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Making & Using Drum Samples

Lesson 2 of 15

Introduction and Overview

Sam Pura

Making & Using Drum Samples

Sam Pura

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Lesson Info

2. Introduction and Overview

Lesson Info

Introduction and Overview

Today I'm going to be talking about trump samples and we're gonna talk about making and using germ samples that's one of the coolest things that I like to dio drums are the foundation of any recording you do not have a good recording unless you have a great trump sound so that's the entire topic in theme of today how to make really good drum sounds once you get really good drum sounds we want to talk about how to make them into samples so we can use those with our drums in the mix and or on other drums later down the line and those mixes so let's get it started here who am I? I'm sam pura on the owner and audio engineer at the panda studios I started panda studios in two thousand three I was about eighteen years old started in my bedroom at my mom's house and from there I went to a college called the d a which is expressions digital call or expressions college for digital art basically I got a b s bachelor of applied science and uh sound sound art so I spent three years during that the...

n after that I went immediately into aa recording as many of my friends fans and uh any band possible basically tio make some sort of career out of it and fortunately I've been able to be due to you makes records every day of my life now so that's awesome some material that I recorded some popular material, this bank, all the story so far under solitary was probably my first really big pop punk record that pave the way for a few other albums that have done sense. State champs is another new pop punk band, but those bands are warped tour currently, and I produced engineer to mix both those records. Also originally, I started out doing a bunch of heavy metal and hard core stuff. Spanned, suffocate and lionheart were two of my other big clients. Those kind of defined my heavy drum sound and my heavy raw production and aesthetic. So the last new album, actually devin the dude he played in trash back to the south. He plays in this band called meyer and long as well and that's how I met him and I just produced that album just came out last week and I would highly recommend checking it out. It's one hundred percent real drums now. Samples nothing really no weak, you know, compression. Anything on it's, really? Rajaram zone. And devin is great drummer. So that's, the material recorded where you have a court audio. We talked about a little bit it's called the panda studios. It's, located in fremont of california, fremont is basically twenty minutes from oakland, twenty minutes from san jose, said a good spot in the bay area. All the freeways are really accessible, so if you're ever in the bay area, you have to hit me up and let's be best friends because you can always come by hang out with us, basically that I've had six locations. The one right now is our six. I built it in two thousand nine it's the first location that I actually moved in, set up completely blank space, and we built absolutely everything in there. So I got some really cool pictures of the studio to show you that's uh, me and my assistant ryan. There he's a cute looking guy, there's my control room with my awesome new desk there's some compressors, mike, that we build and preempts my awesome drum room down here. One of really cool things about my drum is try umbrella. We'll get really into that because that's some really cool, complicated stuff. Also my best friend, dalton he's, my facilities manager. He makes a lot of gary keeps the place clean. But those guys I work with and it's a great team to be a part of every day, so basically at my studio, we have a few main rooms on dh recorded drums and two of them to be able to demonstrate the differences and sounds, so I'll talk to you a little bit about the rooms. Panda west is the original panda studios, where our studios a two studio location, so we have to control rooms to live rooms. Teo one shared isa, beth and it's just basically a big recording complex. It's not too different, studios logical get confused because we call it west in east, so people think it's in new york or something, but it's only because we don't want to call it studio b your studio because one is not better than the other, the both really cool studios. So basically, the other really cool thing is that we have a big ice, a booth, so any time we're recording live bands, I can put guitar amps and isil booth and have completely complete isolation from trump's. So we're really big about recording live bands all the time and trying to get a live aesthetic so that's where the cool of the other awesome thing that we'll get into later is. I have a really big warehouse where we build a lot of gear, but we also do crazy experimenting in there we'll set up mikes and they will set up accused guitars and their gang vocals it's basically like a river of chamber, so that has a lot of ah cool aspects to it. So moving on if you ever want to follow me and or get in contact with me, you go to the panel studios dot com that's our website and if you ever want to see all these cool photos and updates of cool stuff I do on a daily basis, follow me at instagram or twitter or whatever sam here and also the studio is the panda studios, so nothing that information let's get on with this so I'm gonna just give up briefly talk about today's format and what we're going to go over, we're gonna have three breaks, so before our first break, we're going to talk all about drum samples, drum sounds, history of it, the signal