To say you like Pop music is no different than saying you like Ice-Cream. It’s a generalization, that doesn’t say much. Are you Peanut Butter Cup, Cookie Dough or Phish Food?
Pop = popular, and therefore the sound of pop music is changing every day. What’s popular today, may not be next year.
Fret not, some staple sounds seem to have stood the test of time or look to be, and this article will be exploring exactly that.
Whether it’s the Bruno Mars dry, unprocessed pop drum sounds and grooves you crave, or the more Electronic Dance Music orientated, this article has you covered.
Below is a short list of the pop drum samples we talk about in this article. Scroll down for more details or click for audio demos.
- Looptine – Synthwave 1980 Retro-logue
- Singomakers – Tropical Pop
- Organic Loops – Pop Session Drums
- Loopmasters – Back To The 80s
- Producer Loops – LA Pop Sessions Vol. 01
- Zenhiser – 80’s Dream Pop
- Freaky Loops – Summer Pop
1. Looptine – Synthwave 1980 Retro-logue
Who doesn’t love the ooey-gooeyness of synth-wave music? It’s the scent of warm circuitry and bath-like soundscapes that keeps people coming back. Of course, the drums are a big part of synth-wave music. They need to be both punchy yet soft, which can be a difficult thing to accomplish with just any old sample pack.
This is where the Synthwave 1980 Retro-logue sample pack comes in handy. This sample pack comes with a wide variety of electrifying beats for a beautiful representation of the unique, stylistic sounds of synth-wave.
If you’re looking to recreate sounds similar to soundtracks from Stranger Things, Terminator, or Miami Nights, then this sample pack is absolute perfection. The pack is built on 20 different song ideas, each of which is presented to the user as full mixes and stripped-down versions. The driving beats can be easily placed into productions ranging from 100-125 BPM to give them added drive and warmth.
This carefully crafted collection of sounds from Looptine nails the spirit and vibrancy of the 80s unlike any other kit out there. For those seeking the thrill of analog in their 80s-inspired productions, look no further.
2. Singomakers – Tropical Pop
Summer Pop tunes are sickly sweet, drizzling in Ibiza dancefloor influence. Singomakers Tropical Pop is a sample collection brimming with summer vibes.
Crafting Tropical Pop, Tropical House, Classic House, Reggaeton or just want to add the warmth and soul of the summer into your music? Then this is the sample pack for you.
The pop samples have been recorded at tempos ranging between 105 – 120bpm, giving you the perfect foundation for sunny dancing. All samples were tracked using the highest quality hardware; both studio and synthesizer, to bring you a stunning sounding selection.
All drum hits, synths, and loops have been processed to maximize punch and warmth. Find the sample you want, drop it into your track and move on!
As well as the massive collection of loops and one-shots, there are also a series of MIDI loops. These MIDI loops allow you to retrigger melodies using your own synth patches. The loops are REX2 compatible, making chopping and moving beats a breeze.
Singomakers have also provided 7 software sampler patches for Battery, EXS24, Kontakt, and NNXT, and 20 synth presets for Native Instruments Massive. The number of custom patches available to use within your DAW allows full flexibility and customization of the Tropical Pop sound to suit your compositions. Load up one of the soft sampler patches in Battery, and start hitting your pads to craft the foundations of the next Tropical Pop smash.
If you’re trying to craft the next Diplo, Calvin Harris or Major Lazer smash, this is the pack for you! Though, with the popularity of those mentioned, you’d be foolish not to invest and keep up with the arms race.
3. Organic Loops – Pop Session Drums
To get punch and power on your pop recordings, you need great drums. There is no question about it.
Pop Session Drums from Organic Loops is a large collection of rock-solid, rhythmic backbeats with punchy grooves and tons of energy, which provides users with a live acoustic kit, as well as a variety of percussion instruments. If you’re looking to craft a mainstream masterpiece, you need not look any further.
The drums in this pack were recorded by legendary UK session drum Matt Butlin with his massive Gretsch Kit, hard-hitting Tama snares, and shimmering Sabian cymbals. He provides some seriously groovy loops, as well as a variety of percussion loops to add rhythmic diversity to any track.
In all, you get 778 MB of content, including full drum loops, builds, fills, tom grooves, and step sequences, essentially everything you could need to build a pop song from the ground up. The drums and percussion were recorded at 24 Bit and 44.1 kHz for high-fidelity tones and the tempos range from 110-127 BPM for high-energy productions.
If you’re looking to give your pop productions a bit more range, we highly recommend going with the Pop Session Drums from Organic Loops.
4. Loopmasters – Back To The 80s
Like we said before, the sounds of the 80s are alive and well in modern pop music. It’s hard to deny that it was a vibrant and energetic time for music. The ability for producers to bring those sounds into modern music has helped to craft an incredible resurgence of the sounds of the time. Of course, the need for warm yet driving drums is very important in this style of music.
