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Discover how to get started creating and recording music with Ableton Live 9 in just two hours. Author and musician Yeuda Ben-Atar starts this course by showing how to set up all audio, MIDI, and external plugins and prep an initial project for recording. Then he jumps into high gear: making beats with the Ableton drum kits, recording with the built-in virtual instruments, and capturing live performance like vocals and guitar. After your tracks are recorded, learn how to arrange song clips, layer in effects, create and record automation, and quickly mix the tracks with groups, busses, EQ, compression, and other techniques. The final chapter in the course shows you how to save, export, and master your finished song.
Producing music in the Session view is a very unique way of working because there is no timeline and we can mix and match different clips together. When working with the vocalist, you sometimes want to record using a linear workflow on a timeline. Let's switch between the two views using the Tab key. Ableton will still play from the Session view because we still didn't start arranging our song, and that will allow us to record as many takes as we need for the vocals. As you might already notice, the tracks are no longer vertical, but rather, horizontal.
We can find the same mixer control as we have in the Session view on the left of the track. They will be the same mixer controls as we see in the Session view, and they will correspond accordingly. Go ahead and hit Value and hit Delete. Let's go back to the Arrangement view. Let's open up the Inputs/Outputs using the view selectors to the right. Scroll down to our vocals track. I'm going to set external-in from the first dropdown menu, and then I plugged in my microphone to my audio interface through input number 2, so I'm going to set input number 2.
I'm going to record-enable the track. I can set the Monitor to Auto if I want to hear myself. But in this case, I don't want to hear myself, so I'm going to keep it on off. I'm going to hit the Stop button, just so the play bar will go back to the beginning. And once I hit the global record button, we'll start recording our vocals. I'll record 4 bars, let it play for 4 bar, and then record another 4 bar, and let it play for 4-bar, so total 16 bars. Let's do this. (music playing) I stop the recording using the spacebar.
Once we finish the recording, we'll see all the clips in the Session view recorded into the Arrangement view, but they are all grayed out. And that's because we are still playing them from the Session view. Now, we have a drumbeat, melody, guitar, and bass clips playing from the Session view, and the vocals are playing from the Arrangement view. We can see the vocals are enabled and all the other clips are disabled. Recording vocals in Ableton Live is straightforward and very similar to recording other instruments like guitar, bass guitar, and acoustic drums.
You can also record vocals in the Session view, but I find it to be more comfortable recording vocals on a timeline. Now that we have a drumbeat, bass, guitars, and vocals, we're almost ready to start arranging our song.
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