Making a DJ Mix Using Ableton Live

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This is a video designed to teach one specific skill for DJ’ing … creating a DJ mix using Ableton Live software. It is a very detailed examination that guides the viewer step by step in the process of arranging tracks, cross-fading, and adding automation.

This particular method should not be considered to be appropriate for a live DJ performance, although Ableton Live can be used differently for that purpose. This is only for producing a studio mix. I’m working on a separate video right now to cover live performances with Ableton.

Unfortunately, as of early 2014, YouTube annotations are not visible to mobile viewers, only to users watching on desktop browsers. I use annotations quite frequently to post clarifications and additional information during the video. For the best educational experience, you might prefer to watch this video in a desktop browser rather than on mobile, unless YouTube eventually fixes the mobile annotation deficiency.

Also, if you’re looking for a video that helps you understand live DJ’ing using CD players or turntables, I’d recommend that you check out this mix:

In order to put together a mix using Ableton Live, as described in this video, you must first understand how to “warp” tracks in the software. I have a separate tutorial designed to teach that specific process, at this link:

The third video in this mini-series, which talks about mastering your mix, and marketing it on the internet, is available here:

I’m also working on several other “DJ’ing in Ableton” videos, which when tied together, will teach you how to use this powerful software for some pretty impressive performances. Some of them are online now, and others are pending. For a complete organized index list of all my music-related videos here on YouTube, go to this link:

Follow Jonathan Clark on other sites:

Here’s the specific link to the final version of this DJ mix, on SoundCloud. You can find full track listings on this page too:

If you find this video to be useful, please help us out by sharing it on Facebook or other forums or websites!! Or share the link to this post, which talks about all three videos in this mini-series:

Track listings are as follows:
01. Reflect Grace, “I’m A Robot, Not A Human” (Original Mix).
02. Kachu MX, “Orlando” (Original Mix).
03. Monodrive, “Deeper Sight” (Monodrive’s Rainy Day Mix).
04. Trim The Fat, “Disco Head” (Original Mix).
05. Philip Jo, “Su Vit Nastis” (Original Mix).
06. DJ Smilk & Black Criss, “Is The True” (Original Mix).
07. David Anthony, “High Tech Soul.”
08. Bas Struik, “Transitions” (Original Mix).
09. Vincent Villani, Kevin G, & Chriis Cruz, “Planet Underground” (Original Takeover Mix).
10. John Sweet, “Sliding Behind Sun” (Claudio Climaco Remix).
11. Paul Jays, “Spiritual Battery” (Carlos Fauvrelle Remix).
12. Martin Bonansea, “Spirit Of Force” (Original).
13. Cream Sound, “Always” (Snake Sedrick Remix).
14. Ke Nobi, “Jump Into The Air” (Rodrigo Diaz Remix).
15. Arieldecks, “Indian Rules” (Original Mix).
16. Gomo, “Bandelay” (Mikel Ayerra & Ismael Alonso Remix).


djbolivia says:

+themikebernard Yes, absolutely. It’s too long for me to describe here.
Go into google and search the following phrase:
“ableton manual automation and editing envelopes”

ADDGAM3R says:

Jesus dude cmon 2 hours.

Cameron Tams says:

Thank you for this! I personally am not a dj and am not trying to be. I
love listening to mixes and sometimes dislike certain songs in the mix so
this is perfect to just be able to make my own mixes with all music i like!

aly mohamed says:

@djbolivia i cant find the mastering suite on my ableton live any help
please ???? 

DvjStorm says:

thanks man for this video 

Mark Palnau says:

This is great for me. I have friends that dj, but I dont have the
experience and just want to make a seemless mix. But maybe it will inspire
an actual dj to use my ‘produced’ mix in a real set

Rafael says:

my ableton live doesn’t come with “Mastering Suite” any other alternatives
to be able to Export the mix successfully?

bitspacemusic says:

I miss the old DJs without laptops.

