“Phrase Factory” is a nickname that we have become fond of using when describing the unique combination of Motif ES functions designed to overcome writer’s block. We all get it, whether it is due to the fact that coming up with a cool drum groove, guitar part and/or bass line can be very difficult for us as keyboard players. Sure 1787 arpeggios is a great specification; so is 687 drum grooves, but how do you make these your own? One of the unique functions in the sequencer of the Motif ES is the ability to record and archive USER 256 Phrases in a PATTERN. Every recording to a track in PATTERN mode can be housed in a named and numbered User Phrase. The 1787 Arpeggios really become powerful when you start to use them to play your music.
The analogy that comes to mind is, when you hand out charts at a band rehearsal the chart you give the guitar player and the bass player are usually sketches of the chord changes and a brief outline of what you want them to play. You actually expect them to bring “their own thing” to the part. Make the chord changes you scratched out into a living and breathing guitar parts and bass parts. That is why you hired these musicians, they know how to play their instruments. That is what you do when you use the arpeggios in the Motif ES. We call it “painting the track” with the arpeggio. When you Voice a chord or change the root note, those guitar pattern and bass line arpeggios come to life. You are outlining the chord changes and making the selected arp “play” your composition. “Painting” the track is using the Motif ES’s ability to record the output of the arpeggio to the track. This function is a key point because you can reuse the arpeggiator again and again by recording its phrases to the track as actual MIDI data. You don’t need 16 arpeggiators when you can easily record the output of the arpeggiator to the track. Guitar and Bass Keyboard Mega Voices and Mega Voice arpeggios to go with them.
The concept of the Keyboard Mega Voice adds remarkable realism to guitar phrases and bass lines. Think of the Keyboard Mega Voice as a way to add “attitude” to your tracks. Fret noise, finger zings, scoops, hammer-ons, dead notes, rakes, glisses, etc. are the things you don’t get when you do a typical sampling session…but they are the stuff that realism is made of. What the Keyboard Mega Voice implementation does is make these available for you to manipulate. The Mega Voice Arpeggios take advantage of these additional samples and add them in an appropriate place to add realism to the played line.