Get That Swing: Drum Programming Tips

Using the groove pool in Ableton Live

Are your drums feeling a bit too stiff? Sometimes, that's an asset - plenty of classic electro is built on machine-perfect rhythms. But it's not for every case, and, often enough, you need a more "human" feel to your rhythm. That's where the tutorials in this post come in - follow these and learn some tips for programming more dynamic, lively drum sequences in Live.

To start with, learn how to manually put swing in your pattern with Ivan Corraliza:

You can also use grooves to add swing and timing variation to your drums - learn how in this tutorial from Supreme Beatz:

It never hurts to have variations in your sounds - instead of playing the same snare sample every time, have different options at your fingertips. Learn how to assemble a Drum Rack featuring all of your sounds mapped easily to macros, in this tutorial from Dubspot instructor Chris Petti:

Lastly, you can use effects to enhance your beats on the fly. Watch how Certified Trainer Lenny Kiser does it while playing in a pattern on Push in the video below: