The most common question asked by producers in the electronic dance music scene is probably: “How do I bring my music out of the studio into the clubs or on stage?”
In this blog article we will show you four different examples of DJing from basic to advanced and explain how to get your productions from your bedroom to the stages.
Computer and controller
Pioneer CDJs in combination with a Pioneer DJ mixer and the “Rekordbox DJ” software
Using “Ableton Push”
As the “Live” in the name indicates, Ableton Live was originally designed as an audio sequencer with a focus on live performances. For several years now, “Live” has been offering a range of features such as automatic time-warping, session view and an intuitive interface and is ideal for playing electronic music live.
Using “Push”, you have access to all these features with knobs, an 8×8 drum pad matrix, variously illuminated buttons and a multicolour display. The controller offers you all possibilities to create MIDI patterns on stage, to add harmonies and to adjust effects or to record automations.
There are endless different workflows. In order to keep track of the live set, many artists create stems of their productions in advance and place them into individual clips in the Ableton Live session view, which gives them the ability to use the trigger pads of Push to jump to any point in the song and place filters, EQs or processors of their choice. The big advantage here is that all the features of the DAW are available to you.
Software meets hardware
That takes us to the next level of live performance – the integration of different hardware devices. Although often forgotten, it’s important to be aware that working live with a computer always involves a certain risk. Everybody probably knows the situation that the computer breaks down when nothing can go wrong, even though it has always worked beforehand.
In order to reduce the CPU load, but also to expand the live setup, it is ideal to work with external hardware devices such as sequencers, drum machines and synthesizers. However, this is the supreme discipline in live performance and requires a lot of preparation and practice.
At this level there are live acts like “Paul Kalkbrenner”, “Kiasmos” or “Ben Böhmer”. In addition to Ableton Live, their live sets include various effect pedals, analog mixers, synthesizers like the “Korg Minilogue” or the “Roland Juno-60” and much more.