Take it up a level.

This 2 month course is a great way to explore music production using Ableton Live. Taken from a beginner’s perspective, we’ll first look at creating interesting drum patterns, layering in synthesizers and samplers.

By drawing from music you already love, you’ll learn how to deconstruct it and take inspiration from it. We will then dive into advanced techniques and workflows, using Ableton Live the way the pros do – looking at complex processing chains to get the desired effects. You’ll also learn how to extend your improvisational skills with hardware controllers. Last but not least, we’ll instill some good habits that will benefit you for a lifetime – the lifehacks of organising your projects to maximise your creative output. No searching aimlessly for that awesome vocal sample ever again!

  • Suitable for beginners

  • 2 month duration

  • 2 x 2.5hrs of live-stream lessons per week (16 lessons in total - 40hrs)

  • 1 x 30-minute 121 with a tutor per week (8 x 121s in total)

  • Lessons recorded for you to watch back in your own time

  • World class, industry-active tutors

  • Each lesson includes extra resources and quizzes to check your learning

  • Download a 90 day free trial of Ableton Live Suite to get started with your training straight away

February 2021 - Lesson Times

The 2 modules of this course will take place on:

Basics of Music Production module
February 2nd – February 28th 2021
Lessons: Tuesdays 7 - 9.30pm & Sundays 9am – 11.30am

Advanced Music Production module
March 9th - April 4th 2021
Lessons: Tuesdays 7 - 9.30pm & Sundays 9am – 11.30am

All lesson times are based on UK time.

Please remember, you don’t have to attend all lesson live-streams, as they are recorded back for you to watch in your own time. You will have full access to all the online content for 3 months after your last lesson.

We can also discuss alternative timetabling options if the lesson times do not suit you, please contact us.

The software for this course

...has a free trial you can enjoy whilst you train, so you can get started straight away.

Ableton Live is the software we use to teach music production. It is likely the world's most popular music production software, and the most powerful.

It lets you easily create, produce and perform music within one intuitive interface. It also keeps everything in time so you can play with your musical ideas without interrupting the creative flow.

Ableton Live runs on both PC and Mac. Download the free trial, grab a pair of headphones, and you’re ready to roll.

Other Online Courses


Music Production Basics - Beginner-friendly. 1 month to test the waters of music production.
Music Production Ultimate - Beginner-friendly. Includes Ableton Live 10 Suite (rrp: £539). Most popular.
Producer’s Bundle - Only suitable if you are already producing music. 4 modules included.

Unsure what’s right for you? Book a call with a course advisor.

Course FAQ

If your question is not answered below, contact us.

  • Is this the right course for me?

    You really need know what level of music production you would like to get to - are you curious, a hobbyist, or taking it seriously and wanting to get to a professional level?

    We have 3 music production courses that are all totally suitable for beginners, but that will get you to 3 different levels by the end. If you are unsure what is right for you, book a call with a course advisor or send us an email.

    - Music Production Basics Course (1 module)
    - Music Production Fundamentals Course (2 modules)
    - Music Production Ultimate Course (6 modules)*

    *Ableton Live 11 Suite (rrp: £539) music production software included with the training.

    If you are a beginner then this course is at the right starting level, but will not get you to the same level as our Music Production Ultimate Course, for example. If you are already making music and want to specialise further, check out our Producer's Bundle which includes 4 of the 6 modules taught on our Ultimate Course.

  • Are there entry requirements for this course?

    No. This course is hands-on, and aimed at improving your skill-set as a music producer, from a beginner’s starting point. There are no formal academic requirements for this course.

    At the end of your training, once you have completed all the course quizzes you will receive a certificate of completion.

  • Will I learn specific genres on this course?

    Lessons will generally focus around the more “popular” electronic genres such as techno, house, drum and bass, and the majority of sub-genres within these areas.

    More in-depth questions about genres outside of this can be brought up during your weekly 1-2-1 sessions with your tutor. Feel free to ask away!

  • What are the lessons like?

    Lessons are where the main content of your training is delivered to your class. Lessons are:

    - Taught live by your course tutor, twice a week. Each lesson is 2.5 hours long - you will receive 20 hours of lessons per module (so 40 hours in total for this course).

    - Delivered to your class online as a closed group.

    - Taught at fixed times each week. Lesson times will differ depending on the start date of the course, and may also differ between modules.

    - Lessons are recorded and uploaded to your learning portal for you to re-watch as much as you need, so you do not need to worry if you cannot watch the lessons live.

    - You will not need a webcam for your lessons. You can however type questions in a chat forum during your lesson. For a short period at the end of each lesson, your tutor will review these questions and aim to answer the most relevant questions relating to the lesson topics.

  • What are the 1-2-1s like?

    1-2-1s are quality time to cover anything you need answers for, in order to help you progress. 1-2-1s are:

    - Taught live by a tutor (not necessarily your lesson tutor).

    - Taught as 4 x 30 minute slots per module (8 x 30 minute slots in total for this course - 1 weekly). When you enrol an administrator will be in touch to arrange what weekly timeslot will suit you and the tutor.

    - You will need to use a mic or your computer's in-built mic for your 1-2-1s. You will not need a webcam for your 1-2-1s, although it is recommended so that you can interact better with the tutor. 1-2-1s are taught using Zoom, which allows you to record the 1-2-1s directly to your computer, should you wish to watch these back in your own time.

  • What language is the course taught in?

    Our online training is all taught in English. Please be mindful of this when enrolling. If English isn’t your first language, remember that your lessons will be recorded (and you can directly record your 1-2-1s) so you can watch these back as much as you need.

  • What happens when I enrol?

    We look forward to welcoming you as a SEM student! Once you enrol, join the community online and give us a shout on FacebookInstagram or Twitter, by tagging us and using the hashtag #SEMONLINE to tell us what course you’ve enrolled for. Please add info@semmanchester.com to your email address book so that you receive the admin emails for getting you setup, and keep an eye on your inbox as this is the main way we will liaise with you throughout your training. 

    Once enrolled, you will be taken to your course player, which contains all the getting started information to ensure you’re all ready for online training. Your course content will unlock as your course progresses.

    If you have any questions about enrolling, please book a call or email us.

  • What do I need to study this course?

    You will need:
    - A computer capable of running Ableton Live (see system requirements here).
    - A pair of ideally flat-response headphones, or speakers.
    - An internet connection to allow you to follow the lessons online.
    - Music production software*

    *This course will be taught solely on Ableton Live Suite. We will utilise all the sounds, effects and tools that come with the Live Suite software.

    Ableton offer a full Ableton Live Suite free trial which you can use the full features of temporarily. If you are thinking about buying Ableton Live Suite in the future, bear in mind it is priced at £539. It may be more cost-effective to choose an online training package that already comes with Ableton Live 11 Suite included - check our Music Production Ultimate Course which does. This way you will benefit from the software, and receive the additional online training from SEM.

    Recommended but not essential
    - A MIDI keyboard
    - A second computer screen would be ideal so you can follow along on Ableton Live whilst watching your lesson.
    - We always advise backing your music up on a second source other as well as the computer hard-drive, for example, a good sized USB (256gB+), external hard-drive, or cloud based system.

    Email us if you need any advice on getting setup for training.

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