Music Production

Serato Reopens Serato Studio Beta, Adds New Features

Serato Studio

Serato Studio
Master Waveform in Serato Studio Beta (Source: Serato)

After putting it on hold due to high demand, Serato has reopened the beta for its Serato Studio beatmaking software. The company has also added several highly-requested features, including Master Track Waveform, Library Preview, Stem Export, and more.

“Since launching the first beta we’ve been busy gathering feedback on Studio and channeling that into development,” Nick Maclaren, chief strategy officer at Serato, said in the press release. “Serato Studio is constantly evolving as we continue to build it with the community.”

In addition to the software update, Serato has announced pricing for Studio. Subscribers will be able to access Studio for $14.99 a month or $9.99 a month billed annually.

“Our model is built on regular software updates, which means subscribers get a continuous flow of new features and workflow improvements,” says Maclaren. “You’ll also get monthly sound pack drops from renowned producers like Just Blaze, through to world-class sound designers and labels.”

In the meantime, Serato has made the Dusty Crates sound pack available as a free download for all beta members. It contains almost a GB of soul, funk, and R&B influenced instruments and samples.

Join the Serato Studio beta and learn more here.

Watch the update video below.

Related: Serato Announces ‘Serato Studio’ Production Software

Mixed In Key Releases Studio Edition Plugin

Mixed In Key Studio Edition

Music software developer Mixed In Key has released the Studio Edition plugin. Aimed at music producers, the award-winning key detection program works from within a DAW to analyze sounds and samples.

Mixed In Key Studio Edition is officially supported by Ableton Live, FL Studio, and Apple Logic. It is compatible with Mac OS and Windows operating systems.

Watch the video above and learn more here.

Related: Serato Announces ‘Serato Studio’ Production Software

D.A. Doman: One of Hip-Hop’s Most In-Demand Producers

D.A. Doman

D.A. Doman
D.A. Doman (Source: D.A. Doman)

After a breakout year in 2018, D.A. Doman has become one of hip-hop’s most in-demand producers. The Chicago native has helped lead the resurgence of 100 BPM tracks with his signature sound.

He also played a key role in Tyga’s comeback, producing two Billboard Hot 100 singles for the rapper (“Taste” and “Dip“). Doman also produced “SWISH,” which was one of DJcity’s most-downloaded tracks of the year (along with “Taste” and “Dip”).

To cap off a successful 2018, the 34-year-old produced Kodak Black’s “ZEZE,” which peaked at No. 2 on the Hot 100, and Kid Ink’s “YUSO,” which reached No. 26 on Billboard’s Rhythmic Songs chart.

Continuing the momentum in 2019, Doman has lent his signature sound to Bhad Bhabie (“Bestie“) and Tyga (“Floss in the Bank“). Both tracks appeared on DJcity’s monthly Top 50 chart. Most recently, Doman produced two tracks on Rich The Kid’s new album (“Save That” and “The World is Yours 2 – Intro”).

We spoke with Doman to learn more about his background and sound.

Most of your previous work is slower and trap-influenced, but in 2018 you started producing more 100 BPM tracks. Why did you transition?

I produced Chris Brown‘s single “Privacy” in 2017, and that did well. That was uptempo, and I wanted to do something different than the rest of hip-hop. Everyone was doing slow beats, so I said to myself, “let me make some uptempo ones.” I wanted to be unique and have my own sound. It was influential ’cause now there’s a lot of people doing uptempo music again. “Taste” and “ZEZE” definitely made an impact. I’ve had several big hip-hop producers [direct message] me and thank me for changing things up and keeping things fresh.

Yeah, 100 BPM tracks have made a comeback. How long do you think it will last?

Everything goes in trends, so this sound that I got hot will eventually die off. Hip-hop is so versatile though; you can have a bunch of different vibes going at once. For instance, trap tempo stuff is still super popular now, but so is this uptempo wave that I brought in.

Download on DJcity

You had a very successful 2018 and are continuing to see success. Do you feel pressure to keep up the momentum?

You know honestly, I love music so much, it never feels like work when I’m doing it. And the only way to keep up the momentum is to keep making music all the time. So no, I don’t feel pressure.

Have you produced any tracks that you think got overlooked?

