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Music Production in Ableton Live 9 – The Complete Course!

Join Successful students in Music Production in Ableton Live 9 for Creating, Recording and Performing Music in Ableton
Instructor:
Tomas George
8,590 students enrolled
English More
Learn how to set-up and navigate themselves around Ableton Live 9 so they can learn to use this amazing piece of music production software
Warp and Edit Audio for samples and loops
Record and Edit MIDI Information to create interesting beats and music
Record in their own Audio in Ableton Live 9
Arrange your own music and beats
Avoid common pitfalls and mistakes other Ableton Live users make
Build your own track from nothing
Have a full understanding of the Push 2 Ableton Hardware
Learn how to create amazing sounding songs in Ableton Live 9
Improve your general skills in Music Production

Ableton Live 9 is a software music sequencer and digital audio workstation for OS X and Windows.

Ableton Live is used across professional studios, bedroom studios and also as a performance tool for live performance. Learning how to use your DAW correctly will dramatically improve the quality of your music and the speed you create it.

NOTE: This course is for Ableton Live Suite 9.5 and above. Some of the features I discuss in this course will only be available for Ableton Live Suite 9.5 and above

In this course you will gain a deep understanding of Ableton Live 9 and how to use it to create your own music and for live electronic performance. You’ll learn the beauty and the power of this software that’s used by professional producers today. 

This course will cover such topics as setting up Ableton Live 9, Recording Audio and MIDI, Creating your own Loops, Quantising, Microphones, Multitrack Recording, Warping Audio, Arranging, Sampling, Beat Making, Drums Racks, Synths, Instrument Racks, The Simpler and Sampler, Sidechaining, MIDI Effects, Audio Effects, Using Ableton for Live Performance, Max for Live, The Push 2 Ableton Hardware and more.

What you’ll learn in this course will make you a better music producer, music editor and live electronic musician and will also improve your song-writing abilities in Ableton Live 9 and all other Digital Audio Workstations!

Learn to love Ableton Live 9 and make music with it. 

This course was last updated on 11/27/2016

Introduction and What You Will Learn From This Course

1
Introduction

Thank you for joining me in this Ableton Live Course. My name is Tomas George and I'm a composer and a producer. I've been producing music for over 10 years now and I'm really excited you've decided to join me in this Ableton Live Course. 

Ableton is a fantastic tool for creativity, production and also live performance. So what I've done is I've actually filmed this lecture as one of the latest lectures and I'm going to give you quick overview now of what you're going to learn on screen with me in this course.

2
Getting the Most from this Course
3
Join the Official Student Group

In this Music Production in Ableton Live 9 article, I talk about how you can join the official study group for my Udemy courses.

Getting Started and Setting up

1
Getting Started

This lecture is about getting started in Ableton Live and all the things you might need before even opening up your Ableton project. 

I talk about:

- Which version of Ableton you should use for this course

- Which MIDI controller should you use with Ableton

- Which audio interface you should use with Ableton

- and Speakers and Headphones

2
Arrangment vs Session View

This lecture is all about the arrangement view and the session view in Ableton Live.

I explain the differences between the 2 views, how to access them both and what they are both used for in Ableton Live.

3
Quick Help

In this lecture I talk about the quick help feature in Ableton Live. This quick help feature tells you exactly what all the different things in the interface of Ableton actually do and I show you how you can access and use this feature in this lecture.

4
Session View

In this lecture we are going to have a look at an overview of the Session view in Ableton Live. We are going to look at the basics of what things actually and how this view compares to the Arrangement view in Ableton Live.

5
Arrangment View

In this lecture we are going to have a look at an overview of the Arrangement view in Ableton Live. We are going to look at the basics of what things actually and how this view compares to the session view in Ableton Live.

6
Info and Help View

This lecture is all about the Info and Help View in Ableton Live 9. 

The Info View and Help View can really help you out if you're struggling to remember what certain things do or if you want extra tutorials whilst you're actually on Ableton Live 9 and in this lecture I will show you how to access and use the Info and Help View in Ableton Live 9.

