How do I make House Music?

Mika Zinbanejad NHL player, DJ, and Recording Connection grad

Early house music could contain lyrics, vocals with no real lyrics, or no vocals whatsoever. What it did feature were deep baselines, repetitive rhythm, and a more mechanical delivery. Almost as if to say “We’re here to listen to dance music… so let’s get on it with it.”

As the early ‘80s rolled on, DJs began to play with house music a little more, infusing pop, rap, and jazz into the music. The most popular genre to sample from was Latin music, and more precisely, clave (cla-vey) rhythms. But the overall genre of house music was about to undergo more changes.

Deep House. Euro House. Acid House. Tech House. Electro House. Jump House. Each category of the house genre adds just a little bit more – or takes a little bit out – to hit a certain crowd right in the sweet spot. These variations began to appeal to mainstream audiences and house music was thrust into the public eye by Madonna, Paula Abdul, Bjork, and more.

Daft Punk, Swedish House Mafia, and Steve Aoki continue to make house music a thriving force in the music industry. While its origins began hidden away in Chicago underground dance clubs that catered to the LGBT culture, its been out in the open and embraced by the masses for decades.

Are you looking to return the embrace? It doesn’t matter if you have years of schooling with multiple instruments, or just find yourself lost in the music every time you hear it, house music isn’t just for the professional DJs and international acts. It can be for you, too. If you want something more than a hobby, read on.

Get Your Tools

As is the case with most electronic music, you’ll need a computer or laptop with enough processing power to run a full-blown digital audio workstation (DAW). Do we recommend starting with a high-end DAW, one with more than enough instruments, samples, and loops than you could ever hope to get through?

Absolutely not. In fact, we might even advise against it in most cases. The most popular DAWS, the high-powered software that industry professionals use, easily cost hundreds of dollars and even more when you throw in a few sample packs. But, at some point, you’ll get there. And you don’t want to have to buy a new computer.

To start, consider downloading some free DAWs, like GarageBand, Pro Tools First, or Ableton Live 9 Lite. These programs will give you the solid base you need to move on to more robust versions. And they’re FREE! Getting familiar with dashboards, how to add and manipulate instruments, how to record different tracks all within the same view are valuable starting points.

Then you can move on – incrementally – to the more powerful DAWs, like Logic Pro (David Guetta, Hardwell), Pro Tools (Dr. Dre, Kanye West), and Ableton Live 10 (Skrillex, Deadmau5). Almost no professional electronic music production team works with anything other than these three pieces of software.

In addition to the software, think about getting a trusty set of headphones – especially if you have roommates. Don’t go bottom of the barrel here, get something that feels good on your head and is durable. You could be wearing them for hours on end and you want them to last.

As you tinker with the software and start feeling comfortable with your house tracks, think about adding other hardware. Monitors let you hear what your audience will hear, midi keyboards will free up your computer keyboard, and a drum kit will give you even more freedom to jam with others.

Putting it all together is just part of the electronic music production process, and house production is no different. It takes time to learn the basics, it takes time to take the next steps, and it takes time to produce professional sounding tracks. Sometimes years. But if you’re interested in fast-tracking the process, consider the following.

Get a Jump on Your Future

Learning on your own can be a rewarding experience, but can take a lot of time and it’s hard to know if you’re learning everything properly. With the Recording Connection Ableton Electronic Music Production and Logic Pro Electronic Music Production Programs, you’ll learn how to make house music the same way the professionals do.

How can we say this? Because we put you in a real-world studio to work with those already in the business. You will receive one-on-one mentoring from an industry professional 10-40 hours a week, learning from the ground up or improving on skills you already have.

And you don’t have to move to Chicago, L.A., or New York to do it, either. The Recording Connection has more than 120 locations throughout the U.S. and Canada, so you don’t need to uproot your whole life to learn how to make the music you love. Would you like to learn more? Apply today.

Get your music production certification and build your music production and audio engineering skills by learning with an industry professional near you.