The concept of a multiple cue Logic project has intrigued me for some time. As a Final Cut Pro user, I'm more than a little familiar with "nested" sequences, which is a direct parallel to what is being discussed here.
So, such a thing is very do-able but would necessarily come with a few limitations. To be at all practical, each cue in the master nest has to be its own complete Logic project, with its own mixer, samples in RAM, tempo map, etc.
Why not add some sort of 'sub-project' (of course with it's own grid/tempo map), but share the same samples in memory (but not EXS preset), and the same movie (in memory)?
Try this: open an EXS with a preset using a lot of samples. Watch the Activity Monitor>Memory. Press the New Track With Duplicate Setting-button. This creates a new track, with the same EXS preset (which can have it's own automation etc), but doesn't eat extra sample memory...
The idea about 'freezing' a whole cue that's overlapping another cue is interesting.
I think what you want is multiple arrangements allowed in one song project. [...]
Maybe multiple tracks in the "meta arrange" window so you can overlap/crossfade "arrangement regions" -- though you're getting into potential signature/tempo conflict issues there.
I think that all I need is that Logic (in the background) allows us to have multiple timelines (which may or may not overlap each other), just like we can have multiple multiple polyphonic voices on one stave, independent of each other.
Option 1: However, I don't think the average user want to think of something sounding as complex as 'multiple timelines' or 'meta arrangements'. I, for one, would prefer to relate to simple terms like "Cues" (when working with... cues), or "Elements".
So: if I could tell Logic that a given area (say, everything that belongs to marker 5, between bars 48 and 72), should be an 'independent cue', or an 'independent marker', it would live it's own life, so to speak (and, invisibly, have it's own timeline; it's own grid and set of tempo changes). This would be a 'marker-based', independent element (sharing samples in memory).
Such a solution could result in one pseudo-problem: when looking at the score, there would be "untraditional stuff" going on when Cue#5 starts, because the previous timeline would be interrupted by a new "1 1 1 1" (or a new 48 1 1 1) - maybe in the middle of an existing bar. But: this would also reflect what actually happened in that project - so it would IMO be a good thing. If a musical cue is cut off in the middle because a new cue starts, I don't want to spend time trying to make it look like something else anyway. But: when printing out stuff, the user could eg. decide that the selected (of two competing regions) should be printed.
If this separate, invisible timeline should be accessed on a per marker, or per cue basis, I wouldn't really have the option of having cues (tempo maps) overlap each other. I couldn't let a marimba arpeggio from Cue 5 continue into, and overlap, a string section starting in Cue#6 without tweaking the tempi (if they originally were different from each other).
Option 2: Since I prefer not to deal with a lot of different dialog boxes, and want things as simple as possible, maybe a better way to implement 'independent cues' is a way to assign tracks
(and not markers) to a separate timeline (it would probably be better to (user-interface-wise) to describe it as assigning tracks to different 'cues'...
In other words: I could assign tracks 12-18 to an independent cue (which could be given a name by the user), and this way, cues could overlap each other with no hassle, and keep their original timing, grid and tempo changes without the user having to deal with anything else than telling Logic that 'these tracks are now assigned to "Cue#5", or 'these tracks are now assigned to "Scene 5, Paul discover that Michael has stolen his money".
Option 3: Since tracks can be assigned to multiple groups, maybe something as simple as allowing a group to have it's own tempo map/grid would be one of the simplest solutions.
A fourth option would be to assign folders, and not tracks to 'independent cues/timelines'. But since Logic folders cannot be opened the same way as Finder folders can (with that little triangle), I'm not sure if I like the idea of having to open and close folders (or windows) in order to see two different cues at the same time.
Option 5: Or... maybe assigning windows to a separate cue wouldn't be such a bad idea?
Option 6: Or even simpler: maybe Logic simply should be able to have two (memory sharing) projects open at the same time, and that if they user click a button, they would all start playback at the same time, meaning that one of the windows, containing Cue # 5, would somehow sync up to the same time code, but still have it's separate grid and tempo changes? (Disclaimer; some memory adressing issues would need to be addressed, and this could easily end up with UI confusion..)
Option 7: Screen sets - one screenset could be assigned to a different, independent cue (probably not the best solution..)
Option 8: A new global track, called 'Cues', could behave like tabs - in the sense that clicking on one of the Cue names would show that particular cue in the Arrange window (with an option to show all of them at the same time)
Option 9: Split screens: upper part could show one cue, lower part could show another (not so sure about that one...)
Option 10: A new thing that behaves similar to take folders (collapsible with a triangle): 'Cue-Folder' or 'Independent Element', which would allow us to open that cue and edit it at the same time as we saw the other stuff in Arrange could be a good solution, and have some parallels to an already existing feature (Takes).
Option 11: A Wavebruner-like graphical overview at the top of the screen could show as all the cues/elements in the song (independent of Global Tracks), and clicking on on of the cues/elements could show it in Arrange.
I guess the main issue here is that we all seem to want Logic to implement something that actually deals with the need for separate cues, in a more elegant way than having to SPMTE lock all events before and after the cue we're working on in order to not see them drift (this will let them drift away from the bar grid anyway).
Maybe there are better solutions than those I suggest, and maybe what I suggest even is some kind of 'meta arrangement', but my main focus is that I want Logic to 'think' the same way I do. When making music for movies/TV, I think in terms of 'cues' (and their need to be independent of each other), and not something with semi-strange names like 'independent timelines' or 'meta-arrangements'.
With an extra level of possibilities, Maybe Logic would ned some smart warning messages ("You are now having two cues overlapping each other. Cancel | Freeze the first Cue | Freeze the second Cue", or "EXS Instrument ****** is now being used by two different cues. Do you want to create a new, independent track? Yes | Cancel".)
Songs aren't called songs anymore in Logic, but projects; I guess all I want is that Logic allows me to have more than one "song" in one project, songs that may or may not need to overlap each other. For me personally, the independent-ness of each song/cue is much more important than the need to have musical pieces overlapping each other.