Recently, I've been thinking about how much I liked the album Deep Forest. They won a Grammy, toured the world, and even played for the president of the United States. Besides all that, the music is great, the production is amazing, and who wouldn't want to get Pygmy vocalists into the top 40?
They did get criticized because none of the people behind the voices had been paid anything. Since then, the artists set up a foundation to benefit their tribal community.
Regardless, I was trying to figure out a way to emulate what Deep Forest had done without access to such great voices. After reversing samples of people speaking, I put them in Melodyne sound editing software and brought their speech all on one note. Then I changed the formant which changes how you sound such as young, old, male, or female. The result is like chanting in a foreign language or even an alien language.
After hanging out on the Taxi.com forum, the largest A&R company in the world, I learned that even if sound samples are royalty free, other people using them may send you a letter from their lawyer asking you to cease and desist stealing their song, not that they have a toe to stand on. It's just that defending your position is not free, easy, or fun.
You'd basically need to repitch an octave, time-stretch, and run the vocal through a distortion unit so it sounds like a guitar solo as well as change it from major to minor if you want to guarantee not being sued. I don't imagine many people think to play the vocal backwards because who would want that?
But if the composers of Deep Forest can get Pygmies in the top 40 why wouldn't it be possible to get alien chanting? Hey, I can dream if I want to.
I think music has to strike a balance between repetition and variety and we've all heard enough songs in English worldwide. I wish BTS would sing more in Korean.
Anyway, the weirdness factor of backwards vocals is certainly not contributing to excessive repetition of English. I just have to make sure it doesn't devolve into chaos. I don't know about you but I really like it.
I composed these tracks with backwards vocals; Dub Forest, and Zambezi Beats. Zambezi is quirky but Dub Forest really came out the way I intended and just works so well on so many levels.
I called the language of backwards vocals Zambezi from the fictional African country in the movie King Ralph. When I was trying to register my tunes of Spotify, it asks what language the vocals are in and I couldn't answer the question. I didn't want to say it was an instrumental because people who want a vocalist wouldn't buy it. It's not good to release singles of instrumentals. They work better as albums.
I like the result so much I'm going to double down on this approach. If Spotify doesn't even have a category for it, then I must be on the right trail.
On Spotify I chose to go with the most obscure African language, Amharic, to offend the least number of people. It's probably obvious I didn't color inside the lines or work and play well with others but maybe it's better to have a self and no audience than an audience and no self.
Lastly, it's really important to myself, wife, and two children to have this release be a success so please, PLEASE like, comment, share, subscribe, and especially BUY ten copies for your family and friends. Thank you.