How To Make a Lil Durk Type Beat

As a music producer, you’ve probably seen the recent up rise of Lil Durk, and you want to provide Lil Durk type beats to your audience. The OTF’s very own got his chance on the mainstream level after being on a song with Drake, and has been a household name ever since. You’re at the right place if you want to understand the characteristics of his type beats. In this article, we’ll go through everything you need to know to make a beat that feels like Lil Durk’s signature emotional sound (we won’t be focusing on the dark trap beats on this one, but some tips may apply).

Understanding Lil Durk’s Sound

Before we dive into the specifics of making a Lil Durk type beat, it’s important to understand what makes his sound unique. This specific type of Lil Durk’s beats we’re focusing on are melodic and emotional, with heavy use of instruments like pianos, strings, and guitars. He often uses autotune on his vocals, giving them his signature sound. His beats also feature hard-hitting drums, typically with a hard hitting snare and punchy kick. Overall, his sound is moody and introspective, with a lot of focus on melody.

Setting Up Your DAW

To make a Lil Durk type beat, you’ll need your software (DAW) like FL Studio, Logic Pro, or Ableton Live. Once you’ve chosen your DAW, if you plan on making this type of style more often, you’ll want to set it up for optimal workflow. This might include creating templates with your go to instruments and effects, customizing your keyboard shortcuts, and organizing your sample library. The goal is to make your workflow as smooth and efficient as possible, so you can focus on creating your beats.

Choosing Instruments and Sounds

To create a Lil Durk type beat, you’ll need to choose the right instruments and sounds. Pianos, strings, and guitars are all used to achieve the “emotional” or “pain” sound, so you’ll want to start there. Look for samples or plugins that have a raw or emotional feel, and experiment with layering different sounds together. You’ll also want to find a hard hitting snare and heavy kick drum to give your beat the right amount of punch. We have some free drums and one shots here. Finally, don’t forget to add some atmosphere elements to add character to your beat.

Crafting Your Melody

Once you have your sounds figured out, it’s time to start making your melody. Lil Durk’s melodies are often simple and sad sounding, with a lot of attention on the emotional or “pain” feeling. You can start by playing around on your instrument until you find a melody that speaks to your pain, it’s a “pain” type beat after all. From there, you can start adding more sounds as layers to create a fuller sound. Try to experiment with different scales or chord progressions to find the right vibe. Make sure your 808 is in key with the beat!

Creating Your Drum Pattern

Once you have your melody, it’s time to start creating your drum pattern. Lil Durk’s beats typically feature a hard hitting snare on the second and fourth beats, with a hard hitting kick every first and third. You can start by programming in a simple pattern and then adding elements like hi-hats, percussion, and 808s to give your beat the needed bounce. You can get some sound here for free. Remember, the goal is to create a beat that is both simple and effective.

Adding Effects and Mixing Your Beat

Once you have your melody and drums in place, it’s time to start adding effects and mixing your beat. Lil Durk’s beats often feature a lot of reverb and delay, which can give them that emotional feel or deep sound. If you selected sounds that are good quality, no EQ or any other “fixing” is needed. You can get some one shots for free here. Once you’re set with how the beat came out, it’s important to spend some time mixing your beat to make sure that all the elements are balanced and not ruining the overall sound in the mix. Check the blog section on more info on how to mix your type beats.


In this short guide, we’ve gone through everything you need to know to make a Lil Durk pain type beat. From understanding his sound to choosing the right instruments and crafting your melody, we’ve covered all the essential steps. Remember, the key to making a great Lil Durk pain type beat is to make it have that emotional sounding melody while choosing the right trap drums. Keep it simple so there’s room for artists, and don’t forget to add your own unique touch (and a beat tag) to your beat.


  1. What DAW do Lil Durk producers use?
  • It’s not clear what DAW his producers use, but any DAW you’re comfortable with does the job.
  1. Can I use samples in my Lil Durk type beat?
  • Yes, you can use samples in your Lil Durk type beat, but make sure they are cleared for commercial use.
  1. Do I need autotune for my vocals in a Lil Durk type beat?
  • No, autotune is not necessary, but it can give your vocals a Lil Durk sounding track.
  1. Can I make a Lil Durk type beat with just a laptop and headphones?
  • Yes, you can make a Lil Durk type beat with just a laptop and headphones, but it’s recommended to invest in a good pair of studio monitors for better sound reference.
  1. How can I make my Lil Durk type beat stand out?
  • Try to add your own unique flavor to your beat, that thing that makes you special on your music, whether it’s through your melody, drum pattern, or effects.

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