Collaborative Music on Free Music Sharing Sites!
by Andrew Shields
“I would first off, state for the record that I am rather a latecomer to mp3 music sharing in general, having stumbled onto a few sites in and around 2008. I was really excited with the quality of the artists recordings, and the quality of the music in general. The discovery of music, just to listen to, is almost an endless proposition now, there is literally millions of hours of music available to stream and download on a wide variety of free music sharing (legal) sites. Sometimes the quality of the music is often more imaginative, perhaps even better than many “commercial” music releases, one’s sanctioned and distributed by the few mega-music corporations that still exist like EMI, Sony, Warner Brothers, HMV…etc
In joining mp3unsigned.com. and putting some music up, mainly home recordings from a variety of years, I was immediately welcomed into this interesting music club. There’s a huge variety of music styles available on this site in particular, everything from Classical, Jazz, Pop and Rock, Reggae, World, New Age, Country/Blues, Electronic Dance, Techno, Rap, Hip-Hop, and the list just goes on and on.
I found that many of the friendliest people on mp3u, people such as Terry Wigmore, Keith Allen, Gibbo, Deggsy, and many others, are also very keen to collaborate on original music creations. I collaborated on two tracks with Terry, one called “Sun on Stones” a sort of mystical, soft EDM style track, musing about how the pre-historic sites, the sense of awe, mystery and majesty, continue to spark our imaginations, and possibly to help us here (in the modern world) re-connect with the Earth and sacred sites around this globe. I really liked how Terry added an extra verse, which added greatly to the theme of the track.
Another great song, which featured original vocals and words by Terry, was called “The Rivers Flow” which had amazing, thoughtful lyrics about how many of the worlds incredible rivers are becoming endangered (or at least altered) by Dams, Culverts, Hydroelectric schemes, the song seemed to be a gentle reminder that however important human beings like to think they are, all of us are part of nature, dependent upon it, and should always respect natural powers, especially rivers. Terry’s got a great voice, and I love the semi-spoken intro and dialogue, listing the names of many famous rivers, ending with the lines, “Let the river’s flow!”
I also collaborated on a track with Keith Allen, a fellow from England, a song called “Waiting For The Page To Load” with lyrics, vocals and guitar from Keith, and my contribution to the track was a simple repeated electronic drum track. The end result is so funny and well produced, like all of Keith’s works, it's so likeable and nicely recorded, warm sounding.
More recently I did a collaboration with a fellow from England called Deggsy, and the track was called “Dream Pods of Nibiru” In this number, I was excited to find that Deggsy had done a completely new mix of my original sounds, or even a re-creation of the main tune, in his DAW, he tightened up the beats and added some new effects, filtered, gated synths and some really nice Bass synth lines. I retained my vocal and lyrical ideas, but also re-recorded my vocals to suit the new recording. I liked that one a lot, and could almost imagine it as a commercial music release.
Overall I feel I am maybe not the most reliable person in order to engage with collaborative projects, as it can take me months, even years to actually finish some pieces. I tend to “go with the flow” when creating music, or artworks (I am a visual artist) and this process can take me on a journey, and it can also be that I can lose some momentum when creating. Perhaps I am more of a face to face kind of artist, needing the other artist in the room, and “riffing” ideas can (for me) make the whole process a lot easier.
I guess in some ways I must confess to having far less time for actual music creation now, as I am (rather ironically) doing a Diploma of Audio Production, here in Melbourne (Australia) But I figure that when my studies are over, I should have a far more well rounded appreciation for many aspects of sound and audio production than I had before. I am learning many new things about Protools and the use of microphones, mixing desks and sound shielding, which is stellar information to learn.
As a final comment, I would unequivocally state that most of the people one will encounter (like Terry Wigmore, Keith, Gibbo…etc) are wonderful, kind folk, who are doing their best to make this world a better place, and this can only add to the positivity of the world in general!
larga colaboración de música en vivo!
Andrew Shields - Melbourne, Australia, August, 2018