How to Make a Unique Kick from Default Samples in Ableton

This tutorial is for producers who don’t have drums kits or drum machines. Using kicks from sample libraries is good choice for production, but many producers including me think that using other people’s samples doesn’t sound unique enough. If you want to make unique kicks you have to do it on your own.

You don’t have to buy an expensive drum machine or real drum kits. You do have to buy or download some excellent drum libraries, and use them to create some fantastic and awesome kicks which will be the foundation of your song.

Why is this so important? Listen some dance record from the top artist like Armin Van Buuren, Garreth Emery, Ferry Corsten and you will realize that the kick is the most important element of their song. How we shape the sound of a kick is one of the most creative decisions we have to make—we control aspects like how solid, how punchy, how thick and how snappy. If your kicks lack energy, or are too soft, they won’t bring satisfaction on the dance floor.

The technique which I want to show you is kick layering. The basic idea is that you layer different kick samples and mix them. The result is a completely new kick.

To understand layering you do not need to have a PhD in frequencies. You need to understand low, mid and high. You need to understand cut and boost, filter and ADSR.

Continue to Full Tutorial


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