Toontrack Tutorial

Songwriting & Producing with Toontrack: Dream Pop

28 Tutorials (2hr 55min 52sec)
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Series Introduction

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    Tutorial 1



    Luke outlines the kind of EDM track that will be created in this tutorial series.

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    Tutorial 2

    The Dream Pop EZX Product Explained


    Learn about the Dream Pop EZX expansion for EZdrummer 2.

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    Tutorial 3

    EZkeys, String Machine, & EZmix 2 Product Overview


    Luke explains how he will use EZkeys, the String Machine expansion and EZmix 2 to create an EDM track.

EZdrummer 2 - Dream Pop Presets & Grooves

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    Tutorial 4

    Creating a Foundational Groove with EZdrummer 2


    Luke begins the song creation process by auditioning EZdrummer 2 grooves from the Dream Pop expansion to find a "foundational" groove that can be used for this track.

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    Tutorial 5

    Adding Groove Layers with EZdrummer 2


    Luke creates four additional instances of EZdrummer 2 and chooses a variety of grooves that work well for groove layering.

EZkeys - Creating a Song Track

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    Tutorial 6

    EZkeys Dream Pop MIDI


    Learn how to use the Dream Pop MIDI pack within EZkeys.

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    Tutorial 7

    Song Arrangement with EZkeys Pt. 1


    Luke uses the Dream Pop MIDI pack to create the Intro, Verse, Pre-Chorus and Chorus of this "Dream Pop" track.

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    Tutorial 8

    Song Arrangement with EZkeys Pt. 2


    Luke completes the song arrangement process by adding Verse 2, Pre-Chorus 2, Chorus 2, a Bridge, Chorus 3-4 and an Outro.

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    Tutorial 9

    Song Arrangement Overview


    A quick listen through the song arrangement to see if any other modifications need to be made to the piano part.

EZkeys - Creating Pads & Using EZmix 2

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    Tutorial 10

    Auditioning String Machine Sounds


    Listen to the String Machine EZKeys expansion as Luke auditions a variety of sounds and reveals some of his favorite presets.

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    Tutorial 11

    Creating Pad Chords in EZkeys


    Luke takes the piano part from previous tutorials and explains how to create simple chords using the same chord progression found within the main song track.

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    Tutorial 12

    Adding a 2nd EZkeys Pad Layer


    Learn how to add new EZKeys pad layers by using the "chord" MIDI created in the previous tutorial and the Dream Pads MIDI from the Dream Pop MIDI expansion.

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    Tutorial 13

    Using EZmix 2 with EZkeys


    Luke uses EZmix 2 on all EZKeys instances to add unique FX to the piano and pad tracks.

EZdrummer 2 - Groove Layer Arrangement & EZmix 2

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    Tutorial 14

    Adding EZdrummer 2 Layers Pt. 1


    Luke takes the grooves that he picked from the Dream Pop EZX library and begins to layer them throughout the song arrangement.

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    Tutorial 15

    Adding EZdrummer 2 Layers Pt. 2


    Learn how to add cymbal crashes, cymbal swells and modify groove MIDI within your DAW for custom groove adjustments.

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    Tutorial 16

    Using EZmix 2 with EZdrummer 2


    Luke creates a drum bus and adds a couple of is favorite EZmix 2 drum bus presets.

Editing Your Piano Part & Volume Automation

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    Tutorial 17

    Editing EZkeys MIDI in Your DAW


    Luke now takes the piano part from EZKeys and modifies its MIDI in Studio One to add variety to some of the chords and modify the ending of the song.

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    Tutorial 18

    Volume Automation in Studio One


    Learn how to use volume automation to bring out different aspects of the song and build dynamics and intensity.

EZdrummer 2 - Creating Pads & Bass Tracks With The Dream Pop EZx

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    Tutorial 19

    Consolidating Virtual Instrument Tracks


    Learn how to bounce down your instrument tracks to create new audio tracks in order to conserve CPU resources.

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    Tutorial 20

    Creating Pads with EZdrummer 2 - Dream Pop EZX


    Luke explains how you can create additional instrument pad tracks using EZdrummer 2 and the Dream Pop EZX.

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    Tutorial 21

    Creating a Bass Track with EZdrummer 2


    Learn how to create a bass track using EZdrummer 2 and the Dream Pop EZX.

Creating Vocal Tracks

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    Tutorial 22

    Vocal Track Overview


    Listen to each of the individual vocal tracks including lead vocals, background vocals and vocal FX tracks. (Vocals created by Spencer Hansen)

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    Tutorial 23

    EZmix 2 Presets for Lead & Background Vocals


    Luke explains the EZmix 2 FX chain used for the lead vocals and background vocals.

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    Tutorial 24

    EZmix 2 Presets for Vocal FX Tracks


    Learn how to spice up your vocal FX tracks with these EZmix 2 presets.

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    Tutorial 25

    EZmix 2 Presets for Beat Rhythm Vocal FX


    An explanation of the "beat rhythm" vocal track and how you can use EZmix 2 and an EQ to create an AM Radio effect.

EZmix 2 - Master Bus FX Chain

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    Tutorial 26

    Additional EZmix 2 FX


    Additional EZmix 2 effect presets are added to the Drum Bus, Pad Bus and Vocal FX tracks.

