How to create easy, free electronic dance music

All you need is a couple of synths and a drum machine.

Creating easy, free electronic dance music

In this step-by-step tutorial, we show you Create EDM for free with a couple of synths and a drum machine…

Step 1

Creating easy, free electronic dance music

Electronic music is, of course, easy to create with our synths and drum machines. We’ll start off with u-he’s Podolski, a fine synth for all aspects of dance, but the second preset – HS Boggle Beat Dynamic – gives us a great riff to get started.

Step 2

Creating easy, free electronic dance music

In order to change that preset sound a little and add some movement to your track, open whatever automation features you have on your DAW (in our case, it’s pressing A in Logic) and automate the filter frequency of Podolski. We’ve opened it up gradually to raise the sound as it loops.

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Step 3

Creating easy, free electronic dance music

Podolski is supplying an instant melody riff and we want a bass sound to underpin it. Time to load in Helm, which is a great looking synth and a big-sounding one at that. Select the CM Electro Bass preset – see what we mean?!

Step 4

Creating easy, free electronic dance music

Record a riff to underpin Podolski. In our case, we’re only looping around four bars just to show you how quickly a dance track can be produced for free, but already it’s sounding big, a little too big in Helm’s case… so you’ll want to nudge back its volume.

Step 5

Creating easy, free electronic dance music

Now we want to add that most famous of dance kicks, a 909, courtesy of the plug-in that does just 909s: Synsonic BD-909. Record a kick at the start of each beat, so you get the famous four-to-the-floor kick pattern.

Step 6

Creating easy, free electronic dance music

You’ll want to quantise both this kick and the Podolski arpeggiation for them to lock in time together, but now you have the basics of a dance tune with a classic combination of drum and synth sounds, all for free.

For more tutorials and workshops, check here.

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