I need a studio now. Like, BADLY.
Saturday morning I woke up around 9am for a 11am appointment at a Wonderful Music Studios in SoHo. I've been in studios before. This wasn't my first "studio-experience".
However, I've never felt as comfortable in a studio like I've felt in this one.
I met up with Justin (Pop) @ the studio, and the peeps we were supposed to meet weren't there. Okay. Cool.
"I'm actually kinda calm." Pop says, and I agree with him. I've been put through these "at the door, almost getting the okay to go through it" situations so many times already, that I've lost that inital "nervous anticipation" or "first jitters". We took a stroll real quick to a nearby Halal truck and Pop picked us up some ginger ales to keep us from being parched. We came back to the studio and waited around for a bit, starting to think that we had arrived too early, when this skinny Caucasian fella strolls up like, "Hi, I'm Dan - you guys here to meet with *** about a session?". We agree, and he invites us in.
Now, I had already had my reservations about the studio in my head.
Like most studios, it's a naturally quiet environment that is meant to perfect one's sound in an artificial manner. I usually object to that artificiality because it affects the way I make music. Or at least that's what I used to feel like. This place changed my whole perspective on a "studio experience".
As he's telling us to relax and get comfortable, I notice three things that put my soul at ease immediately.
1: A box full of that good-ole 1960's-1970's thrift shop purchased vinyl.
2: Two turntables, a mixer and what looks to me like Serato Scratch LIVE.
3. A Flatscreen TV hooked up to a Nintendo Wii.
Dan is one of the coolest engineers I've EVER met. I hate when you go in a studio or a studio-like setting and it seems as if the person helping you has your overall intentions in mind, yet is trying to do their job so efficiently that they take on the project as their own, rather then a unity of ideas. I sensed NONE of that from Dan, quite frankly I found that Dan was open to a lot of ideas and we were able to vibe on a musical level very quickly.
We didn't even jump right into the music.
We played some RE4 (Resident Evil 4 for you n00bs) for awhile, listened to some Middle-Eastern vinyl for sample inspiration, and then I inquired about Serato (the latest reason to make you throw away all of your vinyl...lol nah nah, I would NEVER do that) because I never used it before. I've seen DJ's KILL it with Serato, and I always wanted to f**k wit it, just never was around a Serato set for that long and didn't have the $500 to buy it.
Dan starts out by blending some Electro and showing me the ins and outs of the program, then lets me give it a whirl.
Man, let me tell you.
I have not felt that alive with the music since I left The Door and Recess. (for those that don't know, The Door is a community center right below the high school I used to attend where I learned to DJ by going to afterschool classes...and Recess was my first "real" gig, where I would spin Drum n' Bass music every Wednesday night until the wee hours of the morning...)
After spinning together for about 20 minutes or so, Dan was really feeling my DJ style and even invited me to DJ his birthday party coming up this week.
Flattered was I? Yes.
I hadn't even DJed a full 30min set, we just were B2Bing it (back to back) and he was diggin' it. Cool. That's when I realized that DJing is something I will NEVER lose. It will ALWAYS be in my heart to DJ, because that's where this whole obsession with music started.
It stared when I was 3 years old and my mom had bought me a Fisher Price turntable for Christmas. (i need to Google that again to show yall what it looked like - it was SOOOOO tuff!)
I didn't quite know it then, but I knew I loved to play different records and I knew that playing with the speed of the sound was fun too. My love for Hip-Hop would later on have me making mixes in my head. Life would soon cast me into the arms of a father-figure who actually let me experiment with his turntables on a few occassions. (lol - now my dad wouldn't wanna battle me in a mixdown - i would tear him UP!)
Point? Even though the meeting was essentially a "bust", I still gained a lot out of it. It helped revive my love of spinning as well as ignite a new flame of desire...to aquire my OWN studio so that I can have as much fun doing what I love on the REGULAR!
*sigh* Good times...
PS: This is what my first turntable used to look like: