Category Archives: Community

Brendan Meet On SoundCloud Premier Partner Oliver Sadie

On SoundCloud Premier Partner Oliver SadieOn SoundCloud Premier Partner Oliver Sadie is a composer based in England and an avid SoundCloud user since 2009. We reached out to hear about his SoundCloud experiences and his creative process.

Please introduce yourself to the SoundCloud community.

I’m a freelance composer for film, TV and games, and a pianist who records live piano for myself and other composers. My home studio is based just outside of London.

The style of my work varies according to the demands of the client but is mostly contemporary classical orchestral, often with the piano at the center. Outside of that genre I have written a bit in rock, pop, jazz and that annoyingly catchy corporate marimba sound.

I have sole composer credits for a few US and European independent films, including both feature lengths and shorts. I also have co-composer credits for similar, as well as piano performance parts. No big theatre distribution yet but the gigs are getting bigger and better, so who knows.

One long term project I’m working on which is close to my heart is a new zombie film/TV production called After Hell, filming in 2015 for 2016 release, created by Visual Kings Media in Austria. I also write for custom corporate gigs with end-clients including Sony, Microsoft XBox Music and DM (German pharmaceutical giant).

I’m also excited about my debut game scoring gig for indie studio ‘Grand Arc Designs’ in the US, something for 2015.

How do you use SoundCloud?

I’ve used SoundCloud as my primary music sharing and collaboration platform since near the start, in 2009.

Most of my 400 or so tracks are private, which is how I like to share works in progress with my clients or colleagues for feedback. I do enjoy sharing work publicly when allowed, and I try to remain engaged with anyone who is kind enough to leave a comment.

I used to do quite a few things in the community space – open collaborations, developing other SoundClouders’ themes into full pieces, arranging local meetups and that sort of thing. A good flow of gigs in recent years has taken up a lot of that time I used to have but I still like to remain connected to the many great music makers I’ve met on SoundCloud over the years.

I like my customized embeds for websites etc., and enjoy reposting others’ tracks (selectively). Playlists are great ways to showcase your own and others’ work in an organized way and I’m beginning to use that a lot more.

Describe your creative process. What is your home set-up like?

I run Cubase on a Mac Pro. It’s hooked up to 3 mics – 2 for the piano (Weber baby grand) and 1 for general use including vocals and other instrumentals.

I don’t have much in the way of hardware processing but I have a good set of sound libraries accumulated over the years for orchestral instruments, ethnic instruments, synths, drum kits and sound effects. For production, I use a lot of the in-house tools in Cubase, plus a few 3rd-party essentials like reverb (Valhalla) and pitch correction (Melodyne).

My piano is often at the centre of my creative process. I love the art of improvisation and have put many years into refining my skill in that area. It’s useful not only for solo performance but also for composing. One way I work is to record a piano improvisation, chop it up, use the best bits as a basis for a more structured composition, then layer it up with an orchestral or electronic arrangement.

I love having live players in my work and often collaborate with other composers who inject their own creativity or I pay a remote session player to play what I’ve written.

Once I’ve got all the parts down and mixed, I do my own mastering when budget is tight, or hire a mastering engineer for higher value pieces.

I do all this in my home studio, which I’ve affectionately called Red Room One Studio, owing to how I like to keep it lit when working.

How have you reached certain goals or steps in your career?

My journey is certainly not a solo one. I have learned a great deal about various aspects of the business and creative process from many generous people on the way. And as I’ve grown, I’ve taken opportunities to pass these on where I can, and generally offer my own advice freely.

Geoff Heade, who goes by the stage name of Bluffmunkey, gave me some terrific starting blocks on the production side many years ago – advice about best software and hardware for what I wanted to do, plus some tips and tricks for good mixing and production.

Deane Ogden is a composer and recording artist who has been a great leader for myself and many others in the community and creative business aspects.

Emmett Cooke is another name which comes up high in my list of influences, a composer who writes well about how to sell your music in the library space.

A list of composers too long to name exhaustively have provided great advice about aspects of composing and producing professional music, these include James Semple, Richard Chance, Russell Bell, Steve Brookfield, Matt Bowdler, Panos Kolias and so many others who I apologise in advance for omitting here but who know I’m grateful.

