Published by: Julia
Timbaland is a master of beatmaking. Whether you are a fan of his, this style of music or want to create your own beats, this masterclass has you covered.
What to expect from Timbaland’s beatmaking masterclass
In this course, Timbaland shows you how he creates his music with his team. He basically, steps you through his creative process. This is not primarily a technical course. If you are looking for a how-to-use audio software course, this masterclass is probably is not for you.
He wants you to be able to get your creativity flowing, so you can show him what you are capable of. The community for this course is still very active. So, if you have questions or are lookng for feedback, you can easily get it.
As long as you love music, you are welcome in this world of producing.TIMBALAND – Beatmaking Masterclass
A chance to learn from Timbaland’s production team
As you will see, Timbaland works collaboratively. So, when you take this masterclass, you are getting the chance to tap into the expertise of his team as well as him. His co-producers, Fede Vindever and Angel Lopez, and his audio engineer, Chris Godbey all share their knowledge, throughout the course. A fact that helps to keeps things interesting and provides you with an even better insight into what goes into making a piece of truly unique music.
Timbaland’s favorite instrument is his voice
I was surprised to learn that Timbaland’s preferred instrument, at least in the initial stages of song creation, is his mouth. His unique approach enables you to create and experiment with beats and rhythms, regardless of where you are.
There is no doubt this skill takes time to learn, but it is the perfect option for someone like me who does not play any instrument well. It means I can try different beats and rhythms out to quickly come up with ideas. Later, using synth sounds I can make things more interesting.
How to make a beatbox beat
The next part of that process is to take the beats you have created with your voice and put them into a loop. At this stage, you can experiment with speed and overlays. As you will see, creating interesting music is all about improvisation. During this lesson, you watch Timbaland gradually add harmony, melody and texture.
You will also start to understand how helpful it is to work collaboratively. Even at this stage, Timbaland is taking ideas and suggestions from his team. In the next video, Tim takes you through the process of building beats.
How to come up with a workflow that suits you
To be able to create effectively, you need to keep things flowing. If something stops you in your tracks it is all too easy to lose momentum. How you do this is very much up to you, but it is essential to find a process that works for you and regularly tweak it.
Tim shows you his way of doing things. To me, it looked quiet chaotic. But, clearly, the element of surprise created by this workflow clearly works for Tim and it may for you too. So, it is worth watching this video all the way through.
Also, take the time to download the samples provided via the link in the workbook. You can use them to complete the assignment and, later, for creating your own pieces.
Keep your ears open and be inspired
Timbaland clearly takes inspiration from absolutely everywhere. So, follow his lead. Wherever you go, listen out for beats.
They are everywhere; your dishwasher cycle is as rhythmic and interesting as the sound of the waves of the ocean. Potential beats you can use are all around. You just need to tap into them.
How Timbaland created his best collaborative tracks
Throughout the course, Timbaland demonstrates what he has just taught you using tracks he has created with other artists. He also references a lot of music he has not personally worked on. They are not all hip-hop or electronic music tracks. But, most of them are.
If you are a fan of Timbaland’s music, you are going to really enjoy finding out about the song origins of:
- Jay-Z’s Dirt Off Your Shoulder
- Ginuwine’s Pony
- Missy Elliott’s Gossip Folks
- Static Major and Aaliyah’s Are You That Somebody?
I found the video about the creation of Ginuwine’s “Pony” particularly interesting, which really surprised me because I do not actually like the track much. Yet I still enjoyed learning about the creative process that was followed to make it. During the video, Timbaland explains how tapping into spontaneity and emotion helped him to put together this rich and unusual piece of music.
The art of chord progression
This was my favorite video of the course, by far. It is amazing what beautiful music you can create from just a few simple chords. In this case, a basic four-bar chord progression. I hope that one day I will be able to do the same. It was very inspiring.
Using chord progression in the right way makes it possible for you to turn simple ideas into rich and complex pieces of music. Learning this skill will help you stand out from the crowd and create richly textured tracks.
At this stage, I suggest that you skip forward a little and take a look at the vocal samples video. It kind of builds on the chord progression section and demonstrates similar skills in more detail. But, don’t forget to double back and do the tweaking and layering drums section.
Tweaking and Layering Drums
Tim’s drum sounds are something else. Drums are a vital part of beatmaking, so being able to learn about this from a true master, is an invaluable opportunity. In this part of the course, you gain insight into just how important being a good audio engineer is.
