DJing with Freewheeling, Hydrogen, a Foot switch & external MIDI controllers.

Written By Patrick Shirkey
DJ'd by Ringheims Auto


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Freewheeling accepts Midi commands from external controllers such as the BCF2000 as used by Ringheims Auto in the demonstration video.

Combined with a turntable or two, a foot pedal and a drum sampler this allows an amazing amount of flexibility for a Live DJ performance of sample based cutting, scratching and mixing. Essentially Freewheeling allows the DJ unlimited loops which can be injected, over layed and wrapped around a mix at will via the faders on the external midi controller (AKA: mixed). The DJ is free to experiment with loops and FX (LADSPA/LV2/DSSI/...) in a way that only the most expensive hardware samplers can handle. As explained in numerous previous tutorials here on the Quicktoots, Linux Audio Developers have provided a large set of standard FX for processing, tweaking and crafting your sounds.

Step 1

Connect turntable/s, DJ mixer, Foot switch, Midi Controllers, and Soundcard together.

Step 2

Start JACK, Freewheeling, Hydrogen.

Step 3

Ensure Midi Faders are connected to Freewheeling and controls are active when moved/pressed.

Step 4

Freewheeling records loops live and buffers them in memory to provide instant playback. It is capable of automatically handling the recording process and all that is required is an input signal and a start/stop trigger this is where the foot switch is crucial. The foot switch is connected to the midi controller which in turn is connected to the start/stop button in freewheeling. This allows the DJ to start and stop a loop while leaving the hands free to mix, scratch and cue more tracks/loops and drum beats.

Step 5

Start a nice repetitive beat via Hydrogen. Make sure you adjust the BPM to blend smoothly into the mix.

A good beat is the backbone of a good DJ set and Hydrogen is a very user friendly drum sampler with a lot of power hidden under the hood.

Step 6

Start a record on a turntable. Find a good loop and press the start/stop button on the foot switch to record the loop automatically via Freewheeling.

Step 7

Assign the newly recorded loop to a midi fader on the external controller. Adjust the level as desired and start/stop playback via the external controller.

Step 8

Repeat Steps 5, 6 & 7 until loop heaven in reached and the audience is spontaneously forming a human pyramid because of the power of the Mass Controller AKA DJ.

Step 9

Applause. Receive audience feedback and props. Enjoy the copious amounts of free drinks sent your way and groove with the cutest shorty's on the dance floor after your set. Be sure to get that phone number for future rendezvous and promotional purposes.