7
Session and Arrangement Navigation

In this lecture we're going to have a look at navigating around the Session and the Arrangement View in Ableton Live 9.

8
Key Commands

This next lecture is all about Key Commands in Ableton Live 9. 

Key Commands allows to actually perform tasks with just a few hits of our keyboard on either our Mac or our PC in Ableton Live 9. 

9
Preferences

This lecture is all about the Preferences and what the different preferences mean in Ableton Live 9.

10
Browser

In this lecture we're going to have a look at the Browser in Ableton Live 9. 

The Browser is the section in Ableton Live that has loads of stuff like Sounds, Drums, Instruments Audio Effects, MIDI Effects, Max for Live, Plug-ins, Clips and Samples. 

We've also got a section in the Ableton Browser called Places and in this video I am going show you on screen what these things do and how you can use them in Ableton Live 9.

11
Ins, Outs and Sends

This lecture is all about the Ins and Outs and the Sends in Ableton Live 9.

Recording and Editing Audio and MIDI

1
Recording Audio

In this next lecture we're going to have a look at Recording Audio in Ableton Live 9. 

It's actually really straight forward to record audio in Ableton Live 9 and in this lecture I will show you how to do this.

2
MIDI

This lecture is all about MIDI in Ableton Live 9. MIDI stands for Musical Instrument Digital Interface.

MIDI itself isn't an instrument, MIDI is actually a load of data that Ableton Live 9 sends into an instrument. 


3
Recording MIDI

This lecture is all about Recording MIDI into Ableton Live 9. 

4
Recording to the Arrangement

This next lecture is about moving our clips from the Session to the Arrangement View and also Recording to the Arrangement View in Ableton Live 9.

5
Looping Audio

This lecture is all about Looping Audio in Ableton Live 9.

6
MIDI Editing

This lecture is all about editing MIDI information and MIDI data in Ableton Live 9.

In this lecture I will also show you a few key commands and shortcuts to help speed up your MIDI editing in Ableton Live 9.

7
Automation

In this lecture I talk about Automation in Ableton Live 9. Automation is where we can control a parameter over time and we can actually write this in with Ableton Live 9. 

There's two ways we can do this in Ableton, we can either Automate the clips individually or we can actually Automate in the Arrangement View and in this video I will show you both ways of Automating in Ableton Live 9.

8
Groove Pool

In this lecture is all about the Groove Pool in Ableton Live 9. 

The Groove Pool in Ableton Live 9 allows us to have different rhythms on our audio or MIDI tracks.

9
Quantising

This lecture is all about quantising MIDI in Ableton Live 9. 

Quantising is a way that we can correct our rhythm. We can easily do this in Ableton Live 9 it's really simple and it basically just snaps our note to the grid. We can select what note value we want and we can correct our rhythm if we play it in incorrectly or if we want to experiment with new rhythms in Ableton Live 9.

10
Microphones

In this lecture I am going to talk about the different types of microphones that we can use in Ableton Live 9.

I am also going to talk about the uses for the different type of microphones and also audio interfaces that we can use with Ableton Live 9.

11
Multitrack Recording

This lecture is all about Multitrack Recording in Ableton Live 9. 

Multitrack recording allows to record more than on audio track at the same time in Ableton Live 9. 

This is really useful if we want to record more than one instrument or even an instrument with more than one output and in this lecture I will show you how to set up multitrack recording in Ableton Live 9.

12
Warping Audio

This lecture is all about Warping in Ableton Live 9. 

 Warping is basically like quantising but for audio and it allows us to slow down and speed up the audio without actually effecting the pitch in Ableton Live 9. 

Ableton Live 9 have actually made it really simple to do but they don't always get it 100% right as the computer just has to predict where the certain transients are from the audio waves so we do have to go in and actually correct our warping sometimes and in this lecture I will also show you how to correct this warping errors in Ableton Live 9.

Arranging

1
Locators

In this lecture we are going to have a look at creating locators in Ableton Live 9. 

Locators are the same thing as markers but Ableton Live calls them locators. It's basically where we can create points so we know where we are similar to Q points if you're used to Dj'ing and in this lecture I will show you how to create and use locators in Ableton Live 9.

