Explore found-sound beats with pro producer Ed:it
When making music, I try to spark my creativity by thinking outside the box. Experimenting with abstract, bizarre sounds is usually my starting point. By delving deep into my library of obscure samples, I’ll come up with unique outcomes, especially atmospheres and industrial beats.
For this month’s StudioStrategies tutorial, I want to focus on the latter and show you how to generate unique drums using sounds recorded from the outside world, taken from foley sample packs, movie soundtracks and my own recorded samples I’ve collected over the years.
First, I’ll seek out recordings that feature some kind of tonal resemblance to an associated drum sound. For example, a heavy door slamming can become a kick drum; smashing glass can be turned into a snare or hi-hats; and ripping paper often makes interesting percussive shuffles. These kind of beats work especially well when producing downtempo, glitchy styles of music.
After finding suitable hits, it’s time to chop up the audio, then edit the sections using my DAW’s editing features. However, raw sounds like this often sound weaker than off-the-shelf beats from sample packs, which is where clever signal processing comes in. EQ, compression, creative effects and parallel treatments can all bring vanilla signals like this to life.