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2008-06-11 01:09:31 by Suspended-3rd-Chord

Hello chaps, haven't written a blog in some time so I decided to type up what's going for those that care *crickets*

First off, for those that care *crickets again* I have been experimenting in different styles and been posting under an alt account. If you have the time, do check some of my other crap out at Some of the stuff is old FL preset business and unfinished projects, but I decided not to load up all of my crap because there is just too much of it. anyways, experimenting with a lot of different styles and trying to fuse different elements together.

Also, I'm doing a featured artist of the week every Wednesday at 12 AM, please check those artists out and comment on their music.

Probably won't be posting anything under this account for some time, I'm trying to refine my mixing skills, which are quite poor in my understanding department, while also learning how to compose with different methods and learn how to read music, instead of just using my ear. I know a good amount of theory, but never really conscientiously use it. If I learned how to read sheet music fluently, I would have a much better time understanding how stuff works- because let's face it, while not absolutely necessary notation is a universal language and its helpful to learn if you want to get serious. Unless if you're just producing trance music. I also don't play any instruments, dabble with the guitar a bit but I suck. I have never had the discipline to learn a full song. The only thing I can play are certain overused pentatonic licks and other shit that is pre-programmed into the natural patterns of my fingers. If you learn other's people's music, you will be able to break these patterns and be able to develop better ideas from just a playing standpoint. So I have been taken two piano lessons for about a week now, I practice a lot and so far they are going along nicely (watch that vid, its freakin hilarious) - and even though I can move my fingers across the keyboard briskly, I have trouble playing the simplest songs such as Jinglebells without making an error- just because I have never put the time into learning a full song. Maybe its just a personal problem I have. But I truly believe that everyone should take up and instrument. I don't mean this an insult or to take away from anyone who makes music digitally. But programming and composing music takes knowledge and patience. Playing an instrument takes knowledge and patience, and skill . I always feel like I'm kind of cheating by being able to put life into a song without actually performing any of it. Besides, everyone should learn how to interact with a midi keyboard or whatnot, it's a very important skill. Plus, you'll have more genuine sounding dynamics in your track :P

So it kinda sucks that I have to start from the beginning when I've been creating more complex pieces over the course of almost two years. But that's just how she goes isn't it? Back to the basics, start from the drawing board and utilize all the time you have. So my advice to any possible novices that are reading this blog; learn how to read music, learn how to play others songs, learn theory, learn how to play an instrument, get a teacher to point out your flaws that you wouldn't otherwise recognize, and be patient and don't try to take any shortcuts. It will only benefit you in the future if you become serious or take it up as a more firing passion.

So anyway...there you have it....for those that care *even more crickets*....I guess I should pick one or two genres and stick with it, or I will remain mediocre in everything I do for the rest of my life :/

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2008-06-12 07:10:52


Suspended-3rd-Chord responds:

why yes, yes it is.


2008-06-17 20:25:05

"I always feel like I'm kind of cheating by being able to put life into a song without actually performing any of it."

Felt that way myself too. But hey, we're composers, not performers.

I'm a decent guitar player myself and some of my earlier songs are guitar stuff that I've turned into midis, ultimately making it a piano piece.

By the way, still up for that collab? Haha, you're much better than me at this point. The fact that I didn't write anything for months didn't help either. But it'd still be nice. No pressure though.

Suspended-3rd-Chord responds:

ahh, I know I know :P but in the real world, 99% of composers have expertise in one instrument or another. Not that I have any intention to take up music seriously. But I just feel asdiualwodh, haha, I can't come up with any good reason :P

I'm a guitarist too, if I can call myself that. I can't play any songs, I suck at performance. I can just improvise, which my chops aren't very versatile in. You should upload some of your guitar recordings if you have any. I uploaded one on my alt, "astral chamber" is what it's called if you want to check it out.

and man, I definetly don't consider myself above your level. I just have a better selection of sounds than you. anyways, I don't really like to think of musicians being better/worse....but I still do it anyway, haha. Regardless of how good you are, I'm certainly up for a collab! I've been busy with work and practicing piano/keyboard among other things, and haven't opened FL in a few weeks. (A new personal record!) so yeah, a collab would be great to get my creative juices flowing again!

Good to hear from you man, nice to see you back on NG!


2008-06-27 22:00:16

Hey! Interesting thoughts, echoes a few of my own.

I had the same issue, so I just decided - hey - I'm going to learn piano. And so I've been teaching myself ever since about a year ago from now. The results have been good!

As for mixing, I highly recommend going into a music and/or bookstore and picking up some music tech/production magazines! These are absolutely the best way to learn, with in-depth articles, tutorials, etc., all proven and in easy to digest format. That is, compared to scouring hundreds of online forums and audio resources.

