Inside The Mix | Music Production and Mixing Tips for Music Producers and Artists

#57: Write Songs Faster: Key Tips for Better Songwriting | The Safety Word

December 13, 2022 The Safety Word Season 2 Episode 34
#57: Write Songs Faster: Key Tips for Better Songwriting | The Safety Word
Inside The Mix | Music Production and Mixing Tips for Music Producers and Artists
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Inside The Mix | Music Production and Mixing Tips for Music Producers and Artists
#57: Write Songs Faster: Key Tips for Better Songwriting | The Safety Word
Dec 13, 2022 Season 2 Episode 34
The Safety Word

The Safety Word is a musical brotherhood consisting of John Rosvanis on vocals, guitar, and Simon Quinn on keys, and beats. The two have solidified their sound from years of playing and creating music together, forming a telepathic relationship when it comes to building whole musical worlds in which they submerge themselves. They see themselves as artistic maestros who craft sonic compositions referring to their sound as Atmospheric Synth Pop. You can find elements of synthwave, synthpop, dream pop, ambient atmospherics, and upbeat electronic dance floor anthems just to describe the varying sound palette they draw from. Look much deeper into their creative process and you will find the band takes a full D.I.Y approach to everything that they do which allows them to have full artistic freedom in the expression of video, film, music, and photoshoots, they also welcome fans to be a fly on the wall and listen to their regular Instagram lives and engage with them on the communities they have built across their socials where they take pride in being personable, approachable and humble.

To follow The Safety Word, click here: https://thesafetyword.com/

Want to join a community of artists and music enthusiasts and gain access to exclusive Inside The Mix Podcast content? Join the podcast Facebook community group here: Inside The Mix Podcast Community

Are you thinking about starting a podcast or need help growing your audience? Check out the Podcast Business School: https://www.podcastingbusiness.school/a/2147490930/Hw6eEPeg

Start recording your own podcast today using Riverside FM here: Riverside FM

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Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

The Safety Word is a musical brotherhood consisting of John Rosvanis on vocals, guitar, and Simon Quinn on keys, and beats. The two have solidified their sound from years of playing and creating music together, forming a telepathic relationship when it comes to building whole musical worlds in which they submerge themselves. They see themselves as artistic maestros who craft sonic compositions referring to their sound as Atmospheric Synth Pop. You can find elements of synthwave, synthpop, dream pop, ambient atmospherics, and upbeat electronic dance floor anthems just to describe the varying sound palette they draw from. Look much deeper into their creative process and you will find the band takes a full D.I.Y approach to everything that they do which allows them to have full artistic freedom in the expression of video, film, music, and photoshoots, they also welcome fans to be a fly on the wall and listen to their regular Instagram lives and engage with them on the communities they have built across their socials where they take pride in being personable, approachable and humble.

To follow The Safety Word, click here: https://thesafetyword.com/

Want to join a community of artists and music enthusiasts and gain access to exclusive Inside The Mix Podcast content? Join the podcast Facebook community group here: Inside The Mix Podcast Community

Are you thinking about starting a podcast or need help growing your audience? Check out the Podcast Business School: https://www.podcastingbusiness.school/a/2147490930/Hw6eEPeg

Start recording your own podcast today using Riverside FM here: Riverside FM

Send me a Message

Support the Show.


► ► ► WAYS TO CONNECT ► ► ►

Grab your FREE Test Master at Synth Music Mastering TODAY!
✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸
Are you READY to enhance your music with my steadfast dedication to quality and personal touch?
Bag your FREE Test Master at Synth Music Mastering: https://www.synthmusicmastering.com/mastering

Buy me a COFFEE
✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸✸
If you like what I do, buy me a coffee so I can create more amazing content for you: https://www.buymeacoffee.com/marcjmatthews

Send a DM through IG @insidethemicpodcast
Email me at marc@synthmusicmastering.com

Thanks for listening & happy producing!

Marc Matthews:

You are listening to the Inside The Mix podcast with your host, Mark Matthews. Hello and welcome to the Inside the Mix podcast. I'm Mark Matthews, your host, musician, producer, and mix and mastering engineer. You've come to the right place if you want to know more about your favorite synth music artist, music, engineering and production, songwriting and the music industry. I've been writing, producing, mixing, and mastering music for over 15 years, and I wanna share what I. With you. Hey folks, and welcome back to the Inside The Mix podcast. And in this episode, I'm very excited as I always am, to welcome our guest today, Simon Quinn, who has won half of the safety word. Now, the safety word, see themselves as. Artistic Maestros. I love that description. Who craft sonic compositions referring to the sound as atmospheric synth pop. And you can find elements of synth wave, synth pop, dream pop, ambient atmospherics and upbeat electronic dance floor anthems just to describe the varying sound palette they draw from. So Simon is gonna share with us, um, a short musical. key songwriting tools and techniques. Um, he's come prepared with a list, which is fantastic. And this is gonna be brilliant, a deep dive into latest single vanity life. And have another, another key one as well, which is quite a, a running theme for the podcast, is how to stay musically motivated. So, Simon, how are you? And thanks for joining me today.

Simon Quinn:

Yeah, thank you. I'm, I'm doing pretty well. Thank you. Yeah,

Marc Matthews:

fantastic. Just for our audience, can you, um, just tell our audience where you are? You're joining me from

Simon Quinn:

today? Um, Melbourne, Australia.

So it's 10:

00 PM at night., um, yeah. On

Marc Matthews:

Sunday. Fantastic. Mm-hmm.. Yeah. It is 11 o'clock in the morning over here in the uk. But I love this, I love that the podcast has this reach across the world Now. I put my tentacles out there and, and chatting to people all over. I think you are the furthest away to date and racking my brains here over the past 50th 50 episodes, which is amazing. So what I'd like to start with is your musical background. So I've got a bit of your bio here again. So you described the safety word or a musical brotherhood. So you're consistently of yourself and John. Now I'm gonna hopefully pronounce his surname correct here. Ross VanNess. That's correct, yep. Fantastic. On vocals, guitar, and yourself on keys and beats. Um, so you've solid solidified your sound over the, over the years, playing and creating music together, forming a telepathic relationship when it comes to building whole musical. It's like these submerge themselves in, and I think that's quite notable in the latest album you had out as well. I've been listening, I've been putting acoustic tiles up in my, in my studio space here, and I was listening to the album whilst I was doing it, and it's, it's like the perfect ambiance to have whilst I was doing it. It was brilliant. Is that

Simon Quinn:

the moving forward in reverse?

Marc Matthews:

It is, yes. Yeah, yeah. That exact album. It's, um, sorry, I should have named it whilst I, whilst I was talking about it. That's

Simon Quinn:

fine. So we've got a, I've got a few out. Yeah.

Marc Matthews:

Yeah, I, I've noticed that, and I think we'll come back to that later in the chat. And in terms of, um, moti, I think it falls into the motivation category. So you can just tell our audience a bit about your musical influences. How growing up, how did it all start? How did you sort of grow into being a musician?. Simon Quinn: Yeah. Uh, well, I, um, learned piano from a very young age. I wasn't particularly good at it. And that was the very classical sort of rulers across the fingers, sort of, you've got the scale wrong. Uh, and then I sort of gave up piano cause I wasn't really getting anything out of it. Um, but then, you know, got into guitar a bit later on. And then I played in sort of punk bands, alternative bands. That was like late nineties kind of thing. So a bit of sort of, um, grunge, sort of post rock kind of stuff. Um, played in a number of bands and there was a really big scene in Hobart. Um, so playing and going and just immersing myself in that, that scene for a number of. Um, and then I was at art school and started to get into more electronic type stuff. And, um, yeah, and that's when I sort of had this idea of, um, the, yeah, getting more into electronic music and the live, live electronic music. Um, so met Meet, I met people at, at art school and we formed a band called Little. and we'd play gallery openings and things like that, doing very abstract down tempo, kind of lo lofi music. And this was in about 2000. Um, then, uh, about 2003, moved to Melbourne. Uh, Formed a band called Vultures of Venus, which is electro glam space rock band. Um, oh wow. And we, we, we played for about 10 years and released some albums and stuff, and that was, yeah, very sort of party upbeat kind of music. Um, and then sort of at the end of that I was, um, doing a side project with, um, John, who formed the safety word with. Yeah, we just sort of started very casually doing stuff. But, um, as, as we, you know, did more and more, we, we really liked what we were doing and started to take it a bit more seriously. Um, for the first three years that we were together, were more of a live band, and we used to put on performances where we, we'd have guest musicians and we wouldn't really have set songs, we'd just have keys and loops that we were playing. and we'd just sort of have these long 10 minute jams and it was, you know, quite interesting and fun to do. And yeah, then we just started wanting to narrow it down to, um, yeah, a bit, bit more digestible kind of thing. And at the moment we're, um, Yeah, we're, we are still experimenting, as you said, like we released that album moving forward in reverse, um, which I think is highly experimental. But then we also like doing like sort of ultra pop, sort of synth wave stuff that has the classic chorus coming in at the five or ten second mark. And it's just, you know, very pop structure and very, um, access., but it's a big thing for us to be able to have a bit of room to, to breathe within our sound because we have so much, um, music in us that we want to get out that we don't really want to be boxed up. Um, so, you know, we have elements of, um, chill wave or synth wave and then also synth pop and eighties, um, ritualism in there. And then we also like our post rock type stuff. And then we have a lot of electronic influences as.. Um, I'm a also a dj and what I play out's very different from what I do with the safety word. So I like playing, um, glitch hop type, well bass heavy type stuff. And sometimes some of that sort of merges into the safety word stuff, but yeah. But yeah, we've got a lot of different influencers that we like, um, and we yeah, enjoy being able. Explore our different musical, um, palettes and personalities within what we do. And I think we've built a bit of an audience that is willing to come on that journey with us. Yeah, that's a fantastic background. I love that. So it, what you mentioned there about playing piano, it's kind of resonates with a lot of the interviews I've done whereby, um, artists have started playing an instrument in their younger years and haven't quite, um, Sort of grasped it for one of a better way of putting it, moved onto another instrument, and then you've gone down the alt route, the alternate rock route, and the, the, the punk route and whatnot as well. And then you've sort of found your way, and I think it's very impressive the, the, the, the raft of music you're currently doing at the moment. So you mentioned being a DJ as well, and I noticed, um, in the, in the Facebook group for the podcast, you put a poster yesterday, I think it was, which was, uh, a link to a compilation. Compilation album whereby you've got a really quite a dark sound, um, in, in what you've contributed to that, which sounds amazing. I really, really liked it. So I like the idea that you've got all this music inside of you, that your, the safety word is like your vehicle to get it out there and you're not, um, you're not scared for one of a way away of putting it, of, of conveying that music. You're not, you're not sticking within, uh, one set formula. You're actually just showcasing what it is you're about, you know? And I think you mentioned there about moving forward in.. Yeah. Listening to that this morning and throughout the past week when I've been doing my due diligence for the, uh, for this interview. Yeah. Um, it's, it's, it's, it's quite different to, to vanity life and I think it's meant what you mentioned there wasn't it about you've got that formulaic sort of that the pop punk and then you've got the, the quite ambient experimental moving forward in reverse. Yeah. And when I listened to the two I, I listened to and I was like, that's quite, quite a difference you've got going on there, which is amazing and I think it's brilliant. Um, mm. And do My quick question is, you, you, that darker element that you had there at the beginning Yeah. Um, what you posted yesterday, is that something you're gonna lean into as well? Like the darker synth

Simon Quinn:

