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Touring is great. But it can very quickly turn into exhaustive, monotonous work. Here are 10 great tips to keep things interesting and fun on the road.

Whatever your opinions are on K-Pop, it’s awesome to me that the U.S. has gotten on board with an all-Asian boy band. Back in the ’90s (or, ever?) this was not a thing. But streaming platforms, social media, and accessible worldwide distribution of all types of music have globalized and changed our musical tastes — in this case, I think, for the better. We still have a long way to go in terms of representation in the music industry, but when I first saw BTS perform on the Billboard Music Awards, I was stoked!

You’re probably well aware of SoundCloud by now, but its widget feature is worth mentioning. Because SoundCloud is completely free and typically reliable, it’s the perfect place to host music over your site. Yes, you’ll lose some royalty money by not linking up to your Spotify or Apple Music account, but going with SoundCloud is the best option because it doesn’t force those visiting your site to sign up with yet another service. Plus, it’s essentially social media for track releases.

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If you’re used to playing huge stages with elaborate sound and equipment setups, a house concert will force you to present your music in the clearest (and sometimes most stripped-down) way possible.

At the heart of the University of New Mexico is a small place affectionately named the Duck Pond (named, cleverly, for the abundance of ducks who frequent it). Here you can collect your thoughts and mediate to the sound of water and ducks quacking. It’s a great place to sneak away from the hustle and bustle of the city’s sounds and hear nature’s music.

Anyway, shout out to Zedd for sneaking in an Am chord there. It took me a while to notice it. Form-wise, the chorus is a different length each time with some variations, and — wait, hold up… is this a Target commercial?

Songtrust can help. Register for Songtrust, and use promo code STSoundfly for 10% off! If your music is already on Spotify, go ahead and estimate your earnings here. 

The attack setting you use for mix buss compression is just as important as using a compressor on any other individual track. With a faster attack, the compressor will clamp down sooner on the transients that tend to be a little louder than the rest of the audio coming through. A slower attack will wait milliseconds before it clamps down on the audio and starts compressing.

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Why do some songs tug on our heartstrings while others fall flat? Conveying moods and emotions is a key element of making great music, and doing it well requires a deep understanding of chords and harmony. It’s what allows modern music producers and songwriters to convey a sense of danger, triumph, or melancholy.

In the above video, you can watch me put together a quick trap beat and then create some simple variations on it. Subtle changes in the foundational loop or beat will help your song to feel like it’s moving forward as the song progresses, even though the track might only be built on a couple of repetitive looping fragments, just like so much of hip-hop production is.

Here’s the thing about the bariolage section, then: Bach goes ahead and uses all the wrong notes. They’re all surprising, but the most surprising one is E♭, the most dissonant possible note in the key of D minor. That would be a bold choice even now. In Bach’s more conservative context, it was unheard of. But the bariolage doesn’t sound wrong at all. Bach carefully organizes all those chromatic notes so they all sound perfectly logical and inevitable. They sound richly strange, but certainly not wrong.

A great example of this technique comes from P!nk. At 2:03 in “Walk Me Home,” she sings the chorus an octave below, accompanied by nothing but an acoustic guitar, which makes the final chorus that returns later all the more impressive and memorable.

Before your audience hears a single one of your notes, they’ll make a series of judgements about you based on your optics. From album covers to the typeface used in your tracklist, and from your band photos to what you wear on stage, people can’t help making certain assumptions about your band when they first discover you (and likely continue discovering you).