flow, the tune of them how we make our drums sound good and why we're sampling our second format is going to be all about actually setting up microphones on the drums, preparing them to actually be recorded, and then we're going to show some recordings of all these tremors or some videos of these germans recording from there we'll get into segment three where are all about a pro tools and I'll show you how to edit all this stuff start exporting samples naming them all that lastly I'll get really creative and we'll start blending samples will start printing them I'll show you how to work with ease and mix and then we'll have a lot of q and a it will be best friends with everybody yes, any questions so far you're all right you're doing awesome great great I'm excited about yeah well let's get into it drum samples and drum sounds one along basically what are samples were referred to the words samples what's happening so the actual definition of sampling is that sampling is the act of taking a portion or a sample of one sound and re using it as an instrument or sound recording in a different song earpiece cool so most frame this way of sampling is in hip hop is would take drumbeats or whatever record that into their selling and use that so that's how sampling kind of began but then we started getting into the act of taking trump sounds and using those samples of other recordings instead to replace our drums. So what is drum sampling so jump sampling is in modern music production, drum replacement and or sampling is the practice of an engineer producer recording a live drummer and replacing or adding to the sound of a particular drum with a pre recorded sample cool. So with that there's a couple of words that I'm going to use all day today sampling triggers replacement it's all the exact same thing we're talking about us using a drum sample in conjunction with the drum sound cool. So what are some jump sandler's first this drum sandler was created in nineteen seventy it's called the wendell it was created by the student roger nichols who engineered all the steely dan stuff he actually debuted this on the steely dan album gaucho specifically the song hey nineteen so when you listen to that song it's all one hundred percent fake replace drums so that was happening in the seventies right after that I knew synthesizer called the fair light came out and this was like the longest running sampler one of the most infamous users of this was this guy named mike shipley who worked with a big producer named mutt lane and so they did death leopard together and like that drum sound is like the sound of modern rock and modern middle production today so that that entire trump sound kind of defined the larger than life drums that people are trying to achieve these days and no one really knew it was drug samples at the time but now that we know that we can utilize that education and bring it into our germs so after that when pro tools was developed this was a really big play and it's called sounding place is one that I when I first got into actually recording things this is the first plugging that I used to actually replace sounds musical plugging you basically uh highlight your entire way form you choose your trigger points and then you choose your sample that you want to put instead and replace that it would spin it out for you and that was the original way of doing it but the problem with that is that it wasn't really that accurate wasn't great so a couple of new companies can't along drama god was one of the first ones to bring in this really cool library and the ability to blend your samples and she was more dynamics as in if you have a drummer who's hitting with inconsistent velocities you would be able to use this and help restore some impact and things of that sort with using journal god general was one of the really cool handy one's got a big library in browser so you can adjust in different sounds and then a new company that where we're going to talk about all today slight trigger students late he invented this and basically it's the better than version of demagogue and it's what I used today and it's what we're gonna talk about all day so I'm possum why do we use drum samples? Why do I use drug samples basically when when we're working with any client and any van, you have to sit them down and you have to understand what sounds there go for our they rock then or their metal dan? Are they punk band what's happened? Trump sounds they're going for so lots of the reasons that we immediately want to rely on samples is because we're chasing our artist's vision and we're trying to emulate records that they listen to. So for example, if we're listening to death leverage drums and we have a drummer who's planet drum set and he goes, how come my drums don't sound like def leppard? We know the obvious because we aren't using samples as well. So in order for us to achieve your vision of sounding like def leppard, we're going to need to use some samples and try to experiment with that so I could help emulate these records that we're trying to do and I can chase your vision. The other reason I use it is to reinforce and to create impact and or ambience and what I mean by this is that any time that someone has a snare drum you want to be really thick you want to have a lot of attack, you want to be perfect sense you want to have a full image of that snare jim consistently so people will rely on tools like compression or e q and things like that however, there's some downsides to every single tool and what I find is a big downside with depression and q is the ability to start bringing in introducing more of your external bleed that you're hearing these microphones. So if I'm trying