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    Tutorial 27

    EZmix 2 Mastering Preset


    Luke finishes this track with a great EZmix 2 Mastering preset from the Mastering II expansion.

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    Tutorial 28

    Series Recap


    A recap of all the Toontrack products used to create this track.

In this video tutorial series, Toontrack guru Luke Oswald and vocal extraordinaire Spencer Hansen return, and this time create a stunning Dream Pop song from scratch, using only Toontrack products and a DAW. See it built from nothing, all the way to mix and master!

Using Toontracks Dream Pop EZX, Grand Piano Expansion, and the Dream Pop EZKeys MIDI Pack these guys put together a pro level production including vocals. Luke and Spencer use Studio One, but the info can be applied to any modern DAW, so youll be able to use what they show in the videos in your own DAW and productions.

See the individual tutorial descriptions below for more info. If you are interested in this style of music, or just want to see an inspirational way to use Toontrack products creatively, watch Songwriting & Producing with Toontrack: Dream Pop today!

Luke Oswald Professional Drummer and Instructor

1. When did you start dabbling in music?
I've always had an interest in drumming from a young age and started playing in 6th grade when a family friend stored their drum set at my parents house for a summer. I started playing in church the next fall and have been playing ever since. No one had to tell me to practice, it was just something I loved to do. I just enjoyed everything that had to do with drumming.

2. What training have you had?
I studied piano at a young age, then played trumpet from elementary through middle school. I started drumming on my own at the age of 12, then switched to drumming as my main instrument in high school and went on to study in college along with Music Business. I've been teaching drums since college, both private instruction and drum clinics.

3. When did you get into recording?
When I was in middle school/high school, I was very interested in music technology. It was much different then, but I remember recording/sequencing song arrangements with music software and filming videos and editing in camera all the time. In and after college, I started learning about audio production when I was recording drums for the bands I was in.  In the late 2000's I stumbled upon drum sample technology, and that changed everything for me. I started really digging into the study of audio production, recording, mixing and mastering. I started studying video production around the same time as I knew I wanted to eventually film high quality drum videos while using this sample technology.

4. People you have worked with/for?
During my time in Nashville, I studied drums with Derico Watson (Victor Wooten), Jeff Bowders (Paul Gilbert), Will Denton (Steven Curtis Chapman, LeAnn Rimes), Marcus Finnie (Kirk Whalum, India Arie) and Raymond Massey (Pearl Drums). I've recorded drums on multiple albums produced by Sadson Music Group and have played on albums with artists such as George Clinton and Samantha Ware.

5. Why are you so good at training people?
To me, teaching is as inspiring as performing. When you teach, you're forced to understand the topic at a much deeper level.  I love the process of learning and improving, and to me teaching is just an extension of that process. I learn something new every time I teach anything, whether it be a drum lesson or a software tutorial. I also believe as artists we have a responsibility to pass on the knowledge that we've accumulated. You must take action and apply what you've learned to your own life, but that only goes so far.  If you can take what you've learned and share it with someone else, you're giving them the opportunity to take that knowledge, nurture it and allow it to influence their own lives. Eventually, they can pass that knowledge on to someone else, and the process keeps going. You never know the impact you can have on someone simply by sharing with them what you've learned.

Products by Luke

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    tutorial video

    Addictive Drums 2 Advanced Vol 1

    In volume one of this advanced video tutorial series, eDrum guru Luke Oswald explains a wide range of topics designed to make you a real master and addict, of XLN’s Addictive Drummer 2 virtual instrument plug-in!

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    tutorial video

    Addictive Drums 2 Advanced Vol 2

    In volume two of this advanced video tutorial series, eDrum guru Luke Oswald covers the finer nuances, more features and functions, as well as eye-opening tips and tricks for using XLN’s Addictive Drums 2 virtual instrument!

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    tutorial video

    Advanced Drumming Combinations & Patterns

    In this Drumstroke™ video tutorial series, drum guru Luke Oswald lays down the groove and shows you awesome drumming combinations and patterns that you can use to spice up your drumming or drum programming!

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    tutorial video

    Bass Drum Technique Workshop

    In this Drumstroke video tutorial series, drum guru Luke Oswald reveals the steps to take to build up bionic feet when playing your kit, including speed and endurance and the ability to play what’s in your head!

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    tutorial video

    Creating Drum Fills & Patterns

    In this Drumstroke#TM# video tutorial series, drum master Luke Oswald reveals how to create both basic and advanced drum fills and patterns, that you can apply to both real drums and programmed drums in your DAW!

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Songwriting & Producing with Toontrack: Dream Pop is rated 5.0 out of 5 by 3.
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Workflow! Great tutorial , learned a lot from it, thank you guys!
Date published: 2017-02-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent workflow Very clear, concise training, gained more than I anticipated!
Date published: 2017-02-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The best of this series so far! Luke is becoming better and better at showcasing many skills, workflows, and techniques at once. Here you can see all of Toontrack products power at full force, while also better grasping Studio One production workflow capabilities, and also many interesting music production ideas and workflows. Excellent!!!
Date published: 2017-01-15
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