2
Map Locators

In this lecture we going to have a look at mapping our locators to a key on our Mac keyboard in Ableton Live 9.

If I just want to jump to a certain section in our Ableton Live 9 project we can just hit a certain key on our mac keyboard and it will jump to this section in our Ableton Live 9 project if you follow the steps in this lecture.

3
Looping

This lecture is all about looping in Ableton Live 9. 

If you want to hear the same section again and again you can actually loop in Ableton Live 9 and in this lecture I will show you how to do this.

4
Arranging in the Session View

In this lecture I give you quick over view of arranging in the session view in Ableton Live 9. 

I show you how I arrange clips and tracks ready for live performance in Ableton Live 9.     

5
Sampling Audio

This lecture is all about sampling audio in Ableton Live 9.

6
Tempo and Time Signature Changes

In this lecture we're going to have a look at tempo changes and also time signature changes in Ableton Live 9.

Making Your Own Beats

1
Chopping up Audio

This lecture is all about chopping up audio in Ableton Live 9.

2
Slicer

This lecture is all about slicing audio with a MIDI track in Ableton Live 9. 

In the previous lecture we chopped up a drum loop and then put some effects on it and exported it in our Ableton Live 9 project. 

What we are going to do in this lecture is actually slice up this audio with MIDI.


3
Drum Rack

In this lecture we are going to have a look at actually building our own beats in Ableton Live 9. 

Ableton has something called a Drum Rack and in this lecture we are going to explore it for creating our own beats in Ableton Live 9.

4
Drum Rack Groove Pool

In this lecture we're going to have a look at adding grooves and a bit of swing to our drum rhythm in Ableton Live 9. 

With the Groove pool we can add a bit of swing and a bit of groove to our beat in Ableton Live 9 to give it a bit more of a human feel.

5
Bass Part

This lecture is all about adding a bassline to our drum beat in Ableton Live 9.

When adding a bass part or a bassline I do think it's really important to listen to the drums as much as possible and really try and lock in with the drums. 

With live music and electronic music the bass really has to lock with the drums and especially the kick drum and in this lecture I will show you how to create a bassline in Ableton Live 9.

6
Pads

In this lecture we are going to have a look at adding some pads and some synths to our groove. 

I will also show you the notes of the chords that I used to create a pad and synth sound for our groove in Ableton Live 9.

Synths, Samplers and Racks

1
Synths Intro

This lecture is an introduction into synthesisers in Ableton Live 9.

2
Synths Explained

This next lecture is continuing looking at synthesisers and synthesis in Ableton Live 9. 

In this lecture we have a look at the analogue synth instrument in Ableton Live 9 and I show you what the different things of the synth do and how to use it in Ableton Live 9.

3
Instrument Rack

This lecture is now about instrument racks in Ableton Live 9. 

Instrument racks actually allows us to stack more than one instrument together in Ableton Live 9. 

This is really useful for live performance if you want to switch between instruments really quickly with your MIDI controller or if you wish to actually layer multiple instruments at once. 

It's really simple to do and in this lecture I will show you how to set up instrument racks in Ableton Live 9.

4
Macros

In this lecture I show how you can use macros in Ableton Live 9. 

Macros basically allow us to control more than one parameter in our instrument rack and can be really useful for live electronic performance in Ableton Live and macros can also make our instrument racks a lot neater and more organised in Ableton Live 9.

5
Simpler

This lecture is about the simpler in Ableton Live 9. 

Basically the simpler is a simple version of a Sampler but there's one main difference. 

The one main difference is the Simpler can only load one sample at a time and the Sampler can load more than one. 

I'll be talking about the Sampler in the next lecture but for this lecture we are going to look at the Simpler in Ableton Live 9.

6
Sampler

In this lecture we are going to have a look at the sampler instrument in Ableton Live 9. 

The sampler is basically a more complex version of the simpler and allows a lot more adjustments and options for sampling in Ableton Live 9.

Effects

1
Sidechain

In this lecture we're going to have a look at sidechaning in Ableton Live 9. 

