If it’s really, really bad, you might have to worry about some of the comped-together vocal notes being out of tune — in which case, don’t be afraid to break out your favorite pitch-correction software like AutoTune or Melodyne to touch up any shaky notes. Depending on the genre, you may want to run the vocal through pitch-correction software anyway, as it provides a nice presence and sheen commonly found in high-end, radio-ready productions.
Joseph: Emily’s music drastically improved when she started to use the higher quality samples and sounds that Logic Pro offers. She learned the foundation of Logic in Soundfly’s Intro to Making Music in Logic Pro course so that she can now transfer her compositions into fuller productions.
You may know the theremin as the sci-fi sound of aliens and robots, but it’s been used by composers all over the world in concert music too. Let’s explore!
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Financially-savvy songwriters have been taking advantage of this loophole by quietly selling a portion of their catalogs. In addition to receiving a big lump sum payment taxed at half the rate, these songwriters are diversifying to hedge against industry turmoil, inflation, and declining royalties. It’s something worth checking out!
Alright, this one is another melody you’ve definitely heard before, whether you think you have or not. Francis Lai’s theme song to the film Love Story actually opens with two notes ascending a minor sixth, but if you skip ahead to 0:24, just after a short horn fanfare, those two notes reverse briefly before entering the meat of the run. Either way you play those two notes back, it’s a minor sixth interval, but train your ears to hear it as a descending melody to recognize the gap as such.
In fact, any one item can be a costume: a funky, customized necklace, a big, bold hat, or even some sort of prop that helps you get into character on stage and channel a new identity. The one important thing to keep in mind is how everyone on stage interacts together visually; it’s essential to be unified somehow. If you have one person showing up in a suit, another dressed like a punk, and another wearing a neon bodysuit all you’ll be saying is that you don’t know what to say.
Not all of us have access to the kind of gear that the Boards are rocking. As usual though, we can find some good digital approximations on the internet. One of my absolute favourites is James Peck’s VHS Audio Degradation Suite. It provides emulations (with optional speaker simulation) of old video tape audio playback, based on machines in various states of disrepair. If anything digital is going to get you even close to Boards of Canada’s bevy of broken-down gear, this is it. While it’s free, it only works through Native Instruments’ paid Reaktor 6 soft synth platform. If you don’t already have that, you can try it out for 30 days.
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Prechoruses can either be repeated before each chorus (and used occasionally as a bridge) or they can be taken out after they are used the first time. Either works just fine, as long as you build your song around its use with intention. The prechorus is an important tool for writers to test out in order to tie any loose ends together, or add new melodic hooks in to beef the song’s singability up. Definitely take the time to experiment with this form.
The first two lines are matched with the same repeated musical phrase and end rhyme, and the second two lines have a new rhyme and a new melodic phrase.
Learn the different scale types and modes that exist and the popular songs that make use of them, and all inside your DAW’s piano roll, in Soundfly’s game-changing free online music theory course series, Theory for Producers, taught by NYU professor Ethan Hein.
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Every time the cycle repeats, that low E root is right there to support that downbeat. Notice that it doesn’t have to hit every downbeat of the pattern, but it must hit on that repeated downbeat at the start of the cycle. Funky bass lines emphasize beat one and lay a solid rhythmic foundation.