Search Results

Designing Electronic Drums

Ableton Certified Trainer Craig McCullough reveals the steps to design fat, brilliant modern and classic electronic drum sounds. The techniques Craig shows you can then be applied in any DAW and to any type of sound to make them stand out and be noticed!

Download (508mb)

$20.00 $10.00

Stream the Entire Site

$15.00 /month

Slice to New MIDI Track 15m:17s

See how to use the powerful 'Slice to New MIDI Track' function in Live 7 to trim, warp and slice audio data!


Making a Kick Drum Sound 9m:16s

Learn to shape a sliced sound into a more usable and familiar sounding kick drum using the filter and volume envelope settings on the simpler instrument and Live's Saturator and Compressor plug-ins.


Creating a Clap Sound 18m:47s

Discover how to fabricate a clap sound using the settings on the Simpler and Sampler instruments and some of Live's effects, such as Compressor, Simple Delay, Saturator, Reverb and Gate.


Making a Closed Hi-Hat Sound 16m:01s

See how to create a great sounding closed hi-hat sound using the settings on the Simpler and Sampler instruments and some of Live's effects, such as Compressor, Saturator, Reverb and Gate.


Creating Slicing Presets 8m:54s

Learn how to create a new slicing preset where no macros are mapped to any of the Simpler's parameters. This time saving procedure is crucial to working with drums in Live.


Making an Open Hi-Hat Sound 12m:02s

Explore designing the ever useful open hi-hat sound using the loop, envelope and filter settings on the Simpler instrument and some of Live's effects, such as Compressor, Reverb and Gate.


Making a Tom Sound Pt. 1 12m:45s

See how to make two different types of Low, Mid and High Tom sounds. This tutorial also looks at creating a nested sub-rack within the main drum rack of our kit.


Making a Tom Sound Pt. 2 21m:06s

Learn to map key parameters to the macros on the drum rack to allow flexible, real-time control over the most used parameters on all 3 Toms together. Also discover how to map send effects, and a Grain Delay to complete the sound.


Making a Conga Sound 6m:55s

Discover the secret to making conga sounds reminiscent of old vintage drum machines. Racks are further explored, as well as the 'Copy to Siblings' feature added in Live 7.


Making a Ride Cymbal Sound 16m:57s

See how a ride cymbal is created by layering 3 Simplers together in a nested drum rack, triggered by the same MIDI note, using 3 different, very short loops and some crafty programming.


Making a Triangle Sound 13m:07s

Starting with one of the Simplers created in the Ride cymbal tutorial, the sound is re-tuned and a nested rack is created containing an open and closed triangle sound.


Making a 909 Kick 4m:47s

Copying one of the Congas and using it as a starting point, the same short waveform loop is used to create a powerful second kick drum much closer to the classic '909' sound by changing the filter, pitch and envelope settings.


Making a 909 Snare 14m:05s

See how you can make a great sounding snare similar to the classic '909' snare using impressive programming techniques as well as the Saturator, EQ8 and Compressor plug-ins.


Making a 808 Snare 8m:58s

Starting with the snare created in the previous tutorial, some of the key parameters are changed to create a snare very close in sound to the classic '808' snare.


Saving the Finished Kit 8m:57s

Explore the options for saving the different elements of our new kit, such as saving the devices and racks, using the new kit in other projects, and creating Live clips so that clips can be saved with the kit.

Craig McCullough

1. When did you start dabbling in music?

I have been living and breathing music, and music technology, for most of my life. I first got into music by learning guitar over 20 years ago, at around 11 years old, and after playing in bands throughout my school years. I studied Audio engineering at college, at first with analogue tape and MIDI gear using external synths and an early version of Cubase.

2. What training have you had?

After leaving school and earning a living playing in bands for a while I started working in live sound in the mid 1990s, working on a lot of live music events, large and small, while still writing and producing my own music, both solo and with various different bands.  By this time my music took more electronic focus, switching to Logic to sequence samplers, synths and drum machines, and record live instruments and vocals. 

3. When did you get into recording?

From 2000 I worked in a production studio in the UK, mainly using Logic, Cubase SX, Nuendo, Wavelab, Sound Forge and the Waves plug-ins for audio engineering, and Reason and Acid for music composition, until discovering Ableton Live in 2002.

4. People you have worked with/for?

When MIDI was added to Live in version 4, I focused much more on using Ableton Live with Native Instruments and Waves Plug-ins, getting to know them intimately. Over the last few years I have been an internal tester for Ableton’s upcoming versions and I am also an Ableton Certified Trainer.

5. Why are you so good at training people?

I am good at training people because I have an intimate relationship and passion with the technology I use. I strive to develop a deep understanding of the tools I use and genuinely want to share that expereince with others

Products by Craig McCullough

Copyright 2015 Groove 3 Inc.