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Music software company visits UCM

UCM music students learned about software and production through the Ableton University Tour Tuesday, at Hart Recital Hall.

Ableton is a company that creates products used by musicians, DJs, and producers.

These products include Ableton Live, a program that turns the computer into an instrument, and Push, a hardware instrument controller that allows musicians to make beats and sounds through connecting to the software.

The tour started with day sessions where students learned more about Ableton and different strategies for production and ended with a presentation performance using the software.

Ricky Spaeth, junior music technology major, said he found the Ableton visit fascinating because he learned more about the software he had little experience with.

“I’m much more interested now than before, since I did a project with Ableton,” Spaeth said.

Spaeth attended the first session of the day where he learned how to use Ableton with the program Max/MSP, a music software compatible with Ableton Live.

“You can use Max with a lot of things,” he said. “It’s a blank canvas in engineering.”

Thomas Faulds, local brand manager for Ableton, said he started the tour after speaking to a few schools about Ableton Live and hearing the faculty was interested in it.

“One of the things about live software is that it is designed for live performances,” he said.

Not only did the UCM students learn how to use the software from Faulds, they learned from Makaya McCraven, a beat scientist and presenter at the event.

“Ableton is really flexible with using audio to compose and create music without using a traditional instrument,” he said to the audience during the presentation.

McCraven has been using Ableton Live for the past 10 years and said there is a learning curve in the beginning, but the software is user-friendly with prior music knowledge and some experience with it.

The Ableton University Tour allowed students the opportunity to explore and get a glimpse of how the music software works and it runs all across the country at different schools.

Faulds said to the audience that UCM is one of the first schools in the country to allow the computer to be an instrument.

“One of the coolest things is that you can turn the computer into an instrument. It’s so unique.”

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