tio make this snare drum sound like it's being hit harder and I compress it, maybe it's going to bring the high hat into more focus and then I'm gonna be accused of brightness orson bottom but it's bringing the kick in as well. So it's going to kind of complicate things that's where we immediately want to rely on a drum sample? We're not using the sample to replace the sound we're using it to reinforce and to create impact with our drone it's not and that's that's one of the biggest common misconceptions of samples in general, lots of people, they think that they're trump sound is bad, so therefore they immediately go. I need to replace my snare with a sample, but that's not what we're trying to do and that's not what I want to talk about. I want to talk about reinforcing your drum sound with samples and how to bring and how to be aware that the drugs that you have sound grade and we just need a little bit of tweaking to make them perfect so sam what's the advantage of reinforcing verses replacing because for anybody who's been watching that's like records, their drums and it just sounds terrible, they don't have the money for the microphones in the drum room and all that set there like it would be easier just to replace everything, um, what's the advantage of not being keeping what they have and just adding to it. The biggest advantage is that this is we're kind of going into morals here, I guess, but for me, as a producer, I'm trying to capture my artist and I'm not trying, and I want to capture them as best as possible, and I want to utilize my tools toe augment their performance to be what it needs to be. So at the end of the day, I don't want tio say that snare drum that I spent four days on working out, we're just going to throw it to the side and I'm gonna instead just use this sample and it's going to be one hundred percent this sample that you hear and not the real snare ever, I don't think that that sounds and natural and I don't think it achieves it doesn't achieve it's, not it's, not why we use samples essentially, you're not using samples like like I haven't based on the bottom here, why do we use drum samples? Fear that's the worst reason to use a sample? Because you're like I'm afraid of my drum sound I don't like my kick, I don't like my snare so let's open up samples and let's replace them with this person sound or this person sent it's not really going toe yield the best results what's going to yield the best result is you creating your own samples and blending them into your drum sound because they're going to sound more natural because I'm going to sound like your drum sound. So just to kind of touch on what you're saying like and don't ever be afraid of your sound like we're all artists were all different, we all have different likes sound is subjective, the way something sounds to me sounds totally different data to you and that's why this is an art, you know you can tweak and you can make your sounds however you want, and I could do so as well, and at the end we have two different representations that are both art, so I wouldn't say don't replace drums. But I would say the real lesson that I'm trying to teach today is how to actually captured great serum sounds I'm going to help you learn and understand how to make your trump sound better. And I'm going to help you understand how to utilize and rely on samples tio achieve and emulate the records in the vision that your artists and clients wanting to cool work. So then the other I'll touch on the last few things, and we'll move on. Basically, the other three reasons that I use sample samples is teo, as we said, to reinforce and creating backto entering ambience, the ambiance thing we can also get into, like a lot of times, people think that when you're using samples, it's just going to be a close mike of snare, I find that room samples sounds really good because I like my close mike on the snare, if anything, I'm trying to do things like bring up the room microphones, but when I do, I have way too much symbols in it or kick drum or something. All I want is more, and he had some nice nair so why not blending a ambience sample? Right? Make sense. So I'll show you how to do that, but basically that's that's another huge reason I using the other really cool things that you could do with it, is that when you do make your triggers, you can send us to a river. To just on lee dr river or you can send them to like a gate to open up and close under stare so that way your gate isn't misfiring it's not being opened by a high hat or anything else that's on lee being opened by a sample so that's another really cool use of samples the other really big one is just tow limit bleed it's that simple you got a lot of you got kicked around tom's everything else is living in each mike so if you can blend in a little bit of your original track into that, you can eliminate a little bit of plead and you don't lose theory urschel source cool super cool all right, so we talked a little bit about vision, artist's vision and stuff like that. I just want to reference and talk about some drum sounds that I commonly have to reference, so I would say that most drum sounds can fall within this entire category. Basically someone wants really close dead quick and felt the drums they're probably referencing some sort of motown e sounding record right? I want to be by that is like let's say you got a band like fits in this hand terms and they're obviously want to sound like motown or if you get before thompson was going to be a motown dan, you're not going tio use drum samples on them and or you're not going to try to make you not going to use all these weird tools to make this natural drum sound and or you don't have the