Ableton Live Tutorial Series Pt 2 – 5 More Videos from Dubspot’s Professor Nalepa

We are proud to have Professor Nalepa on staff as Curriculum Designer of our Ableton Live program at Dubspot. Professor Nalepa has worked with a diverse and talented group of musicians, each with their own unique sound and approach to composing and performing, and has worked with many artists to help them actualize their ideas in Ableton Live. Below we continue to revisit a series of video tutorials he created to provide tips, tricks and advice to our growing community. In parts one through six of this series you can learn more about Slice To MIDI, setting up return bus effects, Beat Repeat, Locator Points and much more. In parts 7-11 (below) Professor Nalepa talks about vocal recoding and effects, auto filter & the effects rack, creative MIDI mapping, creative use of simpler and creating variation in your drum patterns. Read on to expand your knowledge of Ableton Live’s capabilities and check the links below to learn more about Dubspot’s in-depth programs in Ableton Live.

“Working together with Dubspot, we have created a deep year-long Ableton Live curriculum designed to take you through the complete process of finding your own unique style and creating a body of work – learning Live inside and out!

“So far the experience through Dubspot is incredible I can’t wait to go through the next levels it’s just getting better each week and I can not wait to start putting my EP together in addition to creating a successful track!” – Dubspot Online Student

In the seventh installment of Live Production Tips, Professor Nalepa demonstrates three effect techniques for spicing up your vocals. Inspired by the field trip his Advanced Tech class took this week to Low End Theory to catch a secret DJ set by Thom Yorke, he uses the lead vocal of Radiohead ‘Reckoner’ to demonstrate the first technique: reversing it, routing it out through reverb, resampling the reverb, reversing the resampled reverb and laying that back underneath the original forward vocal to get a haunting, ghostly premonition-style effect used in a lot of popular dance tracks.

In the eighth installment of Live Production Tips, Professor Nalepa shares a tip he learned from Justin Boreta of The Glitch Mob at the Dubspot Ableton Live 8 Tour workshop in Los Angeles. The technique involves creative use of the Auto Filter, Audio Effects Rack, The Chain Select Ruler and the Macro Knobs. Nalepa starts by demonstrating how to adjust low and high frequencies using  Auto Filter to give tracks more emotion or add some excitement, and then shows you Boreta’s technique which involves grouping the Auto Filter into an Audio Effect Rack and mapping it with the Chain Select Ruler. By then end of this tutorial, you should have a good grasp on how to create a custom filter sweep that you can control with a MIDI controller.

In the ninth installment of Live Production Tips, Professor Nalepa shares a composition process he stumbled upon years ago working on the song “Pomme Granite Dub.” The technique involves taking short loops from some source material, loading them up into the Session View, mapping them to your MIDI controller and then recording your live performance into the Arrangement View. The source material can be a song you are remixing, an older production you want to breathe new life into, or some crazy synth recording that you’ve mined for the best moments. He explains MIDI mapping of Send Effects, MIDI mapping the Loop Position of an Audio Clip, and MIDI mapping multiple cells in the Session View. The tutorial shares a variety of composition techniques, and also explains how to view multiple automation lanes in the Arrangement View.

In part one of the this two-part edition of Live Production Tips, we’ll explore some techniques inspired by two incredible conversations I had this past week. We will look at the creative possibilities of using the Simpler, some portamento, LFO, and delays, and we’ll also explore a great technique for crafting 8 bar drum patterns.  First up, I had the great pleasure of catching Dorian Concept’s insanely inspiring set at Low End Theory. Dorian Concept is a Vienna-based producer who has developed his own completely original style of keyboard playing. He’s been tearing it up at Festivals around the world since bursting on to everyone’s radar with the massive tune Vertical Output a few years back. His latest release on Ninja Tune is called Her Tears Taste Like Pears, full of funky, synth driven club heaters.

In part two of this Ableton Live tutorial series on creative composition and production techniques, Professor Nalepa shares some great tips for drum programming and sequencing he picked up from fellow Dubspot Instructor, producer Matt Shadetek. It is a simple and efficient technique you can apply using any software or drum machine to get your ideas down fast when you’re inspired. This method involves creating a linear 2, 4 or 8 bar drum pattern, duplicate it, and add some variations – the key is making sure something interesting is happening every 4 or 8 bar. This is a fundamental lesson in drum programing for all electronic music genres; add variations from bar to bar, even if they’re slight and subtle changes; avoid sounding loopy.

Professor Nalepa is an LA-based producer, professor, Dubspot Instructor and Ableton Live expert. He’s produced tracks and collaborated with everyone from legends like Bill Laswell and Pharoah Sanders to rising electronic music artists Nosaj Thing and The Glitch Mob.

Ableton Live Producer Certificate Program

See dates and register for NYC and online classes!

The flagship of our music training, with every Ableton Live course offered at the school. After completing this program, you will leave with 4 completed tracks (EP), a remix entered in an active contest, a scored commercial to widen your scope, and the Dubspot Producer’s Certificate in Ableton Live.

What’s Included:

  • Ableton Live Level 1: Shake Hands with Live
  • Ableton Live Level 2: Completing Your First Track
  • Ableton Live Level 3: Production Essentials
  • Ableton Live Level 4: Sound Design & Instrumentation
  • Ableton Live Level 5: Advanced Composition & Production
  • Ableton Live Level 6: Taking Your EP Global

This program is about learning Ableton Live by going through the entire process of being an artist, by developing your own sound through a series of sketches and experimentation. You will also learn the ins and outs of this powerful software through a series of exercises designed to help you master the steps involved in producing your own music. After a level of getting familiar with the tools that Ableton has to offer, you will then develop your sonic ideas into full length songs – one per level. You will be exposed to a variety of approaches to arrangement and composition, storytelling techniques, ways of creating tension and drama in your music. At the end of the day, it is the sum total of your choices as an artist that define your sound, and levels 2 – 6 will give you the experience of actually completing tracks to add to your portfolio.


  • Ableton Live Core & Advanced: 6 levels
  • Dubspot’s complete Ableton course load
  • 132 hours of hands-on instruction
  • Additional instructor-supervised lab hours


  • Ableton Live Core & Advanced: 6 levels
  • Dubspot’s complete Ableton course load
  • 60-80 hours of high quality videos
  • 3 hours of instructor-led chat sessions per week
  • Direct video & audio feedback from instructors

For more start dates and information about payment plans, please call 212.242.2100 or 1.877.DUBSPOT (1.877.382.7768) or send us a message.

  • Ableton Live Tutorial Series Pt 2 – 5 More Videos from Dubspot’s Professor Nalepa « Music Lessons « MUSIC LESSONS
  • 8/5/2011

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  • 5 Ableton Live Tips from Dubspot Instructors – Pt 1: Thavius, DJ Kiva, Hatsis, Cellitti, DJ Ceiba | Dubspot Blog
  • 8/5/2011

[...] In the spirit of constant improvement and sharing, we’re continuing our free tips from dubspot instructors series. In the first installment of our new 5 Ableton Live Tips from Dubspot [...]