In the first video, Mark spends time looking at how he approaches production as part of the songwriting process and shows you the importance of listening to a song to understand how each section works as a part of a finished record. Mark then focuses on breaking down the rhythms of different songs to see how they work and how you can build your own.
Mark continues to show his rhythm building techniques in this video. He uses a variety of quantising and MIDI tricks to give a built drum line more groove and swing, helping to add that extra level of polish to your track.
Mark takes a break from the keyboard to give some pointers on how to listen to your music objectively. Pulling yourself away from the song for a while can be a great way to hear mistakes or areas for improvement and Mark gives you a run-down on why this is so important for your song. He then continues to show creative ways you can reshuffle your rhythms to give your song a completely new feel.
Mark and Tom carry on building up the song’s drum beats, adding a mixture of samples and MIDI drums to add more life and colour to the track. You’ll also see Mark adjust small elements of the beat to completely transform the feel of the song, without changing much at all.
Mark looks at MIDI automation to draw in crescendos and add other effects to a song to give it another layer of depth. He also looks at the different types of loops that you can include in your song, including pre-recorded and pre-built MIDI tracks which you can edit later on.
In this video, Mark moves on from building drum beats to look at a fully-built song and pull apart individual tracks. You’ll see how he used a basic piano and drum beat as a base to work from, used a delay effect as a drum beat and much more!
Mark now looks at vocal takes. Vocal fatigue, tiredness and other problems can make it difficult to get a good vocal track in one go. Mark looks at the ways you can get a “perfect” take by chopping up and using the best parts from multiple attempts.
Mark looks at effects that can be put on top of a vocal to give it a better, warmer overall sound, as well as a variety of other creative sound tricks to help the song sound smoother. He then answers a variety of questions from our course members.
Mark looks at one of his previous remixes and gives a breakdown of what he did to make it sound as good as it does. He shows you one of the key Artful Dodger techniques of using a vocal part as a rhythm instrument, as well as continuing to work on the bass and drum lines.
In this video, you’ll look at a variety of extra techniques that Mark uses to fill the sound of the track with. From using a specific plugin that reduces the cold, robotic sound of digital instruments, to limiters that help remove clipping and distortion, you’ll learn it here.
In the last video, Mark and Tom speak more about their experiences as producers, how they got noticed and how they continue to work in the industry. They also answer a variety of questions from our course members.
10/10 – I really enjoyed the day and look forward to the Bootcamp
Thanks for a great day & for inspiring me to #makeithappen along with discovering some crazy improve skills!
Just had an amazing mentoring session with Charlie Dore. Great suggestions and inspiration, along the lines of possibly becoming a ‘superwoman’!
The passion of all the lecturers was amazing to see. The sharing of their life experiences that enabled them to get a career in the industry was inspirational and has made me reinforce in my mind it’s truly possible for me!
Amazing and inspiring to be around wonderful like-minded people who live, breathe and love music like I do
Thought the course was so good and inspiring, have signed up for the Platinum Mentoring Program!
I’m so freaking excited to be on this songwriting retreat!! Have written with some awesome people so far and have created some beautiful songs already! Yesterday’s was incredibly emotional
Feeling so blessed to be a part of this songwriting family! Thank you for creating this wonderful community, a place for us all to be creative, passionate, supportive and talented!
So enjoyed my mentoring session with Mark Cawley yesterday – from now on I will be hanging out in bookshops looking shady – thanks mark x
Great first mentoring session with Martin. Really encouraging, helpful in establishing focus and with so many things to takeaway.
When I look back to last April, when I attended TSA’s Introduction to Songwriting, my life has changed immensely for the better
Absolutely brilliant! Informative, fun, engaging, great opportunity to network with like-minded people. Great atmosphere!
Great mentoring session with Luc Floreani last night! Really encouraging and so many good tips for upcoming events!
The day went far too quickly
10/10 Thoroughly enjoyed this course, lovely group of people, fun and informative
I’ve finally found myself and my confidence has come back! That is down to what The Songwriting Academy has done for me and given me the boost I needed. I can’t thank you enough
Dominic King… Absolutely Inspirational!!!! Almost did not take up this session, wanted to play it save, but thank God I didn’t !!! Risk aversion you’re a bloody thief. Thanks
Had a great and informative mentoring session with Mark Cawley, nice guy, had some interesting left of field ideas for me to try. Thanks Mark
Fantastic mentoring session with Martin Sutton today, thank you Martin! Great feedback as always
Just finished an awesome mentoring session with Charlie Charlie Dore what an inspiration you are Charlie. Thank you for all the excellent advice and guidance.
l’ll never forget this songwriting experience. I’ve learned so much from everyone. It was great meeting all these talented lovely people
Great organisation and inspiring evening
10/10 – Well worth the travel. I would do it all over tomorrow. I feel a lot more confident now with what I’ve learned.
Just had an amazing mentoring session with Danny Roberts. He knows his stuff. So much for me to go away and get started on!
10/10 – The one day course far exceded my expectations. Full of useful information backed up by eveidence. Would highly recommend to anyone interested in the process of writing a song
Another superb mentoring session today with @lovesongwriting “I really like the emotion and honesty in the song” 🙂
Just completed my first mentoring session with Mr Martin Sutton … got direction .. critique ..structure .. ongoing goals and targets …lots of advice and a real motivation boost !!! AWESOME !!!
I was going to write “you can’t beat Martin Sutton”, but that would sound all wrong. 🙂 So just saying am very happy with mentor session from Superstar Sutton. Virtual hugs all round.
Another incredible mentoring session with Charlie Dore tonight! Really great feedback. So so much to work on and a good challenge but excited to get working on it!
Thank you so much for this weekend, really was such a fantastic experience. I’ve learnt so much that I wasn’t able to sleep all last night thinking about it.
I have had the most amazing mentoring session with Martin Sutton. So inspirational and energizing! Thank you Martin, you Rock!
Finished yet another epic, inspiring and all round fantastic 1-2-1 with the awesome Luc Floreani So exited for the plans we’ve got cooking up…
Feeling thoroughly inspired after a mind-blowing chat with Luc Floreani of Floreani Management. So thankful that he’s willing to share his enthusiasm and give me some new ideas.
Excellent thought provoking and inspirational
Just had a fantastic mentoring session with Martin, my first on my platinum membership! Feel completely boosted and grinning away ready to take this year by the horns! Positivity all the way
Very engaging, high energy and motivating content and delivery. I would highly recommend to anyone.
epic PR mentoring session with Luc Floreani last night!!!!!
Great atmosphere and great for meeting other writers
Just had my first mentoring session with Martin Sutton, what an amazing experience, so grateful and ready to face my first exercise. Thank you Martin.
10/10 – Excellent and superbly presented, fulfilling, educational and inspiring