Music Composers Unite!
You mentioned Fruity Loops in your introduction. I recently registered for FL Studio 9.0 and for me, this is the program for beats. I hold a fair collection of beats and percussion loops which I use in FL Studio by way of the Slicex plugin, the Edison wave editor and the DirectWave Sampler. In Slicex I track the loop, create regions for oneshots and/or rhythmic phrases. Each audio slice is automatically assigned to the midi keyboard which allows you to jam away and create and record new percussion arrangements in to the piano roll. Once in the piano roll I can adjust the velocities and midi controller information. From there I then route each region/audio slice to its own dedicated mixer channel through the Slicex multiple outs.
Once assigned to individual mixer channels I then process and mash each separate audio region/slice using FX, dynamics and position each sound exactly where I want it to be in the stereo field. Each mixer channel is subject to 8 parallel inserts and 4 FX send returns so you can create quite a musical scene. If I need to further edit the audio of any of the regions I simply drag the audio into a version of Edison and manipulate them in there and drag them back into the FL pattern. Its a very productive work flow that produces great results for me. If you have FL Studio, the updates are free for registered users so you are always up to speed with latest FL technologies. I recommend a revisit to your FL Studio for sure. Hope this feedback helps.
Thanks for the reply, Chris...
When you say that you "perform 2-6 parts at a time", do you mean that you are performing these "live" on a keyboard? And if so, how are you keeping your sounds from overlapping (at least overlapping in an unintended manner)? Do you map them to different sections of the keyboard?