If you’re reading this article, chances are your objective is to become a music producer, or you’re already making music and want to hone your skills. The good news is becoming a music producer has never been easier. All you need is a decent laptop, a pair of headphones, and the music production software of your choice. Still, with its many dimensions and complexities, music production can seem overwhelming for a beginner.
Luckily, there are ample resources available online to help you master the trade, get confident, and kick off your music production career.
If you want to choose the best course for yourself, you should consider several factors, including the music genre it focuses on, the quality of the content, your budget, the software you will be using, and the level and intensity of the course to suit your schedule.
To help you make a decision, I reviewed the most popular music production courses online and made a list of the best options available in 2023.
Let’s get started.
Ableton Live I: The First Steps of Digital Music Production by Skillshare
If you’re into music production, sooner rather than later, you will need to decide which DAW to use. There are many professionals swearing by one software over another, and at the end of the day, it often comes down to personal preference. Nonetheless, Ableton Live is one of the top options recommended by artists such as Skrillex, Flosstradamus, Baauer, and Deadmau5, to mention just a few.
In this excellent beginner course developed by Ableton and led by Brian Jackson, audio engineer, musician, and Ableton Certified Trainer, you’ll get to know the interface and understand the difference between audio clips, scenes, and tracks. During this 1 hour and 15-minute-long course, you will get a solid grip on how to use the software. Ableton is a powerful, versatile DAW, and this course only scratches the surface of this incredible software, yet this course will help you start off on the right foot.
Skillshare is one of the largest platforms in the e-learning space, and it offers an endless number of courses; with a free trial or a subscription plan, you will have access to over 25000 courses, including another three classes on Ableton by Brian Jackson, that will give a more in-depth understanding of your DAW.
It’s a perfect course for beginners who have Ableton Live and want to learn how to use it.
1-month free trial. The annual plan costs around $165/year. On top of the course, you will get access to Live Sessions, a learner community, offline viewing, and more.
Mixing & Mastering In Depth by Point Blank Music School
Established in 1994 in London, the Point Blank Music School, over the years, opened branches in LA, Ibiza, Mumbai, and China. In addition to location-based specialized courses, they offer an array of choices online, focused on music production, DJ skills, sound engineering, and more. Easily one of the best places to learn music production, Point Blank School offers various lengths and levels of certificates and diplomas. It’s worth mentioning that its list of admirers includes Goldie or Pete Tong, among others.
During the 6-month course created by professional sound engineers, you’ll gain an understanding of the intricacies of audio post-production and be able to mix and master a track of any genre.
There is a limited number of spaces available to ensure that each student gets 1-to-1 sessions with a course leader, and the course start dates are fixed throughout the year.
Like all Point Blank courses, the program is designed with Ableton and Logic Pro users in mind, which could be limiting if you are not using one of these software.
For a serious music producer who wants to master the skill of professional mixing and mastering music, the course is adapted for beginners and professionals alike.
£1,295 ($1,612.97) payment in full; there are also 3-monthly (term) and monthly payment plans available, which work out slightly more expensive. As a Point Blank student, you will get access to a number of discounts, including significant Evident plugins, Ableton Live, and Roland Cloud discounts.
Blueprint to Beatmaking by Skillshare
Another course by Skillshare on top of my list has been designed for novice producers working in the hip-hop realm. The course is taught by Kia Orion, music producer, hip-hop artist, and founder of the Beat School. As of November 2023, the course has been completed by almost 7000 students.
During 40 lessons, which take just over 5 hours in total, you’ll learn the fundamentals of beat-making, starting from understanding and arranging the melody, drums, percussions, and bass up to mixing and mastering.
Skillshare includes over 1000 other courses related to music production, in most cases led by industry professionals, which could be a great thing if you are looking to get into music production but perhaps less if you need a more specialized option.
Beginner learners who want to produce hip-hop music.
1-month free trial. The annual plan costs around $165/year.
In The Studio w/ Ferry Corsten by FaderPro
FaderPro is a relatively new platform in the e-learning market, but the offer looks very promising; amongst hundreds of courses and tutorials focused on music production, you will most likely find one for you. The genres they cover range from techno, dubstep, and trance to nu-disco and future bass.
Some of their course leaders include Mark Knight, Harry Romero, and Roger Sanchez, amongst others. Associated with top labels, including Armada, Toolroom, Mechnikal, and Hospital Records, FaderPro offers a wide variety of content, from beginner courses to more in-depth analysis and “track deconstructions.”
A nice thing to know is that FaderPro doesn’t limit the content to Ableton Live and Logic Pro fans and covers DAWS for users of Cubase, Pro Tools, Studio One, and FL Studio too.
In The Studio, led by the iconic trance music producer Ferry Corsten, is a 4-hour and 42-minute platinum masterclass created specifically for Armada University and FaderPro. The sessions are broken down into parts, helping you understand every part of sound production as you follow Corsten while he is creating a track from scratch.
A cool perk: when you purchase the course, you will get guaranteed feedback from Armada Music’s A&R team on one demo.
