Musicians condem themselves to failure by subscribing subconsciously to the “starving artist” mentality, but it’s time to shift the paradigm and start anew.
Finally, why make things complicated? There’s nothing wrong with a very simple, no-frills structure, especially if you have a catchy hook on which you’re seeking to rely heavily. This seems like a fairly popular structure for hip-hop tracks in particular.
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A typical pedal point segment places a bass instrument repeating an ostinato or sustaining a single note against the lead instrument, moving in harmony or independent of it. In the outro of “The Chain,” this relationship is reversed, as Lindsey Buckingham’s guitar crescendos with what sounds like the open high-E string, and repeats while McVie’s bass line moves around akin to a lead guitar part.
Ethan Hein is a Doctoral Fellow in Music Education at New York University. He teaches music technology, production and education at NYU and Montclair State University. With the NYU Music Experience Design Lab, Ethan has taken a leadership role in the creation of new technologies for learning and expression, most notably the Groove Pizza. He is the instructor of the free Soundfly course series called Theory for Producers. He maintains a widely-followed and influential blog, and has written for various publications, including Slate, Quartz, and NewMusicBox.
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When it comes to organizing the structure of your song, where and when certain sections come in, and the roles they play as your song develops, there are a few ways to go about this. Some of the most common types of song forms are just variations of verse, pre-chorus, and chorus, with the occasional bridge or solo thrown in, especially in pop music.
Lastly, check out how the beat here often delays how it enters. In the first verse, it’s delayed by four bars, the chorus has a little hiccup in bar two, and the V2 delays by two bars. It’s a creative technique.
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Carter Lee is a bassist/educator/producer. He is originally from Edmonton, Canada and now resides in Brooklyn, NY. In addition to leading the hip-hop group, Tiger Speak, Lee is the music director for the bands of both Shea Rose and Moruf. He is also a sideman for countless other artists. Carter brings his wealth of experience in many different musical situations to the Soundfly team and is eager to help any musician who is hoping to better their band. Check out his course Building a Better Band on Soundfly today!
Since the housing bubble burst in 2008, banks are skittish about lending money to nontraditional earners like songwriters, here’s how you can beat them.
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With the help of a few super clever musicians, I came up with some ideas to alleviate these latter issues. In this article, I would like to suggest alternative ways of thinking about singing, and how to take practical steps in kicking your insecurities to the curb. Let’s go.
The frontwoman of the Israeli group Panic Ensemble’s first solo effort covers a lot of ground. Kraus’ versatile pipes carry her through multiple genres from cabaret to orchestral/Balkan pop, maintaining a sensual curiosity throughout. I’m interested to see whether she brings out a full band; her arrangements are as joyously unpredictable as an early Bjork record.
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When the studio asked for a song that sounds like The Beatles, Schlesinger decided to use similar instruments, style, and production techniques from the time period. If anyone in their 40s or 50s walked into the theater to watch the film, they were immediately transported back to their youth. For those of us too young to have lived through the early 1960s, it’s likely that our parents introduced us to the music of The Beatles at some point so that we’d have our own developmental reference point as well.
Home producing your vocals takes some to get used to. Here’s some advice to help you out. But in the mean time, let’s talk about the microphone. If you’re recording at home, you’re probably going to use whatever mic you have lying around. So make sure to purchase something that fits with what you plan to record next time you get to the store.
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The U.S. was founded on Enlightenment principles, and many of our deepest assumptions about art and life come from the era after Bach’s lifetime. Although Bach’s music is universally loved now, the stern Lutheran beliefs that infused its creation are counter-cultural today, and have often been ignored or derided since his lifetime. These days, the idea that theology can find direct expression in music theory can seem at best a heady curiosity, and at worst a regression to a way of conceiving the world whose very nature challenges some of our most cherished cultural, social, and political achievements.
Convenient though it is, some musicians don’t want to accommodate a 12-TET, insisting instead that we continue to use pure intervals derived from harmonics the way God and Pythagoras intended. Harmonics-based tuning systems are collectively known as just intonation. This is a poetically apt term, because it implies fairness. By contrast, the implicit message of 12-TET is that life isn’t fair. As we’ve learned, just intonation systems give you some lovely pure intervals, but are severely limited otherwise. A few malcontents prefer alternative historical compromise tuning systems that make some keys sound better at the expense of others sounding worse. There are many such esoteric temperament systems, but none of them are in widespread use.
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Though this case ruled in Porter’s favor and spies were found to not, in fact, be in the equation, the decision set a major precedent for music copyright cases. First of all, this was the first of Arnstein’s several legal battles that had been taken seriously. He was somewhat of a “full-time plaintiff,” and by 1946 had already unsuccessfully attempted to sue ASCAP, BMI, and Twentieth Century Fox Film. Although he did ultimately lose his case against Porter, this case helped establish the two-pronged test to determine copyright infringement that is still used today: Courts must determine if the defendant copied the plaintiff’s work, and whether this copying constitutes substantial similarity between the two works.
Planning to take your creative or compositional practice out of the house sometime soon? These gorgeous residency locations will have your jaw on the floor.
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It is said that Dragonetti influenced Beethoven’s composition deeply, reorienting the composer’s eye toward making more creative use of the double bass in how it interacts with the rest of the orchestra. As for his own composition, he really took it upon himself to expand the repertoire for double bass, having written dozens of short works for double bass and piano, string quartets, as well as a sort of “instruction manual” with exercises and studies for the instrument!
As Paul Simon said farewell to performing music in September in his childhood home of Queens, NY, we revisit the ups and downs of the songwriter’s career.
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If you know you’ll have Tuesday nights free, then take that opportunity to call it a “music-making night.” Or if you have early mornings open, schedule that time for your songwriting sessions.
For many of us in the English-speaking world, the Middle East remains a mysterious and misunderstood place. For those of us who love music, exploring artists from a different region can be a way to deepen our understanding and make the world seem a bit bigger and more expansive when it starts to feel small and repetitive.
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