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Electronic Music Composition

Joe Ford Drum & Bass Masterclass – Frequently Asked Questions

Good news –

The Joe Ford Drum & Bass Masterclass opens for enrolment less than one week from now!

Thousands of people are getting pumped about this masterclass –  my inbox has been blowing up with questions

Here are the new details you’ll want to know:

  1. How will the Drum & Bass Masterclass be delivered?

Via five weekly LIVE web classes in a webinar room. You’ll see Joe’s computer screen and hear him teaching his newest techniques in real time, building a track from the ground up.

This video explains it pretty concisely:

  1. What are the advantages of a live web class?

You can get Joe’s insider secrets to your questions as he produces in front of your eyes. It’s like sitting in the studio with a world class producer while enjoying the comfort of your own home –  

No need to need to catch the bus to a studio or blow thousands to fly to the tropics of the UK…

You’ll have time to practice your new discoveries each week to solidify your skills. You’ll get feedback directly from Joe on how to improve your track in Week Five.

Even if you miss a session, or part of one, you’ll get your own download of the recording.


  1. How long will each live web class last?

Each session will be three hours long. There’ll be five live classes totalling 15 hours of live coaching.


  1. Who can enrol in this masterclass?

Anyone who takes action quickly when enrolment opens will be able to attend.

We have to be strict on group size so that each student has plenty of chances to ask questions to Joe Ford directly


  1. When are the sessions?

The first session starts on Sunday June 3rd at 6pm UK time. That’s 1pm Eastern, 10am Pacific.

Use this time converter to find out the time in your location.

There’ll be one web class every Sunday at the same time for five Sundays in total.


  1. What’s included with this Masterclass?
  • 15 hours of live coaching by Joe Ford
  • Ask questions, get answers
  • Recordings of each web class session (lifelong ownership)
  • The Ableton Live project file from each web class
  • Optional weekly assignments
  • Joe Ford’s personal critique of your track or work-in-progress in week five


  1. How do I enrol in the masterclass?

When enrolment opens, you’ll receive an email from me with a link to the course info page.

You can complete your order online using our secure web page.


  1. I don’t live in the UK. How do the videos work? Can I watch them back at a later time?

You’ll be able to download them to keep forever. You can watch them at your own pace on any device without an internet connection.


  1. Which Digital Audio Workstation will Joe Ford be teaching with?

Ableton Live 10. But if you use a different DAW, don’t let that stop you from discovering the best-kept secrets of a chart-topping pro.

Most DAWs these days are very powerful. You can do almost anything in any DAW that you can do with Ableton Live. So don’t worry.


  1. What other 3rd party synths will he be using?

Only the most commonly used ones – Serum and Massive.

Possibly some FabFilter plugins (Pro-Q 2 EQ unit, Pro-L limiter) and iZotope Trash 2.


  1. What skill level is this for?

Intermediate or advanced. If you’re a beginner, you’ll need to pay close attention to keep up.

It doesn’t matter how advanced you are – There are several very well known producers who can’t wait to attend this masterclass.

If you think you can’t learn anything new from a guy whose album has just smashed #1 on the BeatPort Drum & Bass Charts, this isn’t for you.


  1. Is this only suitable for Drum & Bass Producers?

It’s for anyone who loves bass heavy music. The techniques you’ll uncover can be used to produce many different styles and tempos of music.

Joe Ford’s recent #1 album Colours In Sound features tracks like Enemy, which is more similar to electronic hip hop or glitch hop than drum & bass.


  1. Do I have to do the weekly assignments?

Weekly assignments are optional – you can practice your new discoveries, or don’t.

You can send in anything you like to get feedback from Joe in week five – a 4-bar loop, a work-in-progress, or a completely finished track.

Put in as much or as little time as you like. The more effort you put in, the bigger results you’ll get from this.


  1. What if I miss part of a web class or I can’t attend a session?

You’ll get the recording of each live web class within 72 hours of it being recorded. You’ll also get that week’s project file to dissect.

You can learn at your own pace, even if you miss a live workshop or want to re-watch parts of it.

You’ll have lifelong access to all video recordings and all Ableton Live project files from each week’s web class.


  1. Is there a guarantee?

Yes. We guarantee you’ll uncover the newest ways to make cutting edge bass music from a chart-topping producer, which will change the way you make music forever.

If you’re not happy after the first session, you’ll have 72 hours to request a refund.


  1. Do I need a mic to ask questions to Joe?

No need for a microphone. You can ask questions via live chat box. All you need is a computer with an internet connection and a good pair of headphones or monitor speakers.


