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Music

Use iDrum for Your Drum Tracks in GarageBand

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This post is part of a series called Producing Rhythm: How to Add Amazing Feel to Your Tracks.
Bring Your MIDI Drums to Life
How to Produce a Larger Than Life Drum Sound

iDrum is a great drum machine, and it works great with GarageBand on your Mac. Even without buying an expensive DAW, you can use iDrum to do your drum track in your home recordings

A good drum beat can add a lot to any song. It can be hard to make a custom beat for a home recording or music project, and a good drum machine can help. If you use GarageBand for your recordings, and you have iDrum, there is a lot you can do to make your song have a great drum track.


Step 1: Create the iDrum Track

Begin by opening GarageBand and creating a new Loops project. With the new project open, create a new Software Instrument track (Track > New Track...).


Step 2: Add the iDrum Plugin to the Track

Now, we need to select iDrum for the track's sound generator. It should be piano by default. To make it iDrum, go to the edit pane for the track, click on the menu that says "Piano", and select iDrum. If you have iDrum installed, but do not see it in the list of modules, re-install iDrum and make sure you have it configured to install the AU plugin.


Step 3: Make Beat Patterns in iDrum

Open the iDrum plugin by clicking on the button under Sound Generator.

With the iDrum plugin window open, you can make beat patterns and do other adjustments. There are are some built in patterns, but I'm going to go to some vacant pattern numbers and make a couple of beats with the Goldbaby MPC60 Kit.

Pattern 11:

Pattern 12:


Step 4: Using the iDrum Song Editor

In the iDrum plugin window, you'll see a radio button for the Song Mode option. Select that. Then, click the E button next to it.

This opens the Song Editor. Here, you can configure the drums for your whole song using the paterns you create. It is pretty straightforward to use. To change a value, double-click on it.


Step 5: Finishing Up

Now, when you play your project, you will hear the drum track playing according to how you have set up your song with the Song Editor. There does not appear to be any recordings in the track, but your drum track is there. Now, you can add other tracks, record, and make the rest of your song.

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