SOUNDFLY MAINSTAGE

Beat Making in Ableton Live

Master the processes and techniques for programming professional-grade electronic drum beats in Ableton Live.

Gifting options available at checkout.

Starts January 9

Six Week Mentor-Guided Course

Money‑Back Guarantee

Want to make huge-sounding beats that people can't help but dance to? Making great beats is about so much more than just writing in notes on a piano roll or jamming out on a drum pad. From Dilla to Diplo, Quincy Jones to Com Truise, or Fly-Lo to Flume, electronic beats have come a long way — and these days are funkier and deeper than ever.

In this six-week course Ableton Certified Trainer Dan Freeman takes you on a comprehensive tour of Ableton Live's drum programming capabilities. Each week, Dan will guide you with in-depth videos, illustrations, and activities, while an expert Soundfly Mentor will follow up with you personally to offer encouragement, provide feedback, and answer your questions. With your mentor's weekly guidance, you'll practice laying out simple beats, manipulating them with effects, creating break beats, humanizing and randomizing them, and other pro tips for creating bigger, better beats.  

*Note: While not required, a basic familiarity with Live will help with this course. This course is all about making beats, rather than a comprehensive overview of the software.  


Dan freeman

Dan Freeman

Ableton Certified Trainer

Dan, also known as CØm1x, is an Ableton Certified Trainer, artist/producer/bassist, and music technologist based in Brooklyn, New York. One of the world's leading experts on the integration of live instruments with laptops using Ableton Live, he does live electronic acid house and electro­ funk sets that integrate live musicianship with improvised sound creation and visuals. He has performed and presented at venues, festivals and universities globally including SXSW, Harvard University, Berklee, Sonar (Barcelona), Berghain (Berlin), Centro Cultural Español (Mexico City), IATEC (Rio de Janeiro), AIMEC (Curitiba, Brazil), The Strøm Festival (Copenhagen), La Universidad de Santiago (Chile), DJLAB (San Jose, Costa Rica) and the Festival Internacional de la Imagen (Manizales, Colombia).

Originally from Boston, Massachusetts, Dan comes from a bi-cultural background: his mother is Nicaraguan and his father American, so he grew up exposed to a rich variety of music. He graduated Harvard University, and came to NYC to be a session bass player and performed throughout North America, South America, and Europe in venues ranging from underground Brooklyn loft parties to Broadway pits and Carnegie Hall. He also played keyboards for the RCA Records’ rock group Stellastarr*. In 2008, he formed the electro funk digital music and art collective Comandante Zero (CØ). CØ developed techniques for fusing live acoustic instruments with laptops running Ableton Live and created their own unique hybrid set as well as serving as a backing band for various artists including Polina Goudieva and Virgin Records’ artist Xavier.

Currently, Dan has a production studio in Gowanus, Brooklyn where he mixes, remixes electronic music and writes for film as well as performs with his electro funk digital art and music collective Comandante Zero (CØ). Dan has designed curriculum centered around Ableton Live for several institutions. Previously he served as a senior instructor at New York City's Dubspot where he taught electronic music production and headed Dubspot International. He is currently on the faculty of New York University’s Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music where teaches producing music with software and MIDI. He also curates the Digital + Acoustic Sessions, a monthly event in Brooklyn, New York at ShapeShifter Lab that features artists using Ableton and live instruments in cutting ­edge new ways.

In 2015, he founded the Brooklyn Digital Conservatory, a platform that brings top digital music producers/performers and educators to emerging markets in Latin America and Asia for courses and performances. Since its foundation, the Brooklyn Digital Conservatory has run workshops and courses in Chile, Costa Rica, Italy and Colombia with workshops scheduled in Guatemala, Nicaragua, Panama, Brazil, Argentina and Mexico for 2017.

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beats
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production
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drum machines
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beat making

7 Weeks Left to Join the Next Session


  • Unlimited access to interactive and video content
  • Weekly feedback and support from an expert Mainstage Mentor
  • Downloadable course pack with extra resources

Price $499

Program professional-grade electronic drum beats

By the end of this course, you’ll have everything you need to be able to make more dynamic, interesting, well-designed beats in Ableton Live.

