Martin is a composer, producer, and bassist with his hands in a huge variety of musical projects. He’s produced music for acclaimed podcasts such as This American Life, Limetown, and The Spark, and written for various artists and production houses. He’s recorded and performed all over the world with acts such as VÉRITÉ, the PLS.trio, Arthur Moon, Emel Mathlouthi, and other NYC-based artists, and produces original electro and house music and remixes as MDFX, and trap/jungle/bass music and remixes as WNNR. He’s also written lots of the music featured in Soundfly videos!
Soundfly welcomes new voices each month to offer unique perspectives, shine a light on unexpected musical worlds, and help our readers find their sound.
Before you attempt playing around town seriously, you should consider preparing yourself by playing in front of people any way you can. House shows, open mic nights, busking — these are all low-pressure ways to discover your strengths and weaknesses as a performer.
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A prolific Nashville songwriter (who shall remain nameless) has a strategy where he wakes up and writes down five ideas, lines, or thoughts in his journal. In the sessions he goes to that day, he’ll pull from that list and use the words as the first line of the song, the last line of the song, the first line of the chorus — it could even just be a word. The point is, the words he writes down are often fresh to him, but they also came up for a reason — something he’s dealing with, or something a friend is going through — and he’s able to use that idea as a target for that day’s sessions.
When Shimkovitz launched Awesome Tapes as a record label in 2011, he started tracking down Ata Kak, but after years of searching he kept coming up empty. After four years though, he finally tracked down the man behind the mysteriously amazing music, Yaw Atta-Owusu. Yaw Atta-Owusu has been touring live ever since being discovered and is finally getting the international recognition he deserves.
Jeremy is a Montreal-based musician, sound artist and improviser who loves giving advice to emerging artists on how to make their tours more effective. He writes, records and performs electroacoustic “concrète” music for tape, oscillators and amplified objects and surfaces, as well as solo guitar. He has performed and released material throughout Europe and the UK, Asia, the US and Canada, mostly with his trio Sontag Shogun.
In the meantime, Lulu languished, almost complete. Three long stretches of music were fully orchestrated, and the rest clearly sketched by Berg in a manner where completion would require almost no guesswork. The unfinished version had been performed a number of times across the globe between 1937 and 1976, but Universal Edition, the composer’s publishing house, knew that Helene Berg alone was standing in the way of this great opera being fully released to the public. So, they started secretly commissioning their own final version to be completed by Viennese composer Friedrich Cerha.
When pitching to venues, being completely honest about what you can deliver is essential for building trust and solid relationships for years to come. A promoter might ask: “What’s your draw for Kansas City?” If it’s 25, say 25, even if that means you won’t get booked. If it’s zero, say zero, but say you’re willing to boost Facebook ads in the area and send a bunch of press releases out.
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Modern equipment is incredibly versatile. Sometimes a Swiss army knife unit can take the place of several other pieces of your gear arsenal. If you have something else that does the job just as well, why bother keeping both?
My personal mission is to make the music experience amazing for every human being in the world with a smartphone — starting with the visually impaired!
Student-Artist: Storm Erlingson
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