Beat Lab Academy
Beat Lab Academy is an Ableton Certified Training Center born in Los Angeles, California. It’s the brainchild of Yeuda Ben-Atar, who founded the school in 2014. Unsatisfied with how modern music production was being taught via archaic methods – he decided to start a unique music production school with a community-driven focus in Eagle Rock, LA.
Seven years on from that inception, the school has outgrown its humble home on Colorado Boulevard, as its online course has attracted students from Mexico all the way to Japan. The pandemic in 2020, and the rise of online – has only accelerated its worldwide growth. In this article, we bid farewell to our physical campus, and reflect on some of the fond memories there – as we welcome this next chapter of our growth.
Our Origin Story
Raised in Haifa, Israel – Yeuda moved to LA in 2012 & was quick to make an impact on the music scene. He started hacking video game controllers to control Ableton, and it caught the eyes of renowned channels like Dubspot. Soon, his hip-hop and soul-influenced music; along with being one of L.A’s earliest Ableton Certified Trainers had him teaching at places from UCSD to USC. He was helping artists such as Skrillex, Timbaland, and Flying Lotus; while working at record labels like Leaving & Dirty Bird.
In 2019, he was asked to speak at Ableton’s official event for music makers – “Loop.” Check out his talk below.
Through all of his experience delivering lectures and workshops at these well-acclaimed schools – he started to notice a glaring problem with the way electronic music is taught today.
The Vision: Beat Lab Academy
After years of experience teaching in the major production schools in LA – Yeuda started to notice what works in class, and what doesn’t work. So he started teaching privately, at a small studio in Silverlake, LA. He realised that students would stick with him for years, provide extremely good feedback on his teaching style, and even bring their friends.
Get a taste of his infectious teaching style in the video below, where he shows you how to recreate Daft Punk’s iconic “Vocoder” effect:
This is when he realised where modern music schools of today were falling short. All these schools were teaching electronic music in a lecture format, similar to how they would teach history or literature. The students were missing out on the benefits of hands-on learning through practice and playing music together. Electronic music education needed a transformation, and Yeuda realised he was in the right position to spearhead it.
He aspired to teach people to play Ableton like an instrument, instead of simply giving lectures on how to use a computer program. So in 2014, he set out to do just that by launching Beat Lab Academy. By having smaller classes, an Ableton-only focus, and class jams – where students could connect to each other’s computers and play like a band – he created a new breed of community-driven music education.
After 6 years of operating, Beat Lab has produced notable alumni such as Madame Gandhi, Naomi Wild, Simi, Brit Lari, and Coco Morrier to name a few. The school has become synonymous with Ableton, who often trial new devices and updates with the teachers and students of Beat Lab. With the brand name growing far and wide, Beat Lab has scored partnerships with Ableton, Fab Filter, Serum and more, to enable students to unlock significant discounts.
But then came Yeuda’s biggest challenge yet – how does a physical, hands-on school like Beat Lab Academy go through 2020 – a year of distance, online, and lockdown?
Opening The Floodgates
Even before the pandemic hit, word had spread internationally about the unique education at Beat Lab Academy. The curriculum had been tried & tested in the hands-on environment, the Youtube channel continued to rise in popularity, and students were moving cities to join Beat Lab in LA.
The Beat Lab Academy Curriculum
There was only one problem – students had to be in Los Angeles to experience this one-of-a-kind education. To overcome this, Beat Lab launched a self-paced online certification program.
In-person classes were recorded, and uploaded with extensive notes, cheat sheets, videos, exclusive downloads, and templates. The in-class jam sessions pivoted to online study groups, complete with beat battles & special guests. Teachers were made available for students to ask questions or request feedback on a track. The best part – to tie in the community aspect – all students & alumni could connect via a student-only Facebook group.
Now – students could experience Beat Lab’s education from wherever they were, whenever they wanted.
A Door Closes, And A New One Opens
When the pandemic hit, Beat Lab had to immediately comply with lockdown enforcements and close its doors. In order to continue teaching current students, we started a “Live Online” course. Students could jump on a Zoom call with one of our teachers and continue their course in real-time.
This is when pent-up, locked-down music enthusiasts from around the world found they finally had the time to produce. With a rise of international students opting for either our Live Online course or the Self-Paced course, we realised something quite phenomenal: This was the first time that a Los Angeles quality music education was being offered across the world – and more affordably. Furthermore, our study groups have started to get more international, paving the way for diverse, international collaborations.
And so – with the world still hanging in uncertainty, but students from LA, the States, and around the world able to still benefit from Beat Lab’s education – it’s with a heavy heart that we are announcing the closure of our physical campus in Glen Rock.
“It’s a bittersweet moment, To let go of a place I put everything into. But it’s the right move forward. It’s not the place, it’s the people.
To the students who’ve been able to be a part of our special home on Colorado Boulevard – thank you. It’s your excitement, participation, and passion that’s helped our community thrive and support each other.
Our next chapter will be about helping producers from around the globe achieve their dreams.”
-Yeuda Ben-Atar, Head of Education – Beat Lab Academy
We are excited about the results that are already coming in from our efforts of taking this school online. Take the example of one of our students – Diveakssh Schae, all the way in Australia.
Divi planned to move from Australia to LA to join our school. He wasn’t able to make the move due to the pandemic but is now studying our self-paced online course while travelling Australia in his van & working on releasing his first album.
After 7 years of community-driven music education – we believe that your computer is an instrument. We believe we can teach you how to play it just as well whether you’re in front of us or halfway across the world. And we believe that the musicians of tomorrow will not be bound by the confines of yesterday.