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Brendan Red Fang Guitar Solo Contest Winners


SoundCloud + tOCK + Red Fang
In conjunction with Relapse Recordsmetalsucks.net, and IndieMerchstore, Metal band Red Fang ran a contest on SoundCloud inviting fans to put their own solos on the band’s latest single Blood Like Cream. They removed the band’s solos and made the song available for download via their label’s SoundCloud profile, then asked people to upload to a group made for the contest.

Over 75 people submitted solos. Red Fang said: “The response to the contest was really overwhelming! Thanks to everyone for submitting so many amazing interpretations of these solos! We won’t bore you with cliches about how hard it was to pick a winner. Just check it out and see what you think…”

Here are the Grand Prize winning solos, from Owen Gibbons, known around SoundCloud as tOCK: (The first one begins at “1:40″ and the second one starts at “2:44″) 

Owen’s confidence carried him through: “When [I saw] the Red Fang guitar solo competition on Facebook, I [said], ‘I just hope my solo is not so bitchin’ that it causes them to disband when they hear it.’ ” He’s kidding, of course: he describes himself as a “huge fan” of the band.

For his own solo, Owen “tried to mimic what they would play (loose, groovy, chaotic and lots of feel) but it sounded too contrived. I ended up using patterns from my own style which are usually in darker, minor keys. The chord progression was a little off-the-wall for a solo break, so what I did on the first one was largely follow the shape of a minor barre chord and play around that shape. The second solo was a variant of the classic blues scale.”

Runners Up Ocean Of Emptiness and Overcaust were also excited about the opportunity to collaborate with Red Fang as well as the potential to win boutique guitar pedals, an LP, and concert tickets.

Eric Zann from the band Ocean of Emptiness, “wanted to do a sleazy, over the top 3 part guitar harmony to start out the first solo, and then just see where things went from there.” His second solo, “oscillates between some harmonic minor and some good old pentatonic minor blues box lines.”

SoundCloud creator Manuel Higuera Pascual, who plays under the name OverCaust, decided on a slide solo: “I was trying to do a very wild solo with good structure, so it was 80% composed. The solo was recorded three times, so you’re hearing three guitars playing at the same time, which was an accident while recording, but I liked it so there it is. The other solo was improvised in the opening and I changed the phaser rate manually with my picking hand to get this wave effect. The chord progression was a bit tricky with those tritones so I used a harmonic scale on the slide solo and arranged the notes on the middle part of the second solo in relation to the backing chords, to create a melody.”

Initially, Red Fang was only going to choose 3 winners. They were so impressed with a number of the solos, however, that they decided to award a couple of honorable mentions as well.

Like a couple of the other contestants, creator Palle Demant was open to serendipity and ended up leaving something that was initially a mistake in his solo:  “I ran the guitar through an old Space Echo and then through a POD 2 box and by accident connected it wrong, but it sounded fun/good and kept it like that. Creatively, it was [an] inspiring and fun challenge.”

Wieczny Powrót thinks, “the idea of a solo contest with a “real” song is pretty cool. Usually you have to record a solo to some lame backing track.” His solo was, “100% improvisation. It took me two or three attempts to record it. I used the minor pentatonic, the eolian scale and some chromatic notes.” Like a lot of good guitar players he believes,  “in the rule that you can play whatever you want If you land on the notes from the right scale.”

If you’d like to hear some of the other entries, they’re all still available in the group formed for the contest.

Brendan Make A Playlist During Upload

We’re always hard at work making SoundCloud easier and more intuitive to use. Today, we’re happy to announce an update to the SoundCloud upload experience. When uploading several tracks at once, you now have the ability to group them into a playlist.

SoundCloud Upload #2

Edit all the pertinent details of the playlist on one page during upload. Information that applies to all the tracks in your playlist – such as the artwork, description, tags, and settings – now only needs to be filled out once. Super simple.

If you’d like to upload a group of sounds but don’t want to turn them into a playlist, we’ve got you covered – simply uncheck the “Make a playlist when uploading multiple sounds” box before uploading and your sounds will upload as individual tracks.

SoundCloud_Upload__1

Happy uploading!

 

 

Jane Creating with Constraints: Weekly communal sound-making

SoundCloud Creator: Marc Weidenbaum

The Disquiet Junto started in January 2012 by organizer Marc Weidenbaum and is an open group for anyone to participate in. The Junto is unique in that its weekly projects come with a deadline and defined constraints, like utilizing a certain sound or sticking to a specific BPM.

As it reaches over 80 weekly projects, the Junto has had more than 350 contributors from around the world so far. Back in late 2011, Marc’s Insta/gr/ambient was one of the projects that would be the foundation for the group. Musicians used Instagram photos as inspiration to create “sonic postcards” of ambient music. “It was wildly more listened to than anything I had done before, and I felt that had something to do with the energy of the musicians sensing a camaraderie unique to this larger-scale effort,” Marc says.

As more members joined, Marc began to let go of the anxiety of whether people would participate every week. “It has encouraged me to do more things that might lead to failure. On a creative level, since the Junto began, I have done fewer and fewer things that felt inherently certain or safe. The result is a weird mix: both thrilling and comforting,” he said.

Naoyuki Sasanami regularly participates in the Disquiet Junto group’s challenges every week and compares them to “experimental trials” that are opportunities for sound design. “I feel like I’m playing a weekly chess game using sound.”

In the past year, Disquiet Junto has led to several collaborative opportunities, including four live concerts in Chicago, Denver, Manhattan and San Francisco. They have also provided sound installation for Apex Art Gallery in Manhattan and scored the trailer for a documentary film about competitive blind sailing. In last month’s project “Faulty Notation,” participants were invited to interpret the San Andreas Fault as a musical score in collaboration with BLDG BLOG. A free iOS app of the map and the group’s submission may also be developed in which users can touch the map to trigger an associated recording from the group. With focused themes and constraints, the Junto has enjoyed opportunities like these that have expanded beyond the SoundCloud platform.

If you’re interested in making music as part of a communal group, Marc shares some advice: “First, I would not model whatever it is you want to do too closely on what other groups have done. Instead, I would identify the loose knit community that you find of interest, and think long and hard about that community’s motivations, about the way its constituents both produce and consume sound. I would try to develop a group approach with those unique characteristics in mind. Second, I would be prepared to alter your approach as time proceeds, in response to what the participants contribute, both in terms of the ideas they share with you but also, and equally importantly, the behavior, the predilections, the habits, they display.”

Hear the results from the Disquiet Junto’s latest weekly project focused on generative music.

Let us know what you thought about this feature on creating with constraints. We’ll be sharing more stories from the community in the coming weeks, so stay tuned. If you’ve got a story to share, leave a comment.