Deconstructing Hit Songs: Dance Music Synths

Inner City, New Order, Daft Punk, Robin S

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This course will break down how to transcribe and synthesize some famous sounds from classic dance tracks. The sounds and tools selected for this course are still commonly used in music production today! We will analyze and recreate a drum pattern from the Roland TR-909, a bass sound from the Roland TB-303, the infamous Korg M1 “Organ 2” sound, and finally, a sampled chord stab sound used across the many sub-genres of house, techno, and dub music. In additional to creating the core sounds, we will add processing and effects to fine tune and finalize each sound.

Lessons topics include:

  • Background on the Roland TR-909
  • Transcribing drums from “Revolution 909” by Daft Punk
  • Using Live’s Groove Pool to add the proper swing and feel to the drum beat
  • Background on the Roland TB-303
  • Synthesizing the bass from “Confusion (Pump Panel Reconstruction Mix)” by New Order
  • Creating an Instrument Rack with macro controls for sonic tweaking
  • Background on the Korg M1 workstation/synthesizer
  • Synthesizing the organ lead sound from “Show Me Love” by Robin S.
  • Introduction to Parallel Harmony and Chord Sampling Techniques
  • Transcribing & Synthesizing the chord stab sound from “Big Fun” by Inner City
  • Resampling and configuring samples for playback in Live’s Sampler

Your Instructor

Paul Laski
Paul Laski

Paul Laski (P-LASK) is an Ableton Certified Trainer with over six years of teaching experience at DubSpot New York and Icon Collective Music Production School in Los Angeles. Paul has been involved in the electronic music scene for over a decade as a producer, remixer, sound designer, DJ, and educator.

Blending sounds from house, techno, garage, and beyond, P-LASK's original productions and remixes have been featured on Moody Recordings, Groovebirds Records, Crowd Records, Cherrytree (Interscope) Records, Abe Duque Records, Mean Red Music, Krafted Music, and his own imprint, Electric Dangerous Records. He has done remix work for artists such as Coeur du Pirate, Abe Duque, Divisible, Pointe Claire, Edian (UK), Rainer Hoeglmeier (Germany), and Wei Wei (China).

A small selection of his sound design work can be heard in the factory preset bank of XFER Records’ SERUM software synthesizer. Paul continues to develop presets for software synthesizers, free Ableton Live Racks, and samples, many of which are available through his website ( When he's not busy in the studio, he offers instruction and consultation in Ableton Live and live performance for artists and producers in the LA area.

Frequently Asked Questions

When does the course start and finish?
The course starts now and never ends! It is a completely self-paced online course - you decide when you start and when you finish.
How long do I have access to the course?
If you purchase the course individually, you have lifetime access to the content. If you sign up for a membership, you'll have unlimited access to this course for as long as you keep your membership active.
What if I am unhappy with the course?
We would never want you to be unhappy! If you are unsatisfied with your purchase, contact us in the first 30 days and we will give you a full refund.