There are few producers out there who can just make whatever music they want. Whether it’s because they are holding themselves back, or their label, or whomever else can impede the process, its seems that SeamlessR is immune to having to conform to those issues. His songs range from, well, pretty much everything to anything he can imagine. He recently released his EP, The R Is Silent, which will serve as a perfect example of his diverse palet. Aside from an interview with SeamlessR, we have an exclusive free download of the title track for his aforementioned project.
Making music is not only what this cat is good at, but he also is one hell of a production teacher. Boasting over 50,000 followers to his Youtube channel, SeamlessR is one of the most respected tutorialists you can find on the web. The FL guru is someone all producers should be familiar with. One way you can do that is by subscribing to his Youtube, or you can attend his CREATIVELIVE class that will be held January 16th and 17th. Instead of trying to look up this teacher on ratemyprofessor.com, you are provided with a look inside the mind of Stephen himself right here where he reveals his origins, why he’s stuck with FL for so long, as well as what is to come in the future.
Your EDM Interview:
1. How did you get into music in the first place?
My Dad’s side of the family were all very musical people. He was a jazz drummer himself. He would always bring me into the living room and play me classical music, jazz, even some classic rock. I was bored to tears from most of it, but that’s because I was 6 years old. Eventually, though, my parents decided it would be best if I had some kind of extra curricular activity and they settled on piano lessons. Which also bored me to tears. But it happened that I was pretty good at it. I kept up the lessons, did some regional competitions and things like that until I was 15 or 16.
2. What did you grow up listening to? When did you get into dance music?
I was always into the heavier stuff. Though, not full on heavy metal, not yet anyway. But things like Korn, System of A Down, Marilyn Manson, stuff like that. I can remember the exact moment that I was suddenly into electronic music. I was watching the episode of Samurai Jack where Jack infiltrates a rave and is attacked by a giant DJ robot. For some reason, the music from that episode spoke to me, and I felt the need to find more things like it. The nearest thing I had access to was my brother’s Prodigy CD. I listened to that album (The Prodigy Experience) non stop for a long time.
3. Have you always produced on FL Studio? What makes you chose it over other DAWs?
I definitely have always used FL. When I was introduced to it in high school, I was given a choice of using either a Mac and Reason 2, or a PC and Fruity Loops 3. Being a PC user at the time, I was more inclined to use FL, but I did give them both a shot. Having had zero experience with any kind of physical hardware, Reason made absolutely no sense to me. FL was much easier to grasp, and it used the windows file system so I wasn’t as lost trying to find things.
These days, using FL is a matter of the fact that I’ve been using it for coming up on 11 years. At this point, it hardly matters if another DAW does something better or faster, I am still faster using FL than I will ever be in another DAW. As well, when I contemplate using a new piece of software that’s meant to replace something I already use, I ask myself “can this new thing do stuff that the old one cant?” and also “can this new thing do everything that the old one can?”. Very rarely are both of those answered “yes” in reference to new software. Which is what it would take to change over.
4. What are some of your favorite plugins?
Plugins plugins. Harmor is definitely my all time favorite. Additive synthesis is such a game changer and Harmor presents it in a way that is actually usable. Sytrus is my favorite FM plugin hands down. Maximus is my favorite compressor plugin. Vocodex is my favorite vocoder. The Fruity Waveshaper is my favorite distortion unit. A lot of this isn’t just about the fact that they are FL plugins. For a very long time I used Native Instruments’ Massive as my main go-to synth. But that was before I knew how to actually design my own sounds and make my own synth patches. FL plugins design philosophy seems to be to allow the user to do whatever they can think to do. Which can sometimes make for a very confusing looking product (Harmor’s UI is often thought of as “cluttered” and with “too many options”). But I am always in favor of more options over less. Most commercial synth or effect plugins seem to be streamlined and thus very limited in their abilities in comparison.
5. What made you get into making tutorials for producers?
The tutorial thing is mostly about me remembering what it was like not to know anything. When I first started producing, YouTube didn’t even exist. What little tutorial action there was would be on some forums or others, or behind a pay wall. The very few times I ever actually paid for tutorial content I was always disappointed. It was very hard for me to find answers to my questions, or even find the questions I wanted to ask. Those that did know them were very tight lipped about it and would often say that newer producers should just stumble around in the dark until you learn things on your own.
You certainly could do that. But so much time is wasted vs if someone just told me that changing intensity of FM is done by changing the volume of the modulating operator. The very last thing I want is for someone to be prevented from making the kind of music they want to make because of technical problems that are known quantities now. None of the things I teach in my tutorials are things that, if someone should learn, could threaten someone else’s career for them knowing it. Which is the primary reason anyone will say that they have secrets about their productions.
6. You make tons of differing styles of music, so I was wondering how you feel about genres/sub-genres?
I have only recently gotten kind of a hold on what certain genres are or are called. I put all of what I do under the umbrella of “bass music” and are really only other genres as determined by their BPM. It seems like every single day a new genre shows up and I am never on top of that.
7. What do you think the next “big” sound in dance music will be?
It seems like dance music is trending towards more melodic territory. It isn’t relying so much on fantastically high end sound design but on simple stuff used well. But, I mean, I don’t spend a huge amount of time listening to music. When I do, I find myself unable to get out of “analysis mode”. Which is fun, and useful, but not very “recreational” as most normal music listeners would think.
Vocal chops and edits seem more popular than ever.
8. Who are some up and coming producers you have your sights on?
Let’s see, Frequent, Evoke, Dion Timmer, those are pretty good ones.
9. What do you have planned for 2015?
Oof, new music, new videos, actually doing live shows, live streaming on Twitch, more lessons, maybe some film or TV work, maybe some video game work, sample packs, preset packs, a whole bunch of stuff. As well as anything else that might come my way or that I can come up with. Always have to improve and keep on adding things to keep ahead in this industry 🙂