Broey. is a 24 years old multi-instrumentalist, producer, audio engineer, and independent artist from Scranton, Pennsylvania in the United States. He specializes in laid back and relaxing hip hop instrumentals, tastefully blending samples with live instruments.
Here’s his take on a few topics we wanted to discuss with the ambitious ForTunes user. Very interesting interview – keep on reading!
How would you describe your style of music? What are your influences, what inspires you?
My style of music falls between lofi hip hop and chillhop. Sometimes I blend the two, or sometimes I go all in on one or the other. It usually depends on where I’m inspired to go during a session. I have a lot of musical influences. The biggest is Tame Impala, even though he doesn’t create the same genre as me. I often try to take a lot of his sound design and replicate it in my productions in my own style. I find listening and studying indie or psych rock helps me experiment and get out of my head to try things I normally wouldn’t do.
Aside from musical inspirations, I’m very inspired by visual art and sound in general. Seeing certain colors and hearing certain sounds invokes feelings in me that I try to translate into melodies. You can hear foley sounds a lot in my music. Like birds chirping or rain, because that really helps put the listener in the environment that I’m trying to create.
2019 was a productive year for you so far, you released some singles, an EP as well as an album. What’s next?
That always seems to be the question! What is next? I’m always working on music whether it’s for my personal brand or mixing for other artists. I don’t see myself putting out any full lengths any time soon though. The next full length I produce I want to run a vinyl campaign and sell physical copies. I want to make sure people are going to be interested in buying before I commit to that.
However, I would like to work more with other artists as well. Whether it be creating together or mixing for them. I have a few collaborations in the works and a few finished so you’ll have to look out for those!
How would you describe a perfect release? What has to be done beforehand to get the biggest impact?
What I’ve learned is that there is no such thing as a perfect release. Sometimes you might think you’ve created the perfect project and it flops harder than a sumo wrestler doing a bellyflop during a high dive. However, there definitely are a few things you must have in order to give yourself the best opportunity to succeed as an artist.
Primarily, make sure you have all the details in order (song names, project title, artwork, etc.). People often are more likely to check out songs that have eye catching artwork. It’s not always that way, but sometimes your art could make or break your project. You’re also going to want to create content to promote your project whether it be photos, videos, posters, stickers, or whatever you desire, but be creative. This is an opportunity to get people interested in checking out your project prior to it even releasing. It’s important to understand that having an “unsuccessful” release is a great opportunity to reflect and see what didn’t work out and correct it with your next release.
Many artists get upset when they put all this work into a project that yields little results. My advice is to keep going and keep working. I’ve spoken to many notable artists who talk about how it took them 10 years before they got discovered. Success isn’t cultivated over night. It’s going to take time, but if you’re passionate about your art you will find a way to get where you want to be.
What do you prefer: Single vs Album release?
Personally, I enjoy listening to albums because it really helps you understand the picture or message that the artist is trying to portray. Sometimes I get impatient and wanna share what I make as soon as it’s finished so I’ll release it as a single. Other times I find myself in creative waves where I create a few tracks with the same vibe and are cohesive enough for a longer length project. Of course now in the streaming era, it is completely irrelevant whether you put out a single or an album.
What I believe is more important now is to have a large catalogue of music. If it takes you months to put out one single, chances are people are going to forget you even exist unless you’re posting content every day to remind them. They might also take you more serious if you’re able to put out a track every month or every other month over someone who takes months to put out a single. It’s going to be different for every artist, but my suggestion is to have a release schedule and stick to it. Also the more music you have, the greater the chances are of being picked up by an editorial playlist!
What are the biggest challenges for you as an up-and-coming artist in the digital age?
I think one of the biggest challenges for me as an up-and-coming artist in this era, and especially genre, is trying to find ways to be unique and stand out from other artists. For any artist, it can be difficult getting your music heard, especially when platforms like Spotify release 400k+ songs every day. Sometimes your music just falls between the cracks, and that’s okay because once you start getting picked up by radio algorithms those tracks will begin to be heard.
