RAMI Interview

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Author:
Daniel S.

Published on: October 07, 2019

UpstreamSquad: What made you want to start making music and get into production? How have things changed since then?

I was always into music in general ever since I was in middle school. Me and my brother used to dig deep and try to find all the latest songs that would come out and I remember feeling so good about finding new records because then I would share them with all my friends and they'd be so impressed. My mom is classically trained in piano and she really introduced be to the music world. I was curious to how music was made, behind the scenes and all.

 

Mixing & Mastering

Mixing the volume levels of your track is one of the most important and overlooked parts of the mix. Do you have any specific tips for gain staging or how to get a balanced mix through mixing the volumes of your elements. Any specific mixing numbers? (Do you but your sub at -11 db, kick at -7 ?)

I never use specific numbers, simply because each sample will sit differently in the mix. A lot of people might disagree, but I tend to avoid the technicality behind mixing and instead try to be creative about it if that makes sense. Some people might want their kick or sub to cover the entire mix and some might want it to be super low.

 

Producers seem to struggle a lot with the stereo imaging of their tracks. Often times, their track will be too wide, not be wide enough, or have elements all over the place which make it hard for the listener to understand. Your drops make great use of the stereo field. How do you decide which elements go where and make sure they are giving enough interest to the listener without being distracting?

I try to keep things simple. Never do too much. I keep everything below 70hz in Mono. As for imaging, I like to completely widen my percussion. That's recently been a thing of mine. You always have to be careful because if you do too much you might risk ruining your mix. For example, instruments clashing with each other. Sometimes I like to widen my top bass as well just to give it a different feel.

 

Inspiration can easily come and go when you are working on music. What do you do to get into the creative zone and get inspired to work on music?

In terms of getting in my creative zone, I try to stay away from listening to the majority of music that's out there today. Simply because I want to stick to what sounds good to me, rather than imitate others. As for my inspiration to work on and creative music, anything can be inspiring to me. From having conversations with people close to me to sitting in solitude sparks my mind.

 

Plugins

What are some of your favorite plugins at the moment and how do you use them in your tracks?

Some of my favorites plugins are Izotope, Vinyl, and Transient Master by Native Instruments. I've been really into tight mixes and these plugins help me achieve that. As for sound plugins, I'm digging The Reaktor Prism. It has many unique sounds that allow me to be more diverse.

 

Arrangement

When starting a new track, at what part of the arrangement do you start at? Also, how much of each section in the arrangement do you complete before you move onto the next section? (Until you the main theme across, until you are inspired enough? Do you bounce from section to section just building small parts of it?)

When I start a new track, the part of the arrangement I begin with really depends on my mood and the idea I have in my mind. Honestly, I prefer to bounce around because it allows me to get my ideas out of the way. Later on I like to go back to it and focus more specifically on each section one by one.

 

I try to stay away from listening to the majority of music that's out there today. Simply because I want to stick to what sounds good to me, rather than imitate others.

 

 

Writing

Your tracks are full of beautiful progressions and track defining leads. Are there any specific techniques that you use to get the emotion that you want out of these two musical parts?

I don't know if you'd call this a technique, but I let my ears do all the work. I like to listen to the sounds of the song I'm working on over and over again until it feels right. I may listen once, think its great, and then listen again and completely change my mind. I feel like because I put so much effort into my progressions, the emotions and passion come through to listeners.

 

Your tracks are full of beautiful progressions and track defining leads. Are there any specific techniques that you use to get the emotion that you want out of these two musical parts?

I don't know if you'd call this a technique, but I let my ears to all the work. I like to listen to the sounds of the song I'm working on over and over again until it feels right. I may listen once, think its great, and then listen again and completely change my mind. I feel like because I put so much effort into my progressions, the emotions and passion come through to listeners.

 

General

If you could give an aspiring artist one production tip, what would it be?

The simpler the better.

 

Aspiring producers these days lack patience. They want to produce the next big hit after they've only been producing for a short period of time and they get discouraged when the results arent immediately there. What motivated you to keep learning and improving through the beginning stages of your music career and what advice would you give to impatient producers.

I'm still impatient, and that will never go away. The difference is, now, I've learned to accept and enjoy the journey instead of anticipating bigger and better projects too soon. My passion for music is what motivated me to keep learning and improving- there's always more to learn and I realized that very early in my music career. The advice I'd pass on to other impatient producers would be to apply their impatience smartly...in other words, rather than anticipate and rush to get the next big thing, turn the impatience into drive. A drive that will allow them to work harder, not faster, in order to gain quality opportunities.

 

Marketing & Branding

For better or for worse, social media is a big part of an artist's career. How do you use social media to build your audience and brand?

I use social media very moderately. Sometimes I feel like I should be using it more, but I'm not one to share too much. Social media has changed the way artists succeed for sure, but I'm still trying to figure out how to use it to benefit me and my audiences while remaining authentic to who I am.



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