Being a singer/songwriter, you are given lots of freedom in regards how your music will ultimately sound. Nowadays, we have so much technology at our disposal that you can easily use a computer to make it sound like you recorded with something as complex as a full orchestra or as simple as an acoustic guitar.
Up and coming pop/rock artist, Kelsey Bramson, recently started using one of this oh-so fancy pieces of equipment on a new song she’s recording. Check out Bramson’s story about using a looper for the very first time after the jump.
Bramson released an EP titled Adding Injury To Insult in June 2013. You can purchase a CD here. Also be on the lookout for Bramson’s new song “Fine,” the one she recorded with the looper, to be released very soon. For more information on Bramson, visit her website here.
You can read all previous “My First Time” stories here.
When the idea for “Fine” came, I had barely been working my looper a month. Like many of the songs I’ve written, it started out as something I screamed at my bathroom mirror, and then became a melody. I took the word to my equipment, and did my best to create a series of harmonies for the main loop, to be used in the verses, and return in the chorus.
I have always wanted my own a capella group. Due to friends with commitments elsewhere, lack of funds and time, and otherwise, while I was able to participate in one here and one there, the dream was never fully realized. Being a vocalist, and a childhood choir geek, chords and harmonies make sense to me more than anything else. Growing up I taught myself to play the keyboard just well enough that I could write songs, but by no means well enough that I enjoy playing the keys and singing in front of crowds. So, I bought the looper to craft the ideas I heard in my head, the arrangements and melodies (and in time, learn to even do a bit of vocal percussion), and become that group, by myself.
It was like arranging a band, and working with it allows you to have the control over your musical ideas at your fingertips. You listen to the metronome (a kick drum, if you wish), and pick and choose what to hear, what to build, what to filter, and what to create. “Fine” is a song about the breaking point of a relationship, and it felt like hell to write. By the middle, the simple structured loops that I had created didn’t cut it alone, and I needed to find ways to take the sounds I was creating and the tools at my fingertips to overlap and overlap the voices, and let the song come crashing down. Probably my favorite effect on the machine (TC-Helicon VoiceLive Touch 2) is the harmony button that allows me to modulate an octave, and two octaves down. It creates this rumbling bass that vocally I have never (and probably will never) be able to reach on my own.
So the song was created, and it was just the beginning. Nowadays, while I don’t necessarily use my looper to perform live, I use it as a tool for crafting songs, and creating the arrangements I’ve always heard.
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