LoFi Hip Hop Drum Kit: What To Look For [updated 2020]

LoFi Hip Hop Drum Kit: What To Look For [updated 2020]

A LoFi Hip Hop Drum Kit helps you create lofi hip hop music. And looking through my Spotify and YouTube homepages the lofi sound is pretty popular.

Chilled this, relaxed that, music to study to, music to work to. All these lofi playlists are super popular right now.

So how can you knock out a few lofi hiphop drum tracks? Use a lofi Hip Hop Drum kit.

So let’s break it down

Close up shot of a modern wooden record player playing a clear white vinyl album. A man's hand is dropping the needle onto the record.
Photographer: Victrola Record Players | Source: Unsplash

What is A LoFi Hip Hop Drum Kit

A collection of sounds and loops that have a lofi sound (we’ll talk about the lofi sound below). At the minimum a lofi hip hop drum kit should have drums (duh!).

This kit should include kicks, snares, and percussion with the lofi sound. Additionally you might find:

What’s in a lofi hiphop drum kit:

  • Single drum sounds (kicks, snares, percussion) in the lofi sound. We talk more about this sound below but generally is a but distorted, warm, and gritty with a touch of vinyl.

What’s optional included

  • One shots (such as horn stabs or key riffs)
  • Drum Loops (drum patterns put together with the sounds).
  • Melody loops (usually lofi keys, but can be any melody that can be looped)
  • Chord Loops (also typically keys but can be any sound in the form of chords).

So at the minimum, in a lofi hip hop drum kit you’ll single drum sounds in the sound of lofi. After that you’ll sometimes find other sounds to round out the kit.

drum pattern guide plus lofi drums

How Do You Make A LoFi Hip Hop Drum Kit

Nowadays most lofi sounds are created by using plug-ins that help capture that old school, analog and vinyl feeling.

Start with a sound you like, apply a plug in, and you get the lofi sound. Of course there’s a bunch of adjusting and tweaking you can do to get the exact sound you like.

Here’s a video going over using plugins to get the lofi sound

A few examples of what you would do with a plug in:

Add Vinyl sounds

This usually means adding in the vinyl hum that you get form vinyl. You can also had in hiss and pop sounds to emulate the lofi sound.

Gritty

To get a gritty sound you need to add some distortion and compression. Finding the right mix is a bit of an art. Adding these two gives a grittier feel and muddies up the sound enough to get a lofi feeling.

EQ Your Lofi HipHop Drum Kit

To EQ a sound to get the lofi hip hop sound you want to run to filters: A high pass and a low pass. You want to cut out the high ends and low ends to get the lofi sound.

Warmth

When you start with stock sounds they usually are very clear, crisp, and bright. That means they be slightly harsh especially when you compare it to grittier more analog sounds. So you want to round off some of the brightness and harshness to get a bit of a warmer feel.

These are just a few ways to get a lofi sound in your lofi hip hop drum kit.

How Do You Describe LoFi Sound

Lofi is generally referred to as lofi which isn’t very helpful but if you look a bit deeper, these words are usually the ones to describe the lofi sound:

  • lofi
  • punchy
  • gritty
  • warm
  • crunchy
  • dusty
  • vinyl
  • vintage
  • crackle
  • analog
  • tape

In your hip hop lofi drum kit you should have kicks, snares, percussion that you can describe with any of the words above.

“These drums a dusty”

“These snares are very warm”

“I love the vinyl feel of this lofi hiphop drum kit”

How Do You Make LoFi Hip Hop Drum Kit Patterns

In your lofi hip hop drum kit, start with the kick and snare and create a hiphop drum pattern. How do you do that?

Easy - use check out our blog on 4 classic hip hop drum patterns. Start with any of those and a lofi hip hop drum kit and you’ll have a lofi hip hop drum pattern.

If you need more drum pattern ideas, we also have the hiphop drum pattern pdf guide with 100 pattern plus a bonus 20 more in the trap aestehtic - you can make your own lofi trap sound!

Any guidelines when programming the drums?

