“FL Studio has, and probably will remain the main ingredient to my workflow. its ease of use and fast results are what get the ideas down as fast as they come to my head, and hat’s really important for me.” - DeadMau5
Remixing songs has become more popular than ever thanks to the plethora of software and technology readily available and can even be done on our phones through apps and other gadgetry.
For DJs and musicians remixing is a great way to not only learn how your chosen DAW works and operates but a good remix can provide a lot of exposure off the back of an already popular track and give you the chance to put out fresh material without the pressure of creating an entire song from scratch.
Some of the most accessible software for remixing is the old favourite and often under rated FL Studio from Image Line. Providing a ‘click and go’ setup allowing you to start creating a track literally seconds after you open it, FL Studio opens up a whole world of music creation and plenty of tools to help you spice up a song with your own unique flavour.
One important thing to remember when remixing is that you’re also essentially doing a ‘re-edit’ of that song, so it’s worth thinking about the structure of the original track and what you want to bring to it with your remix. Can you lose the intro? Should you loop something for longer? Is there a really cool section you wish there was more of?
Perhaps you have the stems of the track and you plan a complete overhaul with entirely new sections or parts of the original recreated on synths and new instruments.
For this you have VSTs such as Poizone or Sytrus. They have a huge range of sounds and you can be exhaustive with the settings for any sound. These along with your own plug-ins and sound fonts go a long way to helping you remix a song. You can re write parts or double up on the original lead melodies. Techniques such as this are especially useful for dance remixes and the increasingly popular dub step remixes we hear all the time. Find a sound you like and a few minute messing with the mod or LFO will give you all the bass wobble you need, perfect for those deep, dirty sounds you’re after.
FL has without a doubt the easiest interface to work with and this is especially true when creating drum loops. The trickiest part of using FL Studio (and most fun,) is building beats in the step sequencer. Fun because you have the whole drum beat in front of you so clearly that even someone who has never touched the software before will pick it up in 5 minutes, and tricky because you can get lost in beat creation and finding that perfect loop. This part is really up to your own personal preference and how many drum samples you’ve stockpiled in your travels.
Depending on your style of remix you’ll need different drum sounds. If it’s a gritty remix with a hip hop feel you’ll be after great sounding samples that you can EQ easily to find their ‘sweet spot.’ If you’re creating a DnB or dubstep remix you’ll be looking for that certain snare or percussive sound you want to tweak and fiddle with until you get a snappy, wet sounding crack for the snare drum and probably two or three bass drums that fit into one whole sound. Before starting a remix in fl studio better read an important tool at fl studio here.