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One of the biggest causes of frustration when it comes to performing on turntables are those mostly annoying record skips. In the video above we show you three ways to tame the beast.
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One of our favourite record shops has moved, merging two prime locations - Bathurst and Bloor in the iconic and soon to be
gone Honest Ed's building and the cosy Kensington Market shop into one space nestled in the busy and what we call the second centre of Toronto, Spadina and Queen area. We were told that the move was prompted by an up coming end of lease at the Bloor/Bathurst location. There is still quite a bit off work to be done before the new spot gets into full swing, but from what we've seen so far it's gonna be quite the sexy location to go record hunting. Definitely glad they're still around and with a rise globally in vinyl record sales they should be around for a good while.
Btw they've got dollar bins! Up and coming producers go get your hands dirty.
Sonic Boom is now located at 215 Spadina Ave. Open from 10am to 12am!! http://sonicboommusic.com/
Off Centre instructor Cheldon Paterson (SlowPitch) takes the turntable to uncharted territories Sunday October 12th at the Musideum in Toronto. "The highly cinematic journey will consist of organic sounds, uniquely created by using the turntable as an instrument. The music is further brought to life by numerous filters and effects in tandem with Paterson's hypnotic tribal rhythms." Find out more HERE!
For a closer look and study of the world of turntablism we cover everything from fundamental "golden era scratches" to more advanced, musical and experimental turntable manipulation. We offer courses that will satisfy your curiosity and help you get your creativity and execution to the next level. Read more about our turntablism programs HERE.
There are many ways to make variations for repetitive sections in your tracks (introducing new instruments, adding more melodies, etc.,) but one of the most effective and underlooked method is to take away some of the existing notes or shifting the timing of percussive instruments very slightly. For example you can take away every other chord or bass notes instead of trying to add new ones, and you can also let the snare hit slightly early (or late) instead of adding more hits. You can do all this through volume automation or warping (in audio tracks), and taking out/shifting the midi note (in midi tracks). So next time you're in need of variations, think of what you can do with what you already have before trying to add new things, it will keep the track from sounding too busy and consequently you'll have more space for other things at the same time - if you need more that is. For more tips and tricks, check out our Music Fundamentals course!
If you ever run out of ideas for melodies, you can always break down your chords into single notes (arpeggio)
and play around with the spacing for a simple in-key melody/harmony. For a little more variation and originality, you can add any notes from the appropriate major/minor scale (according to what type of chord you just broke down) between the original notes from the arpeggio. Refrain from adding too many notes though, more notes could mean less space to play around with creative rhythm. If you have no clue what any of this means, come check out our music fundamentals course!
It's Off Centre's 10th Year and we just wanted to thank everybody who have been with us at any point of our journey. We've seen big changes over the years, but one thing that remains consistent is our dedication to pushing the boundaries of musical expression and education. As soon as we catch a glimpse of creativity in electronic music being exhausted, you guys inspire us with new ideas, stories, and a hunger for creativity. From lovers of Acid-Afro-Prog-Rock, to Progressive-Post-Dub-Jazz enthusiasts, or Deep-Emo-Trap-Funk lovers to Downtempo-Experimental-Electro-Folk!! We've seen it all and have loved every trend setting moment. Our existence thrives on the continuous growth and development of this backwards music industry that has oddly always felt like home. This here is an attempt to celebrate and express gratitude for a unique experience that we've been lucky enough to build from scratch. Thank you for making our 10 years a beautiful experience. The future of music is bright and we look forward to taking your imagination even further Off Centre.
It's always nice to find a finished project from a former student waiting in our mailbox. The Shadow Conspiracy Mixtape Vol. 1 by Camp Casual roots itself in a classic hip hop demeanour and never neglects the art of digging and sampling. Thanks for the drop off Dave (aka Dolo Cruz)! We see you've been putting your Maschine to good use.
If you are a former or current student at Off Centre and wish to share your project(s), feel free to drop it off in our mailbox/inbox anytime or come to one of our Student Nights, say hello, and give it to us in person! We love watching all our students grow and succeed as great artists, and we'll definitely be there to support you along the way. Make sure to leave us a link where people can find your music online, be sure to tell us about what's been happening with you, and we'll help spread the word.
More on Camp Casual:
On April 5th, 2014 Splattermonkey joined us for an up close and personal Q&A at Off Centre, breaking down the ins and outs of creating successful and long running DJ nights, the art and joy of digging, and the many things in between that make up a DJs life.
As part of our December 2013 Student Night, on the biggest Toronto snow storm in years, special guest Basic Soul Unit blessed a full house of Off Centre students and staff with a thoughtful, modest, and real account of the music industry and his career to date.
Reflecting his diverse interest in music, Stuart's house & techno productions can swing from lush and soulful to crunchy and jacking. He has released and remixed music on respected labels such as Nonplus+, Dolly, Philpot, Mathematics, Mule Electronic, Versatile, Ostgut Ton, Créme Organization & New Kanada. The end of 2012 saw the the release of Basic Soul Unit’s first album “Motional Response” on Chicago’s Still Music to great critical acclaim.
In a stimulating and relaxed class environment you will learn several approaches to sampling and track creation using the iconic Roland SP-505 hardware sampler. The ease of use and inherent limitations of this machine emphasizes the users creativity and maximizes their ideas. All of the methods learned can be applied to multiple platforms. The goal of this 6 session program is to encourage female contribution in a male dominated field and to encourage pure creation and experimentation rather than just technical expertise. Throughout the course you will be exposed to prevalent female producers past and present that have made their mark on the industry.
Taught by internationally established music producer Pursuit Grooves who has been making beats for over 15 years.