Lesson 7: Melody

Creating a captivating melody can be one of the most essential elements in making a powerful electronic music track. Depending on the genre, you may find yourself focusing more on quirky and unique sounds as opposed to traditional chords. Dubstep and Deep House can often have less focus on melodies as the bassline leads the way. But when creating an EDM piece, usually there will also be melodic elements involved too.

Developing a strong melody is something that requires passion, creativity, and skill. When it comes to constructing a melody line, the most important thing to keep in mind is that it should be in the same key as the bass line. This means that while you don’t have to copy it directly, the notes you use in your melody should roughly follow those from the bass. This can result in some overlapping of the same notes at certain points.

Keep one thing in mind: a melody line is not meant to be a solo! It’s fundamentally different to this kind of playing, so go easy on your note count. Melody lines should serve as a cohesive accompaniment to the music and pack enough of a punch so that listeners can remember them.

To avoid getting overwhelmed or bogged down by complications, remember that you don’t have to reinvent the wheel every time you sit down to write a new track. Instead, try repeating the same melodies throughout your song – if need be, use different instruments and techniques like orchestration to vary them slightly. Ableton Live has great midi tools that make it easier than ever to edit and transform melody lines quickly and easily. Your assignment for this course will be to practice creating a beat, bass, and melody.