|Love these Qs!|
My shares below…
Currently selected Loop Track is mapped to a PAN and VOLUME controller (in my case, _expression_ pedals)
But most importantly, I build looper track levels and pan positions so that what goes in comes out “premixed.” I seldom touch my _expression_ controllers.
Managing live microphones can be a real challenge in a looping context. I have mapped CCs to unmute the mic channel during recording and to immediately mute it when not.
Getting set up can be a challenge. Less is more. Simplify the rig.
Dynamics. Static EDM parts get boring (for me anyway). For live audio loops, I have been using a variety of manipulation techniques to create dynamics change over time. Turnado is a cool plugin for this purpose. Also, many looping platforms provide cool tools like Slice, Shuffle, Rate Shift, Quantize Replace.. etc.. these techniques can add a lot of color and dynamic change to a static loop.
Similarly, I loop midi data in BFD (a drum machine plug) and control the dynamics and busyness of the drum groove with a VECTOR control mapped to the BFD Master Dynamics and Simplify controls. This is turning out to a be a really cool new part of my workflow… I can use my foot to cool the drummer’s jets… Or heat them up.. way cool.
I use a single Ableton Live Project File that is preset to handle all songs in the set. In Mobius, I have tracks dedicated to different kinds of looping workflow. One for traditional groove looping, another for Quantize Replace Looping, Another for Loop Windowing, etc… each of these tracks is then routed to a dedicated channel strip in Mobiles with Dedicated FX plugs. In this way, a single LIVE project file can host an entire set’s worth of workflows and I need not spend down time loading new Projects between tunes.
Dynamics Control via- Turnado (for audio Loops), Breakdowns via Mute, Fade, etc., Copy/Pan/RateShift scripts, etc...
Audiences love it when I stare incessantly at my MacBook while swearing under my breath and soaking in flop sweat. Not really, but haven’t we all been there?
Stage presence + Live Looping can be tough.. especially if the loops are exclusively produced live. Practice Practice Practice. I practice my workflow for a given looping strategy (in my case, all footpedal driven) until I can do it without thinking about it. (yeah, right!) I have yet to become "Lord of the Pedal Dance.”
sChanges in Pattern draw folks in. Delayed anticipation of the V chord. Breakdowns, skeletization of the main groove. All the normal musical tricks work...
Audience Engagement - where are they at? Dancing, Eating? Running for the door?
Tempo / Key
Target Looping workflow (Quantize Replace? Live Groove Loop? Ambient Pad?) I will often use an ambient pad workflow to segue, especially if I want to change tempo.
The usual suspects- Jeff L, Per B, Bill W, Rick W, Simeon H, and many other amazing artists on this list.
Less is more.