GarageBand 2.0 - Getting Started
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Beginning a New Song


Using Loops

Exporting & iLife Integration

Expanding GarageBand

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GarageBand 2.0 is the musical component of Apple's iLife '05 suite. Novice and more advanced composers can use GarageBand's library of pre-made musical snippets to create songs and become more familiar with the program. Even if you have little to no musical training, GarageBand allows you to create musical elements for your iLife creations.

After you've completed this tutorial, take a look at GarageBand 2.0 - Recording, Editing, & Mixing to learn how to record and tailor your own instrumental and vocal performances.


After you've completed this tutorial, you will be able to:

  1. work with the GarageBand interface.
  2. start a new GarageBand song and choose/change its attributes.
  3. create a song using Apple's pre-made loops.
  4. expand GarageBand's collection of instruments and loops.

Helpful Terms

Balance - changes the amount of sound coming out of each speaker.   Default setting (middle of the dial) is equal sound from each speaker.

Beat - the basic pulse of a song.

BPM - beats per minute.   120 bpm is equivalent to two beats per second.   Tempo is measured in bpm.

Key - The central note of the song.   The other notes center around this.

Loop - a pre-made musical snippet that you can add to your creations.   Entire songs can be made using only loops!

Measure - each song is divided into measures, which always contain the same number of beats , depending on the time signature .   The numbers on the ruler at the top of the window denote measures.

Real Instrument - Tracks using these instruments are actual audio recordings.   They can be cut, copied, and pasted, but the actual notes cannot be edited.

Software Instrument - Tracks using these instruments are computer-generated.   The actual notes of the track can be changed.

Tempo - how fast or slow the beats go by.   Measured in bpm .

Time [Signature] - denotes how many beats will be in each measure (the first number) and what length of note will count as one beat (the second number).   4/4 is the most common time (four beats per measure); waltzes are in 3/4 (three beats per measure).

Track - GarageBand songs are made up of many tracks ; each line in the main window is a different track.

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© 2006 Darby Tober | iSchool | UT Austin | webmaster