The unparalleled style and sound of Salvione is certainly one to follow. His hard-hitting releases, that blend elements from funk, house and tech, have already received the support from top-tier names like Roger Sanchez, Steve Bug and Christian Nielsen. Yet his mission to conquer dancefloors all over the world is just getting started, as he shares not only his music, but his knowledge and talent with others, through his very own courses at his ‘Elevate Your Sound Academy’.
This time, we invited Salvione to walk us through his creative process and share some tips and tricks to maintain inspiration on our side.
Hey Salvione! how are you?
Hi! I am doing great. Thank you for having me.
We want to know more about your creative process, where and how do you usually find inspiration?
I find inspiration everywhere. It could be a song from a different genre that I heard on shuffle or a street performer in the NYC subway. I take a lot of inspiration from the world around me. I hear a quote in a movie and think “that would be a dope sample!” I also pull inspiration from a lot of the tracks I play.
Are there any non-music related activities that help you get inspired to work on new music?
Meditating is a big one. It helps clear my head and allows the ideas to come to me more easily. Honestly, I get a lot of inspiration just from going on a run. Sometimes, not thinking about music at all, is when the ideas really start to come to me. I feel like it’s a common trend to try to force inspiration and creativity but you have to give it space and allow it to come to you.
Do you usually follow the same process when producing a track?
I do follow a similar process when producing a track. I feel like having a great, consistent workflow actually allows you to be more creative. By working in a similar way each time you don’t have to think “what do I have to do next,” you already know. This does two things. First, it allows your brain to focus more on creativity. Second, it allows you to work faster, and creativity loves speed! This is why process is one of the foundational steps I teach in the Elevate Your Sound Academy.
Which part of a track is your favorite to start working on?
Even if I know the vocal or melodic hook, I always love to start with the drums and bass. The groove is the backbone of house music. If you don’t get this right the track will not be effective regardless of how great your hook is. It is what people feel on the dance floor. It’s what gets them moving.
Does technology play a big part in helping you with your creative processes? If so, can you tell us how?
Technology is always playing a role in my creative process. I use a lot of analog gear but it all syncs to a midi clock and goes into Ableton live. With Live 11, I now use take lanes to record in different versions of the analog gear. If it is a synth, I can play with the filter cutoff as it is recording so it fits with the energy of the track, but I can do that 5 or 6 different times and see which one I like best or even piece together different sections from each take.
Have you changed something in your production workflow recently?
I have been keeping things the same lately, but I am looking to add a new piece of gear soon so that might change things up.
What has been the best change or implementation you made to your workflow in music production or in your creative process and how has that changed the way you make music?
The best thing I’ve implemented into my creative process is my process of CAT, which stands for Create/Capture, Analyze, Transform. This process is one of the most important things I teach in the Elevate Your Sound Academy to help finish music quickly. It helps you to get out of your own head and let creativity flow. It is honestly one of the essential things I’ve implemented. I’ve incorporated this process with what’s called the Pomodoro Technique. So you work in a 25 minute interval of focused work and then take 5 minutes off. You can only focus for so long when working, so working this way allows you to be locked in for shorter bursts of time. It helps me to achieve more in a studio session than ever before.
What do you do to help you overcome an obstacle while producing a track?
It depends on the obstacle. If it is something skill related, I’ll typically make a note of it and try to learn it outside of the studio session. I try to separate my time in the studio to improve productivity. If I am sitting to write a track and be creative, I stick to it. I don’t want to go hop down a rabbit hole of videos or organizing samples etc. I save those tasks for their own session.
If I come to a creative obstacle, I will first meditate to clear my head and if I am still stuck, I walk away and go do something completely unrelated. Typically the answer I am looking for will come to me when I least expect it. You can’t force creativity by banging your head against the wall. It took me a long time to learn this. I used to just push on to try to finish at all costs but the outcome usually isn’t the best.
What advice would you give to someone feeling stuck while producing new music?
As I’ve mentioned previously, I am a huge supporter of meditation. I practice in the morning but also before each studio session and if I get stuck. If you don’t want to get into that then just take a break. Go take a walk outside, or do the dishes or listen to some music that is not dance music. Let the mind be free for a period of time. Your subconscious will typically work to solve that problem that you’re having, while you’re not consciously thinking about it.
Also, just try to remember why you’re making music in the first place and have fun. A lot of times I get stuck because I am putting unnecessary pressure on myself to finish a track or to try to make a “great” track. Just let loose and have fun with it. I’m going to bet you didn’t get into production because you wanted to sit in front of a computer frustrated and angry. Have fun and just let it flow.
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