Your history as a musician

When have you started creating music and why?
How did you compose your music and what style do you prefer?

My story:
I the year 1991 my best friend introduced a program called Soundtracker to me at the age of 12. I was addicted to electronic music since the age of 4, and I was always a creative mind, so I started playing around with sounds on Soundtracker. Soundtracker was the first known tracker on the Amiga 500, which was the best computer back then. That was the time when Commodore, the manufactorer of C16, C64 and Amiga, was really big before it disappeared and was being replaced by PC. After a whle there was a successor of Soundtracker called Noisetracker, and shortly after that another successor appeared, called Protracker. That was my DAW for years until 1997. And it wasn’t bad, I almost signed a contract with A&R FAX Records at the age of 14 and got invited in their studio, but it never happened because I wasn’t persistent enough for getting this contract. I thought the lack of sound quality would always be there as long as I create music on Amiga, otherwise I would have had signed for sure. By the way, the music I made back then was primarely Techno. Meanwhile I tried Cubase and using Hardware gear in a musician’s workshop on Atari ST, but that was absolutely not the way I would like to create music. It’s way too awkward working with it. So in 1997 I finally switched to PC, because Commodore wasn’t anymore and I didn’t want to continue creating music in a limited sound quality with only 4 tracks. Luckily there was a successor on PC called Fasttracker, which was my DAW for exactly 6 weeks. It was exactly the same like Protracker on Amiga, but without the limitation of 4 tracks. Suddenly even a single instrument took much more memory space than a whole song made with Protracker. But finally I was able to work with the number of tracks I needed. The reason why I only worked about 6 weeks with Fasttracker was because my PC only worked for 6 weeks, then one part after another fell apart, nothing worked right anymore, so I gave up and didn’t want to be a PC user anymore. I didn’t like PCs anyway, I was a Commodore user. I was that frustrated when it comes to my PC, that I completely stopped creating music.I couldn’t imagine going back to Protracker with only 4 tracks and a limited sound quality. 11 years later in the year 2008 my relationship to my girl back then has ended and I needed something for distraction, so a friend of mine introduced Skaletracker to me, which was an unfinished freeware Fasttracker clone, so I started creating something with it. Time went by and I wanted to get better in every aspect, but Skaletracker had too many limitations. You couldn’t use VSTs and many functions weren’t working, because Skaletracker was unfinished. Luckily at this point Renoise was recommended to me, that was in the year 2011 (In the thread “How did you meet Renoise?” I wrote 2012, but I guess that’s wrong, because I’ve found some tracks on my hard disk from 2011 which obviously were made in 2011 with Renoise). Since then I’m a happy Renoise user and finally everything I’ve always wanted is there. Now I can use VSTs, I can use as many tracks as I need and I can drop a beat as fast as before, because Renoise is a tracker with advanced possibilities. And a tracker is much more intuitive than anything else, it’s very easy to handle. But not only the DAW changed, my music style, too. Since 10 years I prefer creating Elektro and since round about one year I also create Synthwave. Thanks to Renoise (yes, and a little bit to my skills, too) I even have got an official release on a french Elektro label called Ukonx Recordings. And I’m absolutely not a pro! There’s absolutely not enough time to even think about becoming more professional. From 2013 until 2018 I also had to stop creating music because there was no time (self-employment isn’t easy). Music is just a hobby and will ever be, but a big one. :wink:

So that’s my story. What about you?

