Apart from learning how your DAW of choice works, one of the biggest challenges for any dance music producer is working out how to design unique and cool sounds. Sure, you can use the presets that come with your synths and effects, but it's much better to make your own sounds - it's the only way to get a signature sound for yourself and make your tracks sound really unique.
In this short video from the course Live 9 302: Designing Sounds for Dance Music, expert producer Olav Basoski gets to grips with the task of building a deep bass patch from scratch. He does this using Live's Analog synth, but the principles can be applied to any soft synth so you're covered even if you don't use Live.
Live 9 302: Designing Sounds for Dance Music
Starting with a sawtooth wave, Olav pitches the oscillator down by an octave and shortens the release time to make it nice and punchy. He also filters the sound with a tight lowpass filter to remove the upper frequencies. Adding a second oscillator that uses a sine wave, he quickly blends the two signals to produce a nice fat low end that can be used, amongst other things, to add weight to an existing bass part by shadowing it, but without being high up in the mix. Check out the rest of this course for a complete expert guide to designing sound for dance music!