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Modes are a great resource for both improvising and composing. They give us a great variety of harmonic choices, but it’s often difficult to remember the difference between one and the other. In this article, we will look at a way to remember which notes make up a certain mode. In order to do so, we will have to build upon a previous knowledge of major and minor scales.

My next move was to warp out a human performance over my beats to hear what it would sound like. I tried both the Wasser and Poppen, and the Poppen sounded cooler. I did continual A/B comparisons with the MIDI version to line everything up by ear.

That’s right people! So that water bottle you chugged right before you ran out on stage did a whole lotta… well, nothing, if you haven’t been drinking water consistently throughout the day. So don’t wait until you’re already thirsty to have water; by then it’s too late. Make a point to meet your hydration goals periodically throughout the day so you can avoid paying for it later when you really need it!

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Rather than starting by writing lyrics, try exploring different themes and topics through reading, writing, visual art, or anything else that inspires you. Keep a notebook with you at all times. The more you explore art, the more frequently ideas will come to you, and if you don’t write them down, you’ll likely forget. That way, when you start writing lyrics, you can first look at your list of ideas to see if there’s something interesting to start with.

Efa Etoroma, Jr. is a Los Angeles-based professional drummer, composer, and educator who is known for his stylistic versatility, expressive creativity, and his deep musical instincts. He performs and/or records with a variety artists including Moonchild, Sneakout, Ellen Doty, Bennie Maupin, A La Mer, BRNSTRM, The Writers’ Guild, and Sensae. In addition, Efa Jr. serves on the drum set faculty at the Musician’s Institute in Hollywood, California and teaches songwriting and music production at Citystage LA. Efa Jr. uses Yamaha Drums, Paiste Cymbals, Promark Sticks, Humes and Berg Cases, and Remo Drumheads, exclusively.

+ Learning to record and mix at home? Soundfly’s intermediate and advanced online mixing courses pair you with a professional producer to improve your skills and techniques. Or share your musical goals with us, and a Soundfly Mentor can help you achieve them!

SESAC is a much different PRO than BMI and ASCAP in that it is a private, for-profit organization, that runs an invite-only membership system. As a private company, it does not disclose it’s annual distribution total.

The ancient Greeks figured out that if you have a bunch of strings, it sounds really good if you tune them according to the frequency ratios you get from the natural overtone series. In such tuning systems, you get all your notes by picking a starting frequency, and then multiplying or dividing it by whole numbers. The good-sounding (to Western people) note combinations are the ones derived from the lowest harmonics — the ones that have you multiplying or dividing by the smallest prime factors: two, three, and five.

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It’s time to say no. Not only have audiophile tech innovations like Pono and Tidal been hilarious failures, they are priced out of reach of the average music consumer and self-consciously pitched towards those with disposable income. In contrast, low-bitrate MP3 is the Occupy to vinyl’s Wall Street. No matter how crappy your internet connection is, how basic your device is, or how little money you can spend, anyone can pirate low-quality, lightweight audio files or rip them off YouTube. Now, what a beautiful thing that is.

Filippo Faustini is a guitarist and producer based in London. He graduated in Modern Guitar at the Conservatoire in Frosinone (Italy) and then he completed an MA in Composition for Moving Images at City University (London). He is the guitarist and producer for the London-based alt rock/ambient band, Alice in the Cruel Sea. Filippo is also the co-founder of a recently formed music production company called Music Brewery where he works as producer and mixing engineer. 

Terrestrial radio can be a powerful medium for promoting your new release. Here are four steps to using your efforts wisely and achieving great air time!

Favorite lyric: “And I’d tell you I love you but I wouldn’t let you know it / cause that’s when it gets too hard not to blow it” —“Not That Kind of a Poet”

Surprising! There is absolutely nothing sexy about the way that people perform the Bach chaconne. Alex Ross goes on to detail the ways that composers like Bach combine the groove of repetitive dance forms with the descending bass lines from laments to make a romantic form of sadness.