I want to have some fun this evening and do a basic Dirty South Style Beat Tutorial. I’m not doing this to go over the top with all the brass and progressions…. I’m doing a basic beat for tutorial purposes. It may help new producers or anyone whos new to Fl Studio….
I am using Fl Studio version 8. I have saved a template for my default start up containing a kick, hat,snare, and clap. I load that up and make a
basic drum pattern.
I am using a 16/4 Grid because its easier for me to do breaks when I work with 8 bar patterns. In Dirty South Beats you’ll notice the Hi Hats are usually twice the tempo of the actual beat. This can easily be achieved in Fl Studio. I started this tutorial at 143 Bpms, which will sound like 71.5 once we spread the kick and snare as pictured above. I right click the hat channel and select “Fill each 2 steps”, place a kick on the 1, 7, and 13, next I add a snare on 9, and 25 active steps/squares. Next I repeat the same pattern again to fill my 16/4 Grid. Now I have the “overused” basic pattern for a Dirty South Beat…..
I have a foundation for a quick melody line. Here is where I begin to tweak my kick using * NFX’s tip…
I’m not extremely worried about the mix at this point, but I know starting with a great kick is essential in Hip Hop production. I’ve added a little compression using the Fl compressor, and a little reverb to the clap.
I loaded a Slayer Generator, and switched the screen to pattern mode. I copied the drum pattern to extend it to 8 bars. I added some Fx to make a unique sound, and I layed down a basic melody to get things started.
basic pattern extended with melody 1
So I have a basic pattern,melody, and my kick is still sounding good. I used the Fl “chorus .wav”, mangled that with fx and added it in as an extra percussion sound.
basic pattern,melody and fx perc
Now it’s time to introduce a new sound so we can add movement to the beat. I loaded up a vst synth, added fx, and made a simple flanged bass line.
basic pattern,melody, fx perc, and fx (flanged) bassline
I add a new sound, and start playing around with a melody for the Hook. I add the new instrument exactly where the hook comes in after 16 bars. It’s nothing fancy, just a catchy tune that’s easy to remember,hum or whistle. I also add some new percussion, and a snare roll. At this point the “foundation” of the beat is solid. I have a rhythm, a melody, a bassline, and a second melody for the hook…
basic pattern,melody, fx perc,fx (flanged) bassline, an idea for the hook
You’ll notice I haven’t quantized or fixed every note perfectly yet. I usually do the fine tuning last, so I can get the ideas out 1st. Now it’s time to arrange the beat, add more percs, add some snare rolls, and add variation to the drums to break the monotony of the rhythm.
I listened to the beat and decided to move the hook idea to the second half of the verses, and I created something new for the Hook. My beat is now 1/2 done…I have my:
basic pattern, main melody, fx perc, fx (flanged) bassline, a second melody, an idea for the hook, and some variation and movement through out the song. I extend the idea to full song length and listen.
Dirty South Beat Before The Final Mix
What do you think? Soldier Boy could rap on it huh.. 🙂
Now it’s time to fine tune my notes in the piano roll, add some sound effects, and Mix the beat to the best of my ability. (If I was sending this to a professional engineer, I would leave the beat as is and export the files so he/she can mix it)
Some people mix inside Fl Studio and get great quality. For years this is what I did, and my mix was just o.k. . After sitting down with a few engineers, I’ve learned that it’s best to mix the beat in software made for mixing. I like tweak a little in Fl Studio, and export each separate track into Sonar for the final mix. I’ll post the final mix soon, and tell how I mixed it.
So there you have it… Fl Studio getting Dirty Dirty…boom ba boom boom — boom bap..Feel free to ask questions or leave comments..
Pz Til Later..and Happy Beat Making
To all the emcees who could spit some fire on this….you know the drill..
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Dirty South Tutorial Beat