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Haha, I have similar story with Cubase…

  • 1985 Learned the basics on Commodore 64 with futurecomposer and soundmonitor, made a few tunes for the demoscene. I am in forever love with the C64 sound!
  • 1990 That carried over to the Commodore Amiga where the maintool was Protracker, just a bit disappointing it didn’t have a synth chip like the c64.
  • 1994 Started using FastTracker on PC
  • 1997 I bought some hardware but I couldn’t find a decent tracker to use so I really tried getting comfortable with Cubase, that was doomed, the fact that you couldn’t recall settings easily and using the mouse so much threw me off composing for a very very long time…
  • 2002 until Renoise popped up and I started making some music again. I tried Skaletracker, Madtracker and some other stuff before but they just weren’t good enough.
  • 2020 Fast forward to yesterday when I finally got something released on a music aggregator :slight_smile:
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started music school for accordion around 2004
fl studio around 2007, brother and his friends started using it so when they got out I did take my turn.

after 2 years started using acid pro, after approx 1 year reason 5

for several years using ableton live. meanwhile going in high music school and various music related activities (church choir etc)

started music academy for music pedagogy, did 3 years, in that time it was mostly reason and ableton live

5 years ago Ive got the mpc studio and was using only, asstandalone for a year or so

~4 years ago started using renoise mainly, mixbus 32c came along.

bitwig is in primary focus so far

a lot of years behind daw

and whatnot in between :slight_smile:

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man I was just getting born when you started using fast tracker 2 :stuck_out_tongue:

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I’m very new on this forum but also have a story:

Since 1992 I was a computer kid with my ZX Spectrum device. There was my cool school time.
First sounds that I was trying to made on speccy is BASIC program with BEEP operators like this (example from inet):
10 PRINT “Frere Gustav”
20 BEEP 1,0: BEEP 1,2: BEEP .5,3: BEEP.5,2: BEEP 1,0
30 BEEP 1,0: BEEP 1,2: BEEP .5,3: BEEP.5,2: BEEP 1,0
40 BEEP 1,3: BEEP 1,5: BEEP 2,7
50 BEEP 1,3: BEEP 1,5: BEEP 2,7
60 BEEP .75,7: BEEP .25,8: BEEP .5,7: BEEP .5,5:BEEP .5,3: BEEP.5,2: BEEP 1,0
70 BEEP .75,7: BEEP .25,8: BEEP .5,7: BEEP .5,5: BEEP .5,3: BEEP .5,2: BEEP 1,0
80 BEEP 1,0: BEEP 1,-5: BEEP 2,0
90 BEEP l,0: BEEP 1,-5: BEEP 2,0

Not very handy but something. Unfortunnaly I was lose my interest to composing very soon.

Second try was on PC at 1994-1996. Were was a dawn of electronic music and such music groups like Scooter, Blumchen, Interactive and indeed - Music instructor: “We would like to show you how to make a hit record…”
I never forget their “Hymn”. The great knowlege just in one song. Now I figured out about them - there was a group of professional sound operators who started to make their own music.

First steps i made with Sound Forge 4. It was just a sampler like Audacity but I was know nothing about music software.
So that sampler was my first “DAW”. Many hours I spend cutting sounds, transposing them and move some pieces of music between different compositions. And I really LIKE it.

Now I did’t remember where I found a Scream Tracker editor but it was fantastic. From that time I have started to make my own noise.
Second step was Fast Tracker 2 with amazing graphical interface. And many many hours was spended over it.
Third was an Impulse Tracker - soft like Scream Tracker on steroids. Only then I started to suspect that music is not only notes - it something more complicated. This is how I discovered sound effects.
Last soft I have tried was Buzz editor - modular and powerful but with a hellish inhuman interface.
It was maybe 1998.

… And I forgot about music software for many years. Because I was stupid and think that only expensive professional equipment can be used for composing.

At 2015 I remember the old good times and started to serch Internet for new trackers or maybe something like that. And YES.

You guess - I find Renoise. And only then I have understand how music creation works. Effect chains like in Buzz but with my beloved tracker interface, VST support, good documentation.

I was happy and work with Renoise till autumn 2018. And stopped again till autumn 2019 when i was desided to purchase a full version. And I stop again (you know) till september 2020.

And now I’m here :rofl:

A thing that pushed me to creative:

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Probably Mahler would’ve been impressed. (He’d need to correct the tiny typo in line 90 to finish his tune :slight_smile: )

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It’s already a long story!

