How do I create my own drum loop

  1. Load Groove Agent (GA) as a VST insturment (via F11).
  2. Load one of the acoustic drum sets in GA and use the “init” set that you will find in the GA browser. You will find the “init” set among the other strange names in the set browser. This “init” preset ensures that no styles/groves/loops are being loaded.
  3. Be sure that you have the “instrument” button switched on and not the “pattern”. If you now click the different numbers under the “instrument” button you can see what kind of drum sound that is located on which pad. The pad also corresponds to a key on the keyboard. You have now 4 options laying down your own track:
    3.1. Play the drums on your MIDI keyboard (assuming you have one). The pads will give you a hint on where to find a specific drum. This is the recommended way. You may also connect an external MIDI drum pad if that is preferred.
    3.2 Turn on the keyboard in GA and click the appropriate key. If you use this method I would recommend doing one drum at a time as moving the mouse to click is not a very precise operation.
    3.3 Click the pads. (one drum at the time is recommended).
    3.4 Draw the drums directly on a drum track inside Cubase.

3.1-3.3 You need to have enabled the “record” function of the track and record “live” as the cursor moves. You can do one drum at the time if that is preferred.
3.4 First you draw a MIDI range on your track with the pen tool, then you double click it to open the piano roll and you then draw in the drums in the piano roll according to the PAD names in GA. If you choose MIDI channel 10 for your track (default is 1), double clicking will give you to the drum editor instead of the piano roll. Personally I like to operate within the piano roll better, but the drum editor will give you the drum names, also called “map”.

If you are very happy with your groove you may save it as a pattern in Groove Agent and also allocate it to one of the PADs, for later re-use. You may develop many grooves and save them to different PADs. I recommend this only if you want to use GA in i live situation. If not, it is easier just to drag the MIDI groove from the folder you used for saved grooves directly into Cubase. If you go to Groove Monkee website they have a free groove set for GA4. With it comes a manual that I have written for them. It will give you some more information on how to save and operate GA in general. Groove 3 (Don’t get confused by the name similarity. They are two different companies) have a decent tutorial on GA that I recommend, but it does not give you much information on laying down your own track.

Hope this helped.

Cubase is only complicated in the beginning. Soon you will learn the logic of it and it is easy.

thanks for taking the time to explain it all but practically nothing above works for me. When you say GA browser I assume you mean the drop down list of presets. If so I can’t see any acoustic drum sets there. I loaded a brush set. I can’t see an instrument button anywhere but I do see a list of pads which with the names of drums underneath.

I hit the record button and played a drum but nothing gets recorded although I could see the meter working. To record a loop I would expect to a sequence of bars to repeat themselves but can’t see how to do that.

lastly there is no way I want to draw a drum rhythm. I want to play it

Go to and download the free GA4 loops, not as much for the loops but for the maual that I have written. It will show with pictures/answer most of your questions , except for loop recording. In order to get loop recording you need to activate the loop function in Cubase. This is a two step process. In the transport interface you activate the loop button. You will find it in the same section as play, step forward, backwards. Then you go to your timeline of the project and drag the little icon for as many bars as you would want to record. If you drag it the wrong way the section marked will turn transparent red, if you do it the right way it will be colored transparent blue. Another way is to draw a Midi section on your GA4 track for a many bars you would like to record. (it will be empty with no drum hits). Single click it and hot P on the keyboard. This will color the section transparent blue (same as before mentioned) and this will be the section that loops.

When you say there is no recording fro GA 4: Remember th have the GA4 track selected (it will turn lighter blue) and that the recording button is on (red)

I downloaded the Drum freebie gm pack but couldn’t see any manual amongst the files

Then you must have downloaded the GM and not the GA package. I just did a download and the PDF is right there.

I can’t see any download which says its GA on your site

Well it is not my site, but anyway: Go to the search field and enter “Groove agent” and take it from there.

thanks. I found the download by searching and downloaded it but I am working on windows 7 and can’t find any folder resembling any of the installation folders you mention.

I am on both PC and MAC. I work mostly on PC but main studio computer is PC. Regarding the file system that GA uses it is for all practical reasons the same. You need to locate the installation folder of GA, no matter if it is a PC or MAC. However the filesystem is not involved in your original question. In the manual you will see (pictures/Screenshots) where to find the “Instrument” button and how to load presets. However you should look for presets starting with “init” in order to load a drum set without presets on the pads.

I seem to have groove agent 1 and there is no instrument button.

Hi delboy, figure you must have resolved this by now, but I was stuck at the same point, expecting to find Beat Arranger which isn’t part of Elements and so here’s what I did to create a drum loop.
I went through the process of adding the VST and selecting the Groove Agent One instrument. Assigned a drum map and then used the PEN tool to draw onto the GA Midi track for 4 bars. Then double clicked the drawn track which revealed the window where you can place in your drum beats. Rinse and repeat. Hope this works for you. :neutral_face:


No I gave up but intend to have another go soon. It all seems so ridiculous to me. I don’t want to draw anything, I want to play it with as little computer involvement as possible. I should be able to start a click track to loop over or or 2 bars and then tap a keypad to enter a drum. Simple as that. All the other stuff is great if you want it but I don’t.

Very frustrating

Hi .

I’m trying to open up my project in another computer.

I created a new groove within GA4 with my own samples and used the cubase’s backup project features and when I open my project in another computer I get missed samples warning within GA4.

How I can I save it properly so I can use my own kit created with my own samples in another computer?

Maybe as vst3.preset…so how I would recall it ?

bit frustating though


Hi Dellboy, Totale agree on difficulty to add very simple drum loop.
If you find a way, I’m very interested too.
Also steering a drum console through midi is a pain in the ass… So if any one has an easy manual to do that, y’re welcome.

Curious… have you got through this yet delboy007…? Given the above, I would look to the manual for MIDI Recording modes and methods, if you’re still in need of assistance.

In essence:-

  1. set up the Left and Right Locators for bar length(s) and set tempo
  2. Add Instrument Track (Groove Agent One…?)
  3. Arm track to record
  4. Set Cycle mode to On
  5. Press record - (oh, turn on the click too).

Away you go…!

Now, with each pass/cycle you can record your kick, snare, hats etc, separately, building your pattern as you go.


Well done Puma0382! You win the prize for the best instructions, however there are many pitfalls hidden amongst each line. I did manage to work it out for myself eventually and have written detailed instructions which can be found on my website here:

All I want to do is create a very simple drum loop and stick it on a track which took me 10 minutes to learn on a drum machine. I wasted an entire day yesterday looking at instructions and videos which seem to be geared towards people who already have a knowledge of Cubase and who want to spend their lives fiddling with sounds rather than creating music.

Go buy an Alesis SR-16, plug it into your midi port. Make beats from there, very simple drum machine.

That’s like buying a Rolls Royce but continuing to drive your mini because it is easier to park.
Following my instructions it is very easy. Since starting this thread I got hooked on EZ Drummer and am stunned by what great and realistic drum rhythms and fills you can easily create.

I appreciate your effort in helping out delboy007 but I am still confused. What I would like to do is create a pattern of say 2 bars which I can then assign to a pad. Then i can drag that pattern to the appropriate points in my track as often as I wish. I would like to be able to save that pattern so that I can use it with other tracks too. Is this possible with Groove Agent or am I asking too much?