There’s no silver bullet for approaching editorial outlets or music industry professionals, and honestly I’m still low on the learning curve in this respect. What I have learnt though is that persistence pays, courtesy pays, respect pays, honesty pays, and patience is essential.

What does it feel like to become a Premier Partner? Where do you want to take your career next?

I am grateful for the opportunity to be presented as a premier partner for SoundCloud.

The monetization program has beaten my Spotify and other streaming income. It will never pay the rent but it’s nice to fill my kids’ stockings a little more this Christmas.

The support from the SoundCloud team is always of such great value to me, with opportunities that I would never have otherwise seen or had a chance to participate in. I’m looking forward to the future rollout of this so more and more music makers can enjoy the benefits of partnering with SoundCloud.

Who or what is inspiring you creatively? Are there people that you’d like to collaborate or work with?

Collaborating with a skilled instrumentalist, vocalist or composer can be an exhilarating experience. What comes out of it is so much more than the sum of what any individuals put in because of the creative feedback loops that happen when you do this iteratively. Bounce a track back and forth with someone who has original ideas and the result is magic.

I have a long history of collaborations on SoundCloud, almost all of which with people I met right here on SoundCloud and with whom I have productive working relationships in my professional music spheres.

I don’t want to single any out for fear of “naming favorites” but scroll down my track list and you might recognize a few names, music makers who also take as much pleasure as I do in collaboration.

Closing thoughts

In the past I have spoken out both for and against changes which have divided some communities, but SoundCloud have only ever been professional and rigorous in their response, and in my opinion have all participants’ best interests at heart, when viewed as a bigger picture.

With development focus shifting from creators to listeners to distribution partners and everything in between, I believe the team are doing all they can to ensure the best experience and value for all who are part of this picture, all in good time. That includes you, so if you’re feeling hard done by any of the evolution of SoundCloud as a platform, partner and service, it will pay to sit tight and show good faith. In my humble opinion.

I love music, I love SoundCloud.

You can hear Oliver’s Best of 2014 playlist below.

For more about becoming a Premier Partner, visit on.soundcloud.com. To read more interviews from On SoundCloud Premier Partners, click right here.

 

Alex On SoundCloud reaches 100 Premier Partners

SoundCloud

It’s been six months since we launched the On SoundCloud partner program, and it feels like a good time to look back at how far we’ve come. Through On SoundCloud we’ve been able to better support creators as they take the next steps in their careers, adding the Premier Partner level to begin to give people the opportunity to make money from the tracks that they share on SoundCloud.

Since the launch last August, things have been growing fast. We’ve signed up over 100 Premier Partners and paid over $1 million in advertising revenue to partners including labels, audio partners and emerging artists.

There are all kinds of success stories to share. On SoundCloud has led to the creation of native advertising opportunities with emerging artists and brands. With an exclusive track sponsored by Jaguar, London-based downtempo producer Sizzlebird got 1.3 million plays and doubled his followers in three weeks. In December, Green Label Sound launched the Open Call competition on the platform and in February Kelechi was announced as the grand prize winner. Also in December, Microsoft teamed up with Jacques Greene to release an exclusive remix of “No Excuse” (one of his most well-known tracks), by Swedish producer Yung Gud — it got nearly 800,000 plays in just 18 days.

We’ve also seen independent artists like Romiti, Blackbear and Xavier Wulf rise to the top of the Premier Partner pack in terms of people listening to their tracks. Labels are benefiting from On SoundCloud, too, by using it to discover new artists and audiences.

On the audio side, On SoundCloud has opened up many new avenues. For multi-channel networks like Fullscreen, Collective Digital Studio and Maker Studios (the labels of the audio world), SoundCloud offers an entirely new monetization channel for top and emerging talent. For example: using On SoundCloud, comedian Shane Dawson has seen his SoundCloud podcast Shane and Friends become a significant source of revenue. Epic Rap Battles of History is also now using SoundCloud to monetize content.

What’s coming up? We got started with On SoundCloud in the US, but we’re aiming to begin bringing it to new territories later this year — stay tuned. We’ll also continue to add more Premier Partners as we go. We’re looking forward to the next steps of the On SoundCloud journey — and to having you along for the ride.

