When you start out, the MAIN screen shows you the style selected, initially EasyPop on the Tyros3. Look for the button on your panel labeled "CHANNEL ON/OFF". Press that button and the bottom part of the main screen changes to show you the CHANNEL information for the SONG or the STYLE. (Press that button to move from one to the other.) For now, we'll ignore the SONG channels, so move to the STYLE channels.
The illustration below show the bottom buttons on the PSR-S950 and the bottom two rows of the MAIN screen, which is showing the BALANCE controls. The CHANNEL ON/OFF button is to the left of the screen. Use that button to switch to the CHANNEL ON/OFF (STYLE) options in the main screen.
The STYLE channel display shows the eight style channels:
The first two (RHY1 and RHY2) are the rhythm channels that contain the drum and percussion patterns. The third channel is BASS, which uses appropriate instrument voices to match the style. CHD1 and CHD2 provide the rhythmic chord backing and usually contain piano or guitar voices. Channel 6, PAD, is used for sustained instruments such as strings, organ, choir, etc. The last two channels (PHR1 and PHR2) are used to add more interest to the accompaniment with things like arpeggio chords or brass stabs. A style may not include all of these channels. In the EasyPop style, for example, there is nothing in the PHR2 channel.
While we're looking at these 8 style parts, note that the numbered buttons below the screen are used to turn individual style parts on and off. The bottom row of buttons turn the parts ON or OFF and the top row of buttons are used to see what instrument is used for that part. In a later lesson we'll talk more about how you can not only see what instruments are used in the style, but actually change the instrument and thus alter the sound of the style itself. For now, just be aware that styles can include up to 8 different voices. As you audition some styles in a little bit, remember that you can always pull up the CHANNEL ON/OFF display and turn individual parts OFF. This can have a dramatic impact on how the style sounds. Feel free to experiment with these ON/OFF buttons for individual styles.
Style Control Panel
All of the keyboards have a section on the left side of the top panel called STYLE CONTROL. For the most part, the buttons included in this section are the same for all the keyboards. The Style Control buttons for the PSR-S900/S910, the PSR-S950 and the Tyros5 are shown below. Let's look at what is there.
- START/STOP - On the far right of this section is the START/STOP button that is used to start (and stop) the style. If you press this button, the rhythm section starts (channels 1 and 2) and the light by this button will flash in sync with the tempo of the drum beat. The drum beat and pattern varies depending on what style is selected.
- SYNC START - Right next to the START/STOP button is SYNC START. This button can be used to start the style playing as soon as you finger a chord on the keyboard. When you press SYNC START, it lights up and the START/STOP button will be flashing indicating everything is ready to start on your signal.
- ACMP - This button, located on the left side of the style controls, turns the accompaniment feature on and off. Usually, there will be a light (either next to the button or in the button itself) that indicates when ACMP is ON. With the accompaniment on, the other voices can join the rhythm section in accompanying you. However, they need to know more than just the tempo to be able to play along with you, in particular, they need to know which chord to play. So, until you tell them the chord, you won't hear any other voices playing. More on that in just a few moments.
All of the preset styles included in your keyboard contain a number of variations. The variations are controlled by 11 style control buttons for, in order, three intros, four style variations, three endings, and a drum break pattern.
- INTRO - All the styles have three possible INTROs ([I], [II], and [III]), that is, a musical phrase or passage you can play to introduce your song. The simplest would be Intro I and the most complex Intro III. All the keyboards from the Tyros on include three individual buttons for these intros like those shown in the photos above.
In the PSR-2000 and the PSR-2100, there is only one Intro button (and one Ending button). There still are three possible Intros, but the player chooses the appropriate introduction by using one of the cells in the MAIN window. There, you would select which intro you wanted and the single intro button would then trigger that particular intro.
- MAIN - The four main variations in the style are triggered by the four buttons [A], [B], [C], and [D]. The simplest variation is usually the first button, [A]. As you progress through the variations to [D], the accompaniment pattern changes by, usually, adding more instruments and more notes. You may encounter "external" styles, particularly those from earlier keyboards, that do not include all four variations. In these cases, the buttons for variations that are not used will not be lighted. A green light means that section has style data and can be played. A red light means that section is playing (or will be playing when accompaniment is started).
- ENDING/rit - You will also see three ending buttons on all the keyboards (except the 2000 and 2100). Like the Intros, the end of the song can be very simple [I], or more complex [III]. The "/rit" you see above the ending buttons stands for "ritardando", that is, to gradually slow down. You trigger this effect by pushing the ending button a second time while the ending is playing. This causes the ending to gradually slow the tempo as the song ends.
- BREAK - This buttons lets you add dynamic breaks to the rhythm part of the style.
OK, so now you're ready to try out these styles. The next step is to tell your Yamaha keyboard what chord you are playing so the style can accompany that chord. We mentioned earlier that your left-hand can play a chord in the left-hand side of the keyboard. The next lesson will discuss the various "fingering" options you can use to signify what chord you want your "band" to be playing.