It's my first time as a mentor for Noise Singapore's The Music Mentorship programme this year. I'd heard about it for the first time many years ago when Jason Tan and Don Richmond were involved. I'd been spending a lot of time at their old recording studio and they were mentors to Zahidah and Shigga Shay respectively and I remember thinking it was such a great idea to enable newbies to learn from experienced musicians in a non-threatening, organic environment. Giving back to the community is an important part of our scene. It continues the legacy of the musicians' role of passing on history aurally in some way.
At the feedback session yesterday I felt pretty inspired seeing the variety of young artists who have talent and purpose. Most interesting to me were Canvas Conversations...
In a month we celebrate Singapore’s 50th birthday. There’ve been numerous activities in celebration. My crew at Lush have been working real hard on one and I’ve thought a lot about what it means to turn 50 without actually turning so myself – what it means to be Singaporean and how I portray that as one.
It’s a complicated question in the context of a cosmopolitan society, where different generations and races reflect on our history and present, trying to make sense of who we are collectively. There aren’t exactly too many Chinese-Indians making music, working in media, who started out in theatre but I’m not along in feeling equal parts conflicted and proud about growing up in Singapore. My approach to collective identity is anchored in tolerance...
I mean, the things I’ve learned from Kiat are countless. As the 8th producer to talk about in this personal exploration of how I trust people in music, there is no other person I am so glad to get to.
Kiat is a legend. When I first heard his name it was because he had heard I track I’d done with a late friend (an ex radio colleague who was my first real radio mentor, Andrew Crothers). The track was called Stay.
I left 987FM back in 2010 because I realized that I was itching to get back to music after 4 years in radio. It seemed the music bug would not die. I started doing things like leaving the C channel fader down when I’d switched the system to run from A/B to A/B/C after my shift was done. It resulted in dead air.
Anyyyyway, when I left, I started working on the Octover album...
It’s been 3 days since my last entry. Man, writing about what I learned producers on the Vandetta EP Remixes daily is difficult. Just cos I find myself struggling to make the time. I end up here late at night, sitting in the kitchen with the lights off, my face illuminated by the computer screen, cigarette hanging from my mouth, words floating out my head as smoke wafts into the air. How do people do this daily? Respect.
Track 5: Walls Remix
Produced by Sauce 81 ft. Albino Sound
First time I met Sauce 81 I was watching him do a gig with Syndicate at Kyo. I remember thinking he seemed like such a chill guy and I was blown away with how he put his set together with glistening vocal loops that didn’t feedback over soul funky vibes.
Months later we hung out in Tokyo, when he was working on RBM...
The first time I heard Isaac, his voice was on a track for Kiat. A multi-instrumentalist and producer from New Zealand, when I finally met Isaac for the first time what struck me the most about him was his smile. He is genuine, relaxed and warm, and the most memorable conversation I had with him was about how the scene in New Zealand grew from something non-existent to one that was vibrant and well-supported. At the time I was doing research on countries that had created music industries by mandating a percentage of airplay be dedicated to local music and given NZ's similarity in size to Singapore, I was very interested to hear how they'd done it.
I learned that artists are the best advocates, that government support is crucial, medi...
I had a shitty day today. The kind where you feel everything isn’t going right and it’s your fault. Doubt creeps in and overwhelms you to the point where you feel like you want to give up. Then I did a gig tonight for Obey that Intriguant played as well and came home to write this.
When I first heard of Intriguant, whose real name is Louis Quek, it was through my fellow Syndicate member, Brandon Tay. Brandon had created visuals for one of Intriguant’s sets. I wasn’t there but had later watched a video of the performance - shapes and patterns floated around the dark silouette of a man tweaking knobs and bobbing his head to handmade beats, seemingly random yet somehow in perfect harmony.
There is something about Inriguant’s remix of Ground Zero that is both urgent and calming at the s...
Even when you’re alone you feel like someone is watching you…
But for the artist, it can be very freeing.
So here I am telling you what I feel or have learned from each of the producers who did a remix on my album. I have 9, and the last I will write about also did the first single off the Vandetta EP Remixes.
Track 1: "Myne"
Remixed by Seven Saturdays ft. Joey Ponchetti on drums
I recorded this just after I'd moved to LA and was living in the Downtown area, which is incidentally where I first started recording with Jonathan Haskell, an intelligent, patient and talented artist who makes music as Seven Saturdays.