Smiling Savage
Smiling Savage Album Creation Podcast
Album creation podcast, Episode 5

Album creation podcast, Episode 5


It’s time to show off the fourth song for the upcoming album, though the path to get here from the last song wasn’t linear.

I’ve been working on an idea inspired by some saxophone work by Tim Cappello on the track I Still Believe from The Lost Boys soundtrack. Cappello, the saxophonist for Tina Turner, also contributes rich sound to hits such as The Best, Private Dancer, and We Don’t Need Another Hero.

That mix of growling sax and drums is wonderful, and I’m chasing it up the learning curve trying to figure out how to achieve that in my software. I’ve learned a lot, but nothing has come together yet for a song. That said, I still believe there’s potential for what I’ll dub “techno sax” in some later song.

Part of what’s slowing me down getting sax integrated into electronic music is that I’m approaching songs like today’s Song 4 as mathematical patterns. To me they sound right when they look right, which might not make a ton of sense — but since I don’t read music all that’s left for my brain’s pattern recognition to latch on to are other details.

So far, sax notes with growl or sustain have fallen somewhere on the less structured, more organic side of my brain. And while the Logic Pro software makes it easy to transpose notes or MIDI-data between tracks — for example, so that something that starts out as a synthesizer or drum kit can be played on a saxophone — that hasn’t unlocked the type of sound I want yet. Here are some examples of synthesizer sounds transposed to a saxophone…

One can quickly achieve saxophone-like sounds that couldn’t actually be played by a real person — at least I don’t think they could. The thought reminds me of movie trivia from The Fifth Element: That the opera song was specifically written to be impossible for a human singer to achieve, and yet here’s a link to a singer apparently doing it.

In any case, for the fourth song today I’m sharing something completely different. Like all the other first looks, there’s more to come on this one, but I currently love the voices as interesting noise and various bass sounds in this first draft.

As usual, it’s good to lift up and share, which keeps me from polishing details that aren’t ready for a fine tuning. I’ve also found the feedback I’ve received on these drafts to be very helpful! Off the cuff, I’d say each x.1 version song gets 100% better quickly after sharing because the feedback from others is so insightful.

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Smiling Savage
Smiling Savage Album Creation Podcast
Follow along as I work toward my goal of creating and publishing the first Smiling Savage album in 2022. I'm learning Logic Pro and working with musicians to incorporate their feedback.