Week 2

Try the 3 ways to create a MIDI Clip:

1. Double click an empty Clip Slot on a MIDI track to create a Clip and draw in some notes by double-clicking on the Clip.

2. Activate the ‘Computer MIDI Keyboard’ button and the Track’s ‘Arm Recording’ button. The Clip Stop buttons on that Track will turn into Record Buttons. Click a Record Button, play notes on your computer keyboard and press space bar to stop recording when you’ve finished.

3. Overdubbing: activate the Session Record button and play a Clip which already has MIDI notes in it. Record in more MIDI notes by playing your keyboard.

Follow the steps from the session to choose Instruments and record Clips to go with your beats from last week, e.g. a baseline + a melody. If you can, record at least 6 clips – they could be 3 clips + 3 variations, or all totally different. Use a controller if you have one, or your laptop keyboard. Edit the Clips and listen to the differences. If you’re stuck for ideas, try recording while listening to music, copying something you like, or singing what you want first, then re-creating it with MIDI.


  • If you record a MIDI clip and the sound changes unexpectedly:
    • This is probably because you changed the Instrument in the track. The MIDI notes are just the instructions (not the actual sound), so if you change the Instrument, the recorded notes will play this new sound.
    • To avoid this, create a new Track for each new Instrument.
    • If you double-click anything in the Browser, it will be inserted into the selected Track. This is a common reason why students change the Instrument on a Track by mistake.
  • Ableton Live has unlimited undo, so you can go back as many times as you like!

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