And hey, not to worry, you don't need to "go back to the basics" at all. When you play a new instrument, naturally, it's going to be simple at first (although I kind of cheated and never really learned simple songs at first, was too bored and overambitious and spent 3 to 4 months practicing ONE decent classical track haha), but your composition will just remain as advanced as ever. If anything it will get better with the added benefit of discovering new ideas while playing. I write piano pieces that I still can't play without ages of practice - but, thanks to my experience with the piano now, I can write advanced pieces far better, knowing the limits of the human hand and the instrument itself.

Your advice for novices is perfect. If only it were so easy to follow :D

And please please try all the genres you can, a good musician is a good musician, and your classical influence would probably bring some realllly interesting things to different genres. The only people who would be against it are the narrow-minded purists who are retarded in the end anyway.

Good post. I guess I should come back on Wednesday and see the featured artist, eh?

Suspended-3rd-Chord responds:

Hey Nick!

I was at a bookstore today, I picked up a composition related book but unfortunately there was no material on the engineering aspects! (except the computer music magazine, but it didn't really pertain to what I wanted).

Haha, it's good that you were able to leap ahead. The instrument is actually kind of hard for me compared to learning the guitar at first, but that's probably because now I have MUCH higher standards than I did 3-4 years ago. I wish I could jump ahead, but I've never had the discipline to learn a full song and I need to start from the's just so difficult for me :( There's two clefs to read from, change's in certain rhythms that are hard to simultaneously count and play, dynamics (which i can't even play on my current piece of crap keyboard), at first can be hard to incorporate, it's just overwhelming, and it doesn't help that I have ADHD and often lose my place when reading XD.

And regarding my actual pieces, well I still need to realistically learn how to voice between instruments, (I slap chords on French horns instead of spreading the notes throughout different brass instruments, I usually dedicate a channel for the high strings (usually violin) to play higher chords, and one for low strings (usually a cello or double bass, depending on the song) instead of blending the voices on violin 1, violin 2, viola, cello, as if I was writing for a quartet. Some of the stuff is physically impossible to play, so I'm trying to learn about the actual limits regarding real life instruments. as far as how I write now, I'm trying to strain away from the piano roll and use notation. Although I can read it fairly decently, it's significantly harder to visualize a melody and write it down through notation. Piano rolls are much faster and efficient ways of creating riffs and jotting them down, atleast for me. So, because of this new language I'm using I've been kind of held back in expressing my full potential. Although, I will continue practice and hopefully be able to write as efficiently through notation as I can with the piano roll!

Haha, I try to be helpful. I just look at where I could have been if I had made the more "appropriate choices" and I just want people to utilize their time wisely, so they can improve every day. But that's just life I guess, no use in regretting in things and actions I have not done, I'm sure in 5 years I'll look and think to myself I could have made better use of time, but atleast I'm going to try and make a conscientious effort here in the present.

I know what you mean about trying all genres. BUT, if I stuck to one and get better at it, and excel in one genre rather than being mediocre in 4, I would choose the former. Only because mediocrity will get you nowhere, but excellence will get you to places. As much as I like exploring different genres, focusing and building proficiency in one genre will probably be more beneficial down the long road. I don't know. I'm just gonna let things run their course; like you said, a good musician is a good musician.

Yes, do come back on Wednesday to see the next featured artist! I didn't have the time to do last week's, but I think you like this weeks artist :D (although I found out recently all his/her music is stolen, but its still up O_o) I also chose you for week 3, if you didn't notice :P

Anyways, thanks for the advice as always Nick! It's truly a pleasure to have you comment on page! Sorry for the overly long post XD


2008-06-28 17:27:07

^ Excellent post.

Forgot to tell you but I didn't get a request on MSN from you.

Suspended-3rd-Chord responds:

hmm, I just double checked and re-added you anyway, and you're on my list for sure...weird...

anyway, I'll send you a PM with my MSN so you can try and see if that works.


2008-06-29 23:24:25

Forgive me if I sound stupid... where do I find the featured artists list??
Thanks in advance.

We should do a collabo at some point soon, BTW.

(Updated ) Suspended-3rd-Chord responds:


You would want to collab with ME!?

I still consider you the greatest artist on NG, so for you to ask to do a collab with me MEANS SO MUCH TO ME. THANK YOU!!!

I would really like that. I am honored lol.

ARRG: I accidentally deleted your second comment when I meant to delete my response because there were too many grammar errors, sorry about that haha.

but my response was:

Haha, no worries, we all make mistakes some times.

And I'm excited about you asking to do a collab with me!!! Thanks again Nick!! :D


2008-07-02 00:51:46