Sidechaining is basically where we use the volume of one track to control the volume of another track. So where the track is loud this is where it will sidechain so the other track is quiet. 

This is most common in dance music and we normally sidechain the kick drum to another track like the bass or a pad or a synth and I will show you in this lecture how to do this in Ableton Live 9.

2
Resampling

In this lecture we're going to have a look at resampling in Ableton Live 9. 

Resampling is basically where we can record something and then use it again and I will show you how to do this in this lecture with Ableton Live 9.

3
Send and Return Tracks

This next lecture is all about setting up send and return tracks in Ableton Live 9. 

This is where we basically send our tracks to another track and this track can have some sort of effect on and this allows us to actually have more than one track having the same exact effect. 

This is great for time based effects like reverbs and delay and is also great for saving our computer power in Ableton Live 9.

4
MIDI Effects Intro

In this lecture we are going to have a look at MIDI effects in Ableton Live 9.

The MIDI effects in Ableton Live 9 include the  Arpeggiator, chord, MIDI effects rack, note length, pitch, random, scale and velocity and in this lecture I'm going to go through how you can actually use these in Ableton Live 9.

5
MIDI Effects: Arpeggiator

The first MIDI effect we're going to have a look at in Ableton Live 9 is the arpeggiator. 

This is probably the most common MIDI effect and if you listen to a lot of electronic music you're probably going to be hearing this quite a lot and in this lecture I will show you how to use and edit this MIDI effect in Ableton Live 9.

6
MIDI Effects: Chord

In this lecture we are going to have a look at the Chord MIDI Effect in Ableton Live 9 and how you can use it. 

There are a number of presets for this effect and you can also go in and create your own chord sounds with this MIDI effect in Ableton Live 9.

7
MIDI Effects Rack

In this lecture we are going to have a look at the MIDI effects rack in Ableton Live 9.

The MIDI Effects Rack in Ableton Live 9 is quite similar to the other effects rack in Ableton Live 9 and it basically creates a bracket where we can drag in other MIDI effects. 

In this lecture I will show you how you can create and edit the MIDI effects rack in Ableton Live 9.

8
MIDI Effects: Length

The MIDI effect Length in Ableton Live 9 allows you to change the length of the MIDI note or MIDI information.

In this lecture I will show you how use this effect in Ableton Live 9.

9
MIDI Effects: Pitch

Next is pitch for MIDI effects in Ableton Live 9. 

This is really simple, it pitches all of your MIDI information in Ableton Live 9 and it can be automated also or we can either map it onto our MIDI controller.

10
MIDI Effects: Random

In Ableton Live 9 the random effect will create random MIDI data that we can use as a creative effect.

In this lecture I will show you how use this effect in Ableton Live 9.

11
MIDI Effects: Scale

In Ableton Live 9 the Scale MIDI effect allows us to change the scale of of our MIDI notes and to create various new scales with this MIDI effect in Ableton Live 9.

12
MIDI Effects: Velocity

This next lecture is all about the MIDI effect velocity in Ableton Live 9. 

Velocity is basically how hard or how soft we hit the note. It can go from 0 which is no velocity or off all the way up to 127 which is maximum MIDI velocity in Ableton Live 9.

13
Audio Effects: Simple Delay

This lecture is all about the simple delay audio effect and how we can use it in Ableton Live 9.

14
Audio Effect: Ping Pong Delay

Ping Pong Delay in Ableton Live 9 is another time based effect and in this lecture I will show you how use this effect in Ableton Live 9.

15
Audio Effect: Reverb

In this lecture I show you how you can use the reverb audio effect in Ableton Live 9. 

Reverb is a commonly used time based effect and in this lecture I show how and why you can use reverb in your Ableton Live set.

16
Audio Effects: 3 Band EQ

This lecture is about the 3 band EQ in Ableton Live 9.

The 3 band EQ where we basically has three bands, the low we have the mid and we have the high in Ableton Live 9.

17
Audio Effects: 8 Band EQ

This next lecture is all about the 8 Band EQ Audio Effect plugin in Ableton Live 9.

