CCOG for MUC 170A Summer 2024

Course Number:
MUC 170A
Course Title:
Intro to Ableton I: Art of Beat Making
Credit Hours:
Lecture Hours:
Lecture/Lab Hours:
Lab Hours:

Course Description

Introduces the art of beat-making, drum programming, and sequencing with Ableton Live and MIDI hardware. Audit available.

Addendum to Course Description

This is a compressed, immersive workshop serving to bring together electronic music producers and those just getting started to practice the Art of Beat Making and Critical Listening. This workshop includes group discussion around production techniques, stylistic & aesthetic choices, while practicing embodied rhythm training, notation skills, drum programming and sequencing with the powerful software, Ableton Live, and a variety of MIDI devices including the Push 2.

Intended Outcomes for the course

Upon completion of the course students will be able to:

  1. Apply the fundamental ideas and practices of electronic music in the completion of projects.
  2. Discuss artistic and aesthetic choices with regard to cultural and historical assumptions, associations, traditions, and conventions and to one's own voice, style and/or identity.
  3. Apply a basic understanding of electronic music history when utilizing current technology.
  4. Notate music in standard western and alternate notation systems.

Course Activities and Design

  • Interactive, hand-on workshops with trending electronic music technology
  • Critical listening and discussions with peers
  • Embodied rhythm training
  • Building MIDI drum sequences and patterns
  • Evaluation of styles & techniques
  • Instructor demonstration of music technology and place it within historical and cultural contexts
  • Creation of original beats and melodies as an individual and a group

Outcome Assessment Strategies

Grades will be determined by measuring student competency in the related subject matter. Methods used to determine competency might include:

  • Practical Examinations
  • Quantitative/Qualitative Examinations
  • Individual Projects
  • Group Projects
  • Peer reviews/Evaluations

Course Content (Themes, Concepts, Issues and Skills)

  • Foundation & history of rhythm
  • Listening & Identifying percussion 
  • Sample & Synthesized Drum Machines
  • Embodied Rhythm Training - coordination
  • Intro to Standard, Drum and Grid notation
  • Evolution of Instrument Design - Acoustic, Electric, MIDI
  • Intro to the Push Controller - Drum Rack & Sequencer
  • Drum Programming - a stylistic approach