3 Simple Techniques To Unleash Your Samples Full Potential

3 Fun Ways To Get Creative With Your Samples

The Happy Accidents Of Music Production

Music samples open endless possibilities for sound design and creativity. Whether you're working with drum loops or atmospheric textures, simple techniques can turn a good track into something extraordinary. In this guide, we'll explore 3 fun ways to get creative with your samples, focusing on tweaking, embracing randomness, and setting creative challenges.

Don't Think About It Too Much

1. A Little Tweak Can Go A Long Way

Let's say you've got a drum loop you like, or some atmospheric weirdness, and you want to do something to give it your own unique spin. You don't need to do as much to it as you think to make it sound different.

We recommend chucking it through a sampler (we like to use the Mimic sampler that comes with Reason). Here are some quick things we like to do when making something new:

  • Change the pitch
  • Change the playback speed
  • Put an LFO on the pitch
  • Bit crush it
  • Chop it
  • Reverse it
  • Resample it and do it all over again!

With a good sampler, the possibilities are endless, and you can pretty much make anything out of anything. Don't think about it too much.

Producer Making Music

2. Do Something Random

The key when messing about with new samples (we think) is to try as many things as possible, as quickly as possible. That's the most fun way to do it!

Sometimes the best way to get a result you didn't intend for, but still ended up liking, is to do something random.

  • Put the sample through that weird VST you haven't used yet
  • Use presets. Don't think! Just flick through them!
  • Slap on a distortion unit, tweak all the settings without listening to it, and see what happens!
  • Layer it with another sample
  • Drown it in reverb and sample bits of it
  • Hook up a randomiser LFO to different settings and hit record

Some VSTs come with a randomize button, and that is probably the best option to get unusual results. Keep it quick and keep it fun!

3. Set Yourself A Challenge

If you're comfortable with your musical abilities then you might find it good practice to set yourself a challenge. As producers, we think you should always be challenging your abilities in order to improve. Here are some ideas for different challenges you could set:

  • Produce a song in an unfamiliar genre
  • Produce a song in X minutes
  • Produce a song limiting yourself to only using X number of samples
  • Make a pad out of some drums (extra challenging)
  • Turn one sample into 10 samples (extra points for weird)
  • Produce a song using only one VST (sampler, distortion, reverb etc)

Collection Of Drums

Challenges like these help push you out of your comfort zone and encourage you to experiment with new techniques and sounds. We guarantee you will improve doing this.

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