Turning Raindrops into MIDI

I spent way too long last night trying to find a free tool to translate my recording of rain dripping beside my window into MIDI notes. I wanted to capture the rhythm and the varying volumes so that I could map that onto musical timbres.

I didn’t come up with anything free, and I didn’t want to buy software that probably was designed to make all the notes in tune and nicely quantized.

So, for my 3-minute recording, I’ll just do it myself. In Digital Performer, I’m looking at the raindrops in the waveform and adding notes to the MIDI track at each waveform peak. I decided to approximately map different raindrop loudnesses to pitch, with random durations — there’s lots of ways to map the sounds. Using the pencil tool in DP to add the notes means they’re all the same MIDI velocity, so I’ll have to find some way to vary that later.

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