The “Inspiration” page has now been completed, so that’s nice!
I’ve updated the “About” page a bit as well, just changing the wording on some things, moved some stuff around and added a few bits.
Also added another track, “Always Here” to the “Music” page.
I’m not sure if I should go live just yet. I sort of feel like I should have some more music content here, since that’s partly the point of this site. On the other hand the lack of music content is also very much the point of this site… I guess we’ll see…:P
The only track I’ve ever really completed is Drum & Bass One (how’s that for an imaginative title?) and it was done in Reason some years back. Back then I had even less of a clue regarding what I was doing (if you can imagine that) and the result in terms of sound quality for this track was, well, not very good.
However recently I took some of the stuff I’ve learned since then and made a quick “remaster” within Reason and it helped the track a fair amount – at least it made it sound less muffled and distant.
There’s still things that needs to be done to it to make it even better and that will still happen, but I’m not sure when. The plan is to strip it of its effects, side-chaining and so on within Reason and export the stems to do a proper remaster within Studio One with the effects and such in there. Likely some samples will be changed and other things improved and tweaked. I think the track itself is pretty decent – it has some good elements – so I want to try and get it in better shape. 🙂
Anyway the current remastered version can be heard below.
I want to thank a few people, because they deserve it. Being able to get help and get questions answered is amazing and there are some people who are doing that for me.
Obviously I want to thank my friends for listening to all my random stuff and giving me feedback – that’s always awesome and you guys are awesome! 🙂
I want to give huge thanks to Jeff Kurtenacker who’s being absolutely fantastic to me. He’s the composer of the WildStar soundtrack (among other things) and he has created one hell of a soundtrack for the game. Absolutely amazing stuff and just shows the amount of talent this man has. But that’s not the only reason I want to thank him. I want to thank him because he’s doing something that I doubt a lot of other people would do in his position: He’s helping me. He’s answering all my questions about learning to create music and it means a ton to me that he takes the time to help out some random clueless guy from the internet who wants to learn to make music.
Jeff, I know I’ve said it to you a few times already, but you’re an awesome guy and you should know that I massively appreciate everything you’re doing for me!
You should check out Jeff’s music in the links posted in the sidebar – he makes crazy awesome stuff (the man really is freakishly talented)! The Soundcloud page mainly has pieces made for WildStar while his Bandcamp is personal piano pieces (go buy his “Pure” album!).
I also want to thank Arjen Lead for giving me pointers regarding creating trance. Again taking the time to share knowledge with me is awesome and I appreciate it a lot. You can read a lot of things, but sometimes it just enters your brain better when you’re actively talking to someone about something specific, and Arjen has taken the time to help me out from a place where I was stuck in what I was doing. You rock, man! 🙂
You should check out some of Arjen’s music as well. There’s a link to his Soundcloud page, albeit that far from has everything he’s made, out in the sidebar too.
I certainly hope I haven’t forgotten anyone, but if I have I do apologize (and feel free to tell me how much I suck :P).
Not too long ago I did something I haven’t done before… I sat down in front of my keyboard and just played whatever came to me – and recorded it. Up until now every melody I’ve made has been done by inserting notes using the mouse in the sequencer. I didn’t feel comfortable doing anything else and quite honestly I still don’t. Regardless there’s only one way to get past that and that’s doing it more – after all I’m not going to get better at it by not doing it.
It’s a pretty simple piece, because yeah, I have no idea how to actually play the piano. It’s in F minor to at least not just do something in C major and take the easy way out, but at the same time there’s no chords or anything in the piece, because I really have no idea how to play those yet. I know about chords and such, but I’m not in a position where I can play them on my keyboard. My fingers and brain just aren’t able to do that while playing a piece, I just don’t have the skill yet – that will require practice, and a lot of it (surprise!).
Despite it being simple (which isn’t always a bad thing) I think I got a pretty good result for a first try. The linked version is a reworked version (actually the 5th reworked version) where I’ve fixed the worst timing issues (there’s still a few minor ones, but so be it) and a few notes that didn’t quite sit well. I managed to stay within the scale during the entire time playing (I’d better, since it was so simple), but there were a few notes here and there that just kind of didn’t sit well in the progression, so I fixed those too.
Basically I did this because I thought the piece itself was good and deserved to not have all those little mistakes, especially the worst timing issues, taking away from it.
There’s also been some reverb, EQ, compressor and such changes made too.
It’s a fairly haunting and soulful piece I would say and was just played with my brain switched off while hitting the keys. It was played in one go as well, all 6 minutes of it.
I will admit that I’m quite happy with how it turned out, it being my first attempt and everything. More importantly it gave me more desire to actively do this more so I can learn to better play the piano and do more of these pieces, adding complexity and musicality as I (hopefully) get better. 🙂
I will probably release a new version of it once I buy The Grand 3, giving the piano itself a better sound. There’s also a few minor things I want to tweak, for instance with the reverb so it sits a bit better.
Anyway, here’s the piece!
You can download this song from Bandcamp for free (in 24-bit/96 kHz lossless if you want), albeit “only” the reworked version 4, as the 5th one is more an experiement and I’ll wait with updating the Bandcamp version until I make version 6 (with The Grand 3). Donating is also an option, but that’s up to you! 🙂
I haven’t really revealed this site to anyone yet, but I’m getting ready to do so soon, and in light of that it’s time to talk a bit about Prototype and where it’s at.
A lot of things have happened since the post about it here (that probably nobody has seen since I haven’t told anyone about it), but it has progressed a lot. I would say I’ve learned a lot of production sound techniques during the time, elevating my sound to sound more professional. Not quite professional, but at least pretty decent I would say, and more to the point; way better than previously.
The track will also go through a lot of changes, basically the entire intro part I’ve been working on will be redone because I’ve made the breakout part and need to fit the track around that, and because I’ve changed the scale of the track as well (that happened as I was working on the breakout part).
I want to say this about Prototype: It is by far my best work to date. Both in terms of technical quality as well as musical quality. I really feel like I’ve taken a major leap from my previous attempts, which is really exciting.
Despite the track changing I want to post the state of the intro portion that I got, mainly because of the advancement I’ve made in producing music and because it’ll probably be a little while before I have something else new and exciting to show off.
This is what part of the intro looks like visually inside Studio One, if you’re curious.
As I said I have the breakout part made as well, or more specifically the synth and note progression. Right now it’s nothing more than the synth playing the notes (the synth sound might get a few tweaks still, but overall it’s there).
This is basically the part where the song hits its climax and everyone is supposed to put their hands in the air, or something. 😛 I did spend quite a bit of time trying to get something like that working (the whole “hands in the air” feeling) and I think I’ve reached something quite good in terms of that.
Now I need to reconstruct the track around that and see how much stuff from the current intro I can re-use. This change sort of came after asking my friend Arjen Lead for help, whom I’ve known since the Reason days from a Reason community. I was basically feeling a bit stuck with where I was and he told me that I should try and create the breakout part and get the melody and such in place, then build the track up around that. And in all honesty; that makes perfect sense. Up until now I’ve basically just started at the beginning, 00:00:00, with no idea where I was going and I ended up getting stuck each time. Hopefully doing this will allow me to have a better sense of direction about where I’m going with the song as I have the most important elements already, instead of trying to make it up as I go along and make it fit with what I’ve already made, which is probably just making things a lot harder for myself.
Also just for fun here’s the “artwork” for it in a bigger version: