Freeware Drum Program?


Anyone have a freeware drum programmer to recommend? I just want to be able to build simple midi drum tracks for my songs.

I’m messing around with Hammerhead and somthing called hotstepper. GuitarPro4 has a very flexible notation-based editor, but I’d prefer not to drop 60 bucks if I can avoid it…

If there’s no good free version, what’s the best simple shareware drum software? Jamsticks seems intriguing, but maybe overkill? Others?

Thanks in advance for your help!

Jamstix is da bomb! I just bought the full program and it lives up to most hype. The full program is $100, but there is a free demo program :p :p :p

Just been listening to the mp3 demos on the Jamstix website…amazing, thinking of buying it :)

I think Jamstix is the best drum tool for non-drummers too.

For free drums… I leafdrums is supposed to be good but I’ve never used it a lot…

Before I started using Jamstix I used to program my own drums in the piano roll or by tapping them out on a midi keyboard and also download free midi files and rip the drum tracks out of them and copy and paste bars and fills I wanted to kinda comp a drum track together.
Then feed the midi track to RMF (free drum synth).

Once you try the jamstix demo though and get the hang of tweaking it to produce drum tracks as busy or simple as you want you won’t want to go back to having to do drums tracks yourself or putting up with drum machine sounding drum parts.


Thanks for the input guys – I’d love to get JamStix, but I just don’t have $100 for drums right now!

RichLum – I just tried LeafDrums. It looks like it just might be exactly what I need (even though it’s a sample based, as opposed to a midi-based programmer). Thanks for the tip.

Anyone else have suggestions?

I’m also messing around with HotStepper, PianitoStudio, and a couple of others.

Why not a drum machine VSTi, some samples, and n-Track? E.g., Linplug’s RMF, Tom Hick’s Samples, and the big N? Or you could get the sampler from Computer Music magazine, they always have a lot of drum samples with it.


Tom has the ticket… buy yourself a copy of Computer Music magazine at Barnes & Noble. Their free software is not half bad. Leaf drums is cool too. Did you find Tom Hick’s excellent FREE samples? They are great.


Well, I’m brand new to this stuff, so to be honest, I’m a little intimidated by the whole VSTi concept. I don’t really have a clue how they work or where to start… :O I’d be grateful if you could steer me to step-by-step instrux on how to get a VSTi drum machine going.

I looked for Tom Hicks’ samples, but the only link I could find was dead. :(

Anyone have a working DL link for Hicks’ samples?

(I found some others (the EasyRider and RuffRider kits, plus a collection of percussion samples) that sound great with LeafDrums, but more is always better, right?)

Thanks again!


Here’s a working link to the Tom Hicks samples:

The latest issue of Computer Music contains a huge set of drum samples from ns studio (I think that’s the name). They also include a set of basic computer music apps on their CD every month. The magazine, and the apps are more geared toward electronica than anything else but you’ll find the odd useful utility.

Also, look at the tutorials on, I don’t think there is one specifically for setting up a VSTi, but it is pretty much the same as using a VST fx plugin.

Thanks for the links, Earache – I just downloaded all the samples!
And thanks for pointing me to AudioMinds – that’s going to be a lifesaver.
I’ll look for ComputerMusic magazine this weekend.
Have I mentioned how great I think this forum is? You guys rock (and roll!)… :D


Hey PR?

I think CM magazine still includes a tutorial on VSTi’s on the CD/DVD that comes with the mag. Check that out if you find a copy.