Monthly Archives: May 2010

David Friday Fun: Interview Time With ‘The Numbers Guy’ Ole

After a longish hiatus, we are bringing back our interview series with SoundCloud staffers! As the team continues to grow, we feel like this is a good way for you to get to know us.
This week, I would like to introduce to your our very own Web Analyst wizard: Ole.

What do you do at SoundCloud?

I look into everything data-wise at SoundCloud: what people are using/not using, the apps, the widgets, the connections from the client applications, the website itself, how users interact, how users use their accounts, why people are signing up for Pro accounts, and the most used features–to name a few.

Wow. Is Google Analytics your homepage?

Google Analytics is a big part of my work, and we track many things on our databases. Everything in the back-end is stored there, but I aggregate data from many different sources.

What did you do before coming to SoundCloud?

I worked for Ableton. Before that, I was a freelance consultant doing everything from setting-up small websites for business to offering services to various companies.

What’s your background in analytics?

I come from a very mathematical corner of science, so it came quite naturally for me.

Where are you from?

I’ve lived for almost 30 years in Osnabrück, in Lower Saxony (Niedersachsen). Then my wife got a job in Berlin, so we’ve moved here.

Spare time. How do you spend it?

Well, I have a two year-old daughter, which pretty much takes up all my spare time. But I do enjoy cycling and photography.

Anything else you’d like to say to the SoundCloud Community/the interweb?

It’s really exciting working at SoundCloud. It feels like a real startup. It’s fun to work with so many people, who are really good at what they do. It’s a great environment and I feel really happy to be a part of the company’s growth and success!

David Postcards From Nebraska: Meet George Burl, A Singer And Songwriter On SoundCloud

Meet George Burl. George writes songs, plays several instruments and sings. An artist living in Nebraska, he has been holding a SoundCloud Pro account for close to a year now and we wanted to know more about how an independent DIY folk singer and songwriter uses SoundCloud.

Photo by Gary Flanagan

We had the chance to ask George a couple of questions about his music, technology and his goals.

George, who are you what is it that you do?

I am a songwriter from Nebraska, USA. I write songs.

You’re releasing a series of new songs, tell us about it and how did you get them together? What role did SoundCloud play during the process?

The series of demos I’ll be releasing over the next year are a mixture of studio sessions and home recordings. They are intended to introduce the world to some of the new material I have been working on. I have been using SoundCloud to work with my band-mates and engineer to put a lot of the songs together and get the rehearsals for studio sessions.

We all have accounts on SoundCloud and it has been relatively easy to throw up a demo and then have the other people download it and rerecord their version of the song or add something to it or just rehearse with the recording until we could get into the studio.

I also do a lot of recording at home, in my apartment and as an amateur engineer/producer I have found it very helpful to throw my mixes up and get advice from professionals in this field. Because I can upload uncompressed file formats, this means that other people can download the track and then send it back to me after they clean it up a bit by doing some basic mastering or whatever magic it is that they work on the sound.

How big of a role did today’s tech & services play in the process?

I have been playing music and trying to promote bands I was in for over 10 years.  The technology and online services available to the independent musician today is mind-blowing.  My primary resources are SoundCloud (for archiving, cataloging, rehearsing, writing, pre-production and distribution), WordPress (for embedding, organizing, commentary and information dissemination) and BandCamp (for trying to make a little jingle).

I look at SC like a warehouse where I store my songs. Most of the tracks I put on SC remain private, which means that they can not be accessed through the SoundCloud site.  But I am able to embed these private tracks into my website so SoundCloud becomes a content delivery system instead of a destination site or an artist profile.

What’s your goal as an artist and how does the SoundCloud community help you achieve it?

My goal as an artist is primarily to create art and secondly to make that art accessible to people who enjoy it.  Eventually, I hope to develop some type of self-sustaining career in which this art plays a primary role.

Soundcloud has been helpful in some part with all three of these goals. I have found songs to cover on SoundCloud as well as materials to sample and be inspired by (making art).

Obviously, through SoundCloud I have found people who enjoy my music and it has become easier than ever to share that music with people around the world.  As a songwriter, one of the principle parts of my career is playing live shows and SoundCloud has provided a clean and easy way for bookers, promoters and club managers to access what I do.  I use the secret link a lot. It is definitely my favorite feature so far.

Thanks George! Glad to have you aboard. Now everyone, listen to Sketches of Sophia below: