So I use Logic Pro, and I use Ableton half and half 50% 50%.
I love both DAWs.
But one of the things that blow me away with Ableton Live 11 is the new MIDI features.
And I just think Ableton’s MIDI workflow is so good that I’d like to just share a video showing my appreciation for it.
So this is gonna be kind of half tutorial and half showing how impressed I am.
So we have a MIDI region over here, a MIDI MIDI instrument.
Right, and I’m gonna play.
I’m gonna play some keys.
But the point is about the MIDI workflow.
So one of the reasons why I like Ableton Live is that live elevens new MIDI workflow because of the scale feature.
I tend to play the same thing over and over again.
I might play the same, in the same style in a different key.
So whether I’m in C minor, G minor, D major harmonic, whatever it is, I tend to do the same thing, and I get kind of bored.
What makes it even worse is if I have brain fatigue, well, I’m just going to turn off my dw.
So what I like to do now is turn on the scale feature over here.
And it highlights, it highlights the notes, right, so it says we’re in C major.
And if I change it to Harmonic Minor, it’s going to switch I’m sure there are a lot of tutorials already covering this.
Let’s choose F sharp Harmonic Minor.
So we have the scale feature, we can draw things in.
But that’s, that’s not what I want to do.
What I want to do is use the scale lock feature.
So I have a custom key command.
It’s shift s for me, but you can just click it.
So what this does is it obviously locks it.
And the reason why I really liked this, is other da W’s have the lock to the scale feature.
But if I were to make a triad, so right now it says e sharp, but a G sharp will go to B, that’s an E major chord.
If I copy this, and just move it down, it stays as a triad in key.
So that’s why I like the scale lock feature.
So let’s see what we can come up with.
Right, let’s get all the middle notes.
Let’s bring that up.
That was terrible.
Let’s turn that off.
And let’s press legato.
Hey, press legato again.
And let’s bring this down.
So now we have a chord progression going and it was really easy.
I barely had to think that not thinking is a good thing.
But right now I have brain fatigue because I’m very tired from work.
So this is why I like this feature.
It helps to keep me creative and explorative.
So let’s just draw in other notes.
And I like the key commands.
So I’m selecting one note.
And I’m pressing Command D to duplicate, using the arrow key to move it around.
What if I wanted a different grid?
Well, if you see the bottom right, it says 1/8.
If I press Command one, it moves to smaller increments, and now it’s in 16th notes, the division is in 16th notes.
If I press Command two, it goes the opposite way.
So now it’s in 1/8.
Press Command two again, it’s in 1/4.
If I press Command three, it turns the division into 1/8 triplets.
So it focuses on triplets.
So if I press Command, three, which I already have, there’s a little letter.
And if I press Command two and one, the grid changes.
So you have triplets.
And if you don’t want a grid, you press command and say off.
So I’m going to stick to the grid.
And I just want to compose really, really fast, just a general idea, which is why I’m so impressed with this Ableton workflow.
Let’s see what we can come up with.
So you can see also if I select one-note and I press option, down and up, it’ll move, it’ll select a different MIDI note.
So if I move, if I press option up, it’ll go to the MIDI note to the right, or the top option down, it will go to the bottom or to the left, based on the order.
So let’s, let’s make another, let’s get another instrument going.
And let’s just choose I mean, we’re not trying to do anything crazy here, right?
I’m just showing the workflow.
So let’s just choose electric, just get the preset, make another MIDI region.
Now if I click this, and I press Command, and left, click the top region.
And I double click them.
Sorry, there you go.
It will show both MIDI regions, and you’ll see over at this bar, these two bars, the name will change from electric to analog lab.
So if I press focus, now if I click electric, you’ll see that the analog lab MIDI is muted.
And that’s because I’ve selected both regions.
So this is called multi MIDI editing, or something like that.
So now, I can press B, press command to go into eighth notes, and just start drawing and tracing if I want.
Let’s add another layer.
Let’s get this guy.
Let’s do the same thing.
I’m going to click this region, press Hold COMMAND and click another region.
And then I’ll press Shift-Tab to open up the MIDI view mode.
So now I can even just go to the analog lab instrument, press Command-A, copy everything, go back to this new instrument, move my play header to the beginning and press Command V.
And now I can just start muting the parts that I don’t want, right, so all these notes over here.
And maybe I can just put some of these notes.
So let’s see how that sounds.
The workflow is just incredibly fast.
So let’s get a hi-hat loop.
Okay, I think I’m fanboying embarrassed.
I think I’m fanboying when you drag a loop also, it’s already automatically synced to the BPM.
So let’s get a snare now.
And let’s put this in MIDI.
So I’m going to create a MIDI region, I’m going to turn off the scale, and we’re just gonna draw in the notes.
That’s really all we’re doing.
There we go.
So now if I go here, I’m going to add this up.
Note, if I zoom in, and I click, oh, I click this little guy over here, it’ll say chance.
And if I drag this down, it’ll only play maybe 53% of the time.
Let’s play that.
See, that is incredible.
That makes my life a lot easier.
I think a better example is with like a perk.
Okay, let’s, let’s use this guy.
This MIDI workflow is insane.
So, actually, you know what, I’m going to switch to the Session View for this one.
So right now, I’m looping here and everything’s playing, it’s always going to loop.
And I’m going to switch to the Session View by pressing tab.
And I’m going to draw in some pert notes.
Alright, so these guys, I want the chance to be maybe 70%.
And then this one will only come in 50 51% of the time.
So if I solo this, sometimes the notes aren’t playing, and sometimes they are.
The next thing I can do is actually change the velocity range, which helps increase this as a whole.
And now the velocity is different.
It’s also randomized.
And you can just randomize the velocity as well.
And the chance by clicking the randomize function here, so that’s the MIDI workflow.
I think it’s incredibly simple.
And it’s so handy.
The last thing I want to do is add an 808.
All right, so let’s do the same thing.
Let’s click this guy and press Command and click one of the more melodic regions to copy the bass notes.
And here it is, let’s click focus again, go to the bottom, go to the 808.
And let’s just copy and paste the notes or just follow the notes.
Okay, this is this is not a, alright, this is what we have.
But that was not the point.
The point is I wanted to show you guys this MIDI expression thing.
And you can just click here.
Just drag it up.
You got to make sure that the scale modes are turned off though.
So let’s say we want to go here.
Just leave it there.
And then let’s move this down an octave.
If you want to move between the MIDI section and this MIDI expression.
It’s option one goes to the MIDI section, option three goes to the expression section.
So there we go.
I don’t know how to explain how happy I am with his MIDI workflow.
Everything just seemed so fluid.
And I really really liked the whole probability thing going on the scale feature.
The velocity randomization, there’s so much going on where I think the Ableton MIDI workflow is pretty high up there.
That’s my appreciation of Ableton Live and I hope you enjoyed the video, and I hope you take care.