when I want to include a solo eg mandolin, sax, uilleanne pipe, flute etc

I start a new song by setting up Strike 2 using one of its loops to the appropriate rhythm. Then I choose a bass pattern loop using a Ujam virtual bass. These two plugins sync perfectly. Then I choose a Music Lab guitar which is played in real time using the PS Guitar Hero I already mentioned. These controllers are hard to get now as they are not made anymore. But they can be found on EBay with high prices. When I started with GP some years ago, I bought several PS 3 controllers when I realised that were not made any more. Only the older five button version will work. Music Labs never developed the joystick mode after the initial release. I suspect they designed it only for keyboardists who wanted to record authentic strumming and picking. I think I gave them quite a surprise when I told them I was using it live as a real instrument. I’ve been doing this for 10 years now, and don’t know of any others using this controller live. It sounds fantastic.

The key to total control is an iPad Pro running OnSong and motivated with a BT foot pedal. OnSong is a lyrics/chords app that has extensive midi control. Under headings such as Title, Verse 1, Chorus etc, I embed a midi command. These are mapped to GP widgets which control program change etc - the full range of midi commands.

Regarding Gig performer. because all my rack spaces are complete songs, I don’t use set list mode. I load each rspace separately. My computer is a MS Surface Pro 8 i7 with 16gig ram. I use predictive mode set to 3 for a particularly large gig file of 460 songs. Otherwise, when I play a set of 20 songs for one hours worth, I turn predictive off, and the gig file will load in 3 to 4 minutes.

Finally, I have an excellent US based technician that I frequently have Zoom calls with, and he has set up the midi connections for me. Just lately, I have changed from wireless based to Ethernet based and it is now much more reliable.