Chapter 12 of 15 from Timbaland

Making a Beat: Adding a Topline


With help from New City vocalist Adrian Mitchell, Tim shows you the most important step in making a chart-topping hit— creating the vocal melody or “topline”— and shares his philosophy on lyrics.

Topics include: Record However You Can

With help from New City vocalist Adrian Mitchell, Tim shows you the most important step in making a chart-topping hit— creating the vocal melody or “topline”— and shares his philosophy on lyrics.

Topics include: Record However You Can


Timbaland Teaches Producing and Beatmaking

Step inside the production studio with Timbaland. In his first-ever online class, Tim teaches his process for creating infectious beats and making sonic magic.

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Find your beat

Grammy-winning music producer Timbaland takes you behind the boards to teach you his process for creating iconic tracks with artists like Jay-Z, Missy Elliott, Justin Timberlake, Beyoncé, and Aaliyah. In his first-ever online class, learn how to collaborate with vocalists, layer new tracks, and create hooks that stick. Step into Timbaland’s studio and learn from one of the industry’s most innovative hit makers.

Grammy-winning music producer Timbaland teaches his process for constructing beats, collaborating in the studio, and creating chart-topping hits.

Along with a downloadable workbook, the class includes two exclusive new songs and stems you can use to remix or build beats of your own.

Upload videos to get feedback from the class. Timbaland will also critique select student work.


Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars.

I’m a former producer that was amongst the Dr. Dre family and lost the love. Tim just gave the love, that FEELING back. BigFuzzz™️

I learned to be more creative with manipulating sounds

I had been waiting on this masterclass to come out ever since I saw Timbaland was doing one. Today I was sick from work and just spent the entire day watching the whole class. Unbelievably relevant information and super inspiring. Best masterclass yet.

i know a lot already but the techniques and the sonic break downs were priceless timbo the great has struck again!


A fellow student

mann I need a singer like this guy here. His vocals are dooope, and he's so professional, he knows EXACTLY what he wants and just goes in. He's not stressed, anxious, worries, nothin.. I keep running into these artist singers who just.. don't know what to do and get becomes nervous wreck. I give em direction as a producer but.. still no bueno : /

Dee D.

I remember using cheap headphones as microphones to record vocals because at the time we couldn't afford to buy mics. Have to get the music out. Old school improvising.

Cameron J.

Looking forward to doing something with these stems when I finish this Beat Competition on Splice... I wanted to let team Masterclass know that I am a part of Boi-1da's Beat Competition on Splice. He made God's Plan last year and so many other number 1 songs. Instead of one beat though, I entered a 9 track beat tape. The winner gets to make a song with Boi-1da. Currently from hundreds if not thousands of entries, I have 4 songs in the top 10! Would love to hear what the members of the Masterclass think, and of course if you feel inspired like the beats too!! The contest is here: I am #5 #6 #7 and #10 as of today!

Miguel R.

Is the Ableton the only daw that can record the beat bop that you create with your mouth and transform it into every instrument that it copies from your mouth?

A fellow student

ASSGNMENT: "Work with the stems that Timbaland has produced. Download them via this MasterClass, load them into your DAW, and see which sounds you can contribute to the mix. " -- I LIKE THAT HERE IS MY REMIX - I dropped all but vocal-effects chords and base

Brian S.

I loved it. I love the fact in knowing that I'm not the only one that writes songs around incoherent babble. It's crazy how it always turns out . Lol

A fellow student

I’m curious, when Tim puts on his auto tune, is he setting it to the key of the song with a hard robot setting (like in anatares)?

DJ Peak Performer

i studied about not only how to create a music but also how to enjoy a music from this class. Grate!

Yabach U.

I liked how the “Will we make it out alive” vocal worked with the breakdown better than verse groove part. It felt darker and more pensive.

A fellow student

This is amazing and I'm very thankful for this knowledge.. Timbaland from the beginning has been my inspiration in the music production field.. Where is the resource download of the stems ?


Okay, so now, I have Adrian, a songwriter, the group of New City, one of my new acts. I got him here. I did a track, yes, well a day ago. And I want to play it for him and show you how we process music, how we go to the next level with something that we already started. So Adrian, what's up, my G? - What's up? - So I'm going to play you what the crew, what we all did. - For sure. - And let this vibe do it. - Yeah, let's let the speakers speak, man. - See, we don't really talk about it. We just let the speakers speak. So with that being said, Chris. [MUSIC PLAYING] [DISTORTED VOICE] Oo. Yeah. And as you see, the speaker was talking to it, as it's talking to you. Break it down now. When you get in the room with the artist, it's all about just conversation, just-- you know, just talking. And you're doing music. There's no thought process. It's all about having fun. And the music come out. Then when you first-- get the first-- oo, didn't [INAUDIBLE]. You know what we should do? And everybody is throwing the ideas. You know, once the track is-- like, everybody is just throwing, bouncing out. It's the energy, you know, having a drink, laughing, going in the booth. It's all about making this part fun. Because after this is work. Just be who you are. You're a musical genius. Your gift, your gift to sound, you're presenting sounds to hear his lovely voice, or her voice, serenade across your lovely instruments and your well-thought-out, put-together track. You ready? - I'm ready. Yeah, let's do it. - Come on. Basically, now, he's going to go in. But I know you heard the track before. It had a lot of instruments. But we emptied out some of the instruments to create space. Right, guys? - Yeah. - So now that we emptied out some of the instruments, so Adrian can go in there and layer-- or do what he do, do what he do best, see what-- see what the speakers tell him what to do. That being said, Adrian, you ready? - Yeah, all good. - Let's go. [MUSIC PLAYING] - (SINGING) Trying to talk about it. Maybe fight about it. All them games, I don't want to fight about it. Risk my life with dodging. I put my life on doubt for everything. I can't bring me to you. Tell me when I gotta go. Tell me you want to take it there. Tell me if I'm on a roll 'cause I can be the one [INAUDIBLE]. You gotta let me know it. I'm taking you [INAUDIBLE]. I'm picking up the focus. Hey, yeah, yeah, yeah. I'm talking about your mornings. Can't get you out of focus. Baby, I know, yeah. Working around for the half of my life, thinking of where I-- no, no, no. The shot is-- - [HUMS MELODY] - (SINGING) I wanna know if you've been talking about us, no, yeah. You've been looking for me, trying to make [INAUDIBLE]. Yeah. Yeah. - That's a dope real part. - (SINGING) Working up my focus, trying to make the [INAUDIBLE]. Yeah, yeah. TIMBALAND: Pause it. - (SINGING) Yeah, yeah. ...