I will never forget the first time I tried creating a drum loop in a Daw, simply put, it was hell, and the reason it was hell is that it was my first time, Yes, you don't expect to sound good at first shot.
At least, I am pretty sure Bill gate was born with expectations about the objects around himself, he wasn't born with programming skills, but as he grows he was able to refine his knowledge and became who we know today as the father of Microsoft.
The rule of thumb is to learn, practice and your skills will improve gradually.
At the drop of a hat, let's lay the card on the table one after the other, simply put, the terminologies involved in this tutor.
What is A Drum?
A drum is a percussive instrument or a musical instrument which encloses a hollow (a space or cavity inside a hollow tube or container.) round frame with skin stretched across both ends. A drum is usually played by beating with hand, stick, malleting and hammering.
What is A Loop?
In Electronic music or any genre you might think of, a loop is a repeating part of a segment of sound material. An audio D or music file is cut or edited to loop seamlessly from the end back to the beginning.
What is A Drum Loop?
A drum loop is technically a short recording of multiple drum materials which has been edited to loop seamlessly ( to loop smoothly and continuously), a drum loop repeats until an exact duration is satisfied, for example, to break a single loop to another, you might want to use a drum fill which could also be a seamless loop.
Why You Should Be Creating A Drum Loop
You will have flexibility in your music production, and you can edit and tweak the way you want your loop to sound by your genre. One of the most significant disadvantages of downloading a loop from an external source is that a lot of people have used it and this will make your music sound identical or almost similar to other tracks. To sound distinctive, I will urge you to start creating your loop from scratch or at most tweaking the downloaded loop to fit in with your track, don't just plug and play a loop.
Creating Drum Loop In the Daw
Open an instance of your Daw, and I am a fan of Fl studio, I will be using Fl for this tutor.
Tip: Most people tend to create drum loop from scratch without harmonious conjunction, which is fine, we all have a different way of doing things, my rule is to create a melody before creating a drum loop, this method guide you throughout the path of the drum loop creation.
Note: Before creating a drum loop, you need to know the kind of genre you're producing, for this tutor, I will be using Edm style. If you're not producing Edm, listen to some good songs in your genre, then apply these same techniques.
My Formula for Drum Loop Creation:
Now let's start creating a drum loop by following the rule called LO-HI (The LO-west in pitch or frequency to the Hi-ghest in pitch or frequency) or HI-LO(The Hi-ghest in pitch or frequency or the LO-west in pitch or frequency).
At first, you might be wondering what the hell is this formula and why is it useful.
This formula helps in mapping the frequency spectrum of a certain range, and it's usually best to emphasize timbres that the instrument already has and to use those to select its place in the spectral dimension, let's dive in and experiment on how it works
"No one way of doing things, as long as it works for you, crack with your rules."
Start With a progression of bass melody or any pleasant harmony
I created a basic melody progression, and this is how it sounds:
I will be creating my drum loop on top of the progression, and this helps with effective guessing.
Using the LO-HI
I will start by filling the low spectrum with Hard Kicks, and it is usually best to layer kick so that they can sound huge, This is how the first layer one, two and three sound independently
This is just my preference you can choose whatever sounds best to you. Layering layer 1 and 2 sounds like this:
and layer Layer one, two and three sound like this:
This sounds huge, following the rule, the next thing to do is add some low-end percussion which is a little bit higher in frequency than the kick drum, and this is how it sounds:
Next, Is to add some random percussion, which is going to fit into the drum loop, I think I got something nice, and this is how it sounds all together.
I will be using this drum loop for my first 8bar, and then I will introduce a more percussive instrument at the beginning of a new bar, sum together, making a 16 bar track (just for demo anyways).
More Percussive Instrument Just for another 8bar
In this part, I will introduce a closed hi-hat filled each in 2steps and this is how it sounds:
and together with the other sound, it sounds like this
Things are now getting cool and nice, let's finish up this drum loop by spicing it a little bit. I'll add a friendly closed hi-hat and a ride filled at four steps and altogether, it sounds like this.
Since I am creating an Edm track, It is advisable to sidechain your lead or bass sound, so the kick or drum loop can duck through, I'll finish up this tutorial by applying a sidechain to my synth, and altogether, this is my result:
No one way of doing things, if this method doesn't work out for you, try reading from the beginning, put it into practice, then you will gradually move your way to success.
Happy Creating good music