Jeremy is a Montreal-based musician, sound artist and improviser who loves giving advice to emerging artists on how to make their tours more effective. He writes, records and performs electroacoustic “concrète” music for tape, oscillators and amplified objects and surfaces, as well as solo guitar. He has performed and released material throughout Europe and the UK, Asia, the US and Canada, mostly with his trio Sontag Shogun.
Yoshino composes and arranges pop-influenced originals, interspersed with her own arrangements of jazz standards. A classically trained pianist, her arrangements move in ecstatic fits and starts, holding the room with brief moments of tension before bursting into glorious runs on piano, bass, and saxophone.
Many microphones also feature built-in “roll off” switches, which filter out unused bass frequencies to prevent unwanted noise. Another common feature is a pad, which lowers the input volume of the microphone. This can be very useful when dealing with particularly boisterous speakers who tend to clip the microphone even at low gain levels.
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Music theory is a useful feather in the cap of any music producer. Learning a bit of theory will help you fundamentally understand the music you record, the emotional power that can be achieved by it, and how to mix and arrange everything so it comes out more clearly. Check out Soundfly’s popular free course, Theory for Bedroom Producers, to get a sense of how learning just a bit of music theory can do wonders for your songwriting and production practice.
I’m talking about the way compression can make tracks seem like they fit together a little better. When set up correctly, it makes the whole song feel like it’s glued together in subtle ways which give it a nice, musically polished, cohesive sound. The goal with mix buss compression would be to just tame any transients that may spike up in volume just a little too much, and then bring the overall volume of the rest of the tracks up just a bit. We’re just trying to add a little more energy and fullness to the mix.
If you’re mixing at home and just getting started, I’d advise checking out Soundfly’s Faders Up: Modern Mix Techniques course to learn everything there is to know about DIY mixing best practices. But making sure your headphones and monitors are a decent quality will also help, even if this is just a piano vocal demo.
In case you haven’t seen this, or tried it yet, Classic FM (the website version) has created one of the most entertaining and informative tiny “time-waster” games on the internet that we’ve found so far. It’s called “Are These Words Composers or Types of Pasta” and it’s 15 questions of mouth-watering musical joy where you have to try to guess which is which. I’ve played this game thrice and somehow never gotten a perfect score.
In my 2008 piece for Greek Byzantine choir and strings, Nativity Kontakion, I discovered a beautiful harmonic structure based around the Byzantine whole step you get when you divide the octave into fourteen 72nds — a bit wider than the whole step on the piano, which is twelve 72nds of an octave wide. Invert that wide “14/72” whole step, and you get a minor seventh narrower than the usual one. It so happens that this narrower minor seventh is almost equivalent to the seventh partial — one of those pure, God-made mathematical ratios that fell out of favor when equal temperament took over.
“This Is America”: We’ve found the first of this year’s modulating pop tunes: changing from a gospelly F major to what I hear as E♭ Phrygian, which happens whenever Gambino shoots someone (in the video). I hear it as Phrygian because of the shark-in-the-water E♭ and E (or “F♭” if you’re being kosher theory-wise), and then the high-pitched whistle being a solid B♭, so there you go: E♭ Phrygian. Elements from the two tonalities fuse in places, like at 1:35 where there’s what sounds like a sample of previous F major vocals that drone on the very-not-Phrygian notes A and C, creating a heavy tension. This fusion is also present in the outro. Rhythmically, watch out after the second chorus, where it sounds like they added or skipped a beat, but they didn’t. It all flattens out after a few thumps.
Finally, use an aux send to create a parallel compression chain for the vocal. Use extremely fast attack and release times, super-aggressive ratios, and excessive amounts of compression to create a pumping, slamming performance that’s full of energy. Then, gently blend in the results with the original. A common trick is to use an 1176 in “British Mode” or “all-buttons-in,” as it adds a colorful distortion that helps vocals cut through the mix.
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I’m hardly the first person to want to hear how Bach sounds over a groove from the African diaspora. Django Reinhardt recorded a similar idea back in 1937.
Logic Pro offers some of the best-sounding and most customizable synths right out of the box, here’s how to adjust their default settings to your liking!