Tag Archives: electro

dui dollar sign – Fill in the Blanks

ursa: so here we are with something with a lot of vocal layering.

SD: yeah yeah this is the next track we’ll be discussing. and i wouldn’t say there’s a LOT of vocal layer. three voices.

ursa: what’s with the title?

SD: it was the title i had before really beginning. but then again i’d say because the original was called “fill it”. and i kept it because it kinda capture the essence? kinda?

ursa: are you asking me?

SD: ?

ursa: …

SD: kinda?

ursa: explain to me a little more about this vocal thing we were talking about.

SD: ok so in this tune especially, there’s this area where you hear the rhodesy-organny-piano thing loud and clear. and when you listen carefully it masks some of the heavy back ups especially in the beginning where they tend to be lower. as in notes. now in this case it seems unavoidable. i tried panning but the whole sound is compromised because i really wanted this wide organ being that it is the only instrument other than the voices and the drums/percussion. i wanted it to fill space. so it cuts the vocal a bit.

ursa: how does the width effect that

SD: gah, geez, i don’t really know much about audio width it’s sort of new to me. but it seems to interfere with the sound when the sample is wide and you pan other sounds into that area of the audio spectrum. i don’t know i haven’t googled it or anything.

ursa: i like this one. it’s pretty big. why does it sound like my speaker is broken even when i turn it down?

SD: i can’t remember what i did. this track is from 2010. i do remember that i wanted that effect though. i did see the center vocal has a pitch effect on it but i couldn’t place it.

ursa: i don’t know if i like that

SD: well fuck you.

ursa: haha. so what is this tune about?

SD: death? i don’t know, i wrote it when i was pissed off because i had this girl staying over cuz she got kicked out of her place. i had a huge crush on her and my friend totes came over and just started making out with her and it was late and i most certainly did not want them effing in my house.

ursa: hahaha whaaaaat?! haha this does not sound like that kind of song.

SD: listen closer. it’s about how all of you will eventually die. and as much as i want to remember your sunny smiling faces, i def will be happy if i die and never live again. that and how i’m the one.

ursa: what?

SD: huh?

ursa: did you say…

SD: yes.

ursa: … k so next time what are we gonna talk about?

SD: well i have some mixtape stuff i’d really like you to hear.

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KNEW YOU (Who is Dewey Steez?)

here’s some new stuff from DUI DOLLAR SIGN.

who is this chump? well…

ursa: so what’s this thing.

SD: well mkhhmm, if you take my name and switch the letters. and so on. plus it means “flow”.

ursa: flow?

SD: yeah, you know how rappers talk about flow?

ursa: right, but the name means flow?

SD: yeah, yeah, if you etymologize them words you find dewey is wet and steez flows. but we’re done that. now we’re called dui dollar sign. no caps. never any caps.

ursa: my mistake.

SD: yeah and its super fitting and sorta matches everything that’s been going on. dui dollar sign is also flow.

ursa: oh! like draft and cash…

SD: yeah something like that. and you know how people are re-branding themselves all the time. this works for rapping. and steez rhymes with please. and dui was neat, i’ve had one, and instead of being stupid and making my name $teez, i took “dollar sign”.  i haven’t seen there to be any specific word for that symbol.

ursa: …tell me about this track.

SD: well i often blatantly steal ideas from people. in this case i was stealing some minimal funk stuff from prince and it ended up sounding more like the disco-housey-whatever stylings of jamiroquai. like especially when the bass gets busy and then even more when the synthy thing comes in at 2:40 doing this pan thing. it’s playing these bizarre chords on top of that ostinato bass. very cool. very… jamiroquai. like post disco. and my gf was all “sounds like robots”. i was very happy about that. i mean i wrote this years ago. like sep 2010? and there’s a vocal idea for it as well. but it’ll be tricky fitting it in.

ursa: why come?

SD: well when mixing there needs to be space for the voice to sit and this mix is a little heavy in those areas, but that’s fine.

ursa: esplain a tad deeper, sir.

SD: well the voice core, which is the part that people really HEAR [the words], yknow, the part where they tell you to sing louder? the bit above that nasally sound? it sits like between i don’t know, 2000 up to like 4000hz, is being covered by other instruments. you can hear the space in the 500 range where the voice um, notes would be and your ears might even think there are bits missing from the music, well that’s what’s missing.  I really had this huge funk outfit idea for the track but production is hard and i doubt we’ll get around to it, so i post as an instrumental. my friend and musical partner jeanette robertson and i have a hilarious demo of autotune on the original of this track that i will likely lift the melody from, i mean i don’t know if i’ll ever have time for that though. and even then the tune would need to be extended like twice as much?

ursa: why twice as long?

SD: have you heard funk tracks? fuck they could go all night! you don’t have to change the track till people stop dancing. shit the only reason mine is so short is cuz there’s no vocals. I’d probably even save that bad ass guitar solo thingy for much later if there were.

ursa: send me some thingies with vocals next and we’ll discuss more.

interview by ursa urn

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