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Automated Strumming in Ableton
8th September 2022  
I've spent a good few weeks trying to find a decent humanised strummer for Ableton, but without any real success.
Time to build my own, then, I guess.

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View on YouTube
(With apologies for the minor audio delay. Still haven't found a decent way to record Mac Onscreen Audio yet!)

Like any well-trained Womble, I've made good use of the things that I find.

The Midi Effects are your friends, here.
People suggested using the Arpeggiator tool, which kinda works, but isn't everything that you need. Even when you get it as good as you can, it still feels flat and un-human.
On top of the Arp goes the Note Length, which again is set to a predetermined length, so again ends up sounding even less human-like.
On top of those, then, I've the "Add some random" function, tweaked a little, and together the three combine really well to make something that sounds a little less like it's fully automated.

I'd then have liked to have added a couple of LFO's into the mix, to tweak the length and speed a little bit, but bizarrely there doesn't seem to be a way to do that to Midi Effects.
You can add them afterwards, as "audio" effects, and then link them back, but then it won't Group-save as a Midi Group, which is quite frustrating.

Anyhoo, I've bundled them up into a Group and saved the group so you can try it out yourself, if you have Ableton at hand.
Works best with guitar instruments, but .. It's a Midi Effect, so anything goes, really.



Extra tip, make use of Grooves in the Midi Editor to get even nicer strumming patterns.

You can Download the .adg file here.
(If you don't know what to do with that, simply place it somewhere handy, like your sample folder, and link to the folder in your "Places". You should then be able to find the .adg in there, and drag'n'drop it into the effects of your track.. .. Assuming the track is a midi track!

It *should* work with most versions of Ableton Live (I'm using 11), but I'm new to Ableton so I honestly don't have a clue what it will or won't work with. If you try it and have any success, do please let me know.
And also if not!

Thanks for playing \o/yeay\o/

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