ability to make natural drum sounds like that, but you do have some really cool sounding motown samples to blend into your thing so it's, just what I'm trying to say with this entire aspect is you need to understand what trump sounds you're referencing when your clients are saying we want our records to sound like this great so when you're listening to it doesn't sound like it's got a bunch of roomie drums, well, maybe you're kind of listening to some u k style john bottom stuff, maybe they're like want to be a big job ahead of super big roomy? Or maybe they're like now, man, I want to sound exactly like blink one eighty two well, blink one eighty two is falls within the ela sound because it's a little too good to be true it's, glassy and it's really hyper produced, probably haven't we sampled so basically just kind of quickly go down the list really? All the drum sounds kind of start with motown because motown influenced the beatles they were influencing all the news in the uk were like, how is this bottom and happening on these records that's the type of sound that I want so as that as trump sounds kind of progressed the uk guys being like led zeppelin and who all those engineers started getting really big roomy drum sounds and then that translated in to new york when we had a lot of people recording in new york all those sounds of really true to the source they're very natural very organic a good example would be let's say any like seattle indie band they're probably following in new york kind of sound more true to the original but a very good sound but artistic it has some cool space and cool towns nashville they have the best snare towns ever any drum sound they have all that matters is that snare town if you hear the biggest pop and samir it's probably some sort of country hit you know just like about like biggest most best in their town ever so then we get into the l a sound which is very like I said glossy it's too good to be true because it is it's simple a lot of samples being blending in with the kicking snare I grew up listening to lots of records so when I started making records I was like one of my drum so they've been glassy what's going on and then I had to start doing some investigation read about these engineers like chris lord algae then growth lots of these dudes who rely on kicking snare samples to create their sounds side note way talked a little bit about replacing the funny thing about chris sort algae is that any time any time makes us no matter who the band is not of through the engineers that kicked room is getting turned all the way down and replaced with the sample and sounds so weird that would like they got multi millions of dollars of recording is happening but that's his sound that's what people are going to end is there referencing those records and that's part of history. So if you ever have the ability to listen to green day or chris daughtry or anything like that, pay close attention that cake troubling how fake it is the whole time and how you don't really notice it because it's just supposed to sit in the knicks and support the snare and the tops so that's a really interesting thing with that, I would say that the sound really influenced metal modern metal production today, which is super super glossy super compressed super apology just lot very cliquey lots of like attack on the kicked around lots of attack on the snare big dudes like any snap and called richardson are probably the big dudes to listen to you for those type of sounds, then we get into a reagan, which is not really commonly having but I do records and ready idea too put on some lairson bob marley. Or three eleven and just like, I want that snare town, it's, like, all right, we're going to get a really small stare, and we're going to need to crank that thing as high as we can to get that. Um, so the lastly, hip hop production, any like super sampled break beats, soundly drums that are just so mangled. It's, probably being influenced by hip hop, like just distorted, slowed down. So I would say that, like any drum sound that he referenced, could fall within these type of sounds. So these are the type of engineers that you should look into the eyes of the type of sounds that you're hearing with these motown u k sound or whatever. So, I think, it's important to just understand when you're listening to drums, what they were probably referencing and how the drum sound was actually created.

Class Description

Drum samples are a staple in modern music recording. Drummers can’t deliver a pitch perfect performance every time – drum samples free you up to make small mistakes that you correct for in the recording studios. Learn how to use them.

In Making and Using Drum Samples with Sam Pura you’ll learn all about recording, editing, and placing drum samples in a mix. Sam will help you identify weak spots in a performance and show you how a sample can reinforce your tones, add depth to a recording and fill in the gaps. You’ll learn how to record samples from a drum kit, edit them, and then place them in your mix using Beat Detective and Slate Trigger. You’ll master the art of integrating drums samples that sound authentic and natural, not copy and pasted.

If you are ready to get solid drum tracks that cut through the mix, this course is for you.


a Creativelive Student

This is actually money well spent! A good deal of knowledge to be learned. Much better than the Eyal Levi class, that I spent nearly 8 times the cash on!


Crazy useful knowledge on Making & Using Drum Samples. Sam is the man, and throws in tons of tips and tricks along the way on building gobos and room treatment and other random production ideas, this class is definitely worth it!!

Zach Herman