Jane Meet On SoundCloud Premier Partner SevnthWonder

On SoundCloud Premier Partner SevnthWonder is electronic music producer Mateus Almeida whose “Future R&B” sound is making waves and who shares how the Repost tool has been fundamental in his growth.

mateus-sevnthwonder

Please introduce yourself to the SoundCloud community.

I’m an electronic music producer currently based out of a small town west of Boston, Massachusetts called Framingham, but originally born and raised in Houston, Texas. I don’t have a defined genre, but I tend to experiment with various form of Electronic and R&B hybrids, dubbing the genre “Future R&B”. I began my journey on SoundCloud in early 2013 and have been putting out music pretty regularly ever since. For a few months, I had a released project dubbed “Sevnth Sundays” that were just a collection of unfinished songs that would release Sunday afternoon.

How do you use SoundCloud?

I’d like to believe that my use of SoundCloud is pretty unconventional. With over a few thousand “likes” on SoundCloud, I’d like to think that I’m a pretty active community member, always looking for new content to share and add to my playlists for sharing out at shows. My favorite feature is definitely the “repost” function. This single tool has totally revolutionized how new music is discovered by letting bigger artists and channels “co-sign” an artist’s song directly. I can personally say that a big portion of my quick growth is because of early support from some of my favorite producers and DJs reposting my music onto their channels.

Describe your creative process. What is your set up like?

My set up has evolved so much from when I first began creating content to now. I used to record myself playing the piano with a handheld camera and then rip the audio and edit it on Audacity, to buying a Yamaha Motif workstation and creating simple loops there, to learning how to use various digital audio workstations (including FL Studio, Ableton, ProTools, and Logic). My current favorite DAW is Ableton and is essential for my creative process. As far as making a song, I always start with the melodies. Since I’ve been playing at the age of 5, I’ve always loved creating harmonies and playing melodies and find myself still enjoying creating music with various chord progressions. My current most used VSTs are Sylenth1, Massive, Predator, and various vintage Arturia synthesizers.

How have you reached certain goals or steps in your career?

I remember looking up bloggers’ personal Facebook addresses and trying to send them my unreleased music because I felt I was always ignored when I used the music submission emails. I spent countless hours writing to so many people, trying to explain my “vision” for my music and why I thought I deserved their support. The biggest key people to push my career forward were DJ Complexion (a DJ and label owner out of London), Nehzuil (one of my favorite producers out of Australia), as well as two of the biggest music channels on YouTube, Majestic Casual and MrSuicideSheep. Advice for aspiring music producers looking to reach out to editorial outlets or music industry professionals: Stay humble and always understand that even though you might get 99 “No”s, that the 1 “Yes” you get can truly make a huge difference.

What does it feel like to become a Premier Partner? Where do you want to take your career next?

Becoming a SoundCloud Premier Partner was one of the most amazing feelings in my career. The feeling of being selected to participate in this program out of so many talented individuals was extremely motivational and humbling. The experience has been amazing and the opportunities that have presented itself have been phenomenal. I’m really looking forward to the sponsored posts and expanding the reach of my music with the help of SoundCloud and their advertising partners.

Who or what is inspiring you creatively? Are there people that you’d like to collaborate or work with?

I have so many inspirations for my music, but most of it comes from personal experiences and the emotions I have felt with them. I admire so many musicians on SoundCloud (and off) that the list would seem endless. Most of the time, the people who truly inspire me to push the boundaries of my music are the fellow producers in my SoundCloud community. For collaborations in the future, i’m hoping to someday make it into the studio with Drake or Noah “40” Shebib, as well as Kanye West, J Cole, or Kid Cudi. Some electronic music producers I’d love to collaborate with would be Hudson Mohawke, Kaytranda, Lido, Mr. Carmack, and Nehzuil.

Any final thoughts?

I just wanted to thank everyone who’s believed in me from the beginning. The one thing they don’t tell you about the music industry is the mountain pile of people who are just in it to take what they can from you, but finding the diamonds amidst the dirt is the thing that keeps me hopeful for the future of this industry. Also, never stop believing in yourself, especially when it seems like you’re the only one. Always push yourself and your musical art to be better than it can be.

Hear SevnthWonder’s newest track “Higher Love” that was released today.

For more information on our creator partner program On SoundCloud, head over to on.soundcloud.com. To read more interviews from On SoundCloud Premier Partners, click here.