  1. Who this is for? Who is it not for?

This is for passionate producers and “aggressive learner” types who are serious about upping their game this year.

It’s not for “flakes” and “floozies” who aren’t really interested in making next-level music.  


  1. Is this masterclass sub-genre specific?

You’ll be witnessing Joe Ford’s unique style of drum and bass being made in front of your eyes.

Joe’s style transcends sub genres. It’s not going to be pure “neurofunk”, or super “jump-up”, or 100% “liquid funk”.

It’s gonna be the Joe Ford style of DnB, which conjures up influences from across the drum & bass spectrum and outside of it.


  1. How much will it cost to enrol?

To be revealed when enrolment opens. Stay tuned…


  1. Where can I see a detailed outline of the course syllabus?

The course outline can be found after you sign up for the Early Bird List here

I hope it helps you make an informed decision when the doors open.

Hope to see you in the masterclass!


P.S. Join the Early Bird List here so you can enrol early (places will limited)

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DAW Wars: Revenge Of The Synth

“What’s behind this analog synth craze?”

“What has analog got over great soft synths like Serum / Massive / Sylenth?”

These are questions I’ve been asked lately.

Just when the music software and DAW makers thought they had the market cornered, vintage analog synth makers have been coming back with a vengeance…

But WHY?

Here’s my 2¢ –

The electronics of early analog synths led to “flaws” such as –

Drifting tuning. Distortion. Noise. Subtle variations in waveshape, frequency, amplitude.

You may be thinking, “Those are all bad things,”

But in the right amounts, these “flaws” are the most attractive thing about analog synths –   

They add a natural ‘acoustic’ complexity.  

It’s pleasing to the human ear.  

Digital synths and soft synths erased all of the “flaws”…

But while digital is more precise, the lack of variation led to sterile and “cold” sounds.  

The cries of “too cold, too sterile” got louder,

But producers remembered the synth sounds of the past, and started buying second-hand synths from the 60s and 70s.

At first these forgotten synths were very cheap…

But as analog interest grew and scarcity of vintage synths went up, so did their pricetags…

Vintage synths that were cheap in the late 1980s are now worth thousands of buckaroos.

But Here’s The Good News –

If you don’t have thousands of buckaroos to invest in analog gear, fear ye not –

Your boy Lukavich BassGovski has you covered –

There are certain “tweaks” you can make to many soft synths that will give them that analog warmth…

But only if you know how to “warm them up”…

The sound design and synthesis courses in our member’s area will reveal exactly how to do that, and…

Right now there’s a no-obligations trial, but it’s ending very soon.

Details can be found here →

Until next time young Padowan,


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7 Habits Of Successful Producers

Ever wonder how some producers can be so damn “prolific”?

I bet you know a producer who’s always smashing out new tracks, collabing, touring and sharing new stuff with the world…

Here are 7 secret habits they use to consistently achieve such monumental feats:

7. They’re Proactive AF

This type of producer knows the importance of “G.S.D.” – Getting s%&t done!

6. They begin with the end in mind

This producer never starts any new song, new EP, new album, new project until they’ve clearly visualized the end goal.

5. They focus and prioritize ruthlessly

Don’t try to be the “checklist task master”…

Some things are more important and urgent than others. If anything isn’t important, forget about it. If it’s not urgent, do it mañana, mi amigo!

4. They collaborate with other producers

Whether it’s remixing another producer’s track, or collabing with other artists, they’re always teaming up (think about how prolific Mr. Bill is at this).

3. They look after their health

They eat right. They exercise. They get enough rest. They value having emotional balance. They don’t let things stress them out too much.

2. They keep their minds stimulated

Inspiration can come from anywhere. But you have to keep your mind open. Books, art museums, movies, cartoons, comics, weird music, stories are all good sources.

1. They’re constantly “sharpening the saw”

They’re always studying their craft and learning new techniques, new styles, new ways, new approaches – for everything!

From unusual little edits to new soundscapes and textures. From chord changes to bass filter movements…

If you need a convenient source of knowledge, wisdom and inspiration, that you can access from any device 24/7,

you’ll see exactly how world class artists are finding inspiration to create new music in the BassGorilla members area

Our latest courses can be found here –>

That’s all for aujourd’hui, mon ami.


P.S. We just released two new start to finish courses – a liquid drum & bass course and an IDM Glitch course. And they’re both waiting for your viewing pleasure here.

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How To Complete Songs (& Why You Aren’t)

Many producers aren’t sure how to complete songs.

Have you experienced this?

“Luke, how can I complete more songs? My hard drive is full of unfinished tracks just gathering dust…”

I get questions like this all the time from producers all over the world.

