Creating dynamic drum patterns in Ableton Live – On demand

Level: Beginner

Programmed rhythms can lack the expression of real players. This is particularly evident when sequencing drums. In this workshop you will learn to program a variety of drum patterns, utilising a range of expressive techniques in Ableton Live. This workshop aims to provide you with transferable skills to enable you to breathe life into your MIDI programming.

Session Learning Outcomes

By the end of this session a successful student will be able to:

  • Program at least one drum pattern with variations;

  • Understand groove and learn how to implement it;

  • Use MIDI devices (such as random and velocity and MaxforLive) to humanise parts;

  • Utilise the Convert to MIDI function to analyse existing patterns and provide inspiration.

Session Study Topics

  • Drum sequencing in session view

  • Applying groove and swing

  • MIDI effects, LFO device

  • Converting audio to MIDI


  • A computer and internet connection

  • A web cam and mic

  • A Zoom account

  • Ableton Live 11 Suite – if not, participants should be advised to download the trial version

About the workshop leader

Mel is a London based music producer, vocalist and educator. 

She spends most of her time teaching people how to make music with Ableton Live and Push. When she’s not doing any of the above, she makes educational content and helps music teachers and schools integrate technology into their classrooms. She is particularly interested in training and supporting female and non-binary people to succeed in the music world.

Getting started with Max – LIVE Session 2nd Edition

-SOLD OUT- Head over to to this link for Thursday sign ups Getting started with Max – LIVE Series #3 – Music Hackspace

Session 1: Saturday 6th February 2021

Session 2: Saturday 13th February 2021

Session 3: Saturday 20th February 2021

Session 4: Saturday 27th February 2021

Level: Beginners curious about programming

Getting started with Max – LIVE Session

Get started with interactive audio and video, and discover the possibilities of the Max environment. In this series of workshops, you will learn how to manipulate audio, MIDI, samples, oscillators and program your own interactive canvas.

Connect together Max’s building blocks to create unexpected results, and use them in your music productions. 

Learn from guided examples and live interactions with teachers and other participants. 

This series of online workshops aims to enable you to work with Max confidently on your own. 

Session overview 

Session 1 – Understand the Max environment

Session 2 – Connect building blocks together

Session 3 – Master the user interface

Session 4 – Work with your MIDI devices


  • A computer and internet connection

  • A good working knowledge of computer systems

  • Access to a copy of Max 8 

About the workshop leader

Phelan Kane is a Berlin & London based music producer, engineer, artist, developer and educator. For over twenty years he has been active in both the music industry and the contemporary music education sector, with a focus on electronic music and alternative bands.

He specialises in sound design and production techniques such as synthesis and sampling, alongside audio processing and plug-in development. 

He is currently running the electronic music record label Meta Junction Recordings and the audio software development company Meta Function, which specialize in Max for Live devices releasing the M4L synth Wave Junction in partnership with Sonicstate.