A prologue to the program..     (Download the program)

When I started to develop the Usul-velvele program, It was my actual intent to ease the toil of countless friends who laboured in the amateur music societies (in which I've also partaken for many years) to catch the pace of a piece and execute a steady tempo during either soloist/choir performance in deciphering a composition according to its "usul", or learning to play a musical instrument. Being an amateur percussionist, I still strive to keep together my friends in the instrumental ensemble who move forward too fast or lag behind.

Those familiar with Turkish Art music cannot eschew the benefits of knowing usul and executing our pieces along with the beats of an usul. However, even though the melodies of our compositions can be learned by ear, the same cannot be said for usul patterns. Despite the fact that the plain and filled (velveleli) beats of our usuls are very well documented in many sources in accordance with certain transcription rules employing a designated staff and notation, it is difficult to envision how these are sounded without an aiding agent.

Hence, Usul-Velvele Editor has been created to overcome this obstacle. I hope that this program will assist our instrumentalists and singers who wish to perform in an ensemble by instilling in them the ability to sing and play pieces while abiding to the usul and constant rhythm whenever they spend time in their study chamber with their computers on.

This craft earned in tradition through striking the knees and being guided by a meshk (training) teacher has lately become possible to easily acquire thanks to the resources presented by computer technology that allow instant playback and visualization.

The second aim in the creation of this program is to present a working environment to the musician who wants to transcribe and hear the new patterns - beyond the ones available featuring plain or various filled beat variants - he should fancy. For this purpose, empty slots have been made available following slot number 200 in the archive. Users have the means of writing down various variants they may come up with, hear them, save them and print them.

Just like the Notist software, Usul-Velvele Editor too is free of charge, since it has been created with the concern of serving those who have served Turkish music.

I wish to thank my composer friend Ismet Burkay for having laboured to prepare videos explaining the usage of the program visually and orally. The first lesson describes one-step procedures for downloading and installing the software, the second lesson describes the usage of the archive, choosing a new usul and listening to the beats from the percussion instrument and in the tempo of your choosing, the third lesson describes the process of writing a new usul or velvele and saving it, the fourth lesson describes the subsidiary functions of the program.

I hope that the users will enjoy using this software.

M. Uğur Keçecioğlu

Istanbul, 6 şubat 2010

Translated by Dr. Ozan Yarman