(Interestingly, our members who have taken our start to finish courses don’t seem to have this problem so much)

Here are some of the biggest reasons why producers aren’t finishing enough tracks

(are you guilty of any of these too?)

1. Not removing distractions (Flakebook, turning off their WiFi connection and cell phone, etc.)

2. Not mapping out the song structure in their DAW so they know what sections are needed

3. Not knowing how to write a solid B-section that matches their A-section

4. Getting stuck and spending too much time trying to fix small things (like tweaking a hi hat for three hours)

5. Not breaking up the production workflow (sound design then songwriting)

6. Not starting out with a well thought out musical idea

7. Giving up too soon without experimenting and exploring new ideas for a track

8. Not taking enough breaks, leading to ear fatigue and boredom of hearing the same loop play over and over a gajillion times

9. Not bothering to work on the finishing touches that make a track sound complete (fills, edits, transitions, FX)

10. Not dedicating enough time for producing or learning how to produce properly

If you struggle to complete tracks, our start to finish courses can help you uncover the exact workflows and methods that A-list producers are using to write chart smashing tracks step by step.

We just released a new Liquid Drum & Bass start to finish course in the members area today too.

All courses can be seen here

Related video:

10 Reasons Why Producers Aren’t Completing Tracks



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Are You Making These Music Production Mistakes?

No matter how advanced you are at music production, there are common music production mistakes that every producer makes…

Are you making any of these music production mistakes?

1. Trying to produce a track without having any strong musical ideas

2. Focusing too much on sound design instead of songwriting

3. Now organizing your DAW, files and workflow to make life easier for yourself

4. Writing arrangements that are too crowded with different sounds that have clashing frequencies, making it almost impossible to create a solid mixdown

5. Applying effects using plug-ins without knowing how to properly use them

6. Not making use of the stereo field to have each sound sit in its own space (or making your mixes too wide)

7. Applying too much processing on the master channel instead of fixing each issue individually in the mix

8. Not taking enough breaks to rest your ears (and your mind)

9. Not backing up your projects in at least three locations (I save every project in two cloud folders, one external hard drive and on my computer)

10. Over compressing, over limiting and over EQing your sounds, making them feel unnatural

11. Not investing enough time to get better at producing because they prioritize other things

12. Giving up on a track too soon before exploring new musical ideas for different sections and layers

13. Using poor quality audio material (never sample an MP3!)

14. Using untuned or out of key samples because they don’t have a firm grasp of basic music theory

15. Mixing with a muddy low end

16. Not getting to know your sub genre inside out (if you don’t know it well enough, how can you expect to create music that pushes that sub genre forward in new directions?)

I could go on, but then I’d be guilty of music production mistake #11 (spending too much time on other things than producing).

Talk soon,

P.S. If you’re making any of these mistakes, you can find out how numerous A-list producers are solving each of these problems to create musical masterpieces.

The no-obligations invitation to start your trial is still open, but we don’t know for how much longer…

Details can be found here

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The #1 Reason Why Producers Plateau

I was first introduced to Ableton Live back in 2001 by my good friend Dan.

We used to spend hours in his home studio making tunes night after night.

I’d been making music for about five years in my AKAI sampler and Propellerheads Reason.

Dan was completely new to making music inside the computer.

But what I loved about producing with Dan was his passion as we got to grips with Ableton Live every night.

Even though he was new to making electronic music, Dan’s skills jumped by leaps and bounds every single night.

Within a few months, we knew our way around Ableton inside and out.

We could design fairly decent sounds, compose and arrange sequences and layer them into sections of a track, then write each section of the song structure to produce a full song.

But as time went by, our music (and our skills) started to plateau.

Sure, we could write tracks, but they weren’t sounding like label-worthy masterpieces.

As our skills plateaud further, I noticed that Dan’s passion also started to drift off.

He wasn’t as excited about producing new tunes like he used to be.

And then one day it hit me –

When you’re brand new, your skills are so limited that figuring out how to do anything creates a major step forward in your skills

(Remember the first time you mapped an LFO to a synth parameter to make the sound move? Felt like magic right?)

But as you figure out the basics and settle in to your own habits, those habits become extremely hard to break out of to propel yourself to that next level.

Unless you’re constantly being exposed to new methods and ideas, you’ll eventually run out of steam and become a sitting duck stuck in the water. 

Sure, there’s YouTube tutorials, but 99% of them are being pumped out by bedroom producers who aren’t much better than you (and many of them are probably worse than you!).

And if you’re learning from people at the same level as you, how can you expect to grow?

