Tips on Percussion
Percussion lines are very important in giving drive and variance
to your song. A good way to start is to listen to inspiring tracks
to get ideas for the types of instruments you may want to use in
your percussion line.
The trick to good percussion is to have your instruments conversate
with each other, to add some interest into the track. This works
even better when one is panned slightly to the left and the other
slightly to the right.
Adding a shuffle to your percussion it will give a more realistic
feel. We all know that drummers are not machines, they can't hit
the drum at the exact same time every count, close but not exact,
so you'll want to shuffle it ever so slightly. It may take a lot
of trial and error, but in the end will add some jump to your percussion.
Varience and Realism
Pitch - Every time a drummer hits a drum it is in a different
spot causing a variance of pitch. Slide the pitch slightly off for
every note to give your drum some more realism.
Velocity - Real drummers don't hit the drum at the same
velocity, every time they hit the drum. For instance when a drummer
hits the snare and kick at the same time as the hi-hat, then they
will put more force into the hi hat that is being played.
Filter Cut - As similar to the last two theories, by altering
the filter cut ever so slightly, will give variance to your drum
hits. Its small details like these that set your drums apart from
Try adding a different reverb to each instrument this will give
your drums some depth. Adding automated filters and effects on your
drums can be very effective for variating your percussion throughout
the track. A common effect that is applied to percussion is reverb
this creates a virtual atmosphere for your instruments, and gives
them some depth or dimension.
Once you have created your killer loops, and fills, make sure you
have quick access to them. Create a loop archiving system that works
for you. If you write your tunes in programs like Fruityloops http://www.fruityloops.com
you can save all of your midi scores, and presets that you create,
and set them up for retrieval out of the programs sub-browser. This
will save you time when trying write a percussion line for your
melody. The more time that you save writing a track the more time
you have to experiment and be creative with it.
In this day in age it is getting harder to tell the difference
between realistic and programmed percussion. In the days to come
when we bridge the gap closer to realism live drum will
not be forgotten, because there is always a demand for the authentic
sound of a real instrument being played.