Any electronic musician, from beginners to pros, will find the course worth pursuing.
You can choose to pay per course (prices start from $19.99) or subscribe and get access to all courses with FaderPro Producers Club (platinum courses available at discount prices on subscription). Subscription costs $19.99/month (available at 50% off at the time of writing) or $119.98/year ($99/year at the time of writing). If you choose a yearly plan, you can also take advantage of a 7-day trial.
Deadmau5 teaches Electronic Music Production by MasterClass
MasterClass is a popular platform launched in 2015, where learners can watch pre-recorded content on various topics presented by experts in the industry. While nowadays there are various websites using a similar concept, MasterClass is still one of the most popular ones.
Deadmau5, whose real name is Joel Thomas Zimmerman, is an iconic electronic music artist and producer who has gained worldwide recognition with his addictive beats and blend of genres. In his exclusive 6-hour course, you will gain invaluable insights from his extensive 20-year career as an accomplished artist.
With eight acclaimed albums, six Grammy Awards nominations, and a successful label under his belt, Deadmau5 is a true master of his craft. You’ll get to see how to create, mix, and master immersive sounds without spending tons of dollars on expensive gear, which can be a valuable lesson at any point in your music journey. While Zimmerman’s approach might not be everyone’s taste, it’s definitely worth checking out if you’re looking for a high-quality introduction to the world of EDM.
This course is for you if you have just started your music career in EDM or want to get serious about it.
MasterClass has three plans available: Individual at $120 per year, Duo at $180 per year, and Family at $240 per year. All plans are billed annually upfront, and there are no monthly options. On the Individual plan, you cannot download the lessons to watch them offline. They offer a 30-day money guarantee.
Udemy Music + Audio Production in Logic Pro X – The Complete Guide by Udemy
Ableton and Logic Pro are the two most used DAWs in the market, and since I already recommended an excellent course for Ableton Live beginner adepts, now it’s time to discuss a Udemy course that’ll suit anyone who wants to start their journey with Logic Pro X.
Rated 4.7 out of 12337 reviews, this music course is one of the most popular Udemy courses and is taught by Thomas George, a music producer, composer, and audio engineer with over ten years of experience.
During 51 hours and 10 minutes of content, you will get to know the basics and advanced functions of the software and dig into music making, audio, and vocal recording, plus mixing and mastering your tracks.
Udemy is one of the most popular e-learning platforms, offering all-level courses on a variety of topics available to purchase individually or included in one of the business plans for groups (starting from 20 members).
A music producer who wants to gain in-depth Logic Pro X knowledge and is ready to spend over 50 hours to complete the course.
The total price is $79.99, but the course is often available on sale (at $14.99 at the time of writing).
Music Production & Professional Networking (with Danny Avila) by Aulart
Aulart is an online learning platform for music production students of all levels. With a focus on Ableton Live and Logic Pro users, the platform offers a number of masterclasses across music genres, and new content is updated regularly. The popular courses include beat-making, DJ skills, songwriting, and music business topics led by industry pros, such as Chris Liebing, Carl Craig, Paco Osuna, Henrik Schwarz, and Andres Campo.
During this 25-chapter course (just over four hours of content), you’ll get to know music production techniques and helpful workflow tips and tricks, gain insights into music promotions, show setup, and working with a label from the perspective of an acclaimed DJ and producer, Danny Avila.
Any DAW user who wants to get into music production and get access to more business-orientated content.
€99 ($123.31) annually for the ‘Starter’ plan, including 100+ masterclass chapters, and €335 ($417.25) for the ‘Connect’ plan, which includes 700+ masterclass chapters, advanced content, and extra software, samples & plugins (prices in Euros, monthly installments also available). You can also purchase each master class individually.
Music Production & Professional Networking class is included in the ‘Connect’ plan or available at €79.99 ($99.63).
The Art of Vocal Production by Coursera
The Art of Vocal Production is one of the Coursera programs created in collaboration with Berklee College of Music, an institution appreciated for its wide array of quality music courses, certificate programs, and university degrees.
This beginner course will take you on a journey through audio recording, editing, and dynamic processing with a focus on vocals in music production. Rated at 4.7 out of 357 reviews, the course is taught by Prince Charles Alexander, a professor at Berklee and acclaimed recording and mixing engineer who worked with many artists, including Aretha Franklin, Sting, Mary J. Blige, Destiny’s Child, and Faith Evans.
Anyone who wants to start their journey with music production or hone their vocal production knowledge.
Free on Coursera, purchase of a certificate available.
Completing one of these courses will help you get specific knowledge and bring you closer to achieving your music career goals. On the list, you’ll find various options that can help you master particular skills, from software adaptation through creating tracks, mixing, and mastering to promotion and networking. You’ll also be able to choose the option that suits your budget and time schedule.
While a quality course will undoubtedly support you in becoming proficient and developing as a musician, you cannot underestimate the value of regular practice. Whichever course you decide to pursue, you should consider it as a resource to guide you and provide the necessary information to sustain your creativity. The learning process can be a highly satisfactory experience, but don’t let it stop you from creating and publishing your own music.