I think the best things don’t get overlooked. “Taste” could of easily gotten overlooked, but it didn’t, there’s a reason for that. [laughs]

Download on DJcity

You’ve produced a lot of tracks for Tyga. What’s your relationship with him like?

It’s a good relationship. He trusts my ear.

The majority of your work has been in hip-hop and R&B. Do you have any desire to work in other genres?

Yup, I have some music coming in other genres. Rap and R&B are my first loves though, after my wife and daughter. [laughs]

Download on DJcity

Do you have any upcoming tracks that you can tell us about?

I got a bunch of stuff coming up. I have a big record with Ty Dolla $ign coming. He’s not only a great singer but a great writer too. And I got more, but it hasn’t been officially announced yet so I can’t speak on it. The two songs I produced on Rich The Kid’s album, “Save That” and “The World is Yours 2 – Intro,” are out now. You can check those out. “Save That” is my signature uptempo sound and is club ready.

Thanks much for the interview and thank you to all the DJs, PDs, and MDs who have my records in rotation. You guys make the world spin.

Follow D.A. Doman on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter. You can also listen to a playlist of tracks he’s produced on Apple Music, Spotify, and Tidal.

Related: Watch Kid Ink’s ‘YUSO’ Music Video

Watch the Producer of Future’s ‘March Madness’ Explain How He Made the Track


808 Mafia member Tarentino has explained how he produced Future‘s hit song “March Madness” on a new episode of Genius’ Deconstructed.

The track was the first single from Future’s 2015 mixtape 56 Nights. By 2017, “March Madness” had been certified platinum.

In the video, Tarentino explains how Future inspired him to come up with the track and then breaks the beat down layer-by-layer.

Watch Deconstructed above.

Related: Watch the Producer of Blueface’s ‘Thotiana’ Explain How He Made the Track

Native Instruments Announces Details of MASSIVE X

Native Instruments Massive X

Native Instruments Massive X
MASSIVE X. (Source: Native Instruments)

Native Instruments has revealed the details of MASSIVE X, a long-awaited update to their popular sound design software. It is scheduled for a June release.

MASSIVE X comes with a redesigned user interface, over 100 wavetables, new modulation options, and more. It will be available as a free download for users of Native Instruments’ KOMPLETE 12 software.

Read more about MASSIVE X here.

Related: First Look: Native Instruments Traktor Pro 3.1

Watch the Producer of Blueface’s ‘Thotiana’ Explain How He Made the Track

Scum Beatz

The producer behind Blueface‘s “Thotiana” explains how he made the track on a new episode of Genius’ Deconstructed. The breakout hit reached No. 9 on Billboard’s Hot 100, and the Cardi B and YG remix is currently No. 14 on DJcity’s Hot Box chart.

In the video, Scum Beatz talks about going to high school with Blueface in Santa Clarita, California. He then breaks down the process of producing the hit song. Scum also calls Blueface to talk about their favorite “Thotiana” remixes, then gives viewers a sneak peak of the beat for “Thotiana Pt. 2.”

Watch Deconstructed above.

Related: Watch the Producers of Ariana Grande’s ‘thank u, next’ Explain How They Made the Track

Mannie Fresh Breaks Down the Making of Juvenile’s ‘Back That Azz Up’

Mannie Fresh

In 1999, New Orleans rapper Juvenile burst onto the national scene with his raunchy club anthem, “Back That Azz Up.” The track, which was produced by the legendary Mannie Fresh, introduced New Orleans bounce music to the world. It peaked at No. 19 on Billboard’s Hot 100 and has remained a staple in DJ sets throughout the years.

With the 20th anniversary of “Back That Azz Up” this month, Mannie sat down with Genius to discuss the making of the track. He also talked about his background and approach to producing.

“[‘Back That Azz Up’] stood the test of time,” Mannie said. “I don’t see it going nowhere.”

“The way I produce is definitely from a club DJ’s perspective,” Mannie added. “I like it when people dance; I like it when they move. And I notice certain sounds, the way certain drops happen in songs, and [how] the way [producers] format [them] [make] a difference on the dance floor.”

Watch above.

Related: Mannie Fresh Makes Beat Out of Three Random Records

Producer Louis Bell Talks Working With Post Malone and More

Louis Bell

Chart-topping producer Louis Bell sat down for an interview on the music production show Pensado’s Place. Bell co-wrote and co-produced many of the songs on Post Malone‘s album beerbongs & bentleys, including the hits “rockstar” featuring 21 Savage and “Better Now.” The Boston native also worked with Post on “Wow.” and Preme‘s “Jackie Chan.”

