SoundCloud First on SoundCloud: Studio Sessions Berlin ft. Smokeasac

 

A year ago, the music industry lost a future contributor when 21-year-old rapper Lil Peep (born Gustav Elijah Åhr) died of an accidental overdose. Known for his ability to skillfully mesh hip-hop elements with emo vocals and wrap everything up in modern-day production, Lil Peep was just beginning his career but already creating a movement – and doing so from a laptop in his bedroom.

Lil Peep had released Come Over When You’re Sober, Pt. 1 three months before he passed, and it was a project that polished his emotive musings and bedroom beats into something more mainstream; a batch of tracks that solidified his standing as future hit-maker and redefined what it meant to be contemporary pop royalty. Thanks to Peep’s mom rescuing demos off his laptop and his best friend and go-to producer Smokeasac taking the reins, Lil Peep’s legacy is able to live on with Come Over When You’re Sober, Pt. 2, released this month.

Smokeasac and Lil Peep met on SoundCloud when Smoke was a beat-maker living in Virginia and Peep bought one of his first beats. Years later their paths crossed again as they respectively cross-bred the genres of emo and rap. Smokeasac became Peep’s producer on the Come Over When You’re Sober sessions and they never looked back.

Even after Peep’s death, Smokeasac kept looking forward. He had the difficult yet honorable job of finishing the music that the late rapper had started. “I can’t just leave the music behind,” he said. It gave him something to live for. And Peep was still guiding the process – always in Smoke’s head as he attempted to harnesses the essence and integrity of his friend.

The anticipated follow-up that fans never thought they would see dropped on November 9, 2018. COWYS2  is a beautiful tale of modern-day technology meets once-in-a-lifetime friendship as told through Peep’s signature genre-melding, emotionally-charged lyrics. It’s fraught with fragile raw tension and dark themes and according to his mom, “It’s the album that Gus would have wanted.”

Stream COWYS2 on SoundCloud here.

SoundCloud Comfy chair talk with Anderson .Paak

 

As the “dot” in his name reminds us, multidisciplinary musician Anderson .Paak is all about the details. So it should be no surprise really, that his fifth album Oxnard (out now) is a patchwork, panoramic offering that features a little bit of everything. From a first-class cast (Kendrick Lamar, Snoop Dogg and Pusha T to name a few) guest-starring on his tracks, to a nod to multiple genres, mediums and sounds (“Trippy” starts off with an old-school radio show and laugh track), it’s clear that Paak’s focus group is the world.

In the spirit of pausing and paying homage to Paak’s aptly-placed punctuation mark, we were able to get the multi-instrumentalist and genre-blending rhythmic linguist to take a minute to chat with us on a moderately comfortable chair in our New York City office. While positioned snugly between two ferns, a Bonsai tree and a few disco balls, Paak took us through things as random as his surroundings – and some not – from his first experience with SoundCloud to the secret sauce that goes into keeping a band together.

Paak was first introduced to SoundCloud when working on his debut mixtape O.B.E. Vol. 1. He said, “I remember just staying up all night just trying to upload music and making sure it was right, and f-ing up and not doing it right like five different times – and all this pressure to get this mixtape out.” Paak’s willingness to be messy, to power through the hours, to experiment with concepts and to sing/rap/drum/produce himself, are key details that have led to his broader success. That, and an appreciation for the people he works with. What makes his band stay together? He notes that communication, loyalty and time spent with each other (outside of the music-making) are the driving factors.

As a multi-instrumentalist who smoothes the edges of hip-hop, R&B, funk and jazz into a collaged and cohesive whole, it’s no wonder that his latest album Oxnard does so much. The first track “The Chase (ft. Kadhja Bonet)” is a chest-pounding parade of an entrance that shows off his ability to melt concepts; a staticy car stereo blends into spell-casting vocals that are both intros for the main event: a highfalutin flute-fronted funk anthem. “Who R U” is a staccato banger that you can’t listen to just once, and “6 Summers” is a retro, politically-lite, reggae-laced rock ballad that could sit moderately comfortable on a stage from decades ago.  

If you’d already devoured Paak’s latest (we have) and want to dive into who he’s listening to, check out: Tierra Whack, Kadhja Bonet, Nick Hakim, Daniel Caesar and Smino. And if you’re looking to get in his good graces? Pick up an instrument and prove that you’ll do the work.

Because Paak is proof that just doing the work it is always enough – and oftentimes it’s more.

SoundCloud Maximize collaboration with private track and playlist sharing on iOS

 

We know that collaboration is important to your creative process, which is why today we’re making it easier than ever to share your work discreetly before it’s 100% ready to be unleashed.

Whether you’re getting tips from your college roommate’s producer friend, emailing mom to get her perspective (spoiler alert: she’ll LOVE it), or pitching your favorite music blog for feature consideration – collaboration is key. We’re the only audio streaming service to offer private track and playlist sharing because enabling your workflow will help you to create the best possible upload.

With the introduction of private track and playlist sharing on iOS, you can now maximize collaboration on the go, making it easier than ever to share demos, refine content, receive feedback and promote your work. The steps are simple and few. Here’s what you need to know:

  1. You can share a private track or playlist the same way you share a public link via the fullscreen player menu at the bottom of your screen. (Y
    ou must be the owner of the track to share one, meaning you cannot share someone else’s private track).
  2. Once you think it’s ready for the world, you can make a track or playlist public on your mobile phone. You’ll know if you’re public when the locked icon is gone.
  3. Decide you want to go back into stealth mode? You can easily switch back to “locked” status, so your track / playlist is unavailable for discovery.

Because creating your best work requires the best possible workflow, we’re committed to continuously improving your tools and our offerings. So you keep rocking and we’ll keep rolling out the updates – and make sure to check back here regularly so you don’t miss a thing.

Private track and playlist sharing is already available on Android, so download the latest version of the SoundCloud app in either the App Store or Google Play to access today.