As a producer I think it’s very important to be not only skilled by knowledgeable about many types of music, things such as the culture, how its produced and it’s history. Although the past few years I have been focusing on trap and lofi production for the majority of the time I’ve been making music I was making different types of EDM (Electronic Dance music). One of my first big inspirations and the reason I ever started making music was a dubstep producer called downlink I made dubstep and drum and bass for about 3 years before I stopped to focus on beats. I think starting off with genres such as these which are synthesis heavy was a good idea because I learnt lots about synthesis more than I would have learnt if I always made beats.
During this time I was definitely my most creative I tried to branch out and make more strange and abstract sounding music, here are some examples :
These tracks although unfinished and not the best do showcase some creativity production wise, the skills I learnt from these times help lots in my production today as I can take little elements or things I used to do and incorporate them into my music now.
A friend sent me a few samples he found and wanted to see if I could turn them into something, the sample was only titled aiko so I have no idea what song or soundtrack it has come from. The drums are inspired by Earl Sweatshirt – ‘dat ass’ I really enjoyed how the kick went with the sample so I thought i’d do something somewhat similar, some of the percussion is inspired by something else all together. A producer called ediT who is one of the three people in the group glitch mob, I always really enjoyed glicthy music and IDM style drums and production. Here is an example of ediT’s production –
Although I am not 100% happy with this track right now I do think it has potential to be a really nice different sounding beat. I think next I want to maybe find a singer or rapper to put some vocals on it. It would be interesting to experiment with chopping up vocals and making them glitchy as well. I also feel like the drop is a little empty so some reverb would help or possibly may add some more percussion to fill out some of the emptiness.
Sampling is a big part of my productions even if it’s something small I still like to sample something just to keep things sounding a little different, sometimes I sample out of laziness but for the most part I sample simply because it’s what I enjoy doing, when it comes to sampling I like to find things from different countries this way it’s less likely that people will have heard the sample before because of how the lofi community is samples are often passed around and so it isn’t strange to listen to things with the samples. I mainly gravitate towards Asian countries but more specifically japan. Using Japanese disco is probably the most popular thing to sample when it comes to lofi. It is great for chopping because you can get some very different sounds when chopping vocals from something that isn’t the language you know and I think this fact alone is why so many people love sampling Japanese music me included.
This song by [csd] inspired me to make a track in a similar way using a Japanese song. (The song) altough there is no real mixing on the track right now I think the vibe is similar in both all it needs is some production and it’ll be good, at the time it isn’t a collab in anyway although it may be possible to to find someone to help finish it off but it is undecided on if I want to turn this track into another collaboration.
Of course with sampling you have to be careful of copyright it doesn’t really apply to me since im not using these tracks for anything they are all free but it doesn’t mean that sampling hasn’t got people in the mainstream in big trouble.
I focused mostly on lofi hiphop in my productions, over the last few years this genre has become incredibly popular although maybe not in the mainstream but online it definitely has taken over. youtube channels such as ChilledCow with 24/7 radios that only play lofi have really made lofi apart of internet culture.
Lo-fi which comes from the word low fidelity is an aesthetic of recorded music in which the sound quality is lower than the usual contemporary standards (the opposite of high fidelity) and imperfections of the recording and production are audible. These standards have evolved throughout the decades, meaning that some older examples of lo-fi may not have been originally recognised as such. Lo-fi only began to be recognised as a style of popular music in the 1990s. But why is low fidelity music so popular in an age where music is made to such high standard where sound quality is so important, there are a few reasons I can think of one of which is that people like the idea of imperfections the aesthetic of a past time that you may not have lived with is able to connect with you. From what I see from friends who enjoy lofi it seems to be the case of kind of wanting to re live that era of music now. Another reason could be the fact that it makes the music feel less like a bunch of code but real sounds, even though in this day and age electronic music is a part of most mainstream music the average music fan doesn’t realise this so the imperfections and also the other major element of lofi hiphop which is the sampling makes it accessible and listenable by different generations.
I would say I’m doing well so Far on my worked based learning I think that my progress has definitely slowed down over the last few months but I’m slowly getting back to working with new people. I’ve done collaboration with 3 different people both online and in person, I think that I’ve done some good work with these people although the tracks aren’t all complete I have high hopes for them. I tried to do different styles for each collaboration so that I could use a variety of different production techniques as well as mixing differently, I also tried to approach each track from a different perspective even small things such as working in different places often can change how the music I make sounds.
I do still have a few more collaborations in mind but will need to find new artists to work with, I also need to start promoting upcoming tracks and also finish existing tracks. I’d also like to try completely different genres as I’ve just stuck to hip hop and other sub genres in it, maybe doing other types of music can grow my production knowledge and teach me something new or just reinforce existing skills.
Within the next few weeks I should at least 2 more tracks completely finished as well as have started on a couple more collaborations. I’m hoping by the end of March I can get in contact with a couple of artists but it can be hit or miss even with smaller artists because lots of them just don’t check email very often.
When it comes to promoting myself as a producer not much has been done as of yet, although I do have an idea of what I need to do. I will be creating logos and artwork by myself unless I can find someone reliable to do it for me, I’ve done artwork for my own tracks before so I don’t think it will be very difficult for me to do it myself. I already have a few social media set up those being twitter, soundcloud and Instagram these will be the main social media I will be using I will also more than likely make a you tube channel also encase I want to some sort of visuals for certain tracks. The hardest part will probably be coming up with ideas for logos and visuals but making them won’t take to much time or be very difficult.
I will be working with my brother who is doing exactly what I am doing for my work based learning. Although he doesn’t produce the same music as I want to it’ll still be very helpful to know how someone else gets work done. One thing I always struggle with is finishing music whereas my brother always finishes music so getting some tips on how to finish tracks would be very helpful as this has heavily impacted the amount of music I can put out there. Also hopefully some helpful production tips things like improving mixing and mastering, sound design and maybe how he interacts with other professionals in the industry. I’ll be doing this over Christmas because there will be lots more free time so i will be able to get more hours in, I’ll also be working with some students at dmu. They are vocalists who will be co writing the songs with me, I want to create varied music and not just stick to the same style or even genre, this is because I feel like limiting myself to a single style or genre will make a huge difference in who I can work with and I also want to learn the new skills that come with producing a new style of music and then use those skills in other music.