I started to compose with Scream Tracker in 1996, and months ago I switched to Impulse Tracker. I also entered the French demoscene (nickname: Xenon) and participated to a few demoparties :partying_face: in France and Belgium with friends, that was fun!

• 1998-2005 : I composed musics (with trackers) for some professional videogames and products released on Playstation, PC, Nintendo DS… That was not really famous games, but a good experience.

• 2005 : I released a first album of healing music (L’instant Présent), and the point is that I switched to Renoise on this album, and this pushed-up the sound quality of my music (VSTi, a good internal reverb…).

• 2010 : I released the healing album Reiki Plénitude. This is still my personnal best-seller album, still today. Made mainly with Renoise too!
The first track of this album have some lot of views on Youtube, check-it up!

• 2010-2016 : continue with my healing music project and released some new albums.

• 2016-2019 : less active in music

• 2019 I started a tiny kawaii-future-bass project Make A Wish, inspired by animes and Japanese-pop musics.

• 2020 My entry won Mutant Breaks #12 :open_mouth: (Hey! That’s the first time I win a musical contest! Even if at random! :rofl:)

Then… I often switch between professional to non-professional projects into music… It’s as my inspiration bring me (and that’s why I keep a side job as a graphic designer :yum: :pencil2: ).

And now… to be continued!

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age 6 around 1986 or so i started singing on my dads karaoke machine ( i sang a lot then )
age 11 around 1991 or so at school started messing with keyboards
software wise i didn’t get started with and computers and software until around age 30 about 2010 with cubase sx ( before then never owned a pc only play stations , just used keyboards tbh
i used reason for a while after cubase then i found renoise this year and i proper love it
I’m 40 now and getting serious the most i ever have before i mostly sing and play keys

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I found a demo on one of the floppy disks that came with pc magazines back in the day, it let me compose music using the pc speaker. I think it was 4 bits, absolutely horrible sound quality, but it got me hooked. Next thing was to save up for a soundblaster pro and i started making something that sounded more and more like music with screamtracker 3. Years, and many DAWs later i was introduced to Renoise…

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I started playing accordion as a little child somewhere around '85. Soon I’ve got my first Yamaha PSR keyboard as a gift and liked it better than accordion because it had various sounds, drums, rhytms…

In '89 I’ve got my first computer (ZX Spectrum) and started programming first beeps on it. A year later, I replaced it with Commodore 64, which sounded way better and in 92 I got my first Amiga 500, which blew me away with sound capabilities. At this time, electronic music started to take off (eurodance, rave…) and I made a few short songs in Protracker, but nothing much to be proud of. I replaced A500 with Amiga 1200 in '94, also got sampler (TechnoSound Turbo II) and was mostly having fun with it without really making much music.

In 96 I switched to PC with Soundblaster AWE32, but didn’t really make any music with it. It just wasn’t as cool to work with as Amiga. At this time, I was mostly listening to goa trance, but also started to grow interest in hip hop. In '98 I’ve got Cakewalk, started to write hip hop lyrics and recorded first original demo track with a friend. In '99, I remixed this track in Rebirth and in 2000 we made another one.

In 2001 I upgraded to a new PC and got Reason 1, This was really a turning point, Reason really unleashed my creativity. In '02 I made some demos with it in and in '03 I released first demo EP and started a hip hop group with another friend. We released a full album the same year, all beats made in Reason, vocals recorded and mixed in Acid Pro.

After that, I started to feel limitations of Reason, mostly because there was no internal sampling and it was basically pretty clumsy for sample based music. I started to look around for some new trackers and found Renoise 1.26. Since I also got my first job this year I could finally afford to buy software, so Renoise 1.5 was my first music program that I bought. It was absolutely ace for hip hop and I made a whole bunch of beats with it, some for myself and also for some other artists.

In '09 I switched to Mac and got Logic 9. I was still doing music in Renoise, and Logic was great for recording and mixing vocals. In '12 we released a new album. Beats were made with Renoise (me), Reason and Ableton (other two members of the group), vocals recorder and mixed in Logic.

