Posts categorized "Ableton Live" Feed

What's New in Ableton Live 9.5 Mindmap


I created "What's New in Ableton Live 9.5" using MindMeister. Check out my public Mindmeister channel for other maps related past version of live and synth tech in general. Note the What's New in Live 9 mindmap has 14K+ views - woot! Note - I'll add a separate map for Push 2 soon.  

Video: In The Studio with Jean-Michel Jarre - Ableton Live, Max for Live, Tape Looping

FutureMusic magazine posted a fantastic video "In The Studio with Jean-Michel Jarre". It's really worth watching this 23 minute behind-the-scenes look at his process for a track for his upcoming Electronica 1: The Time Machine  which will release on Oct 16th, 2015.

Electronic music icon Jarre invites us into his Paris studio to talk us through his new collaboration with Air. Get the full story of Jarre's first album in eight years, and see more of his studio, in the latest issue of Future Music:

I think this video will be especially inspiring to Ableton Live users out there as it ends up Jarre is a heavy user of Ableton Live, is a fan of many of Live's built-in FX and is even using the great Max for Live Convolution reverb.

In addition to using Live, plugins and hardware synths, Jarre shows us how he uses classic tape loop techniques that he learned back in the day while working under Pierre Schaeffer ("father" of musique concrète).


Mark Mosher
Electronic Musician, Composer, Synthesist, Performer
Boulder, CO <<< Original Techno, Dark Ambient, Experimental Music <<< Soundscape Podcast

Mindmap - What's New in Ableton Live 9.2


Live 9.2 is in beta. I put together a mindmap of what’s new to go along with past mindmaps.

Here is an embedded version of the map.


Mind Maps


Art + Music + Technology Podcast 056: Brian Funk (AfroDJMac)

Photo Nov 30, 3 18 01 PM

Darwin Grosse's latest podcat is up - this time with my Brian Funk (aka AfroDJMac). Listen here

Brian is known for his prolific work to create amazing racks for Ableton Live. I collaborated with Brian on  the Ableton Rack #40: Zebra Attack and Ableton Rack #40: Zebra Attack II so I was super excited to introduce him to Darwin Grosse so we could all get a behind-the-scenses look into Brian's work. 

My friend Mark Mosher doesn't get adamant too often, but when he does, I have to listen. He was adamant about getting into his friend AfroDJMac, and the work that he's been doing on Ableton Live packs. I jumped into my research (i.e., I took things for a quick drive then started digging deeper), and was really impressed with the work. Reached out to see if he'd be up for a quickie chat, and he jumped on the opportunity.

So you get this - my Thanksgiving gift to you. Great talk with a really insightful programmer, sound designer, songwriter and Ableton Certified Trainer.

I always like when someone opens a door for me to explore. Brian's ideas about vocal music (especially mixed with electronic music concepts) are really unique, and the way that he mixes music and teaching is also very interesting. Listen to his work here, and enjoy the discussion!

Ableton Push Impov: Vinyl Needle Drops in Drum Racks (Real-Time & Step Automation)

Working with the Elektron Octatrack has gotten back into sampling big time. Some of the things you can do with an Octatrack - like per step automation - can also be done with Ableton Push when working in "Note" mode in drum racks.


  1. One you turn on a note in the step sequencer, you can then hold the note down to acces all sort of parameters for devices. While holding the step...
  2. Adjust params to your liking. In this example I'm changing the pitch of each step in the step-sequencer.

You can of course record real-time automation by simply pressing the "Automation" button when in record or overdub mode. 

Below is an example audio snippet I put on soundcloud of doing such that. I sampled audio from random needle drops on vinyl into clips and used them to build a custom drum rack.  I then improvised using Push to perform and sequence these clips including per step automation of various parameters.

Mark Mosher 
Electronic Musician, Boulder, CO (meetup)

Manipulating a Percussive Soda Can Sample using Pad Pressure on Ableton Push #MadeWithLive


I recorded the sound of a pen striking a half-full soda can. I loaded this into Sampler and went to the MIDI panel and mapped "Aftertouch" (pad pressure) to "Loop Length" with a value of -100. Now pad pressure modulate the loop length.


Here is a video of this sound design work in progress -


Mark Mosher 
Electronic Musician, Boulder, CO (meetup)

How to Send a MIDI Program Change to Absynth in Ableton Live

(Click Image to Enlarge)

Absynth’s “Program List” is a great way to organize your favorite presets for studio or performance work. You can also use it as a list of MIDI program changes. In this article I illustrate how this works with step-by-step instructions on how to to use MIDI program change in Ableton Live to change presets in Native Instruments Absynth.

  1. Click the Browser tab Absynth has a featured called “Program Lists”. To access this feature, click on the “Browser” tab.
  2. Click “Programs” if it’s not lit in green. This exposes the Program List. If the “On” button is lit, Absynth listens for MIDI program changes.
  3. Drag sounds you would like in your preset change list to the “Program List”
  4. Create some dummy clips (a clip with no notes) by double clicking in a clip slot for the device holding Absynth.
  5. In the “Notes” section of the device interface, use the bottom field to set the program number. In the example, the clip in focus is set to a value of “Pgm 3” which will select the third preset in the list. You can set a different progam number for each clip.

Of course this technique will work with any VST or hardware synth that can receive a MIDI patch change.

One use case for a live situation is to use a grid controller like a Launchpad or APC 40 to launch the dummy clips to quickly change patches. You could load up 8 of your favorite synths (or 8 instances of absynth), then use scene launches to tee up the patches per scene. For example, if you use used one scene per song in a live situation, you could launch the scene, then select each track (or set of tracks to arm and layer the synths as the song progressed. When you are ready for song 2, launch scene 2 and all the patches will be teed up. 

The advantage that instead of having to load a new set per song, or have a lot of instances of a synth, you simply use the same synths instances for each song and change the presets in play for each song.

Mark Mosher (meetup)