Tom Hassall says:

Handy vid. Like someone else I’m stuck with finding something even close to
the Mastering Suite on Live 9. Looked for the ‘Limiter’ but that doesn’t
look like what I need.

gaillard florian says:

complete tutorial and to explain very well. very good work I subscribe now

Diego Eh says:

THANKS FOR THIS VID!! (Y) I have been wondering how to rec a mix , i
have a doubt: it is necesary to warp each track?….nd for djing
live,,,,if i have diferents tracks with diferent BPM, what is the best way
to make a mix without affect the tempo?..i mean ,, i usualy learn the BPM
per track o chooses a color for range and with a Knob which control global
tempo i adjusts it ,,,,but i dont know if is a practice and correct
way….thank you a lot for your nice vids and attention (Y)

Christian Stephen says:

Thanks for this video your an interesting guy thanks for make the video not
so bland

Solo So says:

Forgive me for not commenting .. Jon but some time ago I saw one of your
videos that provided a very simple yet comprehensive tutorial on warping a
track .. it was spot on .. so thanks!

DJDangerousNile says:

Sweet!!! :)

Pouch Musi says:

Excellent !

Daniela Espinoza says:

what can i use if i don’t have the mastering suite?

Lesad Kitteh says:

Great tutorial thanks

nikolazmusic says:

nice tutorial… just one question: is it possible export a dj-mix with
track markers? …to burn a cd with all tracks?

djlowtek says:

I think this is a good way to plan out mixes and get good track lists for
when you’re ready to actually mix! Thanks for the video.

Delaxus Music says:

WOW !!!great work Dj bolivia!!!

Bryan Miles says:

Thank you for your introduction explaining to new DJs what the need to do
when doing a Demo.

Lennox Webster says:

Awesome video. Music creation is my life and I always wanted to become a
music producer. This year my dream came true. After losing countless hours
with inadequate programs I finally found the #1 program for music creation
ever created. please visit my channel to find the link I have posted for
this software

chris b says:

thanks mate helped allot kinda still using fl studio but want to learn
this more

เพ็ญสิณี กอล้ฟ เสนแสง โรจนชัยพงศ์ says:

ok dj
กอล้ฟ เสนแสง

DLoFineSSe says:

i dont have master suite in ableton 9. What can i use instead, or how can i
get master suite?

Col1990 says:

thanks for the tutorial

Big Bob says:

I can tell you like to share you knowledge! Thanks for sharing ideas.

Wesley Smits says:

Hi Dj Bolivia, you are using Ableton Live, My question is, is this way of
mixing posible with ABLETON LIVE 9 INTRO? 

Rkoma900 says:

How you zoom in and out of track? Is there any shortcut on kayboard? Im
using Live 9. Thank you!

AwesomeRoblox TV says:

plz watch my vids

butt3rs33 says:

How can I record crossfader automation in Akron I can figure it out ask my
mixes dint record it. Can you please help?

Otto Hernandez says:

Your videos are very good, but it is too painful to watch because you
explain things too slowly at the start. As a professional DJ I can tell you
the best way to teach people is to first show them what they can do with
what you about to show them and the explain how they can do it.
I am new at this ableton thing but I can’t watch your videos because after
24 minutes I had to stop because there was nothing interesting happening
and I lost my motivation to continue.
Thank you for the info and I hope my comments help you for your next videos

Maurício Moreira says:

Actually this isn’t needed
With ableton 8 or higher, just put music’s in the mix, following the
compass, showing the “red advisor” on the master, and Export with “No
Dither” & 24 bit’s, then grab the set again & put it on ableton.
He will automate “lower” the volume because when is “so much red”, they
automatically do that volume equalization.
And all of the set’s sound’s as really nice mixes.

dylan banuelos says:

they dont need to know that you dont know how to dj because no one even
knows what youre doing on stage anyways 😀 cept for the people behind you

javier mendoza says:

I am loving the video! I am really new to Ableton, just got my Akai APC40,
so I am learning a lot right now. I am halve way, but I have questions
about BPM. Does Ableton synchronize the songs? If I were to mix two songs
of completely different BPMs, would Ableton synchronize them some how? is
that where warping comes in? Thanks! 

Martin Gaffney says:

I absolutely agree. I’ve been told by many experienced DJs when I was
starting out to create a live demo if you’re trying to get a gig at a club.
Thank you so much for pointing that out. I want to create a DJ mix mainly
to start learning how to program in ableton. Thank you for the tutorial. 

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