With 42 drum loops, 43 drum hits, and a variety of other rhythmic and melodic samples, it is the perfect collection for those who want to transport their music back to the 80s. The drums have been recorded at tempos ranging from 104-122 BPM, perfect for slow jams or heart-pounding disco tracks.
The warm and hazy sound that this sample pack provides is perfect for producers of retro-wave, synth-wave, disco, house, and electronica. Recorded at 24 Bit and 44.1 kHz, you know you are getting high-quality sounds as well. Simply load these sounds into any DAW and you’ll get the driving sounds of another time.
5. Producer Loops – LA Pop Sessions Vol. 01
West Coast representing. LA Pop Sessions Vol. 01 from Producer Loops captures the vibe of West Coast Pop in five radio-ready construction kits. This collection was captured in some of Los Angeles’ most beautiful recording studios, bringing the American Pop sound dominating the airwaves, straight to your machine.
Bold basslines, huge snares, modern sounds and real guitar licks, supplied in a variety of formats. Regardless of your software of choice, this versatile collection of sounds is a one-stop shop to crafting instant pop hits.
Each construction kit features a range of one-shot samples. These one-shots allow new beats, drum fills and loops to be created to complement the existing material.
If you’re more of a drag and drop producer, the dry/wet samples included are perfect for you. The wet loops are a series of processed sounds, instantly interjecting the production sensibilities of West Coast Pop into your track.
If you prefer tweaking, dry loops are also provided. There are also un-looped riffs/tails included, to allow you to end a loop with the decay of the processed sample.
The inclusion of MIDI files is an enormous strength of this package. The majority of musical phrases heard in each kit are provided in MIDI format. This allows you as the producer to retrigger the MIDI with your software samplers and synthesizers of choice. Combining the high-quality programming by the Producer Loops team with your own sonic signature.
6. Zenhiser – 80’s Dream Pop
Shoegaze, Synthwave, and Chillwave, are all genres that live in the outer realms of the music sphere. These genres are hybrids of the 80s and modern synth-pop, giving listeners reverberating, sun-soaked sounds to sink into. Plus, as we move deeper into the 21st century, we are seeing many of these sounds come back to life in modern pop music.
The 80s Dream Pop sample pack from Zenhiser is filled to the brim with high-quality analog drum loops and samples from some of the worlds most well-renowned drum samplers, including the Roland TR-707, TR-808, and TR-909.
The grooves revolve heavily around the sounds and rhythms of the 1980s, giving you the vibe of artists such as Human League, A Flock of Seagulls, and Talk Talk.
Altogether, you get a variety of fully mixed loops, organized one-shots, and a chunk of midi rhythms to finish it all off! If you’re looking to add a bit of 80s flair to your modern pop productions, this dreamy collection of drums is perfect!
7. Freaky Loops – Summer Pop
It seems that every summer we get a resurgence of fresh, inspirational pop music from the top artists out there. Of course, to keep things fresh, they need to use fresh sounds. This is where a sample pack like Freaky Loops Summer Pop comes in.
While this sample pack comes with a variety of leads, synths, and bass grooves, the real magic lies within the drum sounds. They are both punchy and crisp, perfect for modern, tropical pop vibes.
There are over 90 drum loops to mess around with, including 9 hi-hat loops, 4 kick loops, 5 percussion loops, and 5 clap loops. Beyond that, you get access to an array of drum hits, including claps, crashes, rides, hi-hats, kicks, and percussion pieces.
Right off the bat, you can tell that these drum sounds are perfect for that future pop and tropical sound. They can help to create a solid foundation under a shimmering layer of bright synths and leads. If you are looking for a way to add some fresh rhythms to your summer pop productions, this pack from Freaky Loops is one to consider.
The complexities of Pop Music have only been scratched upon in this article. With its everchanging sound, recommending Pop specific drum samples is difficult!
Whether you want the Nu-Funk sound that captivated the airwaves through Bruno Mars, Daft Punk and Maroon 5, the Indie Rock sound popularized in the late 80’s/early 90’s and reignited by the likes of Taylor Swift, Carly Rae Jepson and Ryan Adams or floor-filling EDM from the likes of Justin Bieber, Rihanna and One Direction, there’s a sample library in this article for you.
Spend time thinking about what it is you want to achieve with your next pop hit. Are you just needing a groove to write along to? Do you want MIDI so that you can imprint “your sound” on “their music” or are you just wanting a eureka drag and drop spectacular?
Whatever it is, spend time listening to the demos on each packs website. Analyze how they sound now, how they can work for you and what you’d do to make it work even further.