Source-Connect Now is a similar product, but it’s free! If you have the budget, however, I recommend ipDTL because it has greater mixing capabilities and is more common in the industry, making it easier to work with other companies and voice talent. That being said, when just beginning, Source-Connect Now can certainly get the job done. Both services offer a private link to send to your guests and allow you to have more than one guest in different locations. It’s just like connecting via Skype, but at a much better quality. As long as you both have a solid internet connection and suitable recording environments, your interview will sound great. You didn’t even have to leave your bedroom!

If you sit down with pen and paper in hand and find that no new ideas are coming your way, consider a fresh perspective in your writing process. If you are used to writing your songs by starting with just an acoustic guitar and vocals, try opening your mind by starting on the piano instead. If you usually start with a melody in mind but just can’t seem to find the right tune today, start by looping a beat or groove instead. With the great variety of affordable recording and composing software on the market today, you can have a wide palette of sounds at your fingertips and no longer be limited to just the instruments that you own or have the ability to record at one time. If the idea of recording software makes you anxious, you can get started with something as simple as Apple’s Garageband if you are a Mac user or FL Studio on PC.

This technique is most widely used as an alternative to the “speeding buildup” technique. Here, the buildup section is supported with a marching snare-type instrument, serving the purpose of increasing the energy right before the chorus or the drop.

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“Lucid Dreams”: This opening synth motif throws you a bit by going to a different second note on the repeat. And then you get thrown by the fact that he’s only singing five notes within a perfect fifth tessitura: scale degrees 3^-4^-5^-6^-7^. Don’t be alarmed, but there’s no tonic being sung, so if you took away the chords it would sound major, like 1^-2^-3^-4^-5^ (do re mi fa sol), like effing Beethoven’s 9th and stuff. To my ears, it makes the melody feel lost, adrift, never going home. Of course, that’s appropriate for the song’s theme of heartbreak.

Okay, how about A? The interval between F and A, called a major third, is the same as the one between C and E. So we can go up a major third from F by multiplying 4/3 by 5/4 to get an A at 5/3 Hz. Alternatively, A is a perfect fifth above D, so we could just as easily multiply 9/8 by 3/2 to get… uh oh… 27/16 Hz. This is a problem. While 5/3 and 27/16 are pretty close to each other, they are not the same. Which one of these should we use? We’d ideally want the interval between D and A to be a perfect fifth (a multiple of 3/2), but if A is at 5/3 Hz, then it’ll clash pretty horribly with D at 9/8 Hz. On the other hand, we’d expect the interval between A to E to be a perfect fifth too. But if we go up a fifth from 27/16 Hz, we get 81/32 Hz, and if we move that down an octave to 81/64 Hz, we’ll be pretty close to E at 5/4 Hz, but not close enough.

If you have a wildly fluctuating yearly income, be prepared to provide returns even further back. You may even be asked to provide a detailed, written statement explaining any significant decreases over the years.

In summing up (ha!), phase is not just a potential problem in audio engineering. It’s actually one of the essential components of sound alteration. We’ve only touched on some of the most basic theory and techniques here. It will serve a budding engineer well to dive even deeper.

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Sometimes the solution is obvious. Maybe the student has a clear goal in mind, and they just don’t know how to get there. Maybe they wanted to make a bumping club track, and the beats are weak — beginner producers usually don’t know how to layer or mix drums. A lot of the time, there are some good ideas but they’re strung together without any particular structure. That’s understandable; structure is hard! Or maybe there was a misguided attempt at “realism.” Every semester, someone takes a piece they composed or arranged and outputs audio straight from their notation software. The result consistently sounds like garbage. I want them to think of the sound coming out of the speakers as the “real” music, not a placeholder for an eventual performance by humans — nothing against live performance, but my class is about making music in the box. Rather than settling for terrible fake strings or brass, we try to figure out what software instruments might sound unapologetically cool.

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“No Tears Left To Cry”: There’s so much tonal candy here, we had to have a whole public hearing about it when the song came out: the Kabalevsky-esque interplay between major and minor scales in the melody, the Vsus chord, and these yummy jewels-in-the-necklace add2 chords that make up the main chord-riff. It’s the add2 in the major tonic chord (I) that softens and disguises the tonal change between major and minor, by the way. The intro to this song is really two intros that use chorus material — first as is, then she slows it down from 122 to 100 BPM. Then the second intro is an odd 14 bars long, before we finally get to the verse.

Many artists brag about getting very little sleep because they’re so committed to winning. And that’s great. Good for them. And, yeah, you may have to go through seasons where you’re not getting a ton of sleep. Maybe you’re working on a project that you’re super passionate about and it’s taking some time. That’s fine, but give yourself a break every now and then.

Saying goodbye to big purchases can be tough. But if it’s not actively contributing to your music, that money might be better spent elsewhere. Think about what you actually need for your workflow.