Now, the loop is selected and pasted into a new stereo file containing only the selected loop. This loop is almost done, but not quite. You see, it's a two-bar loop, and we have to see if it will loop well on itself at a one-bar loop length. We can even take this further and see if it will also loop well at two beats, and even one beat! You can even edit down to the sample level with Peak. If you need to check timings of subdivisions of less than one beat, you'll have to do it without the help of Loop Surfer, as the smallest subdivision it can deal with is one beat. A little program I wrote called SamplCalc 2.0 is available for free at my web site (http://mikesnyder.net/SamplCalc2.0Folder.sea) to help you calculate these smaller subdivisions (Mac only). Play around with snipping some audio here, and adding some there, it's amazing how small changes in timing will drastically effect a feel. When you're satisfied with the fruits of your looping labor, save the loop in the sound file format you need, repeat for any other loops that you need, and you're done!
These days all bets are off as to what is a good or bad drum sound. Some of my coolest loops were done with a funky old microphone normally used as talk back mike in the drum booth. Experiment and create as many loops as possible, every groove, style and drum sound is valid. It's just like practicing rudiments – the more you do it, the better you get.
When not in an airplane on his way to a clinic appearance, Mike is an L.A. refugee happily living, performing and recording in Portland, Oregon. He also often wonders why people use PC's instead of Macintosh's. Mike can be reached through http://mikesnyder.net