My production challenge this month was an exercise in adaptivity. Instead of going out and finding outdoor sounds to capture and sample, like we did for April’s monthly challenge, we were tasked with the wonderful opportunity to use sounds from a brand new hip-hop adjacent sample pack that launched recently on Splice. [*Skip ahead to hear my final track.] These classic music videos feature thought-provoking concepts and communicate the message of their song perfectly, in ways that we can borrow ourselves.
I found a MIDI version of the piece and brought it into Ableton Live. The MIDI file put the left and right hand of the piano on separate tracks, so I used separate instruments for each one: a palm-muted guitar for the right, and a synth pluck for the left. I recommend getting a professional coach with some years of experience, who you respect as a musician, and who you admire as a singer (I’m simply describing my own vocal coach here).
Once you get a motif, you can repeat it. A very good idea: Repetition is the songwriter’s friend. The more times you repeat the motif within a song the more easily it will be remembered. And you can repeat it at either the same pitch or at a different one. Crowdfunding’s magic lies in the fact that it takes both artists and fans to make a project happen. It’s not the typical, one-sided creative conversation that the music industry has been having for nearly 100 years. And although skimming through live campaigns on a regular basis is difficult if you’re looking after the health of your wallet, there’s really no better way to get a glimpse of the myriad ways music can connect people.