sound? Um, yeah. At, at the moment, um, John's really into the idea of us doing some, um, mini like five to 10 minute movies when we create the soundtracks for them. And they're gonna be kind of David Lynch s kind of a Razorhead type thing, um, where we create these, yeah. Dark ambient drone like soundtracks, and then create these mini movies with ourselves in them and, and you know, release them up onto YouTube, but also on Spotify and things like that. So it'd be very different from our, um, you know, more commercially accessible, um, synth pop stuff. But it's like another layer that, that people who like our sound can get into if they want to. Or if people just want our pop stuff, then that's fine.. Marc Matthews: Yeah. Fantastic. I love that, that that was, once again, it's just branching out and I think from your bio I got that you are, you are very much, um, a DIY band and that you do a lot. If not all of the production, post-production, the, the promo, the videos, you do it all yourself, is that correct? Um, yeah. We, we do all the demoing ourselves. Um, we like, we've got a guy called Ryan Fallis at Invention Studio and, um, we like getting our vocals done there and then getting, he master our music as. um, or sometimes we have someone else, um, who we really like, who they've worked with, um, to master our, our music as well. So we had, for Vanity Life was mastered, um, by a guy called Matt in Melbourne who's worked with, um, boo Seeker and Jared James, and a few other Australian acts that we really. And so, yeah, we hit him up and showed him the track and he was, you know, he doesn't just sort of work with anyone, but he was, yeah. He said, yeah, I really like that. I'll, I'll do this for you. But yeah, pretty much DIY. Marc Matthews: Yeah. Yeah. I was gonna say, apart from the mastering, see, going back, so you do the videos, cuz I know there's a video for Vanity Life, is that sort of produced, directed by yourselves as well? Yeah. So that was. Shot in John's basement. Um, we, we've got, you know, lot ring lights and different covered lights and stuff. Um, just shot, shot on phone at the moment and, uh, John's girlfriend filmed that she often will do our photo shoots or our film clips. Uh, and then I edit it on, um, premier. And do you know, um, the, the layering of Yeah. Effects and the, the colors and all of that sort. um, just sort of, yeah, keep our costs down as much as possible. We've got a, um, coming up next, um, on Friday, actually the fourth of, um, November. We've got our, um, vanity Life remix, um, single coming out. And so I've made, um, it's got six remixes on there by artists from all around the.. Yeah. Um, and , I've made six, uh, visualizers for it. So we like to have a YouTube launch party for each of our major releases, particularly when it's a remix or something. And it's got little like, um, one minute, one to five minute intros from all the remix artists. And they just sort of show a bit of their Ableton or whatever door they're working on their session and how they, um, remix the track and then play the visualizers and. we like to have some wine and cheese and sit back and watch that and be active in the chat. And we've had had, uh, I think we've done it three or four times before, so we did one for moving forward in reverse. They're up on YouTube. You can watch the replays there if anyone's interested. Yeah.. Marc Matthews: I love that idea. Have you noticed, cuz you, you say you've done it before, is it gaining traction? So every time you do another one, are you getting more and more people involved? Cause I know when you start these things mm-hmm., I've done it with a podcast. You start something and engagement might be quite low, but the more you do it, you find that the, you get more and more people each time. Is that, does that happen? Yeah. You, I think you're doing everything right to YouTube's algorithm. If you have a premier of something and you, you know, create a Facebook event and you invite as many people to it, like it's a gig. And then in during the thing, like the actual bands there and they're active in the chat, people are asking questions. So you could, you can see there's a lot of engagement there, even if it's only like, you know., 30 to 50 people, it's still really active and quite fun. Yeah. And then you've got, you know, your 50 views, but then you're seeing the next couple of days it seems to spread, spread it out like you, and within a week you've got, you know, 500 views on it or something, which you know, isn't a lot. But for indie band, it's good. Um, And then when we release a single or something, it seems like YouTube's, um, friendly to us. So we put Vanity Life up the other day and it yet got up to 5,000 streams down. It's only been up less than a week, which is pretty good. Fantastic.

Marc Matthews:

It's a weird one. YouTube, isn't it? I've, um, I, I released a single a few weeks, but a few weeks, a few months ago and it did the same thing and then I released another one and it, and then YouTube algorithm ones. That's so kind to it, but, um,

Simon Quinn:

yeah, that's right. But I don't think you have to worry. I mean, we try not to worry about, um, vanity Me metrics, which is a bit of what the song Vanity Life's about. Um, do it. And yeah, not even really, I mean, you can't help yourself, but look at the metrics, but, you know, try not to worry about it. And that's part of my process too, is just being consistent, um, and not, not, you know, dwelling on the numbers too much. Yeah, I, I

Marc Matthews:

totally agree with that. Um, and much like yourself, I do. more so with the podcast actually, that you get the download metrics and I can't help but look and I think, no, I'm only gonna look like once every couple days and I end up looking every day. But it's, it's hard not to, um,. But I think to stay motivated for me, I dunno about yourself. Well come onto motivation later. Later. Yeah. If I was solely motivated, I think by metrics, it would be very hard to, I find it difficult

Simon Quinn:

to, to keep motivation. I, I enjoy my Spotify for artists' app on my phone and I like looking at it, you know, just see if I'm at work and got a few minutes spare or on lunch break or something and I'll go, oh look. you know, watch the stream counts almost like a little bit of a game to see if you can get a song up to that thousand streams in the first week or something of its release. Um, you know, and you, and it's sort of like a dopamine hit, um, when you know you do it. But I, I try to just look at it as a, a fun sort of game rather than too serious because ultimately what, um, John and I like is. Um, just enjoying the creative process for ourselves and if people want to come along on that ride, then that's great, but, you know, you know, occasionally we, we might do something that's a little bit more out there and it, and it, you know, doesn't necessarily do as well, but it was really important and we really love the song and, and that's, you know, what we feel matters in the. Yep.

Marc Matthews:

Totally agree. Um, I think that is the key to, to creativity. You gotta love what you do. And then if someone else likes it, then great. And, um, I definitely, definitely echo that sentiment. So what we'll move on to next then is the actual, um, songwriting and creative process. So you've come prepared for this, uh, Podcast interview with a list, which is amazing and

Simon Quinn:

I love that. I hope we don't even need to look at the list cuz it's all up here. I was gonna say, just, just for a reference so people might be, uh, interested in what I'm about to say. I did, I did a bit of a challenge. I was working for a company last year making lo-fi music and, and the challenge was could I create a hundred lofi songs and utilizing this process that I'm gonna share, I created a hundred. almost too easily. So I challenged myself to write a thousand songs in a year and I did it. And so , so this is the, um, the process that I used. To

Marc Matthews:

do that. Wow. I I cannot wait to hear this. And actually, I'm glad you said that cause it made me remember what my question was gonna be. Yeah. Because in the notes leading up to this interview, um, you mentioned about gamification of, of creativity and music. And my question was gonna be, can you give us some examples of the gamification, the, the game element that you use? Yeah. In the creative process?

Simon Quinn:

Yeah, definitely. So when you're creating, um, music, it's good to. Your options cuz there's just too many options that are open when you are staring at a blank, um, door screen and going, okay, I'm gonna make a song. So two of the really easy ones that you can get rid of straightaway is key and tempo. So I like to use like a, um, online generator or even I've used dice in the past, or even just like a, um, like a GIE board. And you go boom, and you go, okay, I'm making a song in c., that's one choice out of the way. What tempo do the same thing. It's gonna be 75 bpm. So then you've eliminated a lot of choices that could take you half an hour to think of. So I'm writing a song in C minor that's 75 bpm, let's go. And so, yeah. Oh, I can go on with the process of how I do that if you like.