It wasn’t until I quit my job, moved to a completely new country and dedicated an entire year to working on my music that my skills started to accelerate to new levels.

That was one year before I started BassGorilla. It was also the year I got signed by a label for the first time and got featured on BeatPort.

From there I started interviewing tons of A-list producers for the BassGorilla podcast. Any money I made was reinvested into hiring these A-list producers to share their secrets with our audience. And that’s how BassGorilla’s Full Access Pass was born five years ago.

Since then, dozens of our members have been signed by labels, won remix contests, got paychecks for making music for film and television and even had their music played by big producers at festivals around the world.

Coincidentally, I met up with Dan recently. He has a wife and a baby now.

He told me that even though he’s happy, he often regrets not chasing his dreams of producing music. But there’s no going back for him now…

Here endeth the lesson.


P.S. If you feel like your skills have plateaued and you need a fuel injection of high octane knowledge to break out from your current skill level, the time to give us a shot is now.

We’re running a no obligations trial right now, but it could end at any moment.

Details can be found here

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How To Build Atmosphere With Killabyte

Do your song intros lack atmosphere and sound empty?

In today’s sneak preview from the BassGorilla Full Access Pass courses, Killabyte reveals some killer techniques to build atmosphere in your tracks.

Watch Killabyte building atmosphere in the video below.

You’ll notice that many of the sounds he adds to the intro are very subtle – most listeners wouldn’t even notice them.

But they bring the track to life so much! Your song instantly becomes this living, breathing organism.

[This is a sneak preview from the BassGorilla Full Access Pass member’s area].

Enrolment to the Full Access Pass is opening soon. Join the Early Bird List to see more sneak previews like this tutorial.

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15 Minute Track Challenge With Harvey From Ekcle

Watch the masterful Harvey from Ekcle create a brilliant track in this 15 Minute Track Challenge video below!

15 Minute Track Challenges are a new section of tutorials in the BassGorilla members area. They give you tons of ideas that will spark your creativity and help you to get into a highly productive flow for getting new musical ideas from your brain into your DAW.

Harvey is one half of the Inspected Records signed duo Ekcle from the UK. Keep an eye out for big things from Ekcle this year!

Big New From BassGorilla – 

If you’re an aggressive learner who’s serious about boosting your music production skills, you’ll be excited to know that enrolment to the Full Access Pass is opening soon. Join the Early Bird List to see more sneak previews like this tutorial.

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Ableton Live 10 Shortcuts Tips And Tricks [HUGE List!]

If you are looking for Ableton Live 10 shortcuts, tips And tricks then you’ve come to the right place.

We’ve put together an ultimate list of shortcuts for Live 10, along with some helpful tips and tricks and seven useful videos near the end of this post.

Ableton Live 10 is one of the best Digital Audio Workstations (DAWs) available online.

It has countless great features that give you complete control over your music. We know it can take a long time to master all the tools in Ableton, which is why we made this list of helpful shortcuts.

Whether you are a beginner or a pro, these Ableton Live 10 shortcuts, tips, and tricks will save you time and frustration.

That way you can keep making great music without the hassle of switching screens to lookup how to perform a certain action.

Want free resources for producing electronic music? Grab all our free downloads here

Ableton Live 10 Shortcuts – Keyboard Wizardry

These Ableton Live 10 shortcuts are awesome for multiple reasons –

First of all, they save you from having to point and click and take less than a second to push.

Secondly, they stop you from losing valuable time and energy to edit your sounds and switch between different views in the DAW.

Switch to Full Screen:
Windows – F 11
Mac – CTRL – CMD – F

Jump to Second Window
Windows – CTRL – Shift – W
Mac – CMD – Shift – W

Switch Between Sessions
Windows – Tab
Mac – Tab

Change Devices
Windows – Shift – Tab
Mac – Shift – Tab

Open or Close Detailed View
Windows – CTRL – ALT – L
Mac – CMD – ALT – L

Change to Hot-Swap Mode
Windows – Q
Mac – Q

Change to Drum Rack
Windows – D
Mac – D

Open or Close Info View
Windows – Shift – ?
Mac – Shift – ?