Master multiple beats

Master Multiple Beat Making Approaches

We explore a few different ways to create interesting beats with the Drum Rack instrument and other Live tools.
Give your beats a more human feel

Give Your Beats a More Human Feel

We go through how to use velocity, randomization, and other tricks to make your electronic beats sound more human.
Creative with sample based beats

Get Creative with Sample-Based Beats

We show you the classic art of creating breakbeats, and how to use samples to create more unique music.
Shape your drums

Shape Your Drums with Sound Design

We explore how to use EQ, compression, and other effects to let you get more creative with your sounds.
Are you an educator? If so, you can access educator discounts. !

GET PERSONAL SUPPORT & FEEDBACK FROM A MAINSTAGE MENTOR

Our expert mentors do whatever it takes to ensure that you achieve your musical goals for the course and leap forward in your learning.

Marty 03

Martin Fowler

Producer & Composer
  • Produced & composed works for TV, film, & podcasts
  • International touring & recording artist with over 15 years experience
  • Studied bass & music technology at Berklee College of Music
Screen shot 2017 05 17 at 8.59.42 am

John Hull

Producer & Composer
  • Mix engineer for full-length film scores, including Experimenter
  • Former composer of ad music at Human World Wide
  • Studied production & engineering at Berklee College of Music

Course Outline

  1. Start
    Section 1

    Welcome!

  2. Start
    Section 2

    Working with Presets

  3. Start
    Section 3

    Building Your Own Kit

  4. Start
    Section 4

    The Pencil Tool

  5. Start
    Section 5

    Velocity & Variation

  6. Start
    Section 6

    Sound Design

  7. Start
    Section 7

    Slice to MIDI

  8. Start
    Section 8

    Advanced Techniques

  9. Start
    Section 9

    Final Project

MORE INFORMATION

What will I learn in this course? 

You'll learn how to program drums, create your own unique Drum Rack instruments, get creative with sound design, sample breakbeats, randomize drum fills, humanize your grooves, synthesize huge sub kicks, and more!

Is there a money-back guarantee? 

YES. If you sign up and the course isn't what you expected, we will give you a full refund as long as you tell us before the start of the second week. The reason that the second week of the course is a cut-off for our guarantee is simply because if we go past that deadline, our mentors will have likely put in a lot of time, energy, and effort already. 

We're also happy to move you to a subsequent session, if you end up not having as much time as you expected. Once again, let us know as soon as possible! 

Are there any pre-reqs?

There aren't any course prerequisites, but you'll need a copy of Ableton Live. While beginners to Live are welcome, it's important to know that this is not an introduction to Ableton Live course, but rather focused very specifically on beat making, so you might need to reference Live's documentation occasionally or ask your mentor for help. If you don't have a license you can follow along with the free demo

What do I get as a Mainstage student? 

This Mainstage course is for students who are ready to take their beats to the next level. You'll receive immediate, unlimited access, a downloadable Course Pack, and in-depth personalized weekly feedback from a Mainstage Mentor. This Mentor will help you stay accountable to your goals and offer guidance along the way. 

What does it mean that the course starts on January 9th?

As soon as you purchase a course, you can begin exploring the course material immediately. On the start date, the session begins, which means you'll receive your Course Pack and begin the guided experience that includes weekly activities, feedback from Mainstage Mentors, and much more. This is intended to help you stay accountable and get the feedback you need to succeed. 

Will there be future sessions of the course?

Yes! Check back shortly for firm dates, or sign up for a Soundfly account to receive email updates about course dates and new course launches.

How do I give the course as a gift?

Soundfly courses make great gifts for the music lover in your life. To purchase a course as a gift, first sign into your Soundfly account, or create a new account for you (the purchaser). Pick the course you'd like to give, click to purchase, fill in your information, check the box below the credit card form saying you're buying the course as a gift, and click to pay. You'll shortly receive an email gift certificate that you can give to a friend.

How do I sign up for a course using a gift certificate?

Create your own Soundfly account, navigate to the course you've been gifted, and click to "buy now." On the check out page at the bottom of the form, you'll see a field where you can enter the code on your gift certificate. Enter the code, no credit card info needed, click "Apply," and enjoy the course!