This section is filled with tips. For example, taking the time to listen to what you are working on using headphones. Tim reminds us that not everyone can afford a big and expensive hi-fi system. But, most people do own a half-decent set of headphones. So, whatever you create must stand on its own when played through headphones.
Everybody has a different swing. That’s what makes producers unique.Timbaland – Teaches Producing and Beatmaking Masterclass
How to manipulate vocal samples to make a beat
The way in which Tim uses the voice as an instrument was a real eye-opener for me. I now know that a lot of the sounds I like on the tracks he has created are not actual instruments. A fact that I had passed me by to a certain extent before my taking this course.
Creating a breakdown and adding a topline
This is perhaps the most dangerous point of the creative process. Everything is done, but you now need to enrich things. The trick is not to overdo it. You do not want to ruin the flow and your chord progression. You just want to create a rhythm within a rhythm. Timbaland shows you how.
I believe that a hit song is really about the energy you put out.Timbaland – MusicProduction Masterclass
Again, at this stage, you see the importance of using your music to create emotion to draw a picture. If you feel good while creating your songs, your audience will too. The people who listen to your music will be picking up on your energy. So, you have to put yourself into it and be fully engaged in the process.
But, to create a hit you need a topline. A decent vocal melody. Tim explains how to be flexible enough to be able to collaborate effectively with your vocalists. Again, it is all about give and take and effective collaboration. Being prepared to interpret and contribute to what the other artist is doing. As you will see in the video, often it only requires something small to completely transform a track.
Timbaland’s influences and what drives him on
One of the things that makes this course so enjoyable to take is the fact that Timbaland is not all about himself. Far from it. He clearly values the people he works with, cares about his audience and wants to make an impact with his music.
Having completed about half of the 60+ masterclasses that can be taken for just $180 using the all-access pass, I can tell you that modesty and willingness to work with others are something all of the experts have in common.
These ultra-successful people all approach their art in the same way. They are not prima donnas. So, I was not surprised to see Timbaland finish up his course by paying homage to those who had gone before.
In his workbook and this video he explains how the following artists caught his attention and helped him to experiment and learn his craft:
- Dr Dre
- DeVante Swing
- Teddy Riley
- DJ Premier (aka Primo)
- Pharrell Williams
- Rodney Jerkins (Darkchild)
If you can, take the time to listen to the tracks these guys created, that Timbaland recommends.
The importance of perseverance
You need to be dedicated to learning your craft. Without perseverance, you are never going to get known. Like many music artists, Timbaland struggled to get his parents and others to understand that he was learning every time he set down in front of his computer. You need to invest in the right tools and to invest your time, regardless of whether others believe in you or not.
Be sure to make use of Timbaland’s masterclass workbook
As you can see from my top-level masterclass.com review, which you can read by clicking here, each course includes access to a workbook. When you take this masterclass, it is worth your while downloading Timbaland’s workbook, first.
Doing so will help you to follow the course and get more out of it. I really liked the fact that it included a comprehensive explanation of the jargon used in each chapter.
A unique approach to his masterclass assignments
To help you to learn, Timbaland has created two unique sets of stems, samples and tracks, which can be downloaded and used to help you to practice what you learn. This is very generous of him and much easier than trying to create something from scratch to work on. In fact, you can use these to complete some, although not all, of the assignments that Timbaland sets for his students.
Who is Timbaland’s masterclass right for?
There is no doubt that to be able to take and enjoy this course you need to be a fan of beatboxing. If you are not, this masterclass will drive you nuts. A significant percentage of your time will be spent listening to what Timbaland and his team are creating, in real-time. So, if the video is 26 mins long about half of that time, maybe a bit more, will be spent listening to Timbaland’s music and his sampling process.
If you are a Timbaland fan, getting inside his mind and watching him create will be a real treat. Anyone who is interested in getting into beatboxing will learn quite a lot from this course. But, I would say you should definitely treat yourself to an all-access masterclass pass, so you can take more of the music masterclasses.
Each teacher offers you something different. For example, Deadmau5 goes into the technical side of using synths in more detail and shows you a completely different creative process. Whereas, Usher’s course is all about the performance aspect.
This is not a particularly long masterclass, but don’t let that put you off. Timbaland packs plenty in. But, some of you may be a bit frustrated by the lack of technical tutorials. Fortunately, that is not really an issue because there are tons of how-to videos available online. Plus, most of the audio software producers provide excellent, in-depth training. So, learning the techniques you are interested in using is really easy. View The Course Here.