Continuing along the theme of synchronicity, here’s another story: Just last month, soon after deciding to resurrect Acid42, an old friend of mine from high school and college, Ramon Padilla, contacted me to ask if I had any tracks that could be purchased. He was putting together a set of videos to showcase three new treatments at his makeup salon. I was excited how this opportunity suddenly appeared just as I was trying to get back into the swing of music production. No dropping the ball this time, I told myself!
Here are the details of the project and how I proceeded with it.
There were going to be three videos, between 30-60 seconds in length. The videos had already been shot and would be published online within a week ideally. There would be no dialogue, just background music all throughout. No need for vocals, just something with the feel/ tempo of: Washed Out (New Theory, Feel It All Around, Portlandia Theme).
Washed Out – “Feel It All Around.”
Washed Out – “New Theory.”
My Interpretation of the Pegs
Taking the above audio pegs into consideration, I assembled some keywords that I thought would better explain what the client was looking for.
For example: I figured that the mood needed to be nostalgic, dreamy, laid back, new agey. Instrumentation and technical details would probably include: simple and retro 80s style drum patterns, lots of reverb, sparse arrangement to evoke space, perhaps a lot of delay effects. Overall effect would have to be: dreamy but not lowbrow, retro but modern, approachable but also upscale.
I looked through my library trying to find something that fit and found none that had the same feel so I proceeded to create one from scratch. This was my first draft. I entitled it “Memory Lane” and gave it a nostalgic melody while keeping the same exact tempo as “Feel It All Around,” but with vibes and a vocal sample to make it sound jazzy and upscale.
After the initial draft, I got concrete feedback that would lead to a change in direction, but it helped me clarify what steps I could take. Ramon emailed me to say he wanted something that was busier/groovier rather than laid back/blissful. He wanted to move away from Enya-esque territory popular among other spas (hence no vocals) and instead go for a mood that was “contemporary, almost indie — fun and accessible.”
I submitted my second draft a day or two after the feedback. I kept the general structure and the melodic line (this time I split the melody between two different synth instruments), but let loose with the busier/groovier arrangement (more percussions and fills), opting to do it more like I would as if it were an Acid42 track. And to my surprise, it was instantly approved with just one tiny edit (a change in the synth pad chime)! Here is the final music laid to video:
- Figure out what qualities the peg contains and copy those qualities into your new track.
- But don’t be a slave to the peg. Create an all-new track with the peg in mind, but branch away from its style, structure, & texture.
- Communicate early and often with your client to figure out what they want, and how to make your track sound like what they want.
About EverTrue Semi-Permanent Makeup Salon in New York
The above video shows how they perform True Lip Color, the semi-permanent makeup treatment that gives you perfectly formed lips with a healthy, natural-looking shade. For more information visit www.EverTrueSalon.com. Book a free consult online or call the salon at (917)388-3318.