Issue #30 🎹 A Grand Piano Moment
HIGH FREQUENCY Vol. 1: "SOMETHING OF AN ARTIST" by bloody white
Welcome back to HIGH FREQUENCY.
Before we dive into this week’s drop, we want to address the recent events and conversation surrounding web3 record label Dreams Never Die.
After laying off several team members, the company held a tense community call which culminated in members of the Dreams Never Die team making misogynistic comments towards a female community member.
We at NOISE stand strongly against sexism and prejudice of all kinds. Those who condone, ignore, or contribute to it do not align with our values. We are not here to rinse and repeat toxic culture from the past, but to build a better one.
More to come as the story develops, but for now, back to this week’s music:
Artist and producer bloody white graces us with a gorgeous piano ballad sent straight from the heavens. We are proud to present “SOMETHING OF AN ARTIST” by bloody white, track #8 on HIGH FREQUENCY Vol 1: The Compilation Album.
After the release of his 5-track EP MODERN ROMANCE, artist and producer bloody white offers an otherworldly musing in “SOMETHING OF AN ARTIST.”
The hypnotizing, gentle lull of bloody white’s “SOMETHING OF AN ARTIST” conjures a daydream–imagine a James Blake-esque crooner, playing a grand piano on a hot summer day in the countryside a la Call Me By Your Name. It’s romantic, beautiful, and full of angst.
“Make it hurt, hurt, just a little bit. I’m so ignorant. I bleed out… SOMETHING OF AN ARTIST. I’m selfish.”
Gorgeous, rolling piano accompanies bloody white’s cavernous, haunting vocals, while glitchy sound effects pan from left to right. Seeking a breakthrough, bloody white turned to the piano to help him unblock his creativity. “I grew up playing piano, and it's the instrument I connect with most,” says bloody white. “Back in my hometown in Lompoc, California we have a grand piano in my family home. Whenever I'm there, I take the opportunity to write as much piano as I can–little loops, chord progressions, that sort of thing.”
Revisiting a voice memo from one such occasion, bloody white found a renewed sense of artistic freedom. “I felt pretty creatively bogged down. I was writing the same thing over and over again, making the same beats over and over again. Hearing that piano loop, how free it is, and how devoid of any sort of traditional structure, spoke to me. I threw it into Ableton, mixed it a little bit–made it a bit wider and more atmospheric–then took the microphone and decided to hit record and kind of wing it.”
In the spur of the moment, bloody white improvised the lyrics and melodies. “All the vocals are one, long first take. Afterwards, I went in and added a few heady effects that come in and out.” What rose to the surface was inner turmoil cloaked in irony. “There's a bit of a tone of satire to it, like making fun of myself in a way. A recognition that all of this shit is kind of cliché.”
As the track’s title hints, he’s exploring the nature of identifying as a capital A, Artist. Struggling to tow the line between the trope of artistic narcissism and egoless creative expression, he makes his commentary through the music. “I think it's a pretty thin line. It can either be like, ‘I have something very important to say.’ And it can be a form of expression like a cathartic process as well. It's sort of what you make it. I'm struggling with that a bit right now.” In wrestling with the tension, he kicks down the wall and lands on an effortlessly unique and profound sonic offering.
Starting to produce at the age of 12, bloody white’s passion was sparked by his discovery of electronic music. “I saw Tron Legacy and the score was done by Daft Punk. I hadn't heard anything like it. I really hadn't been exposed to electronic music. It really hit me, ‘like, oh, you don't just have to use a guitar and piano and drums. You can also make sounds that don't really exist anywhere else.’” Doing a deep dive on Daft Punk–who he listened to nonstop on his iPod Nano–led to the discovery of other electronic producers like deadmau5 and Skrillex. “Once I heard Skrillex I was like, ‘Oh shit, you can really make any noise that you could even imagine.’ That's what pushed me over the edge.”
For Christmas in 2012 he got his first MIDI controller and a lite version of Ableton, and started cutting his teeth making electronic beats into his early teenage years. “By the time I hit high school, I was starting to understand sound design a bit better. I kind of found my own ways of doing things. I was pretty stubborn and refused to watch YouTube tutorials, so I found my own roundabout ways of designing things and putting songs together.”
After his parents' separation prompted his enrollment in a boarding school, where no electronics were allowed, his creativity was forced to evolve. “Without my primary means of expression all I could really do is write lyrics into a notebook. And all the kids there were very into rap. I got kind of obsessed with Kendrick, and got more into lyricism.”
Upon returning home, he began integrating his newfound love for lyricism with his beat making skills. “I was pretty rusty, but I started working on beats again. I could hold a pitch, but I didn't quite have my singing voice yet. I decided to put the two together and record vocals over the beats I was making. It started out pretty r&b but slowly evolved. I was making a lot of future bass and electronic shit before I got sent off to boarding school. I slowly figured out a way to meld electronic music with vocals in a way that felt unique to me.”
Honing in his style as bloody white, he began releasing music on SoundCloud in 2017. “A couple of songs got a decent number of plays, and as a result I had some labels hit me up, and did the whole meeting thing, which was … terrible.”
After attempting the music industry rat race for a few years, bloody white was burnt out and downtrodden. “I was pretty disheartened by all of the meetings that I took with the major labels. Those buildings are pretty soulless. People are pretty money hungry. It was an awakening.”
Opting for a distribution deal, he decided to stay independent. “I took the jump, and there was a big risk. I wasn't making money on music for a few years.” After meeting Daniel Allan in 2021, things took a turn. While working as a delivery driver to sustain himself financially, he began minting NFTs. Since, he’s minted over 50 songs and created a sustainable revenue stream allowing him to remain independent and support himself along the way.
Earlier this year, he released MODERN ROMANCE, and is now taking a moment to recalibrate creatively. Currently in Big Bear Lake, he’s working on a collaborative project while ideating his next body of work under the bloody white moniker.
“I’m putting together a side project EP with a feature on every track, focused heavily on the production and meditating on what the next leg of the bloody white story is. I want it to be even better and more put together than Modern Romance. I'm very proud of that project. But I want to improve upon it each time. I really want to get a very solid idea both visually and sonically of what the next project looks like.”
Wherever he chooses to go next, the title artist will inevitably follow him. And aren’t we all lucky that it will.
🗣 Collect Music NFTs from HIGH FREQUENCY Volume 1. “SOMETHING OF AN ARTIST” is the eight track to be released from NOISE, for HIGH FREQUENCY Volume 1. “SOMETHING OF AN ARTIST” is dropping via Sound Swap on April 27 at 2pm PST.
🗣 Read and Collect HIGH FREQUENCY writing NFTs to your digital library on-chain. There are 10 editions of issue #30 available for 0.003 ETH on Mirror.
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