Easy-to-follow video tutorials help you learn software, creative, and business skills.Become a member
When you want to create a groove in Logic, you have a lot of choices. You can use an audio loop. You can use a MIDI loop and there's a powerful plug-in called Ultrabeat that lets you program your own beats. So I've set up a session here that uses the Ultrabeat plug-in. If you want to create this session on your own, go to File > New > Explore > Instruments and then delete all the tracks except Studio Tight Kit. That's how I got to where I am. Then change your master tempo to 100 beats a minute.
All right, so if we double-click on the word Ultrabeat over here in the Inspector, we launch the plug-in. Now, if your plug-in opened up to a bunch of knobs and buttons, just click on full view in the lower right-hand corner because that's the part we want to look at now. Well, there is some math involved here. What it has done is it's broken down a two- bar phrase into 32 separate little slices. That's the X coordinate. The Y coordinate is each individual piece of a drum kit.
So using this X/Y grid, you can tell if the tom is playing anything. It turns out that these toms aren't playing anything in this whole pattern. This closed hat is playing on the 4th, the 5th, the 9th, the 11th. It tells you which beats are playing. So blue lights means it's on, gray means it's off. So the kick is happening on 1 and 9, 15, 17 and 25. I think it would be clearer if I play this little groove and show you how it counts.
So, I'm going to hit the Spacebar and start the beat. (Drums playing) (Drums playing) Kick, kick, kick, kick, kick. Let's look at this closed hi-hat. (Drums playing) Here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here. Here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here.
If we want to add some snares, let's take them out. So let's put a crash cymbal in on the downbeat of the first bar and the downbeat of the second bar. That's number 1 and number 17. Let's listen. (Drums playing) All right, let's take the 17 out, just use the downbeat of one. (Drums playing) Let's put some tom toms in here at the end. [00:02:51.00 (Drums playing.) Now, I'm feeling like the toms are a little loud, so I'm going to click on Hi Tom 2 and use my mouse scroll wheel to lower the volume of Hi Tom 2.
Click on Hi Tom 1. Use my mouse scroll wheel to lower the volume of Hi Tom 1. Now we'll take a listen. (Drums playing) So they are not sticking out quite so much anymore. Let's do the same thing with Crash Cymbal 1, click on it, use my mouse scroll wheel to lower its volume, listening from the top. (Drums playing) Still a bit loud, click, scroll wheel, volume. (Drums playing) Let's take a look at another feature, the Swing parameter.
Now it's kind of subtle on this beat. So let's take a look at one of the other kits in Ultrabeat. Logic has broken them down by the musical style. So let's take a look at this Classic Techno Kit. We'll hit full view, so that we can look at where the beats occur and hit Spacebar to play it. Well, I'm hitting the Spacebar to play, but I'm not hearing sound. The power switch for the Ultrabeat sequencer isn't on. So once that's on, and I hit the Play button. (Drums playing) Let's put some tambourine in this part.
If I just click and I drag all the way across, I add notes on every single beat of it. (Drums playing) Now, let's adjust the Swing parameter. (Drums playing) I think you can hear the vertical nature of this one and then changing the Swing parameter back.
(Drums playing) So in this groove, you can really hear the difference in the Swing parameter. I can choose different patterns inside this Classic Techno Kit. I do that down here in the lower left-hand corner. I'm going to choose a different sequence for this pattern. (Drums playing) And I'll scroll through the next one.
(Drums playing) Now, let me put my tambourine back in here. Aha! Well, you see the problem with writing music with a mouse. Because I'm using my mouse to scroll, I've accidentally gone to the row below that. So I'll just click on a note and it disappears. If I keep holding down my mouse button and drag over the other already placed notes, they disappear.
I can also click where I have to, to get rid of any stray notes. Now, I'll just add the notes that I'm missing. Now I've got a complete line, from top to bottom. If you happen to stray down into a line below and erase what you meant to keep, or add what you meant not to keep, just do your editing with your mouse. Let's take a listen of what we have now. (Drums playing) Now, if you haven't done a lot of beat programming, thinking of music as 32 independent slices is probably not the most intuitive thing for you, but really, when you start working with this program, you start thinking of 1 as a downbeat, 9 as a downbeat, 17 as a downbeat, 25 as a downbeat, so that will start to become more intuitive the more you do it.
The open hat is really driving this and let's pull that down just so that you can hear that. So click on this and-- (Drums playing) And almost make it go away, just scrolling my mouse wheel. (Drums playing.) It seems like a good level. So not only can we change which notes play when, we can change the sounds too.
Let's stick with our open hat and we'll go down to the lower right-hand corner and change this full view to look at some filters that are available. So I'm adjusting the filters for the Open Hat here and let's just play the groove. (Drums playing) I'm just adding a little brightness to that Open Hat. (Drums playing) Or taking it away. (Drums playing) I sort of like it being brighter and you can apply these to any-- there's the Shaker.
You can adjust the Shaker. Now, we don't have any Shaker in this groove. We do have our tambourine. Let's see what we can do to that. (Drums playing) We'll just solo the tambourine. (Tambourine playing) Our sequence stopped.
Let's play it again. (Tambourine playing) So that gets a little brittle up there. That's just about right. Let's un-solo it, hear it in the groove. (Drums playing) Now that I changed the shape of the sound, of the open hat, it's poking out a little too much from the groove for me, so I'm going to use my mouse wheel, scroll it down, scroll its volume down just a little bit. Listen some more.
(Drums playing) Okay, I'm liking this. Now, I'm going to switch back to this groove, the basic groove. (Drums playing) I want to put some kick in here. (Drums playing) How about 1 and 9? Boom, boom-boom.
(Drums playing) So when you've got your grooves set, you're ready to bring it into your session. I'm going to move the Ultrabeat plug-in out of the way just a little bit. I want this to show up at beat 1 in my sequence. So I will hit 0 to take my playhead back to the beginning. There is a little grid right here next to the word Pattern, right next to the Sequence menu. Pick that up and drag it to your session. There is your MIDI for Ultrabeat.
Now, we can push this out of the way and take a look at the notes inside here. Actually, let's just play it and we can see the notes. (Drums playing) And then we can edit the MIDI, the duration of these notes, and the velocity of these notes like we can any other MIDI data. Ultrabeat's a great drum and percussion sequencer inside of Logic. Use it to make really cool grooves and really great music.
Get unlimited access to all courses for just $25/month.Become a member
73 Video lessons · 17875 Viewers
110 Video lessons · 10933 Viewers
130 Video lessons · 19172 Viewers
71 Video lessons · 14896 Viewers
Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.
Search within course videos and transcripts, and jump right to the results.
Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.
Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.
Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.