Hi, Chris Heille here for Zivix. I’m going to quickly share with you a few specifics about how we put together the “Closer” remix with the jamstik+ & Ableton Live 9
. If you’re already using Ableton Live you’ll want to download this FREE PACK
for Ableton that includes the set, samples, and stock Ableton Live patches - and you might want to do that now so you can walk through the set while you read. Download via the FREE PACK link or scroll to the bottom of this page.
First things first, “Closer” is in F minor - so to get the chord voicings in the easiest possible positions we’ll be using the Digital Capo to remap the midi output of the jamstik+ down a chromatic half step. (Left on the D-pad.) That enables us to play in F# minor in friendlier chord shapes, Dmajor7, E, F#m7. I’ll be doing something different with drums that I’ll go over when we get to it. For now just remember the any melodic elements are all remapped down a chromatic step from standard.
Onto breaking down the remix and the free pack.
In the remix video we build the tracks as close to the order they appear in the original by Chainsmokers. However I’m going to go over this by level of complexity, and we’ll start with the drums.
I’ve built a drum rack of custom samples that’s mapped close to General MIDI drum mapping - Kick on midi note C1, Snare on D1, etc. If you’ve used the jamstik+ for drums in the past you probably already know that General MIDI drum sounds are mapped down an octave from where the jamstik’s default MIDI output. Pressing down on the jamstik’s D-pad will remap the jamstik down an octave so you can use the drum samples.
Additionally, in the video I used Tap Mode to play the drum tracks. Tap Mode doesn’t require picking the strings, the jamstik+ generates MIDI note ons when the strings are pressed on the fretboard. It’s an easier method for playing instrument sounds that are normally struck. The jamstik can be put in Tap Mode by pressing Up and Down on the D-pad simultaneously, or using the jamstik+ app and selecting Tap Mode from the options on the home screen.
Here in the pack we have drums tracked into 6 MIDI tracks in a group so we can have some isolation of the elements, but each MIDI track is playing the same instrument, a Drum Rack preset named “Closer Drums Pack.”
Here’s the list of samples and their key mapping:
808 - B0
Kick - C1
Snaps - C#1
Snare - D1
ClapSnare - E1
Live Claps 1 - F1
Closed Hat - F#1
Live Claps 2 - G1
Live Claps 3 - A1
Open Hat - A#1
& Shaker - C#2
Long Shaker - D#2
Impact - E2
Whistle Riser - F2
White Riser 1 - G2
White Riser 2 - A2
Long Sweep - B2
These samples were resampled with iZotope’s Neutron
plugin, so EQ, compression, saturation, and transient shaping has all be done on these samples so I haven’t added additional processing on the drum tracks.
The drum track breakdown is pretty much how you might arrange your own arrangement - Kick, ClapSnare, Snaps, 808, and noise effects all on their own discreet tracks with the other sounds (hi hats and shakers etc.) in the track labeled Tops.
Not seen in the remix video but used in the audio is UVI’s DS990
instrument, based on the Roland D-50. For use in the download pack I’ve substituted an Instrument Rack based on the Operator synth patch Fog Pad and inserted the Auto Filter to get a nice swell going.
Speaking of swells and sweeps, you’ll want to take notice of the filter automation on the piano and fog pad tracks. One trick that goes unnoticed is that lots of piano tracks can take on more of an analog pad sound if you insert Auto Filter set to lowpass and drop the Frequency down around 200 hertz, then it opens up to a more piano sound as you increase the frequency setting.
I hope there's some tip I was able to show you here, but also that you got some cool new sounds or ideas that you can use in your own production from the Closer Remix Pack. Let us know if there's something you found particularly useful or if there's something you'd like to add, or something you'd like to see us explore further. Thanks.