Why Dance Music Is Important

I was reading one of those end of year posts somewhere online and it was stating how dance music is important and how difficult it has been during this time with the clubs closed. And perhaps there were other ways we could dance.

That got me to thinking about why I love to create dance music when so many articles and documentaries talk about the importance of storytelling in song and that’s what stirs people’s emotions and that’s the number one goal in creating music.

Ouch! I started wondering why I love dance music. Am I that vapid? I had never thought of myself that way and I don’t think anyone else would either. Am I avoiding emotion? Hmmm… and then I thought about my history with dance music taking me back to my pre-teen/teen years. Like whenever I got to be in the house alone, I would crank up the family stereo and dance to my favorite music. As I got older, that meant staying home when the family went off on camping trips.

I couldn’t always have the stereo and the house to myself, so when I reached driving age, my car became my dance floor.

And by the time I was in my twenties, Disco was big and I pretty much lived at Earthquake Ethel’s. So why was that?

My dance partners thought I wanted something other than dancing. “I can tell you want me by the way you dance.” That was the furthest thing from my mind and became the inspiration for the “Don’t Touch Me” song I wrote for 50/90 this past year.

So why did I love to dance back then? No doubt music and drums run through my veins, having discovered I come from a big musical family. But it’s more than that natural love for moving to music.  Off the dance floor I was the bookworm, shy, quiet, introverted, awkward in conversation, don’t look at me kind of person. On the dance floor I felt powerful, larger than life, in my element, somebody to pay attention to, comfortable in the spotlight, confident. Sexy.

So is dance music important? You bet it is. So no matter your plans for tonight, you can always find a dance floor, whether in a crowd (stay safe), home alone, or in your car.

Happy New Year’s Eve!

DJ Track Highlighting My Favorites from the 50/90 Challenge #2021 (#50/90 #Songwriting #MusicProducer)

As we count down to 2022, I figured it was time to create a DJ track of my favorite songs from the 50/90 challenge (writing 50 songs in 90 days). It is now available on MixCloud (mixed for headphones):

Drummer Dottie Dodgion Leads Me To Ableton Live/Push2

So I’m thinking I need to know more about drumming since the drums seem to be my favorite instrument in electronic music. I searched online for “female drummer,” thinking I’d be able to relate even more since the music industry is so heavily male. And who do I find but Dottie Dodgion who drummed with all the greats in her time until she was 91. We’re talking the 50s/60s when a female drummer was unheard of. I also discovered she died just this last September.

And then I discovered her autobiography The Lady Swings: Memoirs of a Jazz Drummer. So, naturally, I snapped that up, and I am completely enthralled with her story. And completely humbled. Her father was a drummer so she internalized all that he knew and did, besides having inherited those genes, and a lifetime of learning and practicing and loving her instrument.

My father said, after I met him later in life, “All my kids play the drums.” In fact, his grandson, my nephew, earned a degree in Jazz Performance at Fresno State. You guessed it – he played drums.

And then my life started to make a lot of sense. My uncle said “Now that you know you’re a Holmes, you’re going to want to pay attention to music.” I’ve always loved music, sang and played the keys, guitar, violin when I was young, but didn’t really do much with it as an adult beyond turning the radio up loud, windows rolled down, racing my black Pontiac down Cornell Road in Portland, Oregon.

Although most of the music I create usually falls into the “House” category of EDM, I love all genres, including Jazz. Naturally (I keep using that word), I desired to know more about it and downloaded the Peter Magadini Jazz Drums tutorial from Groove3.

I’m totally intimidated, realizing that being a traditional drummer is beyond me (or, at least, my interest), but I can learn a lot by knowing as much as I can about the drums by studying different genres.

I also realized that this is where Ableton Live shines over Logic Pro, at least to me, when it comes to programming drums using the drum rack and Push2. I am finally motivated to spend more time learning Ableton and Push.

What Disco, Metal, Rock, and House Music Have in Common

Major influences on today’s music. House Music Godfather Marshall Jefferson said (in Electronic Musician) his early influences were Led Zeppelin and Deep Purple. But he moved on to club music because he thought only big, sweaty men went to Zeppelin and Deep Purple and he wanted to meet some women. Ha! Not entirely true, though – lol!

Those were also my influences and my friends and I went to plenty of concerts. And if you read the comments on YouTube, you’ll see that other women were/are fans, too.

Show Me the Way EDM Logic Pro 10.7 Remix

This is me playing with the Dolby Atmos features of Logic Pro 10.7. I tell you, I get different outcomes each time I start playing around with these new features. I created 2 alternatives: 1 with surround and 1 without, but I still can’t seem to export the surround version (had to upload to Apple Music).

It all started when I opened up Youtube and for some reason, Peter Frampton’s “Show Me the Way” started playing and I thought, how perfect! it brings up so many awesome memories. Such feels! I’ll use it to play around with Logic Pro’s 10.7 surround features. Of course, I had to throw in some EDM drums and effects (and my vocals to the chorus). Which makes it even better in my opinion – lol!

(Still experimenting with the features and best listened to with earphones on a computer, although I’m not really getting a stereo effect. So much more to learn!) Any suggestions, tips, etc?