Find your own sound with the best tools, techniques, and instructors in the world.

In this program, you will be guided through everything you need to know to create incredible sounds from scratch. From huge growly basses to laser-focused leads to punchy drums - Sound Design is the thing your tracks are missing to make them unique and memorable. After this class, you will have tracks that no one else can even dream of.


Produce Professional Tracks

Using Ableton Live, industry-proven techniques, and special tricks and tips from our Ableton Certified Trainers, you will leave this class with finished, polished tracks.

Collaborate and Engage

Slam Academy is a community. While in this class, you will meet your next great collaborative partner, someone to share the stage with, or even your new best friend.

Find Your Sound

Get ready to be exposed to more music than you ever thought was possible. When you come out of this class, you will have a deep understanding of the sound you are looking for, and how to get it.

Get Gigs

We aren't just focused on making the best tracks. We want you to be publishing and selling those tracks as well. Be ready to finish this program with everything you need to start working professionally.

Jason Soderlund

Jason is a guitar player who came to Sound Design to explore ways to extend his guitar techniques.

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Julie Thoreen

Julie talks about her creative process that she found in the Sound Design Program, and learning to find her sound.

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Joshua Tolund (Motiz)

Joshua was already an experienced producer but wanted to get deeper into effects and sound design.

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James Patrick is a Minneapolis-based DJ and music producer, entrepreneur, and educator. James has over 20 years of professional experience performing at and directing electronic music events, including curation of the International Spark Festival. A pilot member of the Ableton Trainer Certification program, James participated in the first wave of trainer certifications and has been a critical force among the user base in the US.


  • Instant access to course materials online
  • Exclusive Ableton Certified Training
  • 3 hours weekly class time online or in-person
  • 24 weeks of in-depth curriculum
  • 1-on-1 help guidance from instructors
  • Extra lab time available online
  • Personalized feedback on your tracks
  • Invitation to our private online community


Membership includes enrollment in one structured program at a time, and Members can add more concurrent programs for an additional $125/month per program.

It's just one of many perks to being a Member at Slam!

Click here to learn more about Membership.



  • Tuesdays 01/17/23 - 06/27/23 7-10pm CST (Minneapolis)


Our three Flagship courses - Ableton Live, Sound Design, and Music Theory - are all available immediately upon registration.

That's right, you get IMMEDIATE ACCESS to all three of our core music production programs when you start your Slam Academy Membership. Unlike our "Structured" programs that meet weekly at a scheduled time, our Flagship courses are designed for you to learn at your own pace.

Each Flagship course offers more than 200 pre-recorded video tutorials and course exercises, plus several options for weekly lab time online so you can still get your questions answered by an expert with personalized feedback.


Unable to find a date that works for you? Our online courses offer the exact same content as their in-person counterparts and are modeled after the traditional classroom experience with live instruction.


Sound Design Curriculum

  • 1: Analog and Subtractive Synthesis

    Become familiar with the history and origins of electronic music through the exploration of the Analog Subtractive Synthesizer. Start with historical accounts and innovations, and then look into virtualized versions of these classic machines.
  • 2: Advanced Modulation

    We will begin this level still in the Analog world, building on what we learned in Level 1. Still working with the Subtractive language, but adding on to its capabilities through advanced modulation and waveshaping techniques.
  • 3: Effects Processing

    For this level, we will begin with the fundamentals of audio signal processing, based on the 3 primary dimensions of sound. We will then relate those dimensions to our audio effects device collection in Live.
  • 4: Sampling

    For this level we learn the art of sampling, from top to bottom. Beginning with recording techniques and professional audio file management, moving through the basics and tricks of sampling audio with the Ableton Simpler.
  • 5: Advanced Synthesis

    For this level, we will be covering a variety of advanced synthesis languages. All of which take advantage of modern computing power and cutting edge interface designs. We will begin by furthering our control of “playback speed” inside of a sampling instrument with Wavescan Synthesis, and then we will be smearing and spraying those slices into clouds of texture with Granular Synthesis.
  • 6: Distortion and Mastering

    Learn to finalize the creation of world class sounds through the professional application of timeline-based editing and compositing of your own original sound design creations. Polish them up to scream with spectral processing, analog and digital distortion, and world class mastering techniques. Finish the program with final projects that include an original short film score, or sample pack of all original sounds, presets, wavetables, and more!


Navigate modern music-making tools with confidence to create your own sound and express your musical ideas.


Share your music with the world. In stage or streaming online, our programs include techniques for live performance.


Learn music industry standards, get expert feedback on your tacks, and build connections.