The 8 Band EQ allows you to have a lot more control of your audio frequencies compared to the 3 Band EQ and in this lecture I show you how you can use this 8 Band EQ to change some of your audio frequencies in Ableton Live 9.

18
Audio Effects: Compressor

In this lecture I show you how you can use the Compressor audio effect in Ableton Live 9.

The compressor is a commonly used dynamic audio effect in almost all styles and genres of music.

In this lecture I show you how you can use this audio effect to compressor your own audio and instruments in Ableton Live 9.

19
Audio Effects: Limiter

This next lecture is about the Limiter in Ableton Live 9.

The Limiter basically stops the audio signal going past the top of the ceiling and in this lecture I will show you how to control and use the Limiter in Ableton Live 9.

20
Audio Effects: Tuner

This next lecture is all about the tuner in Ableton Live 9. 

One main use we can use for the tuner is to actually tune different instruments in Ableton Live 9 and in this lecture I will explain how you can use this Audio Effect in Ableton Live 9.

Mixing

1
Mixing Tips

In this lecture I show you some of my mixing tips and techniques when I mix tracks in Ableton Live 9. 

This includes adding certain audio effects and different automations to improve your mixes in Ableton Live 9.

Using Ableton for Live Performance

1
Audio Effects Rack

In this lecture I show the audio effects racks in Ableton Live 9 and how to use them effectively.

The Audio Effects Rack allows us to have separate effects in the same rack and there are certain way that I will show you in this lecture how you can move or blend between these different audio effects in Ableton Live 9.

Learning how to use the audio effects rack can be very useful if you wish to use Ableton Live for live electronic music performance.

2
Saving Audio Effects Racks and Performance Controllers

In this lecture I show you how you can save your own audio effects racks in Ableton Live 9.

I also run through the most popular performance controllers to use with Ableton Live 9 and also which ones I use and why with Ableton Live 9.

3
Follow Action

In this lecture I show you different clip launch options and also the follow action available to us in Ableton Live 9. 

These different options I explain in this lecture can be very useful to learn if you want to set up Ableton Live to use for live electronic performance.

4
Launch Mode

In this lecture I show you different launch modes in Ableton Live 9. 

The launch mode determines the way a clip is launched in the session view in Ableton Live 9.

These different launch modes are useful to learn if you want to use Ableton for live electronic performance.

The different launch modes can give you more options when performing in Ableton Live with a performance controller.

5
Performance Tips

In this lecture I show you some of my performance tips for using Ableton Live 9 for live performance. 

These tips can give you more options when using Ableton Live in the session view for live electronic performance.

6
Ableton Controller - APC40 MK2

In this lecture I show you the functions and features of the live performance controller, the Akai APC40 MK2, which is specifically designed to use with Ableton Live 9. 

If you want to use Ableton Live for live performance then this controller can give you a lot more options to work with.

This performance controller can also give your performances more of a live feel and in this lecture I give you an overview of this controller and how you can use it with Ableton Live 9.

7
DJing in Live Tips

This lecture is all about DJing in Ableton Live.

I also show you a few tips for setting up the clips and DJing with Ableton Live 9.

Max for Live

1
Max for Live Intro

Welcome to this section all about max for live for Ableton Live 9.

Max for Live is basically a programming language where we can put together different things to create our own effects and our own plug ins in Ableton Live 9.

Max for Live is really an ongoing thing you can't really complete max for live, but in this section we will learn how to use the basics of Max for Live in Ableton Live 9 to help you start to understand Max for Live in Ableton Live 9.

2
Max for Live Devices

This lecture is all about the different type of devices we have for Max for Live in Ableton Live 9.

3
Max Navigation

In this lecture I give you an overview of the interface for Max for Live in Ableton Live 9.

The Max for Live interface can look a bit daunting at first if you are new to Max, but hopefully this lecture will explain the essentials of the interface in Max for Live in Ableton Live 9.

4
Max Help View

In this lecture we have a look at the help view in Max for Live in Ableton Live 9.

5
Max MIDI Patching

In this lecture we have a look at the max editing and patching in Max for Live in Ableton Live 9.

