Posted: 24 January 2019

Electronic Music and Me

So, here I am, writing about one of those little skills that I acquired during my pre-JEE-prep time (ah, those days…), which, in its most self-appraising form, is called electronic music composition.

It all started with the EDM craze, which was hot at that time. Anyone who had listened to the likes of Martin Garrix or Hardwell or David Guetta, was super cool. Initially it didn’t catch my fancy, because, well, everyone was listening to it, but then, something about it made it interesting for me in a different way. Now, I don’t want to sound too boring here, but normally when I find something interesting, a natural how or why pops up in my head. So I looked up a bit to see how its done, and I got to know about this computer software called Fruity Loops Studio (marketed as FL Studio, and which the leading composers in the industry loathe for some reason). I liked the software and found it quite intuitive to use. I fiddled around with the controls for a few days, trying out new effects, synths, plugins and all. But then I didn’t have anything in my mind solid enough to be called a melody. So I left the software and went back to doing other things. A few days later I was whistling a random tune when I realized that why not build on this little sequence of somewhat coherent notes. I immediately got back to FL Studio and input all the notes in the sequence. Then again came the experimentation period, where I must have changed the scale at least a thousand times just to make it sound as natural as possible; added layers of drums, tried different instruments, different sound consistencies, different artificial effects; added volume, pitch and panning automations, and what not. Now I’m not sure how long the entire process from inputting the sequence to the rendering of the final four-minute song took, but it must have been a lot, like, almost twenty days; and given that I didn’t watch or learn from any tutorials as such, everything was pure experimentation as I mentioned.

Nonetheless, nothing can match the satisfaction of sitting down, putting on your headphones, closing your eyes, and listening to your own song, where you know what struggle is involved behind each beat. Somehow the news that I made a track of my own spread in my school, and I defined the ‘cool’ then, at least temporarily. I still get a bit nostalgic when I listen to it.

Sometime later I started working on another melody, although I couldn’t do the final touch-ups and rendering of the song at that time. I completed it, my second track, two years later, when I got into college.

The source codes for both the tracks can be found on my GitHub - Infinitio and Ceaseless.