I’ve produced many tracks in the past and usually they’re solo projects, which rely only on me and the time I invest in them. Let Me See on the other hand involved so many variables that I simply wanted to write about it to at the very least have it documented for myself.
The initial Idea
John Beaver, my Coachella Mix partner, DJ colleague and high school buddy, decided to cross off one of his dreams and booked a Europe trip. He let me know that although he’ll be traveling from shows to parties to events, etc. he wants to meet up for a few days and see if we can produce some music together.
Although I live in southern Germany, I told him it would be a good idea to meet in Berlin, being the German capital of electronic music as well as the city I was born in. He booked his flights accordingly and I started the project of bringing a “music studio” to Berlin.
The mobile Studio
With a few additions to some equipment I already owned I managed to piece together a little setup that would provide us with creative flexibility in any hotel, hostel or AirBNB.
Just to list it all:
- Macbook Pro with Ableton Live, Reaktor, Maschine (software only), Lethal, Massive and Traktor
- Traktor S2 controller
- Oxygen8 midi keyboard
- Good ol’ trusted Sony headphones
- Behringer usb soundcard
- Bose Soundlink
- Every cable variation imaginable so everything was able to connect to everything else
John and I briefly went through some style and genre examples of what sort of track we’d want to work on and I went ahead and pre-produced three different ideas, each only about 30 seconds long to see what we would end up grooving to.
John and I hadn’t seen each other in about six years. We’ve continued to work on music over Skype and facebook and dropbox during this whole time. It was gonna be a slightly hectic two Days. I drove for about nine hours, because I wasn’t gonna take all that equipment on an airplane. I had time to setup in the hotel room before John’s plane landed. The first night was about celebrating, having fun and inspiration. He landed at around midnight and we went straight to a club with some friends of mine. The weather was super warm so the outdoor wonderland of Ipse was a really nice location to catch up, have a drink, dance around and see the sun rise over the trees and the canal. Not to mention all the techno and tech house we were exposed to that night.
First day of production
After we slept in the next day and got the sight seeing out of the way we settled in and went through the ideas I started on. We quickly decided on one style. We worked on the initial project until we had about a two minute raw clip of the main idea… and time flew by. John’s flight was leaving at 7 am and it was almost 2 in the morning when we finished up. I saved the project, went to sleep for a couple of hours, drove John to the airport and kept driving until I was home about 8 hours later… and crashed.. (Enter Simon & Garfunkel – Sound of Silence)
Producing at a distance
The rest happened in the same way our Coachella Mixes happen. We shoot ideas back and forth over various channels. I produce a bit, he adds ideas, I implement, repeat. Meanwhile John tested out what we had so far at every single on of his shows and returned with priceless feedback until we finished. Yes, we actually finished it and it was such a great feeling. Off to mastering!
Mastering by the master
Hugo Allen, my long time label partner and friend, was my first and obvious choice for mastering this track. He did an awesome job making the entire thing pop and even hooked it up with a re-master after John played one last show, which prompted some important final edits within the tracks arrangement. I’m so glad to have Hugo in my network and my circle of friends. Hit him up if you need some quality work done: Hugo Allen Music
The final product and the next steps
The plan is to get this track on a label at some point… maybe even cut a music video together of the different shows John played this track at… these things are still up ahead and will trigger their own posts when they happen.
For now I’m just super excited that this project is a wrap and I can start working on the next mission.