So as long as the sounds you have are lofi, you technically have a lofi sound no matter how you put together your drums, chords, and melodies.

However, if you look at what’s popular you’ll notice most lofi music is relaxed and chill. So that means drums are fairly basic (simple kick drum patterns) and bpm are somewhat slowed down.

What BPM Is Lofi Hip Hop Drum Kit?

Anywhere from 60pm to 90bpm. There’s no hard and fast rule. As long as the sound is lofi it’s techinically a lofi sound.

If you’re looking for a bpm to start, try 85bpm and see how that feels.

What’s most important is you make music you want to make. If you want to make a lofi bpm trap beat at 160bpm, knock yourself out!

Where can I get a LoFi HipHop Drum Kit

Our shop of course. We have LoFi Drums Volume 01 up right now and you can also grab the Hip Hop Drum Pattern PDF Guide. If you get the guide you get LoFi Drums Vol. 01 for free so definitely take advantage of that.

hip hop drum pattern guide plus lofi drums volume 01
hip hop drum pattern pdf guide plus lofi drums volume 01.

Get Producing

So there’s the lo down on lo fi drum kits. Don’t forget to check out the hip hop drum pattern guide.

Transcript From The Video

A few quick ways to get a lofi sound. What's up? This is Cole for Rudemuzik I'm going to just show a few quick ways to add and to use plugins to get a lofi sound, in you lofi hip hop drum kits. So right here what I have, very simple pattern - let's play it just as simple chill litte pattern, which you can see. I have a some drums here, not quite lofi yet.

I'm going to add some, some effects to that to show you how to get a that lofi sound. And then, um, I have a little piano melody here and the way it built this melody is, I just took it off of these chords here. So it's just very simple chord structure. Um, this chord structure, I just pulled it in from the, the minor chords, volume one, mini minor chords, volume one that's in our shop. And then that'll be a link. They'll put a link to that. Um, and then just a little, little bassline is the add that low end. And then, um, I add a simple drum pattern here.

The LoFi Sound in LoFi HipHop Drum Kits

Real simple. Um, so, um, how do you kind of add a little bit of a low fi sound? So what lo-fi is essentially the songs you use today are modern. They're very clean for the most part, and very high fidelity.

What lo-fi does is try to capture the sound of decades and decades ago where the technology wasn't as good, obviously as it is today. And so what that meant is you get something that's a little more analog tape, warm, crunchy, gritty. And so what that's done nowadays is a lot of people take the sounds, they start with like that kick and that snare and hi-hat, and they use plugins to get that lofi sound. So let me just show a couple that I like. Let me demo, how you can get that recording my lofi drums.

Greg Wells Piano Centric

One of the, one of my favorite ones is this one from Greg Wells out, uh, from, uh, waves, audio, um, piano centric. And so it's real simple, this one knob when, uh, that you kind of turn and make things a little more brighter than more grittier. So solo, the drums, and then this is off. But when I turn it on you and hear what it does, so I have it kind of far to the left here. So you can kind of say see it kinda messes with the EQ kind of cuts off from the high and low. Um, it just adds a little more that that kinda like filtered a little bit warming gritty sound.

This is a, it's a cool plugins. Just kind of play with this knob. You go this way, do you get something that's a little more brighter. Um, but we're talking a little fly here in making drums for, um, or the type of drums you can get in a hip hop in a lofi hiphop drum kit.

PHAT FX

So go back. You gotta hear what that does. So that's just one way, right? To kind of start to get that sound. I'm going to turn that off. Um, in logic, there's phat effects. Um, what this allows you to do, you can mess with distortion, uh, bass enhancer compressor. Um, most DAWs have something like this. This is just logics version. I'll turn this on. And you can tell, there's a lot of distortion, a lot of compression going on, and you can kind of play with that. Different levels of that.

Again, I'm not going to get into like a lot of the details. How exactly does it, because there's no real exact way we turn this off, but what that was, was applying distortion and compression. Um, you can kind of play around with features in there. Again, there's no exact way to get that lofi sound. It's not like this is exactly how you do it. There's just different ways to go about getting something to be a little more warm and crunchy or gritty and kind of distorted. And a lot of that is kind of like messing with the EQs. And messing with distortion.

