Song Analysis: Kanye West – All Day

[Produced by Velous, Kanye West, Diddy and Charlie Heat; Co-produced by Mike Dean, French Montana and Noah Goldstein; Additional production by Plain Pat, Travi$ Scott, Allen Ritter & Mario Winans]

Yo. I remember seeing this video for the first time. It always cracks me up how, if you’ve been to a more “urban” rap show, rappers would always have like 5 – 10 of their friends just up on stage bouncing around.

Kanye, in true Kanye fashion, took this idea and multiplied it a billion times. AND IT’S AWESOME. The flame throwers are what really got to me. Once I saw those, I was like Kanye damn did it again.

The track was produced by newcomer Velous (with coproduction from a whole lotta people). Velous  came up by producing beats for French Montana.

That growly bass used sparingly in the song is a great touch. As much as I love the true 808 basses, I like how Kanye really diversifies and makes the beats he uses standout from typical trap tracks. That wall of brass bass and chorus is also awesome. Followed by some nice contrast with the angelic singing and the Allan Kingdom hook.
My favorite line in the whole song is the Denzel Washington reference. Come on Ye, that’s David Palmer from 24. The followup line is also super dope. “If you run into me, you better have Allstate with ya.”

24/7, 365 days, everybody gettin’ paid” Ohh shiieet !


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Song Analysis – Avicii – Addicted To You

WRITERS –  Tim Bergling, Ash Pournouri, Mac Davis, Josh Krajcik
PRODUCERS – Ash Pournouri, Avicii
TEMPO  – 128 BPM


The main theme of the song is that all too consuming feeling a person has when they are obsessing over a  specific person.

From the verses, it sounds like that passionate first few weeks of love. The images of veins and being hooked on drugs add to that addicted feeling.

Starting off with a soft guitar with a very soft dynamic, and Audra Mae starts off singing more of a pianissimo style delivery, softer.

When she gets to the main verse where her delivery slowly starts to buildup and buildup.  Until it hits the climax of the song with the second “Addicted To You” lyric.


This song differs from other Avicii mainstream releases in the fact it doesn’t have too much of an EDM trance synth breakdown. The white noise sound is still very prevalent throughout the whole song.

The one standout about this track is the very Adele –like voice of Audra Mae, passionately delivering the emotion that yes, she is addicted to whoever she is singing about.

The bass drum, the snare and the hi-hat are typical EDM snares with the guitar being the main driving instrument. The guitar is what drives the uptempo throughout the song.

And the contrast is defined through the power of Audra Mae’s vocal delivery as the song progresses.

I also really like how the radio edit isn’t that long and is less than 3 minutes. It’s efficient and entertaining. 

Another great song from one of the reigning EDM kings.


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Sampling Motown with 9th Wonder, Harvey Weinger and Mark Anthony Neal

Really great lecture by 9th Wonder, Harvey Weinger and Mark Anthony Neal. Very indepth and also a good primer to the idea of sampling as how it relates to the Motown era.

I am really digging how passionate Harvey Weinger is about his job of going through the old Motown archives and making it so the rest can truly truly understand the genius of the label sound.

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BookKeeping For Musicians Pt. 2 – 2/13/14

The Five Main Sources Of Income

(1) Merchandise
(2) Royalties
(3) consulting
(4) gig money
(5) teaching music

Im also starting to kind of understand debits and credits.

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BookKeeping For Musicians Pt. 1 – 2/7/2014

For as long as I can remember, I have never been a numbers person.

I took an accounting class when I was 19. Got a 37%. And that was me trying !

That’s gonna change. You all gonna respect me for ability to do basic book keeping !

I am gonna record my kaizen-like journey into book keeping and how I am gonna use it for music.

Like for example tomorrow, Im going to play a show in Bloomington, IN.

and I have absolutely no idea how to record it. But I will soon.

Here’s 4 Reasons to Keep Records from Canada Business.

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Kaizen and SongWriting

Kaizen  is the idea of continuous improvement.

Something. Anything.

In anyway shape or form.

Today, write a lyric. Write a poem. Play guitar. Watch a Reason tutorial video. Read a book on How2Rap. Run a few laps around your block. Do those vocal exercises. Find out who Robin Frederick is.

Something. Anything.

Do something that will make you 1% better than you were yesterday.

It adds up.

Of course, always feel free to go more than 1%. go 110% if you want.

But keep going.

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Super Bowl Music Review – Bruno Mars And The Red Hot Chili Peppers

I mean, let’s admit it. Unless you’re from Seattle, the most exciting part of that Super Bowl really was the halftime show. I mean, don’t get me wrong, props to the Seahawks for being awesome and dominant, but I don’t think anyone saw that coming at all.

I feel like the Bruno Mars haters are a bit out of line. There are always people talking about, wow I wish music was the used it to be.

Well, muthafucka, here it is! Bruno Mars is a direct throwback to the good old 40s 50s 60s style of music. Just a pure out powerful voice, James Brown dance moves and inhouse songwriting that makes a complete entertainer !

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Playing Open Mics Is A Lot Like Market Research

A while back I wrote an article on why it is a great idea to play as many open mics as you possibly can. And I still believe in that idea. It’s all about experience, experience and more experience. Those minutes spent add up and before long you’ll start seeing a major difference in your entire swagger.

But then it came to me, another great reason to play open mics.

You get to see what the crowd responds to. I’ve noticed which songs get the least crowd response and which one gets the girls dancing. Note to self, write more songs like those.

It’s like it’s own market research.

So play as many of them as you possibly can !


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Song Analysis – Avicii – Hey Brother

Rhythm is SOOOO important when it comes to songwriting. Learning that backbeat and learning how to count to 4 is the most fundamental and important a musician needs to learn. All of pop music follows that 4/4 pulse. Take this Avicii and start counting 1 2 3 4.

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