Marc Matthews:

Yes, please do. Um, what I qu quickly before you do that, when you, when you have that key and you have that tempo Hmm. Do you then not deviate that from that at all? Do you, you just stick with it? Yeah.

Simon Quinn:

Look, if you decide that it's not working, you can change it. There's no rules, you see. But that's just like a game that I play with myself. It's like, . Okay, so I'm gonna write a song. What's the key? What's the tempo? Have someone else decide that for you. So there's less thinking for you to do, less obstacles in the way of you creating that track. And I, I just find that that helps. And it also makes you write different music, cuz when you're writing a lot of music, you don't want it to sound the same. And so one thing you can do to help it not sound the same, is have different keys, different temp. Yeah. Fantastic.

Marc Matthews:

Okay, so I won't, I won't hold off any longer. So let's go through this creative process then. So do you wanna read off to our listeners the, uh, the creative process that you go through?

Simon Quinn:

Yeah, yeah. So I can Yeah. Talk about that. So I, um, so my mentor that taught me, um, process is a guy called Mike Monday, who's an English guy who's living in Australia now. Um, and he does a thing, um, called splu. and the idea is to, um, create a lot of quantity over quality. And it's the idea of rolling a dice and you're trying to roll a six. So if you only roll the dice once you've got a one in six chance of rolling a six. But if you are, just say you do this splurging idea. I, I usually do two to three songs a day, but you can do bare minimum, you could do it one song a day. Um, that means over a week., if you're doing three songs a day, you are gonna have, you know, 28 chances to roll a six rather than if you're just working on one track a week or something. And it might be not be the right track to be working on. You might be spending hours on something that's not even that good, just cuz that's what you do. Um, . So yeah, so, so what you can do is, uh, the first thing to do is you get, you get your band. So I like to limit myself to five tracks, but there's no rules. You know, if you're creating a song and you go, I need another track, you can put another track. But it's good to, as I was saying, li limit the choices that you have in order to try and, um, achieve things faster. So what you do when you're putting together your band is. Select what you're gonna use for your drums. So you have like a, think about it like a traditional rock band. You've got a drummer, a bass player, someone playing mid-range, and someone playing lead, something like that. Um, and then you choose your favorite vsts, um, or analog gear that you'd use for. That you'd use for your drums, that you'd use for the lead, that you'd use for your pads or mid-range sort of.. Um, so then you've got a, a template that you can load up each time, and then it's just less things for you to do in that session. And then there's different ways that I like to start a song and I like to have different ways to start a song, so it's not the same all the.. But, um, something that's helped me a lot is having something like a cord generator. So I've written down a few of the ones I've used here. So Scaler two, uh, Insta Cord, um, captain Cords. Um, so I've, I've tried all them and they're all really good and they, they actually work really well. So you can go, okay, I'm writing a song in c. and you can have it spit out some chords that are in C minor, and then you can listen to that and change them around to get something that you like. So you've just got a basis of something to start off. Um, that that's, you know, that's one way to start a song. I've since, um, purchased a thing called a theory board. Which is, uh, I've got it over there, but it, it's, um, got chords built into it so you can program whatever key you want. So you want a major, and then you can just play each of the chords in a major and it's got got, you know, all of the possibilities like suspended and. All of that , and it's a really fast, fun way to, to create it. So it's like using those core generators, but you'll have a lot more control over what you are, what you're doing. Um, and so, but the idea with, with splurging is that you want to, um, just be really free in the process and just create something and. Almost like the, the first thing that comes naturally to you. So, um, you know, without putting too much block on it and not too much thinking about is it good, is it bad? It's just about, um, you know, rolling the dice and just putting down something. And the idea is to. Get out of the loop as quickly as possible so you don't get stuck inside the loop. So you get a bit of an arrangement or something happening and then you sort of arrange it out. So it's over a three minute or four minute, or however long you want the song to be, so you can start seeing an end point as soon as possible. Because for years and years I would start making music and I'd just be stuck in like a. Loop going around or tweaking a high hat for hours or doing things like that. And the idea of, of splurging is sort of the opposite of that. You, you use presets or you use, you know, things just to get your sounds and ideas out there. Cause you can go back and edit it later. So if you, you know, if you want a pad sound or something, you can pull up a preset or something that's close to what you want and then just tweak it a little. Um, rather than going, I have to create a patch from Start, it's gonna take me, you can go back and do that later. You know, if you decide a song's really good and you want a unique patch, because there's no point creating that patch if you're not even gonna move forward with this, the song, and that could take you an hour or something, you know, just to create that one thing. Um, yeah. So the idea is, um, so this is the important bit, is you. Within the session, however long you decide that you've got to make music with everything else that's going on in your life, you might have a minimum commitment that you've only got half an hour. You know, cuz you've got a job, kids, you've got everything you've gotta do. So you've only got half an hour a day. So if you've got half an hour to get an idea of a song out and get it out. Actually a full song. So like, you know, two, three minutes, however long it needs to be. But then the important bit is that you finish the song. So whether you like it, you don't like it. And this is the thing, I try not to get emotionally attached to the song during the creative process cuz getting too excited about a song can be a problem as well as not liking the song. So I. You know, cuz obviously you like the song a bit cuz you've gone playing around on the keyboard or programming on the notes, depending on how you do it. Um, you've got something out and you've decided, oh yeah, that's pretty good. I'm gonna go, I'm gonna hit record. So obviously you liked it at that time. And the idea is you, you mix the track down and then you don't listen to it for a week. This is the big. So each day what you do is you create three folders. So you have a sketchbook, then you have an in progress and a complete folder. So that song that you just did goes into the sketchbook and you say 30th of October song a. And then if you've got time, you might do 30th or October Song, B song. You know, if it's a Saturday night, you might have Song D or F, you know, if you're in the studio. And then what you want to do is you want to listen to that a week later., so you listen to the songs from a week ago. So every day if you keep doing this process and you do it, you know, minimum commitment of, you know, 20, 30 minutes a day, you've at least got one song that you're listening to each day. And you go, oh, what's today? And what I do is I upload it to a private, um, SoundCloud link, and then I like to listen to it in my car or walking my dog away. The the I do is to listen to it away from your. So in a different room at least, um, but preferably outside and away from your house. You and, and what you, you'll find is you'll discover, you know, you'll play back the song and you go, wow, that's really amazing. I can hear how that could be a fully formed song. Or you might go, nah, not that. and that's okay. You know, cuz it took you 30 minutes or an hour, maybe an hour and a half, two hours if you know it got carried away. But the idea is not to put too much, um, you know, don't fully form the sketch out. Just get enough down. So it's got the beat, the bass, the, the, the main components of the song so that you can tell whether it's an idea that you want to spend more time on. Um, and so if you decide that. Like the song, then you can go into your, you put it into the in progress. and then you've got this folder of all things that you've decided that you like and you can make notes and things like that. I, I, I keep spreadsheets and things on, so if I listen to the song, I can put into my phone. Yep. Really like that one, but needs better bass, sound needs maybe speeded up by two PPM or something. You, you know, you put your first reaction to it and then you can go back and listen., you know, just open up the session and look at your notes and go, okay, let's try a better bass.

