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drum programming melody making May 31, 2024

There’s one comment I get a lot on YouTube and Instagram:

“Why don’t my beats and melodies sound like yours, Chu?”

I even got it this morning on my new melody tutorial:

But the video literally had every answer 🙂.

  1. Create a guitar melody using FLEX (be sure to control velocity).
  2. Layer a wind instrument (I used horns from BBC Symphony, a free VST).
  3. Color and control sound with slight compression - for this part, I literally gave away some mixing sauce I was only supposed to tell DOPE.
  4. A brand new drum programming guide by my homie Rob Chillin linked in the description.

See that’s the thing.

You can give most people the exact formulas, but they won’t care.

They prefer the endless circle jerk of perpetual VST purchases.

“Oh, my melodies suck cause I don’t have a MIDI controller.”

“My mixes sound bad, but I just need to spend $300 on Pro-Q3 and it’ll be all better.”

“I can’t make anything that sounds good because I don’t have Omnisphere.”

You know how we feel about that last one… 🤨

I have MID controllers, I have Pro-Q, I have Omnisphere.

None of that is what made me better.

So trust me when I say you’re wasting life if you’re waiting on your next purchase before you start getting better.

You’ll purchase it only to find out you still suck.

That’s why you should become a sound wizard instead.

Learn beats brother.

Like, don’t just participate in the culture to be cute (we have enough of that already).

Like I said in the “how to practice” newsletter, you need to sit down and cook.

Once you can do that, you finally unlock the hidden knowledge behind every:

  • YouTube tutorial,
  • Blog article, and
  • Interview.

You’ll be able to build real skills that help you actually make the most of your purchases, instead of VST companies using your ignorance to increase their bottom line.

Here’s how to build those skills, and the order to do it in.

As stated in that practice newsletter, take it easy if you’re just starting out.

Do the bare minimum, assess, then re-iterate.

It’s a marathon, not a sprint!!

1- Learn to make melodies using stock VSTs first.

If you can make good melodies with stock VSTs, you can make good melodies with anything.

Again, it just comes down to what you really want.

Do you want to be good, or do you just want to say you bought a bunch of VSTs?

Check out this tutorial for a guide on how to make dope melodies with FLEX.

2 - Lock in a drum bounce.

Nothing is worse than making a dope melody just to ruin it with a trash drum bounce.

So please do yourself a favor.

Check out this drum bounce guide that my homie Rob Chillin made for you:

He’s one of the best drum programmers I've ever met.

He’s actually who I learn from a lot.

(rare secret exposed lol).

3 - Finish beats.

Like we said the other day in the “Your catalog is gold waiting to be mined!” newsletter, your beats won’t do much for you just sitting in your hard drive.

You’ve gotta finish them and send them out!

If you tend to get caught up on structuring and arrangement, check out this video here.

It’s a full guide covering my arrangement style - I think you’ll learn a lot from it, and maybe solve beat block forever 🤔.



Ps. Be sure to subscribe to Rob!!

Join My Label, DOPE 🔥


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