365 Ableton Live Tips?

Hey everyone! Welcome to 2010, and this crazy project I’ve started: 365 Ableton Live Tips. Here you’ll be finding a new tip, every day, all year. The majority will be written by me, but I’ve also got some very talented friends and colleagues chipping in as well. Follow @jonmargulies on Twitter if you would like a daily update.

While we’ll be addressing all sorts of issues here, This project is about making music and essential Ableton Live knowledge.¬†After two books, 20+ magazine articles, 8 hours of training videos and now a year and half of classroom teaching, I feel like I’ve gotten a pretty good idea of the things you’ve gotta know to have a good experience making music in Live.

So, I’m going to leave covering the latest custom-built whiz-bangery to the folks out there who are much better at it than I am. In truth, I’m a bit of a minimalist when it comes to technology. I use it, I like it, I live it – but really I’m always going to look for an off-the-shelf, comes-in-the box way to get what I need to do done, rather than find or create the newest, most cutting edge way. I have nothing against that approach – it’s just me.

Anyway, enough about me. I’m kicking this year off with a week of things that you Absolutely Must Know about Live. So if you’re new, or just want to brush up on things that I think are essential, this is a good week for you! And now, without further ado…

Keep Up To Date

OK, seriously. You may wonder why I’m devoting a day to this but it’s simple: I have people coming to me with their Live problems all the time. When the issue sounds like it might be a bug, or a piece of functionality that has been addressed with an update, I always ask if they have the latest version of Live – and 9 times out of 10 the answer is no. There’s no point wasting time banging your head against something without taking the time to make sure you’re running the latest version.

A couple of things to note:

1) You can check for a new version from right inside of live:

…or you can just point your browser to http://www.ableton.com/latest_versions

2) But who can remember to do that? (not me) Follow @Ableton on Twitter, and they will remind you when a new version comes out.