At 6/21/12 01:42 AM, apocalypseven wrote:
At 6/21/12 01:03 AM, RampantMusik wrote:
Anyone who tells you that a certain DAW is for writing a certain style of music is full of crap. You can write in any style with any DAW.Yeah, but how do you do that? That's like saying you can drive a car on water or fly a plane on the road, its not easy to do.
If composition was a skill that could be imparted through a forum, then everyone with access to the internet would be rivaling Beethoven and Mozart.
While you could learn a little music theory - places like musictheory.net cover the basics pretty well - and that would certainly help, listening to a lot of music and 'picking' it apart is really one of the best ways to learn. Start big: listen to the form of the rap tracks you like. Is it in binary (e.g. Verse-Chorus) form? Is there an intro, outro, or a bridge between one of the choruses and the following verse (or, between the verse and the following chorus)? Are there any 'odd' sections that fall in between there, where its empty space?
Once you've found the form of the song, you should start listening to individual instruments. The drums and the bass are usually the two most important instruments in rap (because they keep the beat and lay the foundation for the flow of the lyrics above them). Notice how both parts change, or even stay the same, throughout the track. Listen to the vocals: how do they change as the bass and drum change?
How are other instruments used? Synths, strings, pianos, guitars, other percussion, etc. Frequently, more instruments are added as the track goes on, which keeps it more dynamic and prevents it from becoming too repetitive.
Now, for bass, anything will do. Real bass guitar, virtual bass guitars, synth basses, anything. For drums, you usually have several kits layered on top of each other: the Roland TR-808 kit forms the basis of most commercial hip-hop tracks because it has a really booming kick and a very tight, snappy snare. On top of that, you can layer other kick drums, other snares, any hi-hats, crash and ride symbols... there's not really any 'rules' in what you can do.
I know there are other beatmakers here who are far better at what they d than I am. You could try contacting users like feckthisshet, AxTekk, or boney-man and asking how they work or how they get inspiration for tracks, any tips or tricks they might be willing to share (such as their DAW, choice of instrumentation, etc.).