If you are new at using loops in worship or maybe you have been using them for a while, you have probably noticed that there can be awkward moments between songs. Like when you hit the stop button and it kills all sounds everywhere and its just dead silent. Or the loop ends and you are trying to get into the next song that is in a different key. This post will give you just a couple ideas on how to improve your loop transitions.
1. Swelling Pad- If the song you are transitioning into is in the same key then you have the ability to have a swelling pad sound in the background of your loop. Through ableton or your midi controller you can set up an expression pedal to control the volume of the ambient swell. If you are looking for some great ambient swell sounds check out http://karlverkade.bandcamp.com/album/ambient-pad-bases
he has created some killer sounds. I have also used these to transition into different keys. You can also use the Keith McMillen 12Step Pedal and a virtual instrument in live to play a Pad live to help with transitions.
2. Overlap your loops- This is kinda like the way a dj would be mixing in a club. I have one loop running when I am getting to the end of the song I can trigger the next loop as the last one fades out. To make this happen you have to create open space underneath each clip in the next scene (Essentially, a blank scene). Then right click on the clip slot, and remove the stop button. This also works really well transitioning into songs with the same key.
3. Automation- This is probably one trick that not many people know about. You can actually tell ableton to automatically trigger the next loop at the end of the song. So you could have your whole set programmed to flow one song after the other, with just one trigger. I use this alot with different parts of a song or an intro. You can accomplish this by using “Follow Actions” in Ableton on clips. Find these settings in the Clip Overview window. Please note though that Follow Actions do not work with Scenes. In other words, you cannot tell a scene to automatically play after another. You can only trigger different clips automatically.
4. Use Arrangement View – You could use arrangement view to layout your entire worship set in order. Then hit play and let it go through all of the songs horizontally from Left to Right. Add any fades or volume automation that you need.
Hope these ideas got you thinking. Share you comments or concerns below.