i'm looking for a good software to save licks as i learn them so that i will have a good library stored up.  i know a lot of you like to transcribe complete songs and stuff, but in my case, since i'm not a pro and i don't have a lot of time to spend transcribing in full, i just transcribe short licks and work on those and figure out how to work them in my playing later.  and when i say "transcribe" i don't mean write the notes down on staff.  more like, just memorize the keys on the keyboard, nothing really written.

is there a software where i can play the lick on the piano, save it (through midi), and play it back later, and actually see the notes being played back on a graphical keyboard? i'd prefer to see it played back on a graphical keyboard rather than notes on a sheet because that's how my brain works.

the closest thing i found was the program powertracks from pgmusic.  it seems to be just the thing, and only $49.  but i wanted to make sure there wasn't another software i was overlooking.

thanks for any suggestions.
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you can try reaper, i remember it was free, and it's really powerful.

i think for jazz though, you might as well get comfortable staff notation since it's such a great learning tool.  all the reference material is written on staff anyway.

i also made a simple patch based on max/msp that just displays whatever you play on staff.
hi man-
look, you would be wasting your money on software. the best thing to do is memorize the sounds of the "lick." you'll never progress past a certain point unless you do some serious work with your ear. use your ear as your software, if you have difficulty memorizing them, why not just write them down on sheet music and keep a section of your notebook organized with just "licks." i can't think of any musicians i respect who used software to organize their musical thinking. you do have a notebook don't you? just use a pencil and paper. you will learn alot about your conception of music if you force yourself to write with pencil and paper.
here's an excercise i like to do. i take a phrase of a tune, a whole "a" section. then i recompose it, using  the melody as a guide. do this 3 different ways with every tune. create your own licks based on the sounds you love.
software can be helpful, but ultimately it comes down to how much work you're willing to put in with your ear. really, learn to trust that you can learn by listening, you will be suprised.
tomwrush, i agree i have to work on my ear and will that as much as possible.  but you mention using a notebook for the licks...why is that any different than using software to store the licks?  instead of writing it on paper, i'm writing it on the computer and saving it there, where for all practical purposes, it is much more convenient and i have many more options for using it later.

my favorite pianists use certain licks in songs that i want to learn and memorize.  a lot of runs are very fast, and i just can't figure it out by ear, so i have to slow it down and transcribe it first before i analyze it.  after i do all this work, i'd like to be able to save it.    as far your creating licks exercise, it's good but that is different than what i'm trying to accomplish here, which is figuring out other people's licks.

kensuguro, i'm comfortable with staff notation, i used to be a classical musician.  but the graphical key visual is just more effective for me for jazz, especially for short little licks.  i got the idea from the oscar peterson multimedia dvd where it shows a video of him playing a song, and another window shows which keys are being pressed.  it's a very powerful visual and much more effective than reading notes on a staff (which is also shown on the dvd).  i'd like to be able to save my saved transcriptions in a similar way.
superboy, i think what you want to do is good idea. in fact it's probably better than standard notation because when you want to review a lick, you'll to go back and listen to it again rather than read it, thus you will working your ear more. vanbasco.com has some free software that will do what your describing with the graphical piano. just save your licks as smf
thanks paul, that vanbasco software looks good.  i'll try it out tonight.

i'm trying out powertracks right now also.  what's cool about powertracks is you can load a song into it (like an mp3 file) and then wherever a certain lick is played, you can input the midi notes for it and see it being played in real-time on the virtual keyboard while the actual song is also playing!  that's cool.  that's basically what the oscar peterson cd does also.

but i'll see if vanbasco is good enough, it is free.
also the software interface sucks, but band in a box also has a piano accross the top that lights up as they get played.

you just need a piano roll right? i might be able to put together a visualization tool for you with max/msp that just has a piano roll.  then you can hook that up to any midi player with some sort of midi re-routing software like midiox.
writing licks on paper and playing them into a recorder are very different things.  writing them down actually strengthens the ear as well by forcing you to figure out the exact timing instead of "feeling" it.  no problem with either method, but if you want to save them, i second what tomrush said by writing them in a music notebook.  

best thing to do, though, is to take that first lick, learn it in all keys, and then use it in all the songs that you play for a while.  work out areas where the lick sounds good in a handful of tunes and different keys.  that's the way to get that lick in your playing.
If I'm not back in 24 hours, call the president.

Scot is available for skype jazz piano lessons (and google hangouts, phone call, etc...)
Use the contact link at the top of the page.

as far as playing, recording in midi, and seeing notes on sheets and keyboard, look at doug's video (jazz251) on youtube. he does it with a lot of success. afaik, he uses band in a box.

his latest:
thanks knotty, i'll check it out (i can't use youtube at work).

scot and others, do you actually keep a notebook of licks you've worked out?

here's an interesting question...how many core licks do you guys use in your everyday repertoire?  by core, i mean really fundamental to you, i'm sure you have several variations here and there.  i think you know what i mean.  i honestly can't say i have that many, maybe less than 20?  not sure.  i forgot where i heard this, but someone said that even the pros use maybe 5% of the licks they've learned in their everyday playing.
hey man-
it's hard to say really. but i think regurgitating licks is kind of a dead end because you can't always feel the correct phrasing for what you want to say. it's better imo to find the sounds of the "lick" and work with them in so many different ways that you can phrase those sounds to match whatever expression you want.  
sure learning licks is a great way to get the sounds in your ear, but ultimately you need to find your own way of learning the sounds. i've found practicing licks to be useful only as far as ear training is concerned by trying to prehear the licks over a given tonality. but i like to do this with a whole chorus of a solo because i get all the nuance of context. and music, like life is dependent on context.
my advice, and it's worth what you paid for it, is to practice your phrases through twelve keys, but restructure them rhythmically, change the sounds around to different places. don't just do it haphazard, write your variations out in your notebook so you are being very deliberate, this way you will understand whether you're really hearing something or not. really there is so much material to study out there, but what you need to study is what you can hear and what you can't.
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