One of the missing features of Ableton Live is the ability to MIDI map the ‘Solo’ buttons in a device rack.
Notice how the circled Solo buttons are laking the blue shading that indicates they can receive MIDI messages.
I scratched my head on this one for a while, as it was a feature I badly needed to make my APC80 template work properly. I have four buttons that select different cross faders, and without the ability to MIDI map the solo buttons I had this hacky ‘solution’ in the instructions:
Pressing one will turn it on, but not turn the old one off, so you need to press the button of the mode you want to go to, and the mode you’re currently on simultaneously to achieve a nice transition. If you have no sound, you may have turned off all cross fader modes, and pushing any button should bring it back on.
Not very elegant if I do say so myself. So what to do? The solution I came up with today I think is fairly elegant.
- Create a looping dummy clip in the track for each chain you want the ability to solo.
- Select all chains, right click, select ‘Distribute Ranges Equally’
- Make each dummy clip’s envelope set the chain selector to the center of the chain selector target area for the desired chain.
- MIDI map the clips to your buttons of choice.
- Since only one clip can play at a time and it will move the Chain selector to the desired rack, boom, ghetto chain soloing.
The audio track I have this chain on that I want to solo certain racks of, is a ‘pass-through’ track that gets it’s audio from another track, and passes it on through to the master, after applying some effects of course. This technique won’t work on a track that is actually producing the audio. So best used on pass-through or Return tracks.
It’s a very simple solution that took me a long time to figure out, but by the looks of the results I got searching around for this issue, I’m not the only one who has had trouble with this. Hopefully it saves you some time.