for someboday that don't play piano or guitar and don't know how to make melodies off the bat using those instruments I would do the following :
buy a cheap keyboard with a midi connection
even a crappy casio or cheap yamaha will do ..
just make sure its got '' a bunch of ready made presets you can use to messa round with for making beat ideas for your songs ......
like that you can play with one finger if you dont know how untill you get to learn 4 chords then you will be able to manipulate it a bit better
the reason im telling you this is because a lot of software out there is complicated ..
at least with a midi keyboard you can messa around with preset drum beats and sounds to get your musical ideas out of your head
get a midi cable and plug it into a recording prog
i can list a bunch on here but a lot of them are pretty complicated .....
so I would advise using something like FLSTUDIO
because it it is great for using virtual instruments/vst plugins that you can control using your crappy midi keyboard ...........with the midi cable ......and its great fun !
yah sure most recording software these days uses VST plugins ....... but here we need something simpple and direct ............something where you can plug in a play ......leave a live mic running and recording always picking up your words and vocal melodies as you hum or and sing them live ................. all work in progress things I do these are ............ nothing to do with recording demos, just about music the ability to instantly have things set up for when you have an idea that you can just hit record and have that idea in the bag the same instant.
after that its all about watching videos on youtube and learning how to use the plugins that are out there that will more than satisfy your needs ..........
create a simple set up like i explained above, hell man I spent years recording top class demos on a second hand latop using nothing but vst plugins for years .......and a crappy midi yamaha keyboard ......... and I was able to kick off my production work and get repeat business using that method ...............
go listen to my samples half of those were done using a second hand laptop and a few plugins ................... and they are just as good as any top of the range studio productions ........
you will do the same, will take you one month and you will be flying wth your song creation, learn 4 piano chords, a major and minor scale and you are set to begin song creation/recording!
Ray, since I posted this I've purchased and learned to use Band In A Box... still learning, but I know it well enough to turn out a song. I used a keyboard before as you suggested, but was never going to be able to do what BIAB with Real tracks will do. Thanks for the info and suggestions, I appreciate it!
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Hi Dennis, great information.....glad to hear it's working for you. I do believe I'm going to give it a try. The 2010 version is out and hopefully they've refined it even more than the 2008.5 version? If you really want frustration try the Acid software. They have little two second "parts" for you to try and build a song.