How to Make an Analog Style Casaba Shaker in FM8

This quick FM8 Tutorial will show you one way you can make an analog style cabasa shaker that can be put to good use in beats that you are making from scratch or if you just want to brighten up a rhythm a bit.

The sound itself is actually quite simple, and there several ways you can go about making an instrument like this. It’s all about the small details, so make sure you carefully match your settings to the ones shared below if you are wanting to get an exact replica. But I highly suggest that you play around with the sound after the lesson is done so you can get a better feel about which parameters are doing what and how you can customize it to your specific needs for any given project. Let’s get started!

First, lets set up the FM Matrix. As you can see in the image below, this is one of the easiest routing configuration that you may run across in a tutorial here. It is basically just one sound, just being modified along it’s way through FM8. Load up a Sine waveform into Operator F, feed it back into itself, and drop the Pitch Ratio down to 0.0000. Now route it into the Noise Oscillator, Operator X. Then Operator X is routed directly in the Filter, Operator Z. And this is then routed to the main output. You can see the setting for each of the three Operators in the example picture (click on it if you need to zoom in for more detail).

Next is a quick stop at the Master window to adjust the settings for the Voicing, Detune, Pan and Analog Quality parameters.

A total of 8 effects are now added to shape the sound and provide the characteristics of a shaker. Well, and analog style shaker anyhow. The Overdrive, Tube Amp and Cabinet are all added to provide the drive and slight edge to the sound that gives us the roughness. The Shelving and Peak EQ effects are used to cut out the low end and accent the highs and a bit of the mid frequencies. Then Reverb, PsycheDelay and Chorus/Delay are all used to provide the sound with a space to develop in, as well as the slight echo/delay effect we need for the cabasa shaker sound.

This is then all sent through the Arpeggiator to create a rhythm. So All I had to do was get a basic analog beat set up and then match up a pattern in the Arpeggiator to make it all come together. The Accent, Tie and Shuffle features are used to give it a slightly more human feel, while the Note Length feature is used to make it more believable. And since we increased the voicing earlier, you can actually get better action from this shaker instrument if you spread it out across a few notes when you play it. You can hear the results in the audio sample below.

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That’s all it takes to make a cabasa shaker from scratch in FM8! If you have a request for another tutorial, please send us a message letting us know. Thanks for stopping by!


Category: FM8 Tutorials