Bring Up Video Window
Windows – CTRL – ALT – V
Mac – CTRL – ALT – V

Open or Close Browser
Windows – CTRL – ALT – B
Mac – CTRL – ALT – B

Show or Hide Overview
Windows – CTRL – ALT – O
Mac – CMD – ALT – O

Hide or Show Sends
Windows – CTRL – ALT – S
Mac – CMD – ALT – S

Open or Close Mixer
Windows – CTRL – ALT – M
Mac – CMD – ALT – M

Pull Up Preferences
Windows – CTRL- ,
Mac – CMD – ,

Close Active Window
Windows – Esc
Mac – Esc

Enable of Disable Almost Everything (Clips, Devices, Tracks, etc…) with One Numpad Key
Windows – 0
Mac – 0

Hide Returns to Save Screen Space
Windows – CTRL – ALT – R
Mac – CMD – ALT – R

Open or Hide I/O Window
Windows – CTRL – ALT – I
Mac – CMD – ALT – I

Ableton Live 10 Quick Editing Tips

These tips will help you stay in the groove without having to spend time opening context menus or searching for a basic tool.

Tip #1 – Quick Save
Saving your project often is important to avoid losing any of your hard work. To save everything quickly, simply press CTRL – S on your keyboard (CMD – S for Mac).

Tip #2 – Double or Halve a Loop
To quickly double or halve the length of a loop, you can press CTRL – ↑ or ↓ on your keyboard (CMD – ↑ or ↓ if you’re on a Mac).

Tip #3 – Play Only the Active Selection
Sometimes you want to play only a single part of your track while editing.

To do this, you can select the part you want to hear and press ALT – Spacebar on your keyboard. Only the selected portion of the track will play.

Tip #4 – Quickly Resume Playback
To quickly resume playback of your track without the mouse, you can press Shift – Spacebar.

Tip #5 – Finely Move MIDI Tracks and Parameters
Adjusting a MIDI track so it lines up just the way you want can be difficult.

To make it so it only moves in very fine increments, press and hold CTRL while you drag it with your cursor. This same trick works when adjusting parameters.

Tip #6 – Delete Time
While editing you may have to delete a chunk of time. To do this quick, you can press CTRL – Shift – Delete (CMD – Shift – Delete if you’re using a Mac).

Tip #7 – Quickly Resize the Current Grid
Many times, you’ll want to resize the grid you are using. To do this on the fly, hold CTRL (CMD on Mac) and press a number from 1 through 4 on the keypad.

Tip #8 – Toggle Draw Mode when Editing MIDIs
When making music, you’ll be working a lot with MIDIs. To quickly toggle draw mode while editing a MIDI, simply press B on your keyboard.

Ableton Live 10 Shortcuts – More Tricks

Ableton is a massive music editing program. It takes a long time to get a firm grasp on all the various tools.

Knowing some tricks can make your time editing tracks a lot simpler.

So below you’ll find this list of links to useful videos.

They will show you how to master the same tricks used by well versed Ableton users, Certified Ableton Trainers and professional producers using Ableton Live 10.

10 Ableton Tricks and Tips
Top 10 Audio Effect Tricks with k-pizza
10 Ableton Tips, Tricks & Strategies by Seri
8 MIDI Effect Tips & Tricks in Ableton
10 Tips To Help You Master Live’s Drum Rack
Ableton Tutorial: Automation Line Tricks & Tips
Ableton Live Tips and Tricks – Deleting and Duplicating Time
Tips & Tricks: Ableton Live Automation
11 Ableton Tips Every Producer Should Know
10 Ableton Live Tips You Can’t Afford to Miss

Ableton Live 10 Shortcuts – Videos

If you’re interested to see how Ableton shortcuts work in action, or if you prefer a more visual way of learning them, then videos are a great resource.

We’ve put together a list of YouTube videos that will show and teach you a lot of cool and helpful shortcuts.

Ableton Live 10 – Top 10 New Features And Shortcuts

Live 10: Arrangement View Keyboard Shortcuts

Live 10: General Keyboard Shortcuts

The 20 Essential Ableton Shortcuts

10 Ableton Workflow Tips And Shortcuts

Ableton Live – Top Ten Shortcuts

Ableton Live – 10 Keyboard Shortcuts You Should Know

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BassGorilla Is Closing. Here’s Why.

You may know that we just finished our 5th Year Anniversary Remix Contest. We released the stems of finished tracks from three of our courses – a neuro dubstep track by Joe Ford, a future bass track by Killabyte and a glitch hop track by Slynk.

A shortlist of top entries will be announced in the next 24 to 48 hours, and the official winners will be announced on Monday 11th December. Prizes include a Moog Sub Phatty, Maschine Mikro, SubPac S2, and premium software tools from iZotope and FabFilter.


The last five years have been an amazing journey, but after careful consideration we’ve decided to close BassGorilla for the foreseeable future. Watch the video below to find out why.

If you’re surprised by this news and worried about missing out on the very best BassGorilla has to offer, there is some VERY good news – watch the video to find out more.

(After you watch this video, click here to find out how you can take advantage of this opportunity before we close)


Full details here:

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