In following years, we kind of went to different paths. I started to grow interest in electronica again, especially psychedelic trance and psybient, which I loved before I went hip hop. So this is also the sound I’m mostly playing with in Renoise and Logic X these days. I also got myself Reason 11 Intro to use as a plugin and really enjoying using old Subtractor, Redrum, Scream4 and other devices inside a Renoise (luckily on Mac it works as an AU). Remains to be seen if I’ll make anything worthwhile listening to :slight_smile:

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I’ve never been much of a musician but I’ve always been madly in love with music.

I grew up in Brooklyn in the 90s in a household that listened only to hip hop and R&B (Hot 97) but at 12 years old I discovered two Saturday night shows called “Solid State with Liquid Todd” and “The Urban Jungle Show” (with DJs Matt Boogie and Al Boogie) and discovered techno and breaks and Jungle all kinds of electronic music I’d never heard of before. This impacted me greatly. My musical taste started growing and I started recording everything I liked from the shows to cassette. My hobby eventually grew to recording any song, sound or clip of whatever I liked to cassette.

In high school I dreamed of playing an instrument or doing ANYTHING in music or sound design but did not know where to begin to learn - it seemed all the kids who were in jazz band already had experience and their own instruments. For the yearbook they asked me what future occupation I wanted under my picture and I told them I wanted to be a DJ! My school refused to print it because according to them I was wasting my smarts and should have tried to become a doctor or lawyer so they printed “Undecided”. For my graduation present I was given MTV Music Generator (aka Music 2000) for Playstation which was all I wanted at the time!

After graduation I’d had enough of the city, and I left home with my Playstation and took a bus across the country to stay in the middle of the Arizona desert for a few months. My fondest memories out there were of my cousin and I walking for hours in the desert and then coming back to the trailer and seeing who could put together the best tracks. Any style went, we would just see who could make the most unique stuff. Then we would tape our recordings to cassette and listen to them like we were super stars or something haha. I just wanted to make tracks like The Chemical Brothers, Underworld and the Prodigy. If I had known what a tracker was back then I can only imagine what I would have done.

I eventually wound up as a working stiff in retail, but on my day off I would dedicate time to try to learn anything I could musically - just watching live and experimental acts and trying to pick up things from observing what they were doing. I couldn’t quite play an instrument yet, I just really wanted the understanding of the question “what is music?”. I had discovered Warp and Rephlex and Solid Steel and had collected tons of old thrift store records to hear new sounds and ideas - any genre at all from drone to Ethiopian Jazz - And for stress relief I would still record random sounds and my own songs and sound collages on my BR900 as journal entries.

One day I picked up two CDs from the library, “Endtroducing…” by DJ Shadow and 12 Etudes by Claude Debussy which changed my life. “Endtroducing…” took hip hop sampling and sound collage as an art and showed me that it could be done beautifully. And the Debussy etudes just blew my mind with ideas on piano that I did not know could be expressed. I was so impressed I bought a cheap 61 key keyboard and started trying to play all of the Debussy Ravel and Chopin sheet music I could find at the library. I quickly learned that 61 keys wouldn’t cut it haha so I would go to the music store for hours and try to learn on their digital pianos and in my spare time read about music theory (which I didn’t understand fully but it still helped!). I was never close to a professional level but it helped me understand on an amateur level. After this, I started going to school again in my early 20’s with the goal of pursuing a degree in music composition but it had to stop when my mother passed away suddenly and I had to care for my younger brother for a few years. I had to put the music dream on hold and I work in the medical field now - but I never stopped recording my musical journal entries.

A few years ago I met my wife who I knew I had to tell about this strange relationship I had with music and she encouraged me to continue to find more ways to express my thoughts which is how I found Renoise a little over 2 years ago. Renoise has everything I could ask for when it comes to creating, and on evenings after long days at work there’s nothing like sitting down and just making some noise. There is always something more to learn and I truly wish I had discovered Renoise ten years earlier than I did but better late than never!

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