In the interview, Bell talks about his studio sessions with Post before discussing his creative process, favorite plug-ins and more.

On creativity:

“I think that’s what creativity is, is taking something so small and being able to manipulate it and bend it and stretch it out, and, without watering it down. That’s the key.”

On what he looks for in his artists’ vocals:

“Feel, energy, vibe, and emotion. There’s no app yet that can fix that stuff, so that’s why I demand that.”

On what makes Post Malone unique:

“He sounds like he has so much soul and pain… and just hearing him sing, I just felt everything he was saying… There’s not one line that he sings, that he’s just singing to sing it.”

Watch the full interview above (it begins at the 7:56 mark).

Related: Chart-Topping Engineer Manny Marroquin Talks Working With Post Malone and More

Ableton Releases Live 10.1 Public Beta

Ableton Live

Ableton Live
Source: Ableton

Ableton has released the public beta of Live 10.1, the latest update to their popular music production and performance software. The update will feature workflow improvements, device enhancements, and more.

Upgrades to Live’s workflow include a resizeable arrangement overview window, pinch zooming, and streamlined keyboard shortcuts. The EQ, delay, and wavetable devices have also been enhanced, and the program will feature VST3 plug-in support.

The Live 10.1 release date has not been announced, but the beta is currently available to all Live 10 owners.

Learn more about Live 10.1 on Ableton’s website and watch the introduction video below.

Related: Watch: DJ Step1 Performs Routine Using Ableton Push 2

Chart-Topping Engineer Manny Marroquin Talks Working With Post Malone and More

Manny Marroquin

Manny Marroquin
Manny Marroquin (Credit: Ryan Hunter)

Born in Guatemala and raised in the US, Manny Marroquin started at the bottom and has become one of the most successful mixing engineers. He has worked with stars like Kanye West, Bruno Mars, and Post Malone, surpassing cumulative sales of 250 million records and 14 No. 1’s on the Billboard Hot 100.

Marroquin has also won eight GRAMMY awards and has been nominated for five this year. Two of the nominations are for Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical (Charlie Puth‘s Voicenotes and Chromeo‘s Head Over Heels). Marroquin’s work is also up for Record of the Year (Post Malone’s “rockstar“), Album of the Year (Post Malone’s beerbongs & bentleys), and Best Rap Album (Mac Miller‘s Swimming).

Billboard recently spoke with the chart-topping engineer.

On his approach to working with artists:

“I do not think about Grammys, obviously. I do not think about the charts. I honestly take it from a very basic approach. The artist or producer comes to me to work on their baby. That is what I always say. I am an expensive babysitter. [Laughs] … Whenever they come, I try getting into their mind, whether that means talking to them, or even the music [will] speak for itself. I try to understand what their vision is. It is never about me. [The process] is never about my sound or what I can bring to the table. It is always about how I can [create a moment,] whether it is a song that makes you cry, dance, sing-along, or whatever that true emotion is …”

On Post Malone:

“… he has a great team around him. He has Louis Bell which is his engineer/producer. Post has Frank Dukes. That is another amazing producer. He has a tremendous A&R team. … In today’s world, I don’t even know what genre he is. He is one of the only artists where you can not pin him down. I call it genreless music. You know? Nowadays, [people question,] ‘Is it hip-hop? Yes. Is it alternative? Yes. Is it kind of rock? Yes. Is it pop? Yes.’”

On Mac Miller:

“People who did not know Mac had no idea, he was a very artistic guy. Even before I worked with him, I did not realize he was that musical. His musical journey really shows. [The Swimming] album proves that. I hope that this album got nominated because of its’ quality. I remember working on it thinking, ‘Wow! This is such an amazing hip-hop album.’ The fact that it got nominated is great, but I hope people listen to what it really is.”

On opening a venue:

“I am working on a restaurant venue concert that is right next to [my studio] Larrabee Studios. Now, not only will we be able to create from beginning to end. They will be able to perform. We can capture the live performance and put it on vinyl.”

Related: Watch: Scott Storch Reflects on Career, Talks Today’s Rappers