Emerald City Productions

Electronic Music

Electronic EP has grown!

by Paul on October 12, 2010

in Electronic Music, General, Music

Hi All,

In my latest attempts at writing the latest Electronic track have caused me to add a bass line where there was none.  I had a brilliant drum feel to the track and thought I not need to add a bass line-so deep the ground shook–I now have to try it after experimenting!  Then come the effects bending……thought I was up to the mastering stage!!




Going to Scotland for a week to get yet more inspiration-got to mix on Electronic track when I get back…………..hoping for more inspiation for when I get back-fortunately got stuff recorded to dictaphone if short.

Inerested in how to ‘warm-up’ my more harsh digital recordings-there are plugins, but are analouge units better?  I have one outboard gear-SPL viatlizer MKII, which is good for polish.  Wavelab 7 is just out and I will have a look for what ‘warmers’ it has……..




I am currently working on an area which I have never touched on in seriousness, but enjoyed others works in.  I used to be challenged by Tangerine Dream, Michael Nyman, Philip Glass and other German Ilk composers such as Ian Boddy. I am working with a Mac computer and using the Komplete 6 by Native Instruments.  This gives me the vast batch of synthesizers they give with the their package.  You are able to create almost anything you think of-and that’s a fantastic!  I use the Kore 2 synthesiser/controller which I mix the sounds with and create the atmospheres and leads.  I love it.

On the 3rd piece in the EP-Starting with the sounds imagined, I created a beautiful background phasing grunge sound, by mixing on the Kore 2-loading in selected sounds.  A sort of a Moog type lead sound was selected and twisted/EQ’d and came out wonderful.  One or two more synthy lead sounds were selected/altered.  Turning next to Drum/Aux sounds was fun, but needed extensive editing.  I pulled the sounds from all over the place from Ultrabeat in Logic Pro and Absynth/Battery/Kontakt.

I not sure what counts for experimental Electronic music, but what has been created in track 3 is not exactly where I thought I would be going in.  I seem to drift as so many do-but drifting is fun sometimes when there is no pressure from record companies or TV demands!  I know how to react to pressure and write to brief-difficult but true.  I am now at the point of the mix, and thats going to fun…..


Internet Promotion of Music….

by Paul on September 10, 2010

in Electronic Music, General, Music

Had brilliant night out with the 3 stooges (us 3 composers) Ian Boddy/Marcus Howarth +me!  We discussed how the Internet is full of content already, and how to get the message across-although Ian has a 20 year track record, how do other composers get their work known so they can make a living??  The Internet method doesn’t bode well for starters.  Apparently though the word still is content, content and more content!!!!-so here’s some………….


Music Break!?

by Paul on August 19, 2010

in Electronic Music, Music

Hi All,

Mad summer thinking is here!  Everybody goes on holiday…..and stops work or other….I’ve had a break doing house stuff-painting, repaired house etc.

Looking forward to Autumn-had one or two musical ideas and recorded them on handheld tape.  Continuing with Electronic EP-have to alter some of the mixes when I get back to studio……working on third work today-few bars of drum sounds.  Maybe the recent Perseid meteor showers will inspire some ideas, although the tracks for the EP are essentially Astro-Physics and Particle Physics related.

Looking forward to more results from the Large Hadron Colider to get yet more inspiration………..!




Hi There,

Being a Composer of Library and Production music, you would think that I have everything to hand legally and finger on the pulse of all that’s Music. Err no!  Not working close to the Capital, all music composition commissions are largely on the Internet or through it.  Production Music Libraries or Library Music portals have gone the way of licensing their music at a meaningless price for the composer-a matter of pence per track-which means that ‘a living’ can no longer be made from music composition, unless you are fortunate enough to have the time and persistence that needs super-human endurance-and as someone has said ‘near genius’.  I remember one composer for Film & TV who was famous commenting that there are many of composers around like him and just as good or better, but they were not in the right place at the right time unfortunately!

I have a family to run and the job of being a composer in today’s market demands more time than a family tolerate-end of story-apart from making a living through it.

License  terms from libraries such as Q-music, itunes, CSS Music and the like all run business models that favour themselves rather than the composer.  Slightly different are companies like mediamusicnow.co.uk whose pricing structure is fairer than most where they charge more than the others per track from £4.95 to £24.95  believing they choose professional services and quality music with fair pricing structures.  They also interestingly unlike most give 1000 licenses at the base price for the track, then increment up to  several million copies covering most needs-and the composer still gets 50% of the incremental charge-that’s what I call fair!  Good tracks deserve appropriate reward.

I believe the Royalty Free companies need to show respect to their composer base more than they do, and show this in fair remuneration!  Just because there are a large number of composers, doesn’t mean they should reduce the reward for work done.  The pricing structure that exists with Royalty Free Libraries relies on the thought that at least something is being sold and we should be thankful for that!-and we composers have to live with that disastrous philosophy whilst they line their pockets making a good living!  As composers we are at the mercy of a pyramidal business model-us at the bottom-that’s the only way it can work.

