Is everyone in a good mood for X-mas? AfroDJMac surely is and he’s created an Ableton Live Pack created out of a Charlie Brown Christmas Globe. It’s a proper X-mas gift meaning its free.
“Saturday I was a Christmas party where I found a beautiful Charlie Brown Christmas snow globe. I snuck off to a quiet portion of the house and sampled it on my iPhone. From there, I created the 3 Ableton Live instrument racks I am now sharing with you. I think they all have a lot of character and organic movement to them, with the combination of the plucked notes mixed with the cranking mechanism inside the globe.” – afrodjmac.com
The feature that has me the most excited about Live 9 is Drum and Melody to MIDI. I’ve use various other tools to do this (Melodyne for one) but it’s always been hit or miss. It does look like Ableton has cracked this and it’s going to be an amazing and useful tool.
“Your voice is the new keyboard: sing, beatbox, tap a rhythm on your desk, or play any solo instrument to capture your musical ideas as they come. Then use the Melody- or Drums-to-MIDI feature to turn your recordings into MIDI clips that you can edit and reuse with any sound.” – ableton.com
Ableton today announced Live 9 and there new integrated hardware controller Push. There are many new features. The only piece of software I look at more is an internet browser. I’ve loved Live since version 4 and these new features have me pleased. 9 has Record Automation into Clips, a new Browser, Glue Compressor, Convolution Reverb, Melody and Drums to Midi Feature (oh yes!!), Automation Curves and more. Push also looks great. Designed with Akai. I hope they release it soon. The new Ableton website and logo is very nice too.
Hanging in my studio today with my Eurorack and Ableton. Tiptop Audio 808 modules, Moog Slim Phatty, Wiard Oscillator into Toppobrillo Multifilter, Ensoniq ESQ-1 choir sound (off camera). Ableton Live Session View switching from Verse to Chorus. Make Noise Echophon at the end.
“Synthpop (also known as electropop, or technopop) is a genre of popular music that first became prominent in the 1980s, in which the synthesizer is the dominant musical instrument.” – Wikipedia
I used Ableton’s Stretch MIDI function often. You can hear it clearly in my song You Are Disturbing from my 2007 album Attack Decay. The main synth line switches from single to double speed. There is another detailed post on Wire to the Ear about Stretch MIDI notes from April 2008 titled “use the stretch notes command in ableton live” which you can read: click here. I think it’s a great and useful songwriting feature so it was definitely worth a revisit.
“The Stretch MIDI Notes feature allows the user to take a selected group of MIDI notes and stretch their duration, a lot like how you are able to stretch warped audio. You can either lengthen or shorten the duration of the selected notes, and even better is that you don’t have to select every single note in the clip in order to start stretching… that way you can stretch the timing of the kicks and hi-hats without altering the timing of the snares for instance. All you need to do is select a note (or several, or all notes) in your MIDI clip, then right click in the clip, and at the bottom of the contextual menu you will see Stretch MIDI Notes!” – Thavius Beck
There are a few ways to very easily get sidechaining going in Ableton Live. Sidechaining triggers a compressor on the master bus or channel using a kick from a different channel. This causes a pumping effect ala Daft Punk. Used subtlety it can make sure the sharp transients of you kick always sit above the mix by itself. Live’s built in Compressor has sidechaining and you can also simulate the effect using Autopan. The Point Blank Music School has a nice free Max For Live drag and drop device available to download: click here. If you have Max For Live why not grab it? Take a look at the video above for the demo.
“Point Blank instructor and course developer Daniel Herbert has created this Max For Live custom auto sidechain plugin for use in Ableton Live. Watch the video to see how it works, what makes it unique and and how to set it up.” – pointblankonline
I’ve become internet friends with Brian “AfroDJmac”. In passing I mentioned a possible idea for one of his incredible free Ableton Live packs. Basically I love cassette tape hiss. I suggested that if he access to some old tapes I would certainly like a “pack of hiss”. Well a week later and viola Brian surprised me with this nice gift: Free Ableton Pack #60: Tape Hiss Vinyl Crackle! Watch the video above because this isn’t just some samples. Brian has spent time making things work properly and also added vinyl crackle. Eat that Slate Digital!
“An Ableton Live Instrument Rack that turns any synth you have into a synth that sounds like it came from tape or record!” – afrodjmac.com
I use feedback often in my own productions. In fact the “bat” sounds you here on TTC-001’s track Dark Invader is me holding an SM58 microphone in front of a speaker, sampled and reversed (2.21 in the SoundCloud clip above). The DJ Techtools video shows a hot tip on how to get it all going in Ableton Live with a distortion pedal.
“When sitting in front of a DAW with limitless software possibilities, it can be easy to forget that some of the coolest sounds and effects you can make can come from external effects processors. In today’s video, Mad Zach takes us through one of his favorite hardware wirings, an external distortion pedal setup. ” – djtechtools.com