Very Well Project, otherwise known as Anton Orlov, is a student of the Pyramind Mentorship Network. After learning about our school and mentorship network in an EDMProd article, Anton came to Pyramind looking for guidance on one of the most common challenges music producers face: finishing songs. Anton booked online mentorship sessions with Matt Donner, whose popular Production & Arranging courses specifically guide students from the beginning to the end of the production process, and as a result, he recently released his first completed track as the Very Well Project, Float Like a Butterfly (feat C-L).
After continued mentorship with Matt Donner, Anton released a second track, The Wave (feat. Inseparable), on October 27th, 2017.
Anton's story is a journey from a hobbyist producer to a professional who is creating, finishing, and releasing quality music.
How did you discover the Pyramind Mentorship Network and what made you sign up for a mentor? How did you choose your mentor?
I was in New Zealand in the winter, and while sitting on the beach I found a newsletter in my inbox from Sam Matla of EDMProd. In that letter, he shared an article by John Lavido, called "How To Produce Professional Music Within 12 Months (Instead of 4+ Years…)". Besides a lot of important tips about music production, John advised to seek a professional's opinion about your music and shared his own experience of signing up for mentorship session with Matt Donner from Pyramind, so I simply followed his lead.
Who are your big influences?
Music always was a part of my life. In early childhood during the 80s there was Modern Talking, Sandra and other pop music of that time. Then in my teenage years I discovered rock music and was influenced by U2, Led Zeppelin, Metallica and many others. Later, I had a psychedelic period and was influenced by Slinky Wizard, Hallucinogen, Prana and so on. Nowadays I'm listening to different styles and kinds of music, both old and modern, and am thankful for the inspiration and influence they all have on me.
Did you have any music released before Pyramind?
I made my first project at around 10 years old. Having watched my mother playing a piano, I composed an album, wrote half of the lyrics (the other half was written by my friend), and I played and sang it for a live recording. One could even hear my parrots singing in the cages nearby. It was not released and stayed on a private cassette. Then, 10 years later, I had an experience with electronic production and made few tracks, but they also stayed on CD without being mastered or released. Now I'm back and bringing my production to a high level so I can release it and happily share around the world.
What was your biggest challenge as a producer prior to receiving mentorship through Pyramind?
Nowadays artists and producers have all the means to release their music quickly and independently. So the challenge is one's own unwillingness to learn, which results in tracks that can still be much better on every level of production. Luckily I found Matt to guide me through the production process and finish songs.
What have been some of your biggest takeaways from your mentorship sessions with Pyramind?
After making my first album as a kid, I had a classical piano teacher come to teach me about music. She was not interested in my album, but started teaching me about proper posture at the piano and other boring stuff, and I could not get how all that connected to my album and was not inspired to continue with classical music education. Matt, however, although being professional musician for decades, was totally focused on the potential of my compositions and guided me to success. Such an approach both as a person and as a teacher is an important takeaway. Along with that, Matt gave me essential tips on every level of production, be it composing, arranging or mixing, so I would say takeaways are many and all of them are big.
Any words of advice to new producers?
Nowadays having a laptop and headphones is already enough to make all your dreams as a producer come true, so don't hesitate and start producing. Every aspect that is not your strength can be learned or outsourced through the internet -- there plenty of professionals out there who can teach you, share their experiences and help you in any possible way. Remember that as long as it's an inspiration to create, somebody is out there waiting to listen and to enjoy your creation.
Where do you see your path as a producer going next?
Inspiration and ideas for new compositions are always there and I will keep on creating music on regular basis. I wish to meet different artists to do something together. Last month for example I met a guitarist in Czech Republic, we became very good friends and now are working on a jazzy song together. I wish to meet somebody to collaborate with on video clips as well. I also plan to make production music for movies and TV. Simply speaking, my path is sharing my music everywhere where it can benefit and inspire others.
Thank you very much for Pyramind and educating myself and others to create music.