And so, but those are two quick ways, and what you want to do is kind of apply, you know, maybe mess with multiple ones. Um, a third one is EQ. Uh, something to go back in. Oops. Here we go.

EQ Adjustments

Our third one is, is EQ. Uh, this is going to be similar to what we saw at the Greg Wells. Plug in. Um, but what you're going to see here is like, basically like cutting off the lows and the highs. So we play the drums. And then I'm a turn this on and you kind of tell already you're right?. Like a lot of those sounds are cut off from the high pass. It's a low pass and a high pass, but a very like very very large amount is cut off from both ends.

Just a, you know, what we could do today. you capture a lot more sounds than we could do back then. So this is kind of emulating what was capable back then. Um, so that's just another way, mess with the EQ, let me turn that off. And, EQ, any DAW has that. So that's an easy way to go about doing that. When you're building out here, you're your lofi hiphop drum kit.

Smack Attack

A lot of times some drums in lofi end up being really punchy, even though they're distorted. And so this is just a plugin called smack attack. Let me turn this on. You start to hear the kick is a little more in your face. Um, this one's a little more subtle, but I'll turn it up just so you're really hear it. Here we go. And so it just makes, it sounds really smack, really punchy. You mixed this with, um, some distortion. Um, obviously you don't want this all the way high, that high, but you kind of want to mess with it a little bit if you want more like punchy drums, but also with that lofi sound. Let's turn that off.

Abbey Road Vinyl

And then, um, one last plugin I'll go in is, uh, this Abbey road plug in. Um, it does a lot of different things to try to emulate the old school analog tape feel. Um, what, what you see in a lot of, uh, lofi sounds is, uh, there's like, just this addition of noise. So I'm going to turn this all the way up just to exaggerate it just so you can get a feel for it, so obviously that's the sound of the old school vinyl - turn that down.

You want to subtly add that in. And then there's also like idea of the crackle. Again, we'll just turning this way up way up just to hear what it is. But that's something you want to subtly add in and then clicks and pops. You start to hear some of those. Those are even that turn away all the way up. Those are just kinda peek in every now and then. And so, um, but anyways, those are, those are just a few plugins, um, or a few ways really. Like, it's not so much about the plugins, it's more about.

The effects that you apply to kind of get that lofi sound. So what you want to do is just kind of play around with it, like the EQ and the distortion and maybe the vinyl and however, and just kind of blend, blend with those and play with those to kind of get your own lofi sound, uh, when building out like a lofi hiphop drum kit. And, uh, just kinda play with that and see, see, see what you like.

LoFi Hip Hop Drum Kits

So, uh, if you're, if you're interested in lo fi hip hop drum kits. Uh, we do have a lofi drums in our shop LoFi Drums Volume One. That's where these drums came from. Actually, no, that's not where these drums came from, but a lot of the drums are made with these plugins, um, that I made. So if you don't want to spend a lot of time trying to figure out the best lofi, uh, I spent a lot of time figuring that out and working on with those plugins. Um, so a LoFi Drums Volume One.

There'll be a link wherever you're looking at this to that.

And then if you're interested in how to make drum patterns, we have, uh, the drum pattern book. It's a PDF. You can view it on your phone, your computer, anywhere that reads PDFs. What it is, is 120 drum patterns. It says a hundred here, but, um, uh, they helped, they didn't include 20 more and did additional 20 trap drums. So what it is is just a bunch of a bunch of drum patterns that you could program it.

And so you just go in and say, alright, that pattern looks interesting. Go into your sequencer. Alright, I'm going to add the kick on the one, the three eight 11 and just follow the pattern. And you got to hip hop drum pattern just like that. You use that with the lofi drums. And you're good to go.

I'll put a link to this to wherever you're looking at this, and if you buy the drum pattern book, you get the lofi drums for free. So definitely check that out. So, and so, just quick ways to get that lofi drum sound in your lofi hiphop drum kit.


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