This Ableton Mistake I Made Created a Catchier Song

My Stupid Mistake

This stupid Ableton mistake I made years ago changed my whole approach to songwriting.

Playing around with Ableton projects, I found myself listening to parts over and over with the loop markers set in the arrangement view.

One day, I went to drag the loop markers to a different area and I totally messed up. I unintentionally put the loop in wrong location, on the wrong beat, and made the loop shorter. Ooopps!!!

Ableton auto magically started playing this weird short Frankenstein loop.

And the thing was, it sounded awesome. Some unintentional looping mistake I made created a new phrase of this song I never thought about. And because it was shorter and repeated over and over, it turned out to be a super catchy hook. A Shorter and catchier hook than my previously written chorus.

This Ableton Mistake changed my approach to songwriting.

My early days of songwriting I dragged things out too long and didn’t repeat parts enough. Now when I look at my songs, the hook might be half or a quarter of the size of the chorus or verse I originally wrote. It might repeat four or more times instead of just twice.

So now when I am in Ableton arranging a song, many times I will take the Ableton loop markers and move them around the song just for giggles. I loop different parts of the progressions, I change the loop sizes, I repeat different parts of the song over and over. A lot of times, I end up using shorter parts for choruses and verses then originally composed and repeat the choruses more often.


Take the loop marker in the arrangement view and make it a measure or half measure and play it in random spots of your Ableton project.

Ableton Random Looping for Song Ideas

This seems to work best when I am beginning stages of a project. I also do this to help produce new drum beat ideas. Hopefully it can help inspire new ideas.

People have told me that the song that sticks in their heads the most from my last album is “Unseen“. Go figure, I repeat the heck out of that chorus. Don’t remember for sure, but I bet some of the structure came from messing around with the loop markers as in the tip above.

So this post is not just about moving the Ableton loop marker around like a crazy person, but is also about how I made parts of songs catchier by repeating them more and making them shorter and easier to remember.

Click below to listen to Unseen at any one of these sources:      Spotify      Apple Music     Bandcamp

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