Monthly Archives: April 2012

Composer’s session award

The composer’s session award is up and running for the first time at isessions.info .

I’ve been discussing this idea for a while with friends and colleagues who do a similar virtual session thing to me, and now we have 8 enthusiastic musicians involved.

There are a variety of catalysts for this project:

  • I want to promote the work of those involved.
  • I want to help other musicians to adopt this model (and the working practices that go with it).
  • And I want to encourage composers and music producers to use more real instruments in their work.

It’s this last point that has motivated me most.  On social networks I’ve seen too many music makers either get out of the habit of the real thing, or never getting into it in the first place.  ‘Samples sound so good’; yeah but don’t they feel crap, more often than not? ‘I don’t need musicians now I have all these sample libraries’; sure, and you run the risk of sounding exactly like everyone else who believes that rationale. ‘I’ll use musicians when I get the budget’; which comes first, the budget for musicians or the showreel with live performance on it?

So I confess I’m on a bit of a mission to promote the value of musical performance, and what better way to do it than to give it away to someone who deserves it?  And I’m not to be the judge of that, but 2 established, award winning composers: Ian Livingstone and Richard Mitchell .

Skrillex and realstrings

My son likes to pick out tunes on the piano, like you do, and I help him find the notes if he gets stuck.  He’s nailed the Axel F theme and asked to learn another one, which he sang to me, and opened up on YouTube.  The riff he was singing sounded familiar.  It was; I wrote it.

Skrillex – love him or hate him.  His name makes Dubstep afficianados involuntarily vomit apparently.  The tune  Ruffneck has plays in the millions on Youtube.  Not sure if it’s getting loads of radio play or selling much.

There’s some debate on music forums about where the string samples are from, with suggestions that they’re off an 80s pop or tv track.

Nope, they are all from Disco Strings, by realstrings.com, 20 quid from Loopmasters. 

Here they are at their original tempo of 114 bpm.  Loops 18A, 18B and 66B.

It’s probably about the only time my lad has had any interest in Dad’s work!