A common distortion pedal for shoegaze is the fuzz, and there’s almost none more famous than the Big Muff Pi. It’s famous for a reason. It creates a high quality, juicy, fat sounding distortion for a comparatively low price and is sought after for its sustain as well. The Big Muff is really quite perfect for creating those colorful walls of noise, but there’s such a huge range of overdrive and distortion pedals out there, you really need to find what fits your personal taste.

Join us as we recap a year of incredible online learning with our run-down of the best Soundfly student works of 2018! Want in? Mainstage starts next week.

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With social media promotion becoming trickier and harder to do for free, band websites are more important now than ever. From selling merch with no middleman to promoting a new release and upping your SEO game, personalized music websites are crucial in helping get the job done right. But how exactly do you “personalize” a website? Social media platforms are great for promotion because they’re so easy to use, but websites are much tricker to customize and update.

Found Sound Nation leverages mobile technology to create opportunities for youth and underrepresented communities to record and produce high quality music worldwide. Found Sound Nation utilizes a grassroots partnership model with local organizations and has developed work with artists and communities in Senegal, Zimbabwe, and South Africa.

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+ Learn more on Soundfly: Learn essential techniques of recording and premixing a high-quality demo at home and on a budget with our free course, Demo Recording 101.

Syrian-American and with a voice gorgeous enough for radio, Káryyn entered 2019 running at full speed, with her full-length debut The Quanta Series earning rave reviews. The album is a meditation on memory, loss, and connections. Káryyn was compelled to write it after losing relatives in Aleppo in 2011. Her productions evoke the sounds of contemporary electronic music, but morph and shift to evoke the grief her music is channelling. Through it all, the music is held together by a core of great songwriting and Káryyn’s exceptional singing. You can listen to the album here.

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In case you’re new to Soundfly, every one of our mentored online courses comes with ongoing 1-on-1 guidance and feedback on your work from a professional musician, composer, producer, singing actor, or industry insider working in the field. It’s like having a personal trainer, but for music! As you make your way through the high-quality, in-depth course materials, your Soundfly Mentor will help you work out your musical goals and keep you on pace to reaching them, every step of the way.

This vinyl-related project couldn’t be more different from the one above. Until recently, Jesu Berkeley was just a talented dad. Now, he’s an educator and community activist with a dream to provide a creative space for students and at-risk youth to learn about DJing, turntablism, and scratchology!

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The odd timing, as the sequence starts on the “4” beat of the end of the solo, instead of the expected “1” beat, catches the ear off guard and adds to the mystical feel of this little interlude. The icing on the cake can be tasted when the bass doubles the notes from octaves below it — though at the start of the third octave, Jones dips back to the third below it, and finishes his last arpeggio back at the top of the second octave, instead of continuing on to the top of the third with Page. It’s a wise decision, as the widening gap in pitches helps accentuate the guitar’s rise to its zenith. It’s yet another classic example of Jones’ flashy but never overdone playing.

Streaming platforms have long been a source of controversy because of how little they pay artists, but some offer other advantages. Spotify’s Artist Insights feature is a powerful analytics tool designed to help musicians understand who’s listening to their music the most over the platform. It tracks listener information like gender, age, location, and through what source someone discovered your music.

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Make sure you at least understand and consider maintaining and registering publishing ownership when you let others use your beat. Otherwise, you run the risk of making the beat to a song but never getting properly paid for it. Consider further that it is very easy to distribute your music as a standalone product. People like instrumentals, too. Spotify recognizes when listeners like your music and will help you find your listener base, algorithmically if not personally.

So that’s my answer to that question. I get inspired every day because I’m always looking for stories, characters, experiences, and narratives to write about. 

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If nostalgia is at all a part of your band’s image, the cassette is a no-brainer. But even if it’s not, that doesn’t mean your fans won’t get a kick out of a cassette, especially if it has some highly personalized aspects (more on that below).

Whether they’re pushing the contemporary boundaries of songcraft in Songwriting for Producers or laying out crushing bangers in our brand new The Art of Hip-Hop Production courses, or carving their own path in a custom Headliners Club session, each one of these students created something to be proud of. We hope you enjoy some new music from these incredible Soundfly artists.

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Another extremely common and timeless technique to make your chorus shine is simply cutting the music out completely for half a measure or even an entire measure in some cases. Some of today’s electronic producers also prefer cutting out effects such as reverb and delay, to make that moment of silence even more dramatic, like you’re falling off a tiny cliff. This technique is especially fun to apply in situations where the chorus vocals start with pick-up notes from the previous measure.

We can help you get your tracks sounding professional in six weeks. All of our mentored online courses come with 1-on-1 coaching, guidance, and feedback on your work. So whether you’re interested to dive deep into a production-related topic like Advanced Mix Techniques, Making Music in Logic Pro X, or Songwriting for Producers, or just to work with a Soundfly Mentor directly to achieve your next musical goal, your next phase starts with Soundfly.

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“The Montreal-based nonprofit Yellow Bird Project has worked with an amazing range of indie rock musicians over the years to create unique T-shirt designs that benefit an array of charities. This first ever indie rock coloring book is a fitting tribute to the DIY spirit of the bands, featuring witty, hand-illustrated activity pages from artist Andy J. Miller. Music fans can keep themselves out of trouble for hours with mazes, connect-the-dot games, and coloring pages for the Shins, Devendra Banhart, Rilo Kiley, the National, and more than 20 artists. With all royalties going to charity, The Indie Rock Coloring Book is sure to warm even the coolest of hipster hearts.”

Carter Lee is a bassist/educator/producer. He is originally from Edmonton, Canada and now resides in Brooklyn, NY. In addition to leading the hip-hop group, Tiger Speak, Lee is the music director for the bands of both Shea Rose and Moruf. He is also a sideman for countless other artists. Carter brings his wealth of experience in many different musical situations to the Soundfly team and is eager to help any musician who is hoping to better their band. Check out his course Building a Better Band on Soundfly today!

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