Tempo changes in solo piano tracks

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This topic contains 4 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  xev 3 months ago.

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  • #32048 Reply



    I have been finishing a few piano only tracks that I made a while ago for fun. I am not a pianist and a lot of the notes are programmed, not played. I am in the process of humanising them as much as possible, varying velocity, and timing.

    My question is regarding slow downs/pauses (holds?) – don’t know the proper english word sorry.

    Usually I use a click track for everything but in this case it sounds to me like the music would benefit a lot from little tempo changes and pauses, to make it feel more natural and try to mimic what a real pianist would play like.

    Is this ok with library music? Or do most of them want music that sticks to the click to make editing easier? I would like to know your opinion before I do all this work 🙂


    #32070 Reply


    I have done this a good number of times.

    Here is what “I did”

    Had enough of both parts to complete just about any types of Cue/Edit/Scene, etc. First part would be my main composition (somewhere around 90 seconds to 2 minutes)

    Then “I would place a clear/clean break” (Shortening the reverb so there’s not a long pause between the components)

    and then doing the tempo change for about another minute.

    “Normally” the no-no would be going up a 1/2 step/whole step, or key changes..

    #32071 Reply

    abby mettry

    I would definitely add some ‘pauses’ and ‘breaths’ otherwise it sounds robotic. My experience has been that libraries want it to sound natural.

    #32072 Reply


    Hi XEV,

    Does your DAW have a “tap tempo” or similar feature that will allow you to “conduct” the tempo?
    If so, use it to create a rubato feeling that will give your tracks a more expressive feeling.

    #32093 Reply


    Thanks for the replies,

    Yes, I know how to do tempo variations in my DAW, I was just wondering if it would be annoying for editors to have the tempo fluctuate. Good to know it’s not!

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