Joel (Deadmau5) started his career with FL Studio. He even came and lived in Belgium while he worked for us for a while making content.

How did you get involved in creating music ?


Image of DeadMau5I first got into the whole computer music scene back in ’97 / 98… there really really a lot of options to explore when it came to making music with *just* computer music software. Of course, you had your mod trackers and all, but at the time, i couldn’t help but to think that alot was still missing. So began my quest for better software, and it was around this time I met up with Adam Delaire of Cyberdyne Systems, a prolific DJ / MC as well as business owner based in Niagara Falls. Adam hosted a show on a local radio station (101.1 The Planet) at the time and to make a long story short, I essentially came on board as the all purpose “whiz kid” to help out with the weekly production of the show.


Of course many years have passed since then and I have moved from endeavour to endeavour dealing mainly with audio freelancing for video games, media companies, software companies and liscensing companies alike.


DeadMau5 XFER Sample & Loop collection


Check out the DeadMau5 XFer sample collection.



DeadMau5 with red DeadMau5 mask lying on the ground

How did you end up using FL Studio ?


I actually stumbled across FL studio back in the super early days of the application… i believe it was through a random websearch, I grabbed a demo copy of Fruityloops 1.7 (perhaps even older than that?) and I’ve been hooked ever since.

What does FL Studio mean in your setup ?


First and foremost, I launch FL with the beginning of each little idea I have in my head, whether it’s a fast melody, or a drum groove to start out with. I Use FL Studio for that because I have found that the piano roll is by far the FASTEST way to “plot” my melodies and rhythms down because although I have an ear for it, I couldn’t “play” a melody to save my life. So the base of the track is composed almost entirely in FL Studio, all my piano roll / midi data is stored in FL Studio.


I export each element using FL’s mixer down to their individual tracks using the “export multiple tracks” option on. Each of these tracks are then coarsely dumped into each of their respective tracks and I begin the actual “mixing” process. I mainly use Nuendo for compatibility of course with all the studios I operate in and around because their either Protools / Logic / or Nuendo themselves so I like to keep my stuff portable so that im not getting stuck in a Studio that might not have FL.


Even when im in the Nuendo environment my FL usage doesn’t stop there. I load it up as a VSTi and begin building additional content for my current project like, little funky breaks, maybe a new synth line when need be, but its always running in the background and ready for me to switch over when I need to sequence up and render out a break or phrase that wasn’t rendered out the first time I did the big multichannel export.


FL Studio has, and probably will remain the main ingredient to my workflow. It’s ease of use and fast results are what get the ideas down as fast as they come to my head, and that’s really important for me. In the beginning of any of my productions, quality isn’t at the forefront of my thoughts, its getting the ideas down, then refine.


One thing I love about FL studio that even the current “top notch” applications I use DOESN’T HAVE, is the ability to rearrange your chain of effects on each mixer bus I wanted to strangle nuendo a billion times for not having FL Studios “move down / move up” option in the chain especially when im experimenting. Experimentation is 80% of how a deadmau5 track springs up from the ground. I don’t premeditate anything I do, you wont catch me humming along to some phrase when im walking home and itching to get on FL studio so I can draw it up I just get in my little mental zone, and start blindly plotting away melodies with the 3xosc and a little effects here and there and see what I can come up with on the fly and when it starts to work melodically for me, I build around it, and adding in other elements, like loading in NI’s Reaktor as a VSTI into FL Studio and mangling parameters. A lot can be said by a 3xosc with a dissonant melody and the right insert effect.

Deadmau5 FL Studio Project (free download)


What are the advantages & disadvantages of using hard- & software ?


I dont really have all that much knowledge in the hardware department to be bold enough to contribute to the age old “hard vs. soft” debate… however, using software, i have found the flexibility, and modularity to prove to be a beautiful thing when it comes to bringing up old idea’s and either re-working them or using them as templates for whole new songs. I would imagine using a mostly hardware solution, this could be quite the task as you may have X amount of synths with X amount of settings and patches and configurations that you would need to reconfigure each time you want to shift gears… and frankly i shift gears a lot, and I’d rather not be stuck in the studio patching gear all day thank you very much… Software to me has always proven to be virtually non destructible when it came to editing, instead of laying it all down to a few tracks on the DAT tape. I seriously doubt anyone still does it that way anyway.

Who have you worked for in the past?


As of recently, ive just finished a couple of remixes for an LA based group called Orgy, and i will be featured on their upcoming DVD.


A scheduled release of “deadmau5 – Get Scraped” will be in stores late march of 2005 courtesy of


i’ve produced the majority of killersounds music library using a lot of FLStudio ( )


last October there was a public release of “The Hive” which was included on a Smirnoff compilation CD that was distributed along with over 290,000 of their alcohol products.