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Beats Drum Machine

Beats is a command-line drum machine written in pure Ruby. Feed it a song notated in YAML, and it will produce a precision-milled *.wav file of impeccable timing and feel. Here's an example song:

Song:
  Tempo: 105
  Flow:
    - Verse:  x4
    - Chorus: x4
  Kit:
    - bass:     house_2_1.wav
    - snare:    roland_tr_909_2.wav
    - hihat:    house_2_5.wav
    - cowbell:  big_beat_5.wav
    - deep:     house_2_2.wav

Verse:
  - bass:     X..X...X..X.....
  - snare:    ....X.......X...
  - hihat:    ..X...X...X...X.

Chorus:
  - bass:     X..X...X..X.....
  - snare:    ....X.......X...
  - hihat:    XXXXXXXXXXXXX...
  - cowbell:  ....XX.X..X.X...
  - deep:     .............X..

And here's what it sounds like after getting the Beats treatment. What a glorious groove!

For more, check out beatsdrummachine.com

Installation

To install the latest stable version (2.1.2) from rubygems.org, run the following from the command line:

gem install beats

Note: if you're installing using the default version of Ruby that comes with macOS, you might get a file permission error. If that happens, use sudo gem install beats instead. If you're using a version manager such as rbenv, chruby, or RVM, plain gem install beats should work fine.

Once installed, you can then run Beats from the command-line using the beats command.

Beats is not very useful unless you have some sounds to use with it. You can download some example sounds from https://beatsdrummachine.com.

Usage

Beats runs from the command-line. Run beats -h to see the available options. For more detailed instructions, visit https://beatsdrummachine.com/usage/.

Check out this tutorial at beatsdrummachine.com to see an example of how to create a beat from scratch.

What's New in v2.1.2

The latest version of Beats is 2.1.2, released on December 18, 2019. It contains these changes:

  • Several confusing/unhelpful errors shown due to an error in an input file have been improved. For example, if a pattern has the invalid name "4", the error message will now be Pattern name '4' is not valid. It must be a value that will be parsed from YAML as a String., instead of undefined method 'downcase' for 4:Integer.

For info about previous releases, visit https://github.com/jstrait/beats/releases.

Local Development

First, install the required dependencies:

bundle install

To run Beats locally, use bundle exec and run bin/beats, to avoid using any installed gem executable. For example:

bundle exec bin/beats -v

To run the tests:

bundle exec rake test

Found a Bug? Have a Suggestion? Want to Contribute?

Contact me (Joel Strait) by opening a GitHub issue.

License

Beats Drum Machine is released under the MIT license.