Tutorial: Making House Music with Arturia’s KeyStep Pro

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Arturia added the KeyStep Pro to the ‘Step’ range of controllers back in 2019 at the NAMM show, and since then it has made its way into many producer’s home studios (mine included). It currently stands as Arturia’s flagship hardware controller as it gives you unparallel level of control over any modular synth rig, traditional MIDI synths and DAWs combined. To put it bluntly, it’s flippin’ awesome and tonnes of fun. Arturia have recently announced a new firmware update that introduces plenty of handy new features, check out my rundown here.

In this video I show an insight into my music making practise, and how it usually starts when making a track. As an artist I lean pretty heavily to that swung old-school underground house sound where Chicago meets the UK, you know the vibe – plenty of 909 hats, jazzy minor 7th chords and groovy basslines. In this video I tried to keep it pretty simple, 909 drums from a drum rack in Ableton Live, lush housey-chords from the Minilogue XD, a lead synth layer from the Korg NTS-1 and a funky arp-bassline from the Make Noise 0-Coast. The KeyStep Pro is sequencing all of these and what I love about this workflow is not just that I have control over so much of my gear from one place, but how quickly KSP let’s me laydown patterns ideas really quickly across software and hardware gear.

In this video, I’m essentially using Ableton live as my virtual audio mixer. Each of my synths in plugged into my audio interface and monitored in Live. This is useful as I can take advantage of Ableton’s FX sends, and I have the KeyStep MIDI mapped to control the FX buss send. To do this all you need to do is you engage the control lane, click the MIDI Map Mode switch in Live, click on a parameter you want to control and turn the encoder on KSP to assign it.

Would you like to see more tutorials like this? Different genres maybe? Let us know! The Arturia KeyStep Pro is available now.


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