I believe the only fair way is for enforcement of the Music Licensing system, which balances the requirements of both sides fairly-but we don’t live in a fair world.  Generally the pursuit of wealth at the cost of what is ‘fair’ in life is always the way of man.  Man will always design systems for wealth at the expense of the man with the weaker hand-competition always has a loser.  There are other ways that business’s can be run and models that don’t work on the winner/loser systems.  To be brave enough to adopt them, would take something else! The capitalist model seems to be the only ‘functioning’ one here in the West.  There are other working models that work elsewhere in the world that I know of, but they demand a different philosophies which are difficult to swallow by the majority.

Therefor we carry on in the same old vein, until perhaps a miracle happens and someone has the guts to make something work that is sensible and fair for all.  Until that day, perhaps this little ‘insight’ might stir you?


Imagination Album…..

by Paul on July 21, 2010

in Electronic Music, General, Music

Why not try my latest Album ‘Imagination’-an Instrumental Electronic album-laid back & Cool www.downloadplatform.com/paul_stokes/


Hi There,

Re-evaluating 18m 38s Electronic work. Question: does artistic artistic license need to be preserved against what is the musical norm or must we experiment at the expense of being accepted musically or financial success?  I go for the second as that leads to progress in art forms.  There is something to be said for both camps though.

As a practising musician, I think there is something to be said for the restraints of learning form and structure which give a form which can be understood by the masses.  If there is no form or structure which a human being can ‘put a coat onto’, there will be no understanding of the art work or anything which can be understood.  It would be like sending out a radio message in prehistoric times where there was no radio set with which to decode the message.  Similarly, music or art would be nothing if it was not there, even if someone said it was!  This argument does impinge a little on the modern thinking where I recently saw an example.  I do not decry the artist or his thinking in this example.  In MIMA (Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art) where 70 white canvasses had a very very faint almost translucent wash of ‘colour’ such that it barely could be said to be a painting.  No form, no structure-but the canvass.  The work had a discussion about a field of daises which put into the mind that it was meant to be that, however there was nothing to suggest it except imagination!  Was this art?  Is the mere projection of words into the mind ‘the work of art’ or can art be said to images projetced into the mind through whatever means are?  See (www.thisistomorrow.info/viewArticle.aspx?artId=358&Title=Felix%20Gonzales-Torres%20and%20William%20McKeown:%20A%20certain%20distance,%20endless%20light)

This was also previously done with music in the classic attempt by the composer John Cage (1912–1992) in his infamous piece 4′ 33″ where not a note was played!  Discussions still ‘rage’ about that.

The fact that there is a physical suggestion whether the paint or audible notes or sounds is important in my thinking.  An external input must be made that has form or structure of some kind otherwise there is nothing happening in front of you apart from your imagination!  Is imagination art?-categorically no-otherwise we would all be called artists.  Art must involve construction on the part of the artist to ‘direct’ the onlooker or hearer in some method to change perception. Art must encompass change in perception or direction otherwise nothing happens in the mind.  I would argue the ‘Field of Daises’ canvasses in MIMA relies only on what is already in the mind of the observer, and is therefore not art in reality.  John Cages piece 4′ 33″ only has audience noise and outside noise which are already perceived and been allocated to their respective memories in the brain with appropriate association-i.e. an eggcup is used for eating eggs-the ‘field of daises’ is only a field of daises till it is painted  in purple for example, changing perception.  In that way true art must alter the mind image whether visual or aural.

I move….


Ophiuchus is long?

by Paul on June 4, 2010

in Electronic Music, General, Music

I have named a piece that I have written for my next EP Ophiuchus! It is 18m 38s long with undulating scenes and rythmns.  Its been a labour of love and it is what it is!  It is deliberately repetitive but has beautiful deep undercurrents of sounds with background inlaid notes!


Imagination was conceived by Paul Stokes as a Studio album (Glenmoor Studio’s) containing undercurrents of classical though remaining stronglyFront300Pix Electronic and New Age.  This is a release from his back catalogue where it is going to be more widely available for download.  It is being released by BelieveDigital on many download platforms.  Being well received by the public previously on a smaller scale, more people will be able to enjoy the album on major download platforms.  In small trials, Imagination has had critical acclaim by the public when played on Internet and Capital Radio etc.

Paul Stokes-Herbst (Paul Stokes) track record includes being in bands and writing music for the Media and solo albums.  His music can now be found in many countries around the world on film, shorts, advertising etc.  Crossrythmns says “here can be found a pile of influences coming together to make something new”. Imagination is Electronica but is Sc-Fi influenced, with crossing of musical boundaries, creating pleasant but creatively inspiring themes.  It will pull you out and in!

You are invited to explore perhaps deep parallel worlds or deep intertwining themes which will cause you chase dreams……in your head……  The album is available from most reputable digital download stores including itunes/Musiczeit/BelieveDigital and hundreds of  others.  Contact details follow below:

Hear at:



Album IMAGINATION Release!

by Emerald City Productions

Christmas in Narnia