Get to Know: Olly Goodman

We sat down with one of SubBass Academy's newest recruits, our tutor Olly Goodman, to figure out what makes him tick:

When did you start producing?
I stared producing sitting by my uncles side aged 8, he had an Akai sample keyboard & I was a huge Michael Jackson fan, I collected all his records, 12's, 45's & picture disks & was desperate to make my own versions of his tracks so we loaded in Bad & re-edited it live & I caught the bug so deeply I couldn't get enough, I used to wake him up at 7am banging on his door with a record ready to record in & loop up. It's was very archaic compared to what you can do today on a laptop! A few years after the school I was at got a copy of Notator which was early sequencing software & I stared making original dance music aged around 14. I remember my music teacher coming into the little room the computer was in & hitting the roof that I was making electric (devils music) on software made for classical & respectable compositions not techno. I was instantly banned for life from using it again but I seem to remember I slid in there after school sometimes & fired it up. In more recent years I started producing professionally aged 18 doing remixes for a-list artist. Getting the stems for all these world class productions was a great learning curve to see how original songs were constructed.

What made you want to start producing music?
I've always been musical & loved collecting vinyl, the first record I brought I was 8 years old, it was the La's - There She Goes on French 7" vinyl brought in a supermaché. I played piano & violin for many years but always was interested in what made a song & how it was made. I was obsessed with recording studios too. It was the synths & things that excited me & still do, they're like computer games to me.

What inspires you?
I'm inspired all the times by things around me but in particular I get inspired by other producers songs & sounds. How a sound is formed & how to make insane new sounds that nobody else has. I love finding old tracks on YouTube & sampling bits from them & building up my own drum hit sample library with huge & sonically impressive sounds. I guess it's jealousy in other producers sounds & songs that push me forward always wanting to make a sound or song that makes them green.

What inspired your track with Mike Posner and/or your track with Example?
My track with Mike came about from my agent Jesse Rogg (Mack Sennett Studio in LA & Sam Sparro producer) who sent me an acapella of one of Mikes new songs, they loved the vocal but didn't like the backing track so I was challenged to add a whole new track to an existing vocal, no easy feat. They loved my unusual sound so I was very lucky to be asked to work with an artist as big as him.

What have you learnt from working with such big names? I've learnt how to work remotely with an artist & build up strong relationships online before developing it into being asked to be an official producer. That's what happened with my pal Example, we became very close & I love meeting the people behind the artist & from that knowledge helping push them forward & reinvent their sound together.

Have there ever been any interesting or complicated dynamics when working with big names and how did you deal with them?
There's always drama with big names artists but you have to keep your head down and do an amazing job, that's what you're there for. Normal it can be stressful too as these are very busy people you are recording so they have limited time. There is no room for mistakes as you might not get them back in a room for months.

What tips would you give to someone looking to reach your level of production?
Best & only tip is you have to become obsessed with it & let it consume you. I made huge life sacrifices to get to this level & i'm still making them now. Never stop learning & get in the studio, you will only be good if you put the hours in & truly understand what it is your trying to make. Another good tip is too listen to allot of music in all styles allot of the time. I have a record player in the kitchen, studio, bedroom & front room. I'm always playing records while doing mundane tasks, it seeps in.

What aspect of production do you feel most competent/successful at?
Electronic edgy pop is my sound. I love combing synths with real instruments & love collecting weird & wonder toys from circuit bent furbies to my beloved & super rare Hhoner Guitar

If you could work with any artist who would it be?
I'd of loved to make a record with MJ or Prince. Both epic artist. I grew up listening to this artist & a few years ago tracked him down & we ended up best friends. We made an amazing record which is almost finished now. It's very Gorillaz in sound & it's been 2 years in the making it's such a beautiful mad & alive record. The guy played guitar for Bob Marley & is Lee Scratch Perry's guitarist now, he's name is GT Moore

Catch Olly teaching Logic Pro evening classes twice a week from September onwards!

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George Pritchard (Ministry Of Sound)