If you often find yourself working on projects that wind up having 30+ tracks in them, you’ll more than likely need some way or organizing the project into more manageable chunks. Happily, Studio One makes this extremely easy.
As a composer specializing in classical music, I often find myself writing extremely large orchestral scores with 50 or more tracks. It is therefore essential that I organize tracks in a way that allows maximum clarity and flexibility.
Like the name suggests, folder tracks are a way of organizing tracks into handy folders. You can then show or hide the tracks within these folders as necessary, so they are available when you need them, and out of sight when you don’t.
So for example, this large session:
Can be reduced to
There are a couple of ways to add folder tracks:
Keyboard Shortcut: shift+ctrl+N to add a new track, then set the type to folder
From the Track Menu:
From the Toolbar:
And my personal favourite: Right click on the tracks you would like to add to a folder, and click “Pack Folder“. This has the advantage in that you create the folder, and add tracks to it all in one step, which saves time.
When working on a large score, I usually add folder tracks for Strings, Woodwinds, Brass & Percussion. Sometimes I also use a separate folder for a particular library if I’m using many patches from one specific library (In my example, I’m using 11 patches from the symphobia library, so it gets its own folder)
Folders also allow a lot of flexibility for arranging your song. I tend to make one “master” folder for the entire song (including all folders it contains). This allows you to treat the entire song as if it were a single track, and you can split, cut, copy, paste and re-arrange however you like. It provides a really quick way of testing out arrangements and experimenting with ideas. Notice where the track has been cut in the image below.
Using different colours for different tracks makes it easier to differentiate your tracks from one another. It’s easy to assign a colour to a track: simply click the left pane on the track and a colour selector will pop up. This also applies to multi-track selections.
Try to come up with a colour scheme that makes sense: As you may have noticed, my folder tracks are all different colours according to this scheme that makes sense to me personally:
- Brown for Strings, since the instruments are brown in colour
- Blue for Winds, because I don’t know why, but it makes sense to me
- Yellow for Brass, since those instruments are golden
- Purple for Percussion, since my drum kit is purple
- Red for Symphobia, since that is the colour they use in their libraries
So come up with your own and hopefully you will be able to use it to organize your tracks more efficiently.
Markers help you keep track of sections in your song. They’re just a simple way of remembering what’s where. Open the markertrack by clicking the flag on the toolbar at the left hand side. Add a marker by
- Clicking the small plus on the marker toolbar
- Using the key command ENTER
- Clicking event -> Insert Marker
You can rename a marker by double clicking on it. Delete it by single-clicking and pressing the delete key.
Thats a rough guide to organizing your sessions in Studio One.