5 Ways to make MORE INTERESTING lofi beats
Have you ever made a beat in a burst of inspiration, only to find it sounds disappointingly flat the next day?
That happened to me recently. Luckily I manged to turn my beat into something that I love (even the next day) in a few simple steps.
I'm sharing these steps with you in this tutorial :)
5 Ways to make MORE INTERESTING Lo-Fi Beats
1) Make a Custom Intro
A lot of beats just start and then loop the whole way through. One way to make your beat stand out is to make a custom intro.
A custom intro can set up the tone and vibe of your song before the beat even drops. It also allows you to tell a unique story with your beat, which immediately makes it more interesting.
How do you make a custom intro?
You can either compose a unique custom intro from scratch, OR you can use a longer part of your sample without adding any extra drums.
If you want to use MIDI to compose your own intro from scratch, this next tip is for you:
2) Make your MIDI sound human
With the exception of some genres where you want very electronic and robotic sounds, you want to pay close attention to how your midi sounds.
The best way to make your MIDI sound human, is to actually play the notes into your computer, using a velocity sensitive controller.
I usually use my digital piano to record myself playing jazzy chords and melodies.
If you don’t play jazz piano but want that human sound, you can get my MIDI and LOOPS lofi jazz piano chords.
3) Build tension between sections
If your beat just goes from one section to another with no extra fillers, it can sound really unexciting and monotonous. See the video at 2:28 for before and after.
By adding a reverse cymbal, some delay on the reversed keys, and a drum fill pattern I ramped up the energy in the song before the beat dropped, making the change that much more significant.
One word of caution: Get creative with your transitions. If you use a reverse cymbal at each new section your beat is going to sound repetitive again, which is exactly what we’re trying to avoid.
4) Give your bass its own melody
Another way to avoid sounding repetitive is to give your bass its own melody.
This is a great way to capture interest in otherwise dull or boring parts of your beat.
For instance, have a listen to this before and after at 3:20.
In the first clip I let the bass ring on the long chord. In the second clip, I used that otherwise empty stretch of time as an opportunity to shine some light on the bass. Adding melodic movement here not only made the bass line more interesting, but it added interest to the whole music phrase.
5) Use brushes to create ambienceA lot of sampled lofi beats have this warm ambience that people try to emulate by adding vinyl crackle. However, what is often overlooked is that fact that the warm ambience was partly created by the drummer of the original sample by using brushes on his drum kit.
So why not use brushes on a separate drum kit to give your tune that chill jazzy feel?
And, after applying all these tips and doing a bit of editing, here is the final result:
But that is it for today's blog.
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~lil miss beats