So, you have a fire melody or sample, and you want to take it to the next level…
Adding different effects and processing can transform the whole vibe of the sample and help it stand out. In this guide, I’m going to go over the 3 best ways to flip samples and melodies! If you want some free samples you can use to follow along with this guide, check out these sample packs.
Technique Number 1: Chopping Up the Sample
This involves getting your scissors…
And chopping the sample into different sections. This will COMPLETELY change the sound of your melody and add a lot of bounce. You can do this using a slice tool inside your DAW, or using different plugins, for example Slicex.
I recommend slicing up your melody on chord changes and rearranging the chords. You could also add even more slices like Slicexdoes, and add a cut on essentially every note.
I’ve cut this melody into pieces, rearranged it, and now it sounds a lot different:
Using Slicex, I’m able to rearrange the notes in the melody and make it sound choppier and bouncier:
Technique 2: Half Time and Double Speed
These are probably the most common ways to manipulate a sample. The way that half speed and double speed are able to change the energy of a melody still amazes me. Half time adds a mysterious, dark vibe, while double speed adds a lot of bounce.
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To add double speed or half time, load in a plugin that has that ability. This could be gross beat, half time, or you can do it manually. Simply double or half the length of a melody, as well as raising the pitch up an octave for double time, or lowering it an octave for half time.
Technique 3: Changing the Pitch
This is one of the easiest ways to flip a sample. This is very popular in hip-hop, trap and lo-fi, because it helps leave room for the vocals and drums. For example, Metro Boomin and his production in Mask Off. He sampled “Prison Song” and pitched it down, as well as adding half speed for the intro.
To do this, simply use the pitch nob on the sample.
Most software use “cents” when changing pitch. 1200 cents is an octave so pitching a melody up or down 1200 cents is like moving it up or down an octave.
Bonus tip: combining multiple of the above techniques.
You don’t just have to use 1 of these at a time, or during the whole track. Just like how Metro used half speed and changed the pitch, you could use a combination of effects to truly bring a melody to life. Just don’t overdo it!
My recommendation is to use half or double speed as well as chopping up the sample. It will be almost unrecognizable.
I hope these help!