Kim Lajoie's blog

Do something different with rhythm

by Kim Lajoie on October 3, 2011

Break out of your usual rhythms. Think about all the usual assumptions you make when you’re programming drums and rhythms for other parts. People often speak of breaking the rules… what happens when you break your own rules? Take the kick drum for example… do you only ever place the kick drum on quarter-notes? See […]

Why ‘randomising’ is not ‘humanising’

by Kim Lajoie on May 17, 2010

How often do you see the terms ‘humanising’ and ‘randomising’ being used interchangeably? Or maybe you’ve seen someone ask how to make something sound more natural or human, and someone else suggests adding random variations to timing and/or velocity? Perhaps you’ve tried adding random variations yourself, only to end up with something that doesn’t sound any more […]

Composing for Kick Drums 2

by Kim Lajoie on July 16, 2009

Sparser Kick Drums In general, sparser kick drum patterns will be less energetic. As with the First and Third pattern, a sparse approach is generally useful for leaving space for other instruments. Taking this approach, the kick typically only emphasises the first beat of the bar, and sometimes a secondary beat (secondary in importance – […]

Composing for Kick Drums 1

by Kim Lajoie on July 15, 2009

Kick drums. Where would we be without them? They are the foundation of the rhythm section. In most dance music, the kick drives the rhythm and groove of the entire song. Even in other genres, the kick drum provides a grounding. It marks the most important beats in the rhythm pattern, it helps us understand […]

Drum programming – Expectation and Excitement

by Kim Lajoie on July 9, 2009

This post is about drum programming, but these prinicpals apply to all aspects of rhythmic composition (including basslines, melody, etc). Additionally, these principals are applicable to drum patterns of arbitrary (any) complexity, but for simplicity we will be primarily concerning ourselves with the four-on-the-floor kick drum pattern often heard in popular club music. A little […]