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In the studio with MISTRO TS
Jaz from the RepostExchange Team
Feb. 04, 2022

How long have you been producing music and how did you learn?

I've been producing music for seven years. I learned how to produce when I was 13, my friend taught me the basics and I kept practicing over time. I was introduced to music as a hobby when I was seven years old through the classical piano.

What DAW(s) do you use and why?

I use FL Studio 12, it is my favorite DAW to use because it is very easy for me, I feel limitless and completely free using FL Studio.

What are your favourite pieces of gear and why?

My most favorite pieces of gear are my midi keyboard (Williams Allegro 2), my headphones (Beyerdynamic DT 990 PRO), and my laptop (Samsung Notebook 7 Spin). To me, they are the most essential to use for music production and that is really all the gear I need to create my songs.

What are your favourite software plugins and why?

I have two favourite plugins, KV331 Synthmaster and Massive by Native Instruments. These two so far are my most favorite because of their sounds, options, and features. When I use these plugins I feel like I can create or tweak any sound I want without limits. They are both great plugins for sound design.

How would you summarise your approach/workflow when creating a track?

First I love to start with creating a drum pattern that already sets the energy of the track for me. Then I create a chord progression that evokes emotion. And I top it all off with a melody by a lead or synth. In an EDM track I start with creating the drop, buildup then I move to the break. After that, it is all formatting arrangements and touch-ups with effects, mixing, and then finally mastering.

What resources do you use to improve your craft?

The resources I use to improve my craft involve a combination of a lot of things. I learn from YouTube tutorials, listening to my favorite tracks and comparing them to mine. I also learn from my father, he is a music producer also. I grew up in a very musical family so I basically was raised in the studio. I trust my ear a lot because growing up with music I know how everything should and shouldn't sound.

What is the last YouTube tutorial you watched that you would recommend to other Re-Ex Members?

The last YouTube tutorial I watched was actually on how to adjust the audio and tempo of vocals in my DAW. I was struggling with pitch, sampling, and stretching all while maintaining good quality. I would recommend it for anybody who uses FL Studio and is struggling with the same issue.

What knowledge or advice do you wish you'd learned earlier?

That less is more. When It comes to creating the best track every single element you use has to have significance. There has to be space for every sound and there has to be balance. You can have minimal elements in a song and if your leveling and mixing are on point, your song will sound full.

What challenges related to making music do you face and how do you overcome them?

The main challenge I face the most is writer's block, I often create the most I can until I become drained. When I get drained or frustrated with a song, I take a break from music, go for a walk, watch a movie, see my friends or listen to music that inspires me. Usually, after I do all these things I feel like I can produce again.

Can you share any killer tips or techniques?

Focus more on mixing as you produce and leveling and panning your sounds. When you do this you will feel more inspired as you are creating and you will hear your tracks potential. Also when layering chords, try splitting the chords into different sounds, assign certain notes of those chords to your individual plugins. Your chords will come out sounding bigger.

Do you use any online tools to assist with the production process?

I do, but not many. I use Instagram to assist me with finding producers and vocalists to collaborate with.

Do you try and get feedback or suggestions to improve your music?

Yes, I do from other producers I admire. However, I keep it very minimal. I do not ask many other producers or friends of mine, maybe two or three at most.

Which track are you most proud of and why?

At the moment I am most proud of my new single with my friend Joie Kathos 'Fly Away', but I love all the music I’ve released.

Has RepostExchange affected the way you make music? If so, how?

RepostExchange has affected the way I reach more listeners with my music and I love and highly recommend it to anyone trying to get their music off the ground.

Desert Island Gear (top 5 software or hardware)

Top L-R: Pioneer DDJ SR controller, Samsung Notebook 7 Spin.

Bottom L-R: FL Studio, Beyerdynamic DT 990 PRO, Novation Launchkey.

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This interview has been lightly edited for brevity and clarity. This interview was originally published on June 5th, 2020.