In The Studio w/ ZDS (Zombie Disco Squad)

Course Description

Zombie Disco Squad (ZDS) is London Producer and DJ Nat Self.  He has released over 100 tracks, more than 50 remixes and one album feat. Omar & DJ Funk.  

He’s already checked off all the required boxes of a truly in-demand global Producer/DJ.  He was the resident of Panorama Bar when it was just a twinkle in most techno-tourist's eyes.  And of course, he’s played festival slots everywhere from LA’s HARD Summer, to Exit to I Love Techno to Ukraine’s super festival Kazantip.

We were very excited to get inside the studio with ZDS to see how his creative musical mind works and what really goes into one of his productions.  Beyond seeing what he does, Nat does a truly remarkable job explaining not only the technical aspects that make his tracks stand out, but also the creative parts that sometimes are just hard to express.  

In addition, as a part of this course, you’ll learn tips and production techniques for making and mixing your music on headphones.   

Chapters Overview:

  • Chapter 01 FREE PREVIEW - Introduction to ZDS aka Nat Self. Hear about his music background and some of the tracks he’s produced.
  • Chapter 02 FREE PREVIEW - Making music and mixing in headphones. Nat shares tips and general music production tips for getting results in headphones. 
  • Chapter 03 - Sampling. Nat shows his sample collection, the software he uses to sample and ideas for getting and staying creative. 
  • Chapter 04 - Nat shows how he creates signature drum loops to make them unique and how he edits and processing loops with plugins.
  • Chapter 05 - Learn how Nat chops and edits vocals and spoken words and what’s a good vocal sample and how he processes them.
  • Chapter 06 - Discover how Nat layers his drum sounds using Native Instruments’s Battery 4 sampler.
  • Chapter 07 FREE PREVIEW - Put it all together and watch Nat create a first musical idea with all the techniques explained up to this point.
  • Chapter 08 - Learn how to use NI Maschine for drums and how to record into Ableton’s arrangement view for further processing.
  • Chapter 09 - Building the track more, Nat adds more loops and starts extending the arrangement and begins the automation process.  
  • Chapter 10 - Nat switches things up and creates a second musical idea using Cubase re-wired into Ableton creating a new percussion and bass groove. 
  • Chapter 11 - Learn how Nat processes and alters a bass sound from a preset.
  • Chapter 12 - Nat teaches you how to create unique effects and riser sounds to match the style of your track.
  • Chapter 13 - Dive deep into signal flow and see how he uses bus routing, saturation buses and parallel compression busses in his mixes. 
  • Chapter 14 - Watch how he goes through the melody writing process and composition elements for synth and bass parts.  
  • Chapter 15 - Arrangement Part 1:  Nat elongates the parts to build it up to a full track.
  • Chapter 16 - Arrangement Part 2: Here Nat continues adding more effects and demonstrates the techniques he uses for adding a final processing polish.
  • Chapter 17 - The Final Master: To conclude, Nat goes over all mixing aspects and discusses mastering and how to create a pre-master.  

Runtime: over 4 hours.