Band in a Box Wiki

RealDrums are live audio drum styles that replace the MIDI drum track with actual recordings of top studio Jazz/Rock/Country drummers! These are not "samples" of single drum hits; they are full recordings, lasting from 1 to 8 bars, playing along in perfect sync with the other Band-in-a-Box or PowerTracks Pro Audio tracks.

RealDrums Implementation[]

RealDrums are implemented in BiaB through a series of audio recordings of live musicians recorded to *.wav files. To conserve space these wav files are usually stored as *.wma format compressed files however there is an option to unpack them to *.wav if speed is a concern.

The audio files are organized on disk in a series of folders below a user specified default folder. The default location is the \Drums folder below the BiaB default folder (if c:\bb is your default installation folder then the RealDrums folders will be c:\bb\Drums). The installer and the main program offer ways to change the default locations.

Each of the RD folders below the drums folder are named to reflect the style (for example c:\bb\Drums\Disco^). The audio files will be in this folder. A caret after the name indicates the style contains variations in which case there will be sub-folders named for the particular variation (for example c:\bb\Drums\Disco^\Disco^1-HiHat,16ths). These sub-folders will contain the text based control files (c:\bb\Drums\Disco^\Disco^1-HiHat,16ths\Disco^1-HiHat,16ths_120_Style.txt).

Editing RealDrums[]

RealDrums offer limited editing capabilities to the user. There are text files that control how BiaB will use the master WMA files to create the ReadDrums track to match the chord sheet. You can create different variations of any given RealDrums style by writing a new text file. There are numerous conventions that must be followed for this to work.[1]

In addition, the user can create completely new RealDrums from suitable recordings.

Creating a RD Variation[]

If there is a RD style that you generally like but, say, the 'b' part doesn't quite sound right you could create a new variation excluding, or perhaps modifying, the 'b' part. Here's an example of removing one of the 'b' sections from the JazzTerryClarke^05_100_Style RDs.

First, you should make a new folder under the JazzTerryClarke^ folder called JazzTerryClarke^09-Brsh,LiteSt. Then copy the file JazzTerryClarke^05-Brush,Sticks_100_Style.txt into the new folder. Change the file name to JazzTerryClarke^09-Brsh,LiteSt_100_Style.txt. Note: There is a length limit for sub-style names hence the 'Brsh,LiteSt' abbreviation.

If you opened BiaB now you could find this new 'sub-style' by rebuilding the RealDrums list in the RD picker. Note, however, that the RD track produced would still be identical to the original sub-style. You need to edit the text file before your desired changes are in effect.

Open JazzTerryClarke^09-Brsh,LiteSt_100_Style.txt in a text editor. Remove the S4 patterns, that is everything between ;S4 - B{S4} and Shot{...

Then save the file. This removed the B(S4) pattern for me. You don't need to modify the 'bars blocked' section. If you find shots that sound like they come from the S4 section you may want to check and modify that section.


PGMusic may add new sub-styles to existing RDs in the future. If they do their sub-styles may overwrite user defined sub-styles. It may therefore be better to name the folder JazzTerryClarke^99-Brsh,LiteSt instead of JazzTerryClarke^09-Brsh,LiteSt. You would need to change the txt file name accordingly.

RealDrums styles[]

As of BiaB 2010 there are more than 200 RealDrums.


  1. Band-in-a-Box 2009.5 User's Guide.pdf p384

External Links[]