Let's try at 2:

00 PM beat faster. And, and then, you know, you can quite see quite quickly what you want to do. And so from there you can either complete the song and put it into complete you. Some often it will happen really quickly. For me, I, if I decide I like a song, I can finish it. Other people might like to leave it in progress for another week and listen to it a week again. and then they can decide, you know? And sometimes you put things in progress and you might work on it and go, actually no, I'm putting it back in the sketchbook for the moment cuz it's not working. So you don't want to have too many songs in your in progress folder, cuz that's sort of like the work that you've got to do. So you try things out and if you don't like it, you can put it back in the sketchbook and see. I've got a, a sketchbook that's got more than a thousand songs in it. You know, if I ever have a creative rut, I could go back and. You know, mi mine, these things for Yeah. Song ideas. Um, yeah. So, so that's, that's pretty much the process for how you can have endless, um, creativity and sources for your music.

Marc Matthews:

Fantastic. There are so many bits in there that I'd never considered doing that I am totally gonna take forward. I think the most poignant thing for me are the buckets, the three buckets where you've got the sketch, you've got the work in progress, I might call it paraphrase. And then the, the final, what was the final bucket again? The third bucket. Oh, you can have

Simon Quinn:

complete, so you can call it whatever you want or, or release it. Ready to go on SoundCloud, you know? Yeah. Whatever you

Marc Matthews:

want to, yeah. I, I think that that's a, that's a fantastic idea and I like the idea of waiting as well, um, to listen to the, the song before you decide whether or not you're gonna take it forward to actually giving it time to, to almost marinate on its own, and then you come back to it. How many songs would you have in the in progress? What's a, what's a healthy amount of songs to be working on at any given

Simon Quinn:

time? Yeah, that's, that's a very good, um, question. I, I usually have, you know, about 10 in there that I'm liking and then, then you can. Yes, can be between 10 and 20, but try, try and keep it definitely under. Close, closer to 10. Cuz, cuz that's, yeah. The ones that you really think are, are actually, you know, really good songs that you want to want to release. And so yeah, the idea with the, um, with the safety word, what, what we've been doing for three and a half years is releasing, um, a song or an EP every five to six weeks. To, um, to feed the, uh, Spotify algorithms and, and also just for ourselves. It feels really good to always have something that's just come out. And then a track U usually has a good cycle for about five weeks, you know? Um, and it, it feels like on social media, you can talk about that track for at least a month after it's out, but then sort of on week five you can stop talking about the track and then week six you can, you know, talk about the new one coming out. And it's like this nice cycle that you can have and people that. Uh, uh, fans of your music always have something that's fresh and then the idea of something else coming out that they can look forward to as well.

Marc Matthews:

Fantastic. It's a bit, I, I mean, testament to yourselves and, and your songwriting partner there for the amount of music they put out. And it's quality music, which is, it's incredibly impressive and I can see. Through this workflow, how it is possible. Cause I think right at the beginning of, of the, um, demonstration of the way you described it, you mentioned about how you stopped sound designing you, you, when you're writing a song, cuz I, I've fallen into that trap and I'll, I could sit there for a couple hours and come up with it, this great pad sound, and then I might not actually take this song any further. And then that, that idea dies, you know? Yeah. And being able, not, like you said, not get emotionally attached to the, to the song and stay objective. Create the song, complete it, come back to it in a week and decide whether or not you're gonna take it forward. And I can totally see how you would come up with so many songs.

Simon Quinn:

It's about having as much, um, thing much work done before you start the sessions as well. So that's even like having all of your drum samples really clearly marked like your favorites, like. Your favorite 10 kick drums, your favorite 10 snares, so you're not cycling and spending hours. Cuz these are things I used to do, spend, you know, half an hour finding the perfect snare when really, you know, you've got your 10 favorites or something like that. And that's even for bases. You know what, that's why you say you have your dedicated base of ST and you have all your, they might be patches that you've made too, that you can. You know, subbase one, subbase two, you know, synth wave app, bridge base, you know, whatever it is. But I, I create patches and then label them too, or I relabel other patches or put them into folders so you can find them really quickly cuz you don't want to be spending time, you know, cycling presets or trying to create a sound that you hear in your head, but then you lose the momentum for creating the. because yeah, as I said, you can always come back to shape the perfect lead sound and spend an hour on it if you decide that the track's killer. And it's worth spending two hours, three hours on that perfect lead sound and that that it is, cuz you've got the track already there and all it needs is that one little thing that's gonna take it over the edge.

Marc Matthews:

I think it's, um, it kind of echoed something that I read a while back and it's, I, what I tried to instigate in my own songwriting, admittedly not as anywhere near as prolific as yourself, but it was a case of I try and have separate sound design sessions to a songwriting session. Yeah. And not having, um, like not having any cross. Crossover between the two. Yeah. Is that something you would say is, is a definite do? Yeah,

Simon Quinn:

definitely. Well, I, I have sessions where I'm just organizing my samples or organizing my vsts and, and organizing the, the, um, yeah. Or doing sound design yet just, just exploring new, um, vsts that I might have just downloaded. So I'm not doing that while trying to create a song. I'm just like, okay, I've got this new vst. I want to learn how to.. Um, and I'm just gonna do that, you know, rather than trying to do it while making a song, cuz it, it's too distracting doing both. Yeah. Kimber. Yeah.

Marc Matthews:

So my next question off the back of that is then, so you've got your work in progress, you're working on it, and then you wanna move it to the completed folder. how do you know, at what point do you know, you know, what this song is, is ready to move into that completed folder? Is there a, what, what, what is that point? How, how do

Simon Quinn:

you know that? Um, well, I think depends on the style of song that you're, you're making. Um, . So if, if you can listen to it through, and it's, um, exciting throughout. So there's another thing that I use is like the, um, the, the rule of eights or 16th. So every Yep. Eight bars, something is happening, something is changing. You know, is it, is it boring? You know?, is it progressing? Is there a beginning, middle, and an end? Because a song is very much like telling a story, um, is there some sort of payoff? Like, is this worth three or four minutes of someone's time? Like, does. Does the song just sort of repeat itself within, like if you've heard the first 10 or 20 seconds, is there a point for people to watch the rest of it or listen to the rest of it? Um, yeah, but that's a very individual, um, question. Then that's up to the artist to, um, decide what sort of music they wanna make and what sort of stories they want to tell. And worlds they want to create. So where does

Marc Matthews:

your songwriting partner come into this process? Is he doing, is he doing the same thing as you or are you working together or do you, do you bring the ideas together at a certain point?

Simon Quinn:

Well, often, um, we'll have writing sessions where we get together and we do this process, uh, in the same room, um, of. I'll, I'll do a lot more of it myself though. Often I'll come to him with, with a song, but we find that it is, um, a lot more, um, valuable. It, it feels like the right thing to do when we create a track together, um, sort of from scratch. And we are doing the whole process like that. He, he also, he makes, um, music, he is not so into computers and stuff, so he's like the analog and I'm the digital, but he has like an op one and a. Bunch of like little micro music type makers and stuff like that. And he records it onto an eight track digital, eight track. So he'll often have stuff like that and he'll bring that over to me and go, oh, can we make something from this? So he does his own type splurging sessions and he'll save them down and then I can cut them up and make something, um, new from that. And that's how some of the moving forward in reverse stuff came about. Um, Oh, I love

Marc Matthews:

this. I'm sort of, uh, awestruck by this process cuz I've been trying to find a way, cuz you mentioned there about time and um, Time is, is,

Simon Quinn:

yeah. Well, I've got a full-time job. I'm, I'm a high school teacher in a school for autism. I've got a nine year old son and I'm probably someone that you wouldn't think would be able to be prolific with music. Um, . Yeah. So I've got everything going against me, but then I try not to, to use that as, as an excuse or a problem, and I just, and so, you know, some days will be really full on, and it might only have 20 minutes or half an hour, but I see it like going to the gym and it's like exercising your musical. and so it, it's becomes easier for me to create, to do, to get the the splurge done than to not do it. And I feel really bad if I don't do it. But you, you don't beat yourself up about it, but, you know, um, it's cuz I enjoy that, that thing of having the seven days later to go, oh, what did I do a week ago? And you can look in your folder and go, Oh, I didn't do anything. Why didn't or you go, oh, I did seven tracks on that day. Let's have a listen to those. Yeah, and that's really exciting. You know, it's like a, um, birthday present, you know, it's like you get to open it up and you go, oh, what am I gonna hear? Because you forget what you've made like a week ago. And cuz you know, it might have been another 20 songs. um, since then. And, and so it's like you're hearing it for the first time, like someone else made it and you go, wow, what's that? And yeah, it's really exciting. And that's why you listen to it away from the computer too. So you're not looking at the midy notes or you're not looking at the door. You're actually just hearing it as a piece of music.

Marc Matthews:

So is that how you stay motivated then you mentioned about, um, finding time. Cause you're, you sound like you're a very, very busy individual. What were the DJing as well? Um, so., is that how you stay motivated? You? You say they're exercising the musical muscle, which is one in one of my notes here, and I was gonna ask about how do you stay motivated? Do you have it as like habit and routine? Now it's a case of., I need to do this. And then you get the payoff the week later in that you can listen to this music back is how, how you stay motivated.

Simon Quinn:

Yeah. Yeah. It's just about, yeah, just, just doing it every day. And the more that you do something, um, they say it takes like 30 days to form a habit, you know? And so if you are creating music every day, you know, and it's what, what you do, you know, when you maybe first get home from work or when you know, whatever the time is for you. Some people are mourning people. They could get up and do it. I'm not a morning person. I like to stay up.

1:

00 AM or something and do it when everyone else is asleep, you know? And that, that's a nice creative time for me. But whatever works for you. And you know, it depends, depends on your situation, you know. But if you, if you can find half an hour to do something like this and do it every day, just as a minimum commitment, you'd be amazed at what you can do. And in a month, you know, if you've done one song every day for a month, , at least probably five of those are gonna be really awesome songs. You know you got an EP. Marc Matthews: Yeah, Yeah. It's that compound effect, isn't it? It's doing little things often and they're gradually building build and build and

Simon Quinn:

snowball. And it doesn't matter if the song's not good because it was a, it's still a worthwhile use of your time. because you're getting better at creating beats faster, creating melodies, creating pads, you know, just doing, doing everything. So it's never a waste of time if the song doesn't work out. And that's how you've gotta see it as well. You might have a week where none of the songs you wanna move forward, but you've still got gotten better at music production and playing your instrument and using your vsts and using Ableton or whatever you use. And so it's, yeah, it's never a waste of.

Marc Matthews:

Fantastic. So you mentioned there about getting better over time. Was it quite challenging, might not be the right word, but when you started this process, was it, I suppose challenging would be, was it quite a challenging thing to do in terms of., this, these, these, these restrictions in this finite amount of time and everything combined together. Yeah. So

Simon Quinn:

when, when I started this process, um, did it as, as a monthly sort of, um, challenge as it was called. And then you, you challenge yourself to go, okay, I'm gonna do this every day for a month. And as I said before, habits form within a month. So you go. You think I'm only doing this for a month, I can keep going. I'm gonna do this. And obviously you get to the end of the month and you want to keep going because you've written like at least 10 songs that are really cool. And usually before I started this process, it might take me three months to come up with one song, you know? So it's, it was pretty life changing for me, you know? Yeah. A real eyeopener. So I've, I've never looked back from, once I discovered this, um, this process. Yeah. Yeah.

