A question about swing in Ableton

Hey i had a question regarding swing, say you apply swing to one drum loop does that mean you have to apply that same swing to everything in your track?

Also what are some of the better swings in Ableton, ive heard good stuff about the Logic swings up to now ive only really used Abletons own swing…

yeah i want to know that too, because i usually forget to put a swing on until i get into arrangement which means i have a lot of seperate patterns so dows that mean i have to drag the swing onto each one?

Yeah because you will notice as well on certain patters if they have swing on them and other patterns dont it sounds a bit weird…

But like what about vocals and fx and stff…


I think the MPC groove templates are meant to be fairly good/popular, taken from live drumming etc.

As for the groove on everything else question… I’ve often wondered about this. I guess in a real band situation, it would just be the drummer adding the groove, or maybe the bassist.

I think you can sometimes over-groove things but as long as its not too much, and you’re not mixing grooves (I guess) then I imagine that would work?

More I think about this the more I get confused!

I think of swing/groove as adding a human feel, which make is hard to add rules to I guess.

Yeah but when you add groove to one thing and not the other hear what happens…

Anything on a computer is always gonna have rules i guess…?

I add groove to each part. I’m pretty sure that’s what you’re supposed to do. Remember the older versions of Ableton had a global swing function, since removed.

The Logic ones are interesting

And, yes, if you have separate clips in the arrange view you need to add the groove to each clip even if the clip is a duplicate of one before or after it on the timeline.

I don’t think there’s a global swing function in the newer versions of Ableton.

Hmmm, interesting.

Are swing and groove slightly different?

It makes sense if the terms of swing to have everything the same, but sometimes I think of groove as more like introducing the slight off-beat hits that a human would accidentally impart, and therefore kinda more random than with a more conventional swing.

lol more confusion but in simple terms swing makes music more groovy lol…

Think of swing as a subheading of groove or swing as a type of groove.

Here’s the best video I’ve seen that explains it.

Many thanks for this utube link as it has helped my understanding on this topic no end. :slight_smile:

But, i’m still struggling to position the concepts of groove / swing and velocities and where and when to apply them. I’m nearly done with the latest Main Room House Tutorial and it seems Phil uses velocity adjustment in his midi clips and does not apply any grooves at all. The u-tube video mentions that grooves can be applied to midi clips also so now i’m left wondering whether its just personal preference or whether there are any “rules” that can be followed as to which technique to use - maybe its music genre based? For example, in his Progressive House tutorial I recall him applying Grooves to some audio clips and also velocity adjustment on the Midi’s…


Interesting stuff… generally for club beats I’d leave the kick & snare to anchor the beat so to speak then usually groove the hats & other percussion & bass too of course… (if its rhythmic at the time)…

nudging the snare before or after the beat gives the feeling of a lazy beat or of a pushy beat… yeah kick & snare to anchor the beat & elements that are rhythmic usually get grooved… I think to implement grooves at various musical passages in the track IE intro, build, break, drop, is another creative process that can make a huge difference to the production. Its an Art within the Art…

you might know this, if you drag & drop a groove from the GP to a clip slot in the session, it creates a midi clip with midi note data… drop a drum rack on this track & from the midi clip editor, move, copy the notes accordingly e.g. kick on every beat, snare on second beat etc… cool way to kick off the session…

Second note, extract the groove from any beat… & use the above method to construct your own sounds… :w00t: