Jack Oughton - Music Tech 101 Presentation

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This is the latest revision of a presentation I give on 'introducing music technology' to people who are new to the subject. It explores what music tech is, what it is used for, how to use it, and a …

This is the latest revision of a presentation I give on 'introducing music technology' to people who are new to the subject. It explores what music tech is, what it is used for, how to use it, and a very simple way to get started in producing music for free at home.

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  • Start Music ImmediatelyToday I’m going to introduce you all to what music technology is, what it does, why it is important and where we use it.
  • Question Class:What do they have in common?Which did you preferWhat is music to you?Why do we have music?
  • Examples on guitarRhythm example” twinkle twinkle little star..
  • I need 6 volunteers and you all to tap the tables and count with me,Don’t worry if you think your timing isn't that great, if you can count to 8 you can do this.
  • Show a piece of sheet music. – this is music tech.
  • Give demo of ruler, did anyone else ever try to play popcorn at school?Give demo of rubber band.These instruments are pitched, like the string on a guitar.
  • Newly invented instruments: new synthesizers that make entirely new sounds2008 a new type of bamboo flute called the Bamhum was invented in India


  • 1. Music + Technology:§˙
    An Introduction
    Jack Oughton
  • 2. Technology
    Simply put I define technology as the tools we use to help us achieve an aim
    The level of complexity determines the ‘height’; Low Tech -> High Tech
    Jack Oughton - www.xijindustries.com
  • 3. Music
    Organized Sound/Pattern ->
    Example: Listened to the tracks.
    What do they have in common?
    Which did you prefer?
    What is music to you?
    Why do we have music?
    Jack Oughton - www.xijindustries.com
  • 4. Formal Elements of Music
    Music can be said to be comprised of the 3 following parts:
    Melody: – “A succession of notes forming a distinctive sequence..”
    Harmony: – “The science of the structure, relations, and practical combination of notes..”
    Rhythm: – “A specific kind of such a pattern, formed by a series of notes differing in duration and stress..”
    Jack Oughton - www.xijindustries.com
  • 5. Exercise: Got rhythm?
    Rhythm is the sum of different sounds. Each person can represent one part of a greater rhythm. 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + (tap tables)
    2 students: stamp feet 1/3
    2 students: hit knees 2/4
    2 students: clap hands (1st +) / (3rd +)
    2 students: click fingers (2 +) / (4 +)
    Notice how we fit the notes in? Is music more than the sum of its parts?
    Jack Oughton - www.xijindustries.com
  • 6. So Music + Technology = ?
    Tools (tech) applied to the creation and dissemination of music.
    Areas of music technology:
    Recording Music: Microphone
    Synthesizing Music: Synthesizer
    Storing Music: Vinyl, CD
    Representing Music: Musical stave, tablature.
    Broadcasting Music: Radio, Internet
    Jack Oughton - www.xijindustries.com
  • 7. Exercise: Getting Technical
    Of the resources immediately available to you now, which can you use to make music from?
    Try not to focus to rhythmic/percussive instruments
    1 minute!
    Can you find anything that is pitched?
    Jack Oughton - www.xijindustries.com
  • 8. Some Examples?
    Pitched ruler
    Pitched rubber bands
    Blown paper
    Blown bottle
    Things you can do with your voice
    Ways you can use your fingers
    Constructing drum kits from available material in your bag?
    Jack Oughton - www.xijindustries.com
  • 9. Music technology is about “organizing sound” from the resources available to you
    Doesn’t have to be electronic, or even a ‘official’ musical instrument
    New instruments are invented every other day.
    So be resourceful!
    Jack Oughton - www.xijindustries.com
  • 10. What can you do with music technology?
    Mastering Engineer
    Film Composer
    Sound Designer
    Studio Recording Engineer
    Dialogue Replacement
    Foley, field recording
    Jack Oughton - www.xijindustries.com
    Genuine badass
  • 11. Advanced Music Technology
    The field of Music Technology is usually associated with more advanced technology.
    We study how to manipulate software and hardware
    We use it in the studio
    We use it live recording
    Multimedia Entertainment depends on our understanding (music, film, television, computer games, theatre, art installations, etc..)
    Jack Oughton - www.xijindustries.com
  • 12. Introduction To REAPER
    (Rapid Environment for Audio Production, Engineering, and Recording)
    Reaper is a Digital Audio Workstation (DAW)
    This is the kind of software used in the industry to create and produce music.
    Though simpler than many other industry standard DAWS, Reaper is actively used by thousands of recording studios and music professionals for its simplicity and open format.
    Jack Oughton - www.xijindustries.com
  • 13. Demo : Reaper
    Some things we can do with Reaper
    Example: Synthesis vs. Recording: We can either generate new sound or rearrange existing sounds to create music.
    Hardware vs.Software: How much studio equipment do we actually need for the purpose at hand?
    Applying Effects: How we can make a pre-existing sound more interesting.
    Applying Presets: How we can use the expertise of others to improve and program our sounds.
    Jack Oughton - www.xijindustries.com
  • 14. Music Tech: Musician Empowerment
    Music technology is more powerful and more cost effective than ever.
    This is thanks to the falling prices and increasing capabilities of the personal computer and digital hardware.
    Thanks to the internet, learning how to use these tools is as simple as searching for Youtube tutorials.
    So, the boundaries to making and recording music are lower than they have ever been!
    If you have ever wanted to explore music making with minimal cost outlay, now is your time.
    www.reaper.fm/download.php - start here and try Reaper for free.
    Jack Oughton - www.xijindustries.com
  • 15. About Jack
    Jack is a musician and composer from the UK.
    He got started properly recording music when a friend showed him to use Reaper.
    He makes music under many musical aliases.
    At the moment he writes as Xij, composing electronic and orchestral music: www.music.xijindustries.com - or Google “xij music”
    Send him your tracks. He wants to hear them!
    Jack Oughton - www.xijindustries.com