Marc Matthews:

Excellent. I think for the audience listening, I think it's like the key bit there is that continuation and persevering and getting, um, and it echoes a conversation I had, uh, with another artist in a, in, in one of these interviews whereby it was a case, I think he said just, just break through, just continue going, and, you know, and you will. Come out the other side. It's probably the wrong way to put it, but yeah, it kind of makes sense. And then at the end of it, you're like, like you said there, after those 30 days, you. You have that, that habit and then, then you have that routine and it's ingrained in you, you continue on with it, which is amazing. I've, um, one thing I was gonna say is I've realized we're time here, we're already at 45 minutes and I wanna, I wanna touch on vanity life, so, okay. Um, could you give our, cuz it is the, like the, the, uh, the point of recording this episode, it is the most recent. Sort of single. Correct. Can you give our audience a bit of a breakdown of how that song came to life? Um,

Simon Quinn:

yeah. Well, that, that, that song came through, um, a, the splurging process that I do. Um, so I didn't, didn't think much of the song when I wrote it. I just, you know, it was just throwing ideas around. And then I, I did put it into the in progress phase in, um, so if you're doing. With a, a band mate or something. I often will send, um, my band mate, the, the songs that I are at, the ones that I decide that are worth moving forward with. And so I just emailed him the MP3 mixdown of it. And I think within like, you know, five minutes of me sending it to him, he was like, that one, we've got a, I've, I've got a melody already, can I come over and record something? So, you know.. Um, so it, I think it was like a Friday and he, he came around Saturday morning and just went laid, laid down some vocals and I was like, wow. You know, he'd almost written the whole whole song like from hearing it and being inspired by that particular one. Um, and yeah. It, it came together quite quickly like that. And then we, we like to workshop vocals together and sort of like what the theme of the song is, what we're trying to say and that sort of thing. And so the Song of Vanity Life is, um, about how., particularly artists can feel a lot of pressure on social media to have to be constantly not only creating something and feeding the algorithm beast, but also only presenting their best sort of self. Sort of like that., you know, um, cuz people don't want to really hear about, you know, how bad your day was and how much you hate your job. Or , you know, , they, they, they just want, they're there for the good time, you know, , um, yeah. So it can often feel like, you know, you, you've had a really hard day and you don't really want to post a social media and, and that's where batching and that sort of thing. is a really good thing to do. Um, that's another conversation. Um, . . But, um, yeah, so, so Vanity Life is, is about sort of rising above this sort of, um, it's striving for vanity metrics and, and this ideal image that you have on social media and rising above that, um, to be able to present something more real. And authentic. And so in the film clip we had a lot of fun sort of, um, dressing up as, um, yeah. Fein and that as possible with makeup and glitter and, you know, um, yeah, female quotes and stuff and just, just being a bit over the top and glam. And that's that sort of like, look at me, TikTok culture kind of.. Marc Matthews: I, I totally You can see how it would satirize that sort of culture. Yeah. Um, and it's great to do that. Yeah. I mean, PE people don't really know. We're joking, but that doesn't matter., Marc Matthews: yeah. It goes back to what you said earlier, doesn't it? About like you're creating it for your own enjoyment and somebody else enjoys it then. Fantastic. You know, you mentioned there about, um, that. The vocals were recorded the second day. Have you ever done it the other way around then, where you've had vocals first and then put the sort of the arrangement? Yeah. Yeah. John, John sends me Dictaphone recordings of him, like out in the. You know, sometimes it could be on the toilet, wherever he is. Very reverbing there, . Um, but he'll send me little bits and he is like, oh, can we make this into a song? And so like, I'll listen to it and then, you know, copy it into the door and sort of work something around obviously. And then I'll send it to him and, and we do a lot of like sending stuff cuz it's easier than getting in person so we don't get to see each other in person. Too much, you know, once a week or something like that. Um, so yeah, sending files back and forth, like what do you think of this? How about that one? Um, yeah, so some, sometimes it works like that. Or he'll have a guitar line that he'll, he'll play or something like that. And he's got a melody and, and it's quite funny some of the, the first sketches that, that you'll hear just to anyone else. Think that doesn't sound like doesn't sound like a song, but we just totally trust each other and know that it's gonna be totally different by the time we actually do it as well. Yeah,

Marc Matthews:

I, I know what you mean though. When it, when it comes to singers and, um, I'm not a singer myself, but I come up with melodies and, and, and it is kind of where inspiration strikes my, you never know when that situation's gonna be, and it can be in very weird situations, you know? Um, but that's great that you can do it from the other way around as well. So you can actually start from, From lyrics or from vocals. Yeah. And then do it, uh, do it that way around. So with regards to this splurging process, you mentioned a few key tools earlier that you used to come up with chords. I think it'd be quite cool for our audience if you could maybe list off a few of like the, your most important tools that you used during this splurging process. Um,

Simon Quinn:

yeah. So, um, one of the ones that I really like is, is., which is a, um, chord composing tool. And so you can set what key you want it in, and then you can use your left hand to, to play up the, the sort of scale. You press one key and it gives you a chord. And I find that's a really nice way of creating, um, you know, a chord sequence quite quickly is, is by using something like that and another. That is equally as good as Scaler Two is the Captain Chords one, um, in Insta chord. Um, yeah, very similar. Um, just yeah, depending on, you know, the feel or look of, you know, what you like. Um, and, and there's, there's even other ones that, um, I've experimented with that you can get, they can spit out melodies for you as well. I, I prefer to write my own melodies, but if., you know, if you want something to, to start your inspiration, it's, you know, could, could be a tool you want to look. As well.

Marc Matthews:

Fantastic. I'm gonna look at those cuz it, it kind of, um, resonates with me. Well, yeah, it's, it's something I've been doing with my own sound. Right. Sound writing. I combined songwriting and sound design, my own songwriting recently, which is where I'm trying to start with chords and, um, at the moment I'm just picking a scale as you've done there and. Quite arbitrary and then trying to come up with the chords and I can be sat there for quite some time trying to come up with the chord progression, but I'm certainly gonna try out this scale

Simon Quinn:

on the one as well. Yeah, well it's, it's quite, quite nice, like cuz you even have it like, um, spit, spit out some chords for you.. So like, you know, four bars or eight bars and you can listen to it and go, do I like those chords? And there might be just one chord that you go, no, don't like that. And then you can just highlight it, press um, you know, um, what is it, the, uh, yeah button. Then it'll give you a different chords. You listen to that and go, oh, get that works for me. Now I'm gonna go with that. And it's, it's a good way to, um, yeah. Have, have something to start the song cuz that's, you know, yeah. Start, starting the song is, is the, can be the hardest bit. So yeah.