6
Objects, Arguments and Messages

In this lecture I show you the objects, arguments and messages and how you can use them in Max for Live in Ableton Live 9.

7
Buttons and Bangs

In this lecture I show you what the buttons or bangs do in Max for Live in Ableton Live 9 and how you can use them.

8
Goal

This lecture is about my goal for this section when using Max for Live in Ableton Live 9. 

The goal isn't for you to go through and learn every object and for you to learn every argument for every object. 

Max is a very complex programming language and my goal in these section is really for you to learn how to use the max language, rather than every learning every function and feature in Max for Live in Ableton Live 9.

9
MIDI Delay

In this lecture I show you how you can build a MIDI delay in Max for Live in Ableton Live 9.

10
Harmoniser

In this lecture I show you how to create a MIDI note harmoniser in Max for Live in Ableton Live 9. 

A MIDI harmoniser will create notes either above or below the notes we are playing on our MIDI keyboard and in this lecture I show you how to can build this in Max for Live in Ableton Live 9.

11
Audio Effect: Gain

In this lecture we look at the max audio effects in Max for Live in Ableton Live 9. 

I also show you how you can build a gain fader in Max for Live in Ableton Live 9.

12
Audio Effect: Delay

In this lecture I show you how to create an audio delay in Max for Live in Ableton Live 9.

The example I show in this lecture is a drum loops, but this Max audio delay that we create in Max for Live in Ableton Live 9 can be used to delay any audio signal in Ableton Live 9.

13
Max for Live Outro

My goal for this section was for you to think like max to basically be able to dissect and work stuff thing out in Max for Live in Ableton Live 9.

Max is a very complete programming language, but hopefully now you will be able to think like Max and be able to work out certain things in Max for Live in Ableton Live 9.

Ableton Hardware - Push 2

1
Ableton Push 2 - An Overview

Push 2 is the latest MIDI controller from Ableton, there's loads of improvements from Push 1 and during these videos I'm going to go over some of the features and functions of the Push 2. 

This section is for anyone who has a Push 2 or is considering purchasing a Push 2 for Ableton Live.

Push 2 can only be used with Ableton 9.5 or above.

I think the Push is a great way to actually compose and arrangement Ableton. 

I also believe that Push adds a great elements to performance if you're using Ableton for live performance because it does look a lot more interesting triggering samples and composing and recording on the Push rather than just being stuck behind your laptop.

So with the Ableton Push you can use it as a melodic device, so you can use different scales to actually write and record music. We can actually play our drums live or through a step sequencer. There's also a melodic step sequencer, we can access the functions of the mixer on Ableton Live through the Push, we can also add on automation or record automation. So basically all the aspects of Ableton Live we can control through Push. 

2
Ableton Push 2 - The Set Up

This lecture is all about setting up Push 2 to use as a MIDI controller with Ableton Live 9.5 or above.

I go through the basics of setting up Push's display and the metronome so you can easily set up push to use with Ableton Live to improve your music making process.

You will need a Push 2 controller for this lecture to be relevant however.

3
Ableton Push 2 - Loading a Drum Rack

This lecture is all about loading a Drum Rack with the Push 2 in Ableton Live 9.

The drum rack is a fantastic feature in Ableton Live 9 and the Push 2 allows you to quickly and easily load drum racks and in this lecture I will show you how to do this on the Push 2 with Ableton Live 9.

4
Push vs Push 2

This next lecture is about comparing the Push to the Push 2. So the Push is actually a MIDI controller designed for Ableton and the Push 2 is the latest one that is out at the moment. This section is actually about using the Push 2 and it's a fantastic way to actually compose, arrange and record your own compositions and performances to Ableton Live.

The Push is the original one and Push 2 is the new one, so in this lecture I'm going to go through the differences between the two. They pretty much do the same thing but the Push 2 has a few little differences that in my opinion make it a lot better. 

So the differences between the Push and the Push 2 is first of all the price, the screen display, the pad buttons, extra buttons on Push 2 and the development and manufacturing and in this lecture I will going going over the details of these differences between the Push and the Push 2 to use with Ableton Live.

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