Elite Session with Decap | Video Recap

  |  Jeff Straw  |  

Bay Area based Decap delivers a fun and inspiring Elite Session, focusing on his tools of choice - Ableton Live and the Push controller. His work with major label artists and his burgeoning career as a solo artist are explored in depth.   

Interview: Jeff and Decap Chat Before the Elite Session

  • Decap discuss his major influences 
  • His views on sampling in hip hop 
  • Discusses his collaboration with YAK films
  • Talks about his first production rig and first paying gig
  • Gives some insight on his full length album Omni Love.

Elite Session Part One: Breakdown of Live Performance

  • Talks about Push and new update that allows programming for all 64 pads

  • Shows programming on Push for first track in the live set

  • Discusses 2nd track, how to Edit Launch Tempo

  • Shows his track and sample programming in Live 

  • Discusses third track and setting scale on pad to G flat minor

  • Shows hardware setup for vocal tracks

  • Answers question about mic latency

  • Programmed macro demos

  • Shows plugins and sound design used on lead patches

  • Answers question about using Live exclusively, mapping effects to his master channel, vocal track where he uses iZotope Nectar, return tracks, computer hardware, how he organizes his tracks and the methodology behind the creation of his melodies

  • Offers advice to "force yourself to finish a track a day"

  • Talks about experience working with label A&R guys as a producer and his evolution to working as independent artist 

  • Talks about home town, Nashua NH


Elite Session Part Two: Snoop Dogg Track Premiere

  • Decap Plays the track he produced for Snoop Dogg - The Weekend (world premiere)
  • Explains breakdown of each live recorded percussion element

  • Explains the implantation of the samples he uses for melody segments

  • Explains his procedure for laying down vocals

  • Answers questions: how he would have produced differently without pre-recorded vocals, techniques for layering drum sounds, how he masters, reasons for mixing/mastering himself and plugins used, transitioning from music as hobby to profession, differences of working with mainstream vs. major label artists, sample based tracks vs. originals, clearing samples and P Funk's early influence on west coast rap and his subsequent love of Funk


Elite Session Part Three: Talib Kweli "Rare Portraits"

  • Backstory on how Decap got the opportunity to work on this track for Talib Kweli

  • Plays Talib's track "Rare Portraits"

  • Discusses breakdown of the sample re-creation, instruments and plugins used

  • Addresses question about legalities around reproducing a sampled audio recording, and how he got paid for his work on this track

  • Talks about his history as producer, and to "figure out what your individual goals are"

  • Hypes meditation, discusses aspects of his creative process

  • Describes his "signature sound"

  • Tips for creating solid drum samples

  • Answers question re: expected timeframe for when one could produce at pro level, and how to make money in the music business and using an agent.

  • Plays another premier of new single "Feeling" from upcoming album The Chills