Get Epic Songwriting Ideas Fast

Sometimes a track just spills out of you and other times it is an epic battle equaled to the fight on the mountains of Mordor.  Through the years I have figured out some techniques to get me out of those ruts. Once and a while you just need a  little creative nudge to finish that idea or come up with a new one.

One technique that has helped me a lot, I call the title question. The idea is you start with a title and start exploring questions and answers that it envokes. I know… seems cheesy. Well, it is but it works.

1. Start with the track title.  Usually, when I start a track the title is the last thing on my mind. I usually don’t even have the name until I send it out for mastering. But when I am lost on ideas to get a track started, this technique is a lifesaver. One of the best ways to come up with an idea is to start with an action. Like running, fighting, breaking, and so on. Then add something else to give it context, and you have an evocative name.

2. Start to question the title.  Now that you have a title, start asking yourself what it might mean. Make a list of questions you might ask to unlock the meaning of the title. Things like: When did this happen? Who was there? How does it make me feel? What will happen next? Try to get at least 3 questions, but 4-5 is better.

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Drum Patterns for Electronic Music

Over the past week I have been loving using my Launchpad Mini and the custom LPC Live 2 script for drum sequencing. As I am still learning how to write new drums on the fly I decided to make a few “cheat sheets”.  I have printed these out and use them to help me write in the patterns. The idea here is if I do it enough, it will be second nature.

The images below show the sequence in a 1/16th setting. They can also help you visualize different beat patterns in multiple genres for your own production.

House and DnB Step Sequence

For me what I am doing is writing on the Kick part, and the Clap part into my step sequencer to then create the beat. If you wanted to, you could always recreate this in Ableton like the image below:

House Music Midi Pattern ableton

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By |2019-01-05T12:59:59+00:00December 24th, 2018|Subaqueous Music Pages|0 Comments

Bongo Percussion Samples and Drum Racks – Free

Every killer track needs a bongo solo… right? Well, either way, bongos are cool. It’s an iconic percussion that can add interest to your tracks.

I’ve created a sample library of Bongo Samples as well as a collection of Ableton Live 9+ Bongo Drum Racks. Check out this video walkthrough and download below.

DOWNLOAD THE BONGO LIVE PACK AND SAMPLES

If you end up using this in your production, please send a link below. Love checking out what people are up to with the libraries I put out into the world.

The live pack is for free / by donation. Just put in “0” to get it for free. Consider donating if you want to see me release more resources like this.


COLLECT THEM ALL

Download all the free Live Packs, MIDI, and Sample Packs with a single click, for $5. Instead of crawling through the site, you can grab all of them with one convenient download.

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Loop In Review – Ableton Loop Music Summit

I had the opportunity to make it out to Berlin for Ableton’s music summit called Loop. The event left me inspired, helped grow my creative network, and gave me a lot of ideas to take into the studio. In this article, I am going to be sharing my thoughts on the event, highlights, and some review videos at the end. To start, I want to share my highlights of the event and what I think made it an amazing experience that I will want to come back to every year.

Collaboration:

I’ve gone to a lot of conferences over the years. Almost all of them are top bottom classes where you are listening to lectures. Sometimes there are panel discussions to get people engaged, but they don’t quite do it. Loop is on a whole other level when it comes to getting the attendees to collaborate. The event included open roundtable discussions where groups of strangers had structured conversations. There was open meet up sessions and rooms full of instruments that people could jam on. (image below is of me helping out the “Jam Room” with a 20 person set up. All sorts of gear and technology to play with). I loved seeing collaboration being such a strong aspect of the event. 

Diversity:

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List of Microtonal VST Synths and Plugins

To easily make microtonal music in Ableton Live, or other DAW’s, I find it’s best to use third party VST’s that support Scala files. That way you can pick your tuning and write new parts in that temperament/tuning.  I compiled a list of my favorite microtonal VST’s, synths, AU’s, and plugins. There are more synths out there, but these are my favorite.

You will also see a few rows that are highlighted green. These synths are my all-time favorite for working with Microtonal music.

If you have suggestions, please comment below. I would love to check them out and maybe add them to the list. If you are interested in learning more about tuning instruments in Ableton Live and microtonal music, then check out my article on Microtonal Music in Ableton Live.