When I ask Charlie Ryder, a multi-instrumentalist and co-founder Yumi Jauma“How we formed New Zealand, the critically acclaimed alternative pop band made an album during a global lockdown,” he said with a laugh, “the way we’ve been doing it for the last seven years.” For Yumi Zuma, making music together while being physically separate is nothing new. Josh Burgess, the band’s guitarist, keyboardist and vocalist, added, “We’ve never lived in the same town, so we have that skill.” “We did. We had the experience of producing and mixing separately. It was something we just drowned in. I mean, honestly, we didn’t think about it.”
Rushing towards the epidemic
Given the opportunity, the bandmates, who have rarely been together in the same country, have decided that by the year 2020, they have finally got some IRL facetime with plans to travel in support of their new album, Truth or consequence. “We went on tours and spent a lot of time with each other, and that’s usually when we get together to work or finish new music. [preexisting] Music, ”Simpson recalls.
But fate had another plan: “The day we played the first show of our tour, the WHO [World Health Organization] It declared an epidemic, “Ryder explained. The band was rehearsing for 12 hours a day in preparation for their first sold-out tour when all their plans changed.” The first show in the United States was March 12. I was on a plane, literally in the United States. I was flying, watching CNN, and this Irish friend of the WHO said, ‘We’re declaring a global epidemic,’ and there was a [collective] Breathing in the cabin. Burgess recalls.
With their tour canceled, they needed a creative way to promote their new record. So, they leaned towards their esteemed remote collaboration skills and decided to re-record the album. Truth and Consequences (alternative version), This time, experiment using new arrangements, tempos, and chords and Soundbetter Find their lives by finding a string section.
Keep the momentum
Quadrangle, which also includes drummer Olivia Campion, was no stranger to the Soundbetter platform. They used a soundbetter to find a saxophonist for their Sophomore album, Willowbank, And originally stumbled upon the music production marketplace while looking for mix engineers who could add some polish to their music, especially the vocals. “We were just DIY amateur musicians who do things at home,” Ryder explained. “So the results we were getting were not great. When we were advancing our careers, we wanted to be more professional, and the easiest way to do that is to have your voices awesome.
Soundbater gave them an effective way to do it. “Just go back and listen to our first records,” Ryder said. “You hear the difference before we involve others [and now]. We were recording in Joshua’s bedroom closet, and you could hear the car horns. [our first album] Yoncalla. ”
Since Burgess is in the United States, Simpson is in England, and Ryder is in Italy, being able to cooperate without losing steam is also key to their process. “I think one of the most important things is speed because we live in different countries and in different time zones,” Ryder shared. “So, I can give Josh a track and go to sleep, and he can work overnight and I can pick it up again the next morning and continue like a factory production line. So, if we write and record a new song and receive all these voices, we can give them to someone else for sorting overnight and then come back to us the next day completely finished, then we can move on. It’s really helpful. And it prevents us from getting stuck in the weeds of inactivity.
Soundbatters allow them to lean towards their creativity and focus on what they do by pushing the boundaries of their music. “There’s something you can’t do [yourself]For example, like a string section. We can’t play those instruments, and sometimes you want to keep a synthesized version of it versus the real thing. But, there are some things you can do, but there are only a few hours a day, ”Burgess insisted. “Practicing and scrubbing the vocal cords for 10 hours allows you to experiment with 10 hours of separate progress or a new bridge. There are some things you can do just as Yumi Zuma.
Reduce barriers to entry
“Working with producers, it’s fairly accessible in LA, there are producers everywhere. In New Zealand, there are probably 10 producers, and they’re probably all busy, or they may not necessarily be the vibe you’re going for, or [they’re] Expensive. There are many more obstacles when you live in such a small country, ”Simpson notes. Being able to access talent around the world through Soundbetter opens the pool. He further believes that services like Spotify and Soundbetter give small artists opportunities that they would not otherwise have. “There’s a lot of pop work that comes from small roots and New Zealand and does well through Spotify, for example, and [people in] New Zealand doesn’t necessarily know who they are, but they are on all these Spotify playlists. This is evidence of how technology has changed, and streaming services have changed people’s success based solely on your physical condition. ”
Burgess agreed, adding, “We are always blessed that we are [started] At a time when access to professional recordings and music releases was lower than ever before, and I see it as an evolution like Soundbetter. The team of people you can pull from is getting bigger. I think it’s getting less and less of the barriers to entry. Even a string quadrangle 15 years ago, would have been a really expensive exercise that probably wouldn’t have happened unless you were lucky enough to know that you were in your creative community.
“If you’re a New Zealand band, it’s impossible,” Ryder smiled in response.
For Yumi Zuma, tapping into resources like Soundbetter is second nature, not just when they make their music, but how they started in the first place. They hope other artists will do the same.
“The night we wrote our first song, we emailed random addresses that we thought were from record labels and signed our first record deal that morning. [We did] The same goes for Soundbatter, we’ve only reached out to random people, probably people we didn’t think would respond to us first, “Ryder recalls. “There’s always going to be people who don’t listen to your demos or delete your stuff, but you’ll always be surprised to see people who respond and really care and are interested in what you do. There’s a very DIY mindset and an understanding of musicians who do everything themselves, but I don’t think you’ll ever get frustrated by opening up your horizons a little bit.