I think it’s important to just be yourself and stay true to who you are and your vision. People will appreciate those who are genuine more than someone who is a cut and copy of another artist. Ultimately, I think it’s important as a newer artist to find a community or label that is relevant to your art and your style and collaborate within and help them grow and thrive because if one person in that community starts doing well that opens the door for other artists who may have good music but struggle to be heard.
I was fortunate enough to come into a great community and a great label (Aviary Bridge Records) who have helped me so much throughout my journey! I’m very grateful for everyone I’ve met and came in contact with so far in the short time I’ve been doing this.
Give us a sneak peek in your production process. How does a Broey. song come to life?
My general process is split into 3 steps: production, mixing, and mastering. My production sessions usually begin with jams on guitar or keys until I find a progression that I can work with, or with a sample. Upon hearing a certain melody or progression, my head gets flooded with sounds and I can hear the track before it’s even brought to life. This essentially directs the track.
Piece by piece I add to it until I no longer am able to add useful layers. Then I arrange the layers to make the track dynamic and interesting to listen the full length. After I am content with the arrangement, I wait a day to begin mixing. After listening to the track for multiple hours the ears get fatigued which can lead to a poor mix. So I allow my ears to reset and by that time I’ll forget what the track sounds like so I’ll be able to mix more objectively. I do the same for my mastering stage as well. You can try to do all 3 in one day but you might be doing yourself a disservice.
Do you like collaboration with others? How would you describe the perfect form of musical collaboration?
Collaboration is great like I mentioned before. But there are definitely some things that should be addressed about how to properly work with someone in the music industry.
First, don’t ask someone to work with you if you don’t even know what their style of music is. When you want to work with someone it should be because you like their content, NOT because they might be your “ticket” to success.
Second, don’t come empty handed. If you want to work with someone, especially remotely, it makes it more efficient to have a demo or something to pitch to the other person. I get asked by numerous people to work on tracks and they don’t have anything to give me. Time is VERY valuable and coming empty handed is a sure way to waste someone’s time. If you want to work with someone give them something to work with. If I reach out to an artist saying I want to work with them, I already have a track ready for them to work with. Work smarter, not harder.
Third, be organized… label your stems correctly (tempo, time signature, key, etc). This way the artist knows exactly what they’re working with and they don’t have to do extra work figuring it out. It could also be beneficial to set a deadline and try to make a schedule. This way both artists know what needs to be done prior to getting ready for release.
Lastly, be honest. If you’re not feeling what the other person presented then tell them. You don’t want to put out music that you’re not happy with just because you want someone on your tracks. Push each other to be better and create something great!
Name your top 3 software tools for engaging in musical content. Explain why you think they’re awesome!
I see this question heavily debated on social media all the time. I don’t have a top 3 because the order is totally irrelevant and subjective – I personally use Logic because that’s what I feel comfortable with.
I’m working towards getting Ableton next solely because I would like to do more live looping to speed up my creative process. Ultimately, it’s not about the program that you use, it’s about what comes out of it. People could even make awesome music on iPad’s!
So, find a program that you like and learn it inside and out. Everything else essentially translates from program to program.
How important are data insights for your (strategic) decisions?
Data is super important to help understand your audience; where they audience are, what content they like, where they view the your content, and things of those natures. The data helps me understand when I’m starting to gain or lose traction and ultimately plan releases accordingly. It also helps direct what type of content I should provide.
Now, I’m not saying you should change your style to accommodate people. But it’ll help you understand what is working about your style and what is not. Always make music that makes you proud as an artist. Don’t sell yourself just to gain fans or streams or anything like that. Make music because you love to create or because it’s fun and therapeutic, but don’t ever make music because you think it’s an “easy” job, because I can assure you it is not.
You are going to fail before you get better. You are going to doubt yourself, and you are going to want to give up when you see little results. But the data is just as unimportant as it is important. Make your music. Be yourself. Go after what you want, and let everything else come naturally while you work towards getting where you want to be.
I want to thank ForTunes for giving me the opportunity for this interview. I hope that some of my insights will be beneficial for any artist who is new to making music or wants to have a career in music. If anyone wants to further discuss some of these topics, I urge you to follow me on social media and message me so that we can have a dialogue!3 join the family and show some love for this!