Marc Matthews:

Yeah, a hundred percent. These are fantastic ideas., I'm gonna take so much of it, of this away and use it in my own productions and, uh, audience listing. If you do as well, please do let us know which bits, if not all of it, you've taken away and used cuz I'd be intrigued to know. Cause I think it's fantastic. So, off the back of all this, so you've got all these great tools, you've got this process. Um, are there any sort of tools or techniques that you think could help improve your songwriting and production workflow? Um,

Simon Quinn:

yeah, at the moment I'm, I'm learning how to master properly because, uh, we still often, you know, mastering is, is, you know, the dark art of mastering. I, I, um, I think it's, it's a really good skill. So I'm, I'm learning how to, um, master in, in ozone. Um, cuz that's just something I, I can do it already to a basic level, but I'd like to be able to do it, you know, to the level that you pay someone a hundred, $150 to do. Um, and that, that's, that's sort of what I want to, um, Get on to next one. One of the other things that I, I didn't mention is, um, with beat making, I think it's a lot more fun once I started using a pad controller to make my beats rather than, um, using a mouse and clicking, it's just like this, being able to, you know, tap in the beat and rather than program it is just a lot more, um, fun and you come up. More interesting things as well. So having some sort of, and that's the same with Melody as well, having a keyboard, you know, even if it's a 25 key keyboard, you know, rather than clicking like things I i's just, you get a lot more organic kind of sounding music and, and especially with, um, lofi music, you want those high hats not to be right. Too synchronized. You want., you know, swaying around and have a bit of a human feel to them. And that can be fun and you can always, you know, um, quantize it later on if you do want it to be a robotic kind of thing.. Marc Matthews: Brilliant. Um, once again, I, I've been on a songwriting binge myself, and it, you've pretty much, you, you reson everything you're saying is resonating with me because I've done exactly that. I've moved away from the mouse clicking beat creation and admittedly amusing my mid keyboard. I've got a smaller controller base. It's not in the studio with me and, um, to create beats. And one thing I've done, Percussion in particular is I'll have the, uh, the eight bar loop of four while loop playing with the, with the metronome. And then I'll have a load of percussion sounds and I'll just play random stuff, random bits and pieces. And it goes back to what you said earlier, that you could play all this and then you might find there's three or four little mini notes, a little progression that you, you get rid of everything else. Yeah. And then you have that great bit there. and it's through experimentation and just matching that keyboard that I come up with it, rather than sit there with a mouse and think, right, I'm gonna put this little, this bit of percussion here. Yeah, this bit of percussion on this and this here, and realized 15 minutes later I don't like that. Whereas I could have just jammed on the jammed on the keyboard for eight bars and come up with something great. Um, so yeah, everything you're saying is fantastic and I think the audience is gonna get so much outta this. It's brilliant. Absolutely brilliant. No, it's a life-changing thing if you can get it right. Yeah.

Marc Matthews:

I can imagine if you're, if you're knocking out a thousand songs in, in, in a year, I'm, I'm, I'm not impressed. I mean, that would, that would be sig that's probably the most prolific in terms of individuals being on, on the podcast, which is, which is, and it's quality as well. That is the key that what the music you're putting out is, is also quality. So I just throw, throw that in there as well. That's right.

Simon Quinn:

Yeah. It's, it's hard to, to say it to people without sounding like you kind of. Arrogant or cocky or something like that. But I'm, I'm very humble person and, you know, um, but it's, it's all about the, the systems that you have in place that allow you to, to do things that you wouldn't think that you'd be able to do.

Marc Matthews:

Yeah, 100% an audience listening. Do take away all of these nuggets of wisdom, information and do feedback. Whether you're watching this on YouTube, put it in the comments, or if you're listening on your podcast player of Choice, just put, I say review or DM on Instagram and let us, let's know what you're using, cuz. Uh, whichever part of this you're gonna use in your own production, cuz there's so much in here that's so useful and I'm gonna be using it myself. I know that much. So Simon, we're, we're sort of almost at the hour mark now, so what I'd like to give you the opportunity now is just to where, where can our audience find you online? Where can they find, uh, your music and more about you, you as, uh, you as a band? Yeah. So,

Simon Quinn:

um, you can go to ww dot the safety word dot., and that's our, um, like tap link page. And that usually has, everything that's current for us has links to our Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, all of that. Um, TikTok Twitter, we're on all of them. Um, it also just has direct links to our latest songs. Our, um, what's coming up also, what's just been released. Our latest video clips, our latest press, uh, interviews, things like that. I'm gonna put this, uh, podcast up at the top. Fantastic. For next week, . Um, it's my late to air. Brilliant. Yep.. So yeah, that's probably the, but obviously if you look us up on Spotify, we are there, the safety word. Um, yeah, YouTube, uh, what are we, the Yeah, actually YouTube just changed to at the safety word, and we're the same on, on TikTok and on Instagram as well.

Marc Matthews:

Yeah. Fantastic. Simon, thank you so much for joining me on this today. I know it's quite late where you are now. It was probably reaching 11 o'clock.

Simon Quinn:

Yeah, it's 11, 11 0 2 now, but that's, that's fine.

Marc Matthews:

Yeah. Yeah. And it's, uh, time flies, it's day having fun . Exactly. That These, these podcast episodes, I never get through everything that I want to get through. I, I find I always over-indulge with my show, um, with my questions and stuff that I have written down. But there's so much to take away from this episode in terms of songwriting, and I think it's massive and I think it's gonna be so. For, for, for the audience listening. So a really, really big thank you for joining me today. Yeah,

Simon Quinn:

thank you very much. I've had a great time chatting You.

Marc Matthews:

No, it's been brilliant and uh, I'll let you enjoy what's left of, um, well there's only an hour left, left of the day. That's right. And, uh, we'll catch up soon.

Simon Quinn:

Okay, cool. Thank you very much. Hey, this is the artist Gray t-shirt problem and my favorite episode of Inside the Mix podcast is episode 40, where Mark talks to Zach Vortex about staying consistent with your mixes and your releases. And, uh, that has been very, Uh, challenging for me to do, and so it's kind of lit a fire under me to start doing more releases and staying consistent with the, with the releases that I put out.

Behind the music: The Safety Word
Exercising the musical muscle; how do you stay self-motivated?
How to be a DIY band
Vanity metrics and vanity life
The 1000-song challenge
What are gamification techniques?
Splurging: what are the qualities of a good songwriter?
How many songs should you write a month?
What makes a song a good song?
Exercising the musical muscle: how do you stay self-motivated?
Behind the music: Vanity Life
Songwriting workflow: what are the steps in songwriting?

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