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I'm interested in doing some d'n'b stuff (specifically with Reason) using the redrum module or Kong.

As I understand, the basic "rule" of d'n'b drums are the bass drum goes on 1 and 11 and the snare goes on 5 and 13. The sound I want to achieve is that "chugga-chugga" hihat sound before the second snare (like in Chase n Status' "Take Me Away").

The numbers refer to the steps in the drum machine.

No matter what I do, I can't get it to sound like that. The hihats sound very separate and don't really merge into another.

How can I get this effect?

(Apologies for lack of technicality, I'm only a hobbyist :))

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If there was need for an apology of not knowing the answer, this site would have no reason to exist. :) Welcome to the Audio Recording and Producing StackExchange. Please elaborate on what you exactly mean by '1 and 11' and '5 and 13'. Is that something that has to do with the sound, or something rhythmical that might or might not be related to the question? –  Pelle ten Cate Dec 11 '10 at 15:35
    
I've edited for clarification. I was referring to the numbers of the steps in the drum machine (so 1 would be the first 1/16th note, and 11 would be the 11th, etc) –  Ray Dey Dec 11 '10 at 20:39
    
Edit again, it still takes a lot of work to figure out that the timing of the other drums has nothing to do with your problem. –  Matthew Read Dec 12 '10 at 1:22
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3 Answers

up vote 4 down vote accepted

That characteristic drum and bass sound often comes from a sampled drum break that's been sped up. To imitate that you'll need to go beyond a 1/16th note grid.

I believe Redrum allows you increase the resolution to 64 steps per beat -- that may be enough to get you started. Try squeezing a full-measure funk pattern just in between the 11 and the 13.

But to really get the sound you're after, you might try to create a funky triplet-laden snare/cymbal/hat pattern in a separate track, then resample it and drop it into your track sped up 4x or 8x with a little filtering.

Or dig crates if that's more your style (e.g., listen for interesting breaks in old records.)

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Thanks very much :) –  Ray Dey Dec 13 '10 at 18:52
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0123 4567 89AB CDEF
---- ---- ---- ----
B           B      
     S         S   
HHHH HHHH HHHH HHHH

This is the most basic DnB rhythm.

Divide your measure up into 16th notes. Each group of 4 above is one beat.

Start with the kick, notated with B. Make your bass on the downbeat, and the up of the 3rd beat. Add your snare right on beats 3 and 4. Put your closed hi-hat on every 16th note.

Now, what you typically hear in DnB is the 16th notes swung a bit. This is a function of your sequencer, and you can easily do this in Reason. Swinging the 16ths just a bit dirties it up a bit, and makes that one tasty groove.

This gets you started. You can tweak from there, and yes, please rip some breaks and throw them in as appropriate.

Edit: To clarify what my numbers above mean to you... 0 would be 1 on your sequencer, 8 would be 9, A is 11, and F is 16. I just notated it in HEX for simplicity... sorry if that made it less simple.

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+1 for using HEX. -1/2 == 0 for writing the BD above snare above hi-hat rather than the other way around. This feels just wrong! (Like, IMO, any kind of programmed drums, I should add.) –  leftaroundabout Sep 12 '11 at 22:14
    
It doesn't really matter, does it? The point was to explain the rhythm, and I didn't have a quick way to notate. –  Brad Sep 13 '11 at 1:05
    
Of course it doesn't matter, it just "feels" upside-down. –  leftaroundabout Sep 13 '11 at 10:10
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disclaimer: I'm not a trained musician.
Dewb is right I think:

The HiHat I hear coming in @ 20 sec in that track seems way faster than 1/16 notes.

  • Enter 32 steps in Redrum.
  • Paint all 32 steps with a short HiHat sample,
  • turn up the BMP
  • move the Kick & Snare to the correct positions
    (you can display steps 17-32 using the flip switch)
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