Ableton Live is still a great tool for live performance, as its name suggests. Here are eight pro tips for getting the most out of it in performance situations.  

Getting Started: Build Your Framework

Basic categories created, one per track, in the session view.
Tracks populated with Scenes colored and titled according to the songs they contain.

Tip 1: Simplify Navigation With Group Tracks

Drum Loops and Mid Percussion grouped to Drums, Bass Lines and another Sub track grouped to Low End – all fitting within the 8 by 8 Push 2 launch grid.

Tip 2: Expand Your Possibilities With Launch Quantization

Setting the Global Launch Quantization.

Tip 3: Legato Mode For Beat Juggling

Setting a Clip’s Launch Quantization independently; the Clip Legato button is hidden behind the selection menu pictured here.

Tip 4: Use Crossfader Assignments For Easy Change-Ups

Selecting the Fast Cut curve setting from the Crossfader’s right-click context menu, with Kicks assigned to the left and drums assigned to the right.

Tip 5: Program Tempo Changes Via Scenes

BPM changes programmed into the BUILDER Scene, confirmed by the Scene’s orange play trigger.

Tip 6: Let Your Clips Play Uninterrupted

Empty Clip slot with Stop button removed below the Drone Clip.

Tip 7: Automatically Switch Between Instrument Patches On The Same MIDI Track

Two different MIDI Clips with different Program Change settings to trigger a different preset patch; you may have to do some homework to find the right patch ID numbers.
Configuring the Instrument Rack Chain Selector.
MIDI Clips with Instrument Rack Chain Selector modulation programmed in.

Tip 8: Easily Build New Scenes From Currently Playing Clip Combos

The Capture and Insert Scene command in the Create menu.
Learn more Ableton Live tips, tricks & techniques in the Ask Audio Academy here.  

Noah Pred is a Canadian record producer, sound designer, technologist, DJ, and Ableton Certified Trainer living in Berlin, Germany. Releasing dozens of records and touring extensively since the '90s, he currently teaches a wide variety of techniques for stage and studio at the BIMM Institute. For more information, please visit: http://... Read More


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