LMMS(previously Linux MultiMedia Studio) is my digital audio workstation(DAW) of choice. It’s FOSS(free and open-source), easy-to-use, cross-compatible and has a lot of cool features.

What I like most is the interface. Designed to be used on a single screen, it is much less crowded than those of other DAWs. It’s really simple to choose samples(a recording of an instrument playing a note or a series of notes)  from the sidebar, add it to the beat and bassline editor and prototype your loops immediately. In fact, users of FL Studio(previously FruityLoops) will find themselves very much at home as LMMS is designed to replace such commercial DAWs.

What’s more, you ask? The whole interface is, wait for it…. themeable and you can upload themes to as well as download one of 59 user-created themes from the Sharing Platform.

It comes with a lot of built-in software synthesizers/instruments, most famous of all, ZynAddSubFX, a hybrid synth, originally developed by Nasca Octavian Paul. I use this a lot to create Big Room Saws and String Pads. Apart from this, it comes with an eclectic range of audio and MIDI effects in the form of LADSPA plugins. These really add that touch of originality to your music and help you create a signature sound.

Using VesTiGe, one can use VST instrument plugins to emulate instruments and expedite the creation of your track without having to focus on creating your own sounds.

What’s more, it’s super simple to connect it to MIDI equipment like an Oxygen 49 keyboard or even an Akai LPD8 pad so you can record your compositions and improvs directly from your instrument. All you need are the latest MIDI drivers for your instrument installed and a usb-midi cable. Turn off your instrument, connect it to your computer and turn it back on. Now, you can change the note input on any instrument to your instrument’s name in the drop-down menu and voilà! Remember to turn your instrument off before you try to remove the cable.

You’ve been warned.

On a lighter note, you can get LMMS for your desktop OS, here. Good luck on your music making journey!

LMMS(default theme), running on Ubuntu, with the sequencer open in the top left, the effects(FX) mixer on the top right, the notes editor or ‘Piano Roll’ on the bottom left and a drum loop being edited in the ‘Beat and Bassline editor’ at the bottom right.

Check out my recent track Speeding Moment, on my SoundCloud, below. I’d love to hear feedback on it and on my other tracks.