In this class we will focus on the new Pro Tools First software. This is a new version of Pro Tools that is absolutely free. It mimics traditional versions of Pro Tools, so if you learn Pro Tools First, you will be very comfortable working on Pro Tools or Pro Tools HD in a studio.
Pro Tools First is a full-featured program, but it isn’t without it’s limitations. I’ll walk you though what those are, some ways you can deal with them, and how to use the program to produce and/or record your music.
For years I’ve been teaching Music Production in the college classroom. These classes I’m making for Udemy use the same syllabus I’ve used in my college classes for years, at a fraction of the cost. I believe anyone can learn Music Production – and cost shouldn’t be a barrier.
Recently I was named as a semi-finalist for the Grammy Foundation’s Music Educator of the Year award because of my in-person university classes. Now I’m taking those classes to Udemy in an online format in order to reach more students.
What will I learn in this Course?
- Differences between Pro Tools First, Pro Tools, and Pro Tools HD
- Advantages of Pro Tools First
- Limitations of Pro Tools First
- Downloading and Installing Pro Tools First for FREE
- Setting up a session from a template
- Creating a new session from scratch
- Organizing a session
- Importing audio tracks
- Adding MIDI tracks
- Using the XPand!2
- Creating a multi-timberal synth
- Saving and recalling your sound design patches
- Navigation in Pro Tools First
- Pro Tools Editing tools
- Time Stretching audio to fit your tempo
- Elastic audio
- Adding markers to your session
- Recording audio
- Recording setup
- Editing recordings
- Setting up MIDI
- Recording MIDI
- Panning, EQ, and other effects
- Mixing tips
- Exporting your track
- Bounce settings
- Mp3 Conversion
- SoundCloud and uploading elsewhere
- …and much, much more!
About the Instructor
J. Anthony Allen is an Ableton Certified Trainer, and a PhD in Music Composition and master of Electronic Sounds. His music has been heard internationally in film, radio, video games, and industrial sound, as well as the concert hall and theater.
He currently is an adjunct professor of composition at the University of St. Thomas, and is the CEO and co-founder of Slam Academy in Minneapolis.
Praise for classes by J. Anthony Allen
“Without a doubt the best explanation and east of use that one can get. It leaves you enough room to go explore. The classes go by quick, so you can be on your way at being proficient. What are you wait for!”
“Amazing – Seriously Loved It! I took all his courses and have to say I’m so happy! Learnt loads! Jason is an awesome teacher!”
“I have never had any formal training in music at all. Trying to learn all the notes and how everything translated was a serious challenge. After going through this class, Dr. J has totally brought down the barriers. The content was very useful and was easy to grasp for me.”
“I like these courses because you can get up and running quickly without having to spend hours of time wading through TMI (too much information!). Jason hits the high points but shows you what you need to know. Thanks!”
“I’ve watched many other videos on scales and chords before, however, this one has been the best. I now understand minor scales and chords and even how to analyze songs. It really gave me the confidence to start producing music because I feel like I have some structure and guidelines to follow. AWESOME!”
“Clear and Informative – Jason has a clear uncluttered style (with the important dashes of humor) of presentation that is focused on the important key aspects of this course. Recommended for those starting out!”
“Dr. Allen does it again with his music theory series. This course really opened up everything I learned from the 1st section, and now I understand more about the composition side of things for music. I highly highly recommend this course to anyone!!! Really opened my eyes to many things I wasn’t aware of.”
“The Best Teacher Ever, who makes you understand the ins & outs of Music Theory by all means without giving what you don’t want to know.”
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Advantages and Limitations to Pro Tools First
“Free” isn’t always free: In this video we will look at what you can do (and what you can’t) in Pro Tools First.
One of the biggest drawbacks to Pro Tools First is project maximums. There are a few things we can do to deal with it, though.
Downloading Pro Tools First
The downloading process for Pro Tools First is a little more complicated than normal. I’ll walk you through it in this video.
Installing Pro Tools First
Because of that PACE and iLok stuff, we have an extra step in installing, too. Let me walk you through it.
Starting a Session
Organizing Your Session
As we start to build a session, it is always a good idea to keep things organized. This is how I do it.
Importing Audio Files
Next, let’s start to build a track by adding a drum loop into the session as an audio track.
Adding a MIDI Instrument
Pro Tools First has a lot of MIDI instruments built in, which will let us make a little of different sounds.
Using the Expand!2
Creating a Multi-Timbre Synth
Now that we’ve looked at some of the presets, let’s build our own sound in this video.
Panning and Effects
The Expand!2 has some effects built-in to it that we can access to give our sound a little more color.
Saving and Recalling Your Sounds
Now that we’ve created something, we should save it so we can use it in future tracks as well.
Editing and Producing in Pro Tools First
The Pro Tools Editing Tools
Getting comfortable with the various editing tools in Pro Tools will make your workflow much faster. Let’s learn them!
The ability to Warp audio has been common in programs like Ableton Live for awhile. In this video I’ll show you how Pro Tools does it.
Separating and Arranging Audio Files
Next, let’s talk about how to chop up and edit our audio files.
Recording Audio and MIDI
Recording Audio in Pro Tools
It’s time to record a track! Pardon my guitar playing in this video while I get something into our track.
Setting Up to Record MIDI
Before we anything to our instrument tracks, let’s be sure our MIDI system is setup correctly.
Creating Drum Tracks
In this video, I’ll walk you through creating a drum track using our MIDI instrument and the MIDI Editor.
Volume Controls in the Mixer
We haven’t spent much time yet in the Pro Tools Mix Window. Let’s explore it now.
Just like in the Xpand!2, we can control the placement of our sound with Panning from the mixer.
Next, we need to look at how we can get control of our mix using one of Pro Tools First’s built-in Equalizers.
Pro Tools First has a number of other effects built-in as well. Let’s explore some of those!
Finalizing Your Track
Exporting, or Bouncing, has a number of a settings we should explore. In this video I’ll walk you through the different options.
Mp3 Conversion and SoundCloud
Now that we have an exported file, let’s talk about how to get it to an Mp3 so you can upload it.