You can find a lot of videos online of people making beats, but they don’t take the time to show you how to make beats.
The video above provides a good overview on how to create beats.
This is the way that most genres of music layer their tracks. Some beats he starts out with drum patterns (which is often recommended), then lays the bass line, melodies and fillers. Some may want to make beats with samples, lay the samples first then the other components afterwards, so you’ll be putting down your bass etc. to match the samples.
1) Drum Pattern– He added hi hats the same time the metronome plays.
2) Bass Line– He only uses four notes…the A, C, D, B but adds some staccatto (shortens) some of his notes to vary the sound rhythmically. It adds to the groove so the sound is more interesting.
3) Melody– He started with a chord here, but separated it out, playing individual notes.
4) Fillers– Your beats sound empty without this. They help complete your beats sound.
The video shows you how to make a beat using Garage band. This is a great software tool for beginning beat makers to start on. He uses a “Wurly” a.k.a. Wurlitzer Piano in the video.
He selects and quantizes, or aligns the notes for what he plays, to 1/8th in the video. Regardless of how you choose to align your notes, you should make sure to play back your tracks to hear how they sound before adding your next layer.
When listening to your tracks, it’s recommended you use some good headphones like EKG, to listen with optimal sound quality. On mixdown you may want to play your beats in 6 different types of stereos to get the mix just right.
It’s very important to remember that what sounds great in earphones doesn’t always sound great in your car…and so on.