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AdK Studios

Cakewalk Tutorial Series for Beginners

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Finally, finished my Cakewalk Tutorial Series geared towards beginners. The series is made in a way that even those who are new to music production as a whole (not just Cakewalk) will be able to understand the concepts. We are in fact producing a piece of music through the series. However, the production should be seen as a tool to help the viewer understand Cakewalk effortlessly.

Here are the videos -
Video Episodes 1 through 5 deals with the most basic stuff that needs to be understood or set up, before we actually start a project. Without these, Cakewalk is quite blank to even start a project.
After we have set all the necessary things up, we can start working in Cakewalk.
From Video Episodes 6 through 14, we see the core concepts of Cakewalk and see how they actually fit in the actual production process.

1. How to Install Cakewalk by Bandlab

Obviously the first thing to do. The installation process should be done with a bit of care, as we need the files in the appropriate locations. Otherwise we might end up having to fix those later in the future, & can lead to unnecessary confusion.In this video, we go through the installation process step-by-step. In the end, we also go through some initial setting up post-installation. If you installed with a random directory, thinking you could change them in the future, a normal re-installation process will not some of them. You will have to follow the steps listed in this page.

2. How to install VST Plugins

If a DAW is a factory, then the plugins are the machinery. Cakewalk does have enough plugins to mix, but seriously lacks in the category of Instrument plugins (plugins that create sound).In this video, we see how we can add plugins (instruments or FX) into Cakewalk.

3. Working with Samples in Cakewalk

Samples are pieces of short Audio. This video could have been done later in the series. However, I wouldn't have been able to place it right in the story telling. Besides we do need to understand what samples are before we get into the next video.

4. Working with Sampler Plugins

Samplers are plugins into which we can load samples. Some samplers can be used for quite simple purposes like triggering a one-shot sample (short audio sample), while some others can be used in sophisticated ways like a synthesizer. In this video, we look mostly look into the former type.

5. Working with Sample Libraries

Several small audio samples combine to form libraries. These libraries can be loaded into plugins that can be categorized as Sample Players (advanced sampler). Sample libraries are the way to go if you want to emulate realistic instruments.

6. Cakewalk Piano Roll View

The Piano Roll View is where we can write music inside Cakewalk. We write the melody and the corresponding instrument will generate the corresponding pitch.

7. How to make Drum Beats in Cakewalk

We can do this by using samples directly in the Clips Pane (Main Timeline) or, by using a sampler plugin. However, there are some more stuff that should be understood to program drums efficiently. We see those in this video.

8. Cakewalk Step Sequencer

Watch the video if you want FL Studio like Step Sequencer. Also, the video is kind of like an extension of the previous video.

9. Cakewalk Console View

The Console view is like the imitation of the mixing consoles we see in Studios (or movies 🤭). This is where we mix our project. Mixing is the process by which multiple sounds are combined into one or more channels. The video goes in detail on each module. If you see it from beginning to end, you will be able to translate mixing tutorials on any DAW, into CbB console view.

10. How to Record MIDI

In video 6, we saw how we can enter MIDI notes by using the mouse. But, if you do know how to play a keyboard, then you can connect a MIDI keyboard and record your performance. This video involves setting up the MIDI device and all the recording process.

11. How to Record Audio

Just like MIDI, we can record audio (vocal, instruments, etc). In this video, we record stuff without using any interface to connect the recording devices.

12. Automation in Cakewalk

Automation means to record the movement of a control such that the next time we play, that control plays automatically. Automation is one of the keys to making our project sound good. Not just mixing, they can also give some very interesting musical results. In this video, we go through everything we can do in Cakewalk with respect to automation.

13. Bounce Audio inside Cakewalk

We might need to bounce MIDI or audio into the processed output inside the DAW itself. It could be to reduce the load on the CPU, or to implement some creative ideas (like reversing the audio). In this video we go through the two methods to do this.

14. How to Export from Cakewalk

Not only in the end of the production, we might have to export the project out of Cakewalk for different reasons (like for collaborating and all). In this video, we go through almost all of them along with the final export to get a streaming ready file.


And that is the end of the absolute basic stuff needed to be understood to make music in Cakewalk. I'll still be uploading videos to the same Playlist, but they will not be numbered episodes as they don't need to be seen in order.

- AdK (Until I finalise my artist name)


PS - Making Tutorials is not the only thing I do in my channel. My primary goal is to inspire new comers to produce music with Cakewalk & other freeware. Cheers..!

Edited by AdK Studios
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Very well thought out and presented series of instructional videos.  I hope the series will gain enough traction on YouTube to advance up the search recommendations when "Cakewalk" is the search term.

Do you plan to revisit and update these videos as Cakewalk changes over time?  It is very possible the videos will become outdated and lose value if you don't.

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10 hours ago, Jim Fogle said:

Do you plan to revisit and update these videos as Cakewalk changes over time?  It is very possible the videos will become outdated and lose value if you don't.

Yes, when it is necessary, I will... 🙂

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