Last January at the NAMM 2018 convention in California, USA, we ran into a local DJ/producer by the name of Melloe D. It didn’t take long to see this talented 26-year-old clearly knows her way around studio recording equipment and DJ gear. Read more about the inspiring journey she’s made so far in the music industry.

Photo: Jeremias Reyes (IG: @jeremias_r3y3s)

Interview: Lizanne Hennessey

How did you get into producing music in the first place?

“Well, I have a musical background playing piano since the age of 7 but I got into producing music through my brother, Luwasted, who is also a producer. He introduced me to FL Studio back in 2008 while I was in my junior year of high school. I had moved to Maryland and making beats was all that got my attention since being the new girl in school and not knowing anyone really sucked.

“I was heavily influenced by Eurodance music at the time. I looked up to artists like DJ Splash, East Clubbers, Italobrothers, Pakito, the list goes on. I was always interested in how synths were created so I got into sound design and would stay up all night/morning til’ 6am just learning the software and watching tutorials on YouTube. Once I knew I was really into music production, I purchased a book by Rick Snowman called ‘Dance Music Manual’ which teaches you the technical side of creating music, basic music theory, microphone techniques and a bunch of other cool stuff. I became a huge nerd afterwards.”

What kind of gear do you use now?

“For producing, I use my Macbook and an M-audio oxygen 49 midi controller, which has 9 faders and 8 pan knobs that I love to use to automate cool FX and MIDI map them into each fader/knob. I work out of Ableton and Logic Pro x (mainly Ableton). I use Logic when I want to make music that would be great for TV or film. My workflow in Ableton is 10 times quicker though. I use the Rokit 5 monitors and Shure SRH440 headphones. Nothing too fancy but it gets the work done. For deejaying, I love using the Pioneer DDJ SR controller because of its performance pads and the ability to have more control over the Serato DJ software.”

Being a female producer/DJ in a male-dominated industry must be challenging. What advice do you have for other women in the music business?

“Be yourself. As cliché as that may sound, just be you, know your gear, follow your intuition, and network network network! It’s exciting to be seeing more women in the game. Sometimes it can be frustrating because there are times where I know I’m not being taken seriously as a producer so I have to push myself to be better than I was yesterday and just let my work speak for itself. You have to convince yourself that you are a badass! Build relationships with other women in music. Join meet up groups in your area of local musicians/producers and ask for help or collaborate. You can find or create groups in your area in whatever field you’re interested in. If you ever get offered a production gig/project outside of your comfort zone, do not turn it down! Chances are you will learn a lot more out of it and you’ll be glad that you took the gig. Be open to constructive criticism and do not let the naysayers get the best of you. They are the ones who say it cannot be done.”

You say never turn down a project as if you’re speaking from experience! What was your most challenging project to date?

“My most challenging project would have to be scoring for a web series. I had no idea what I was doing but I accepted the gig because it sounded like a piece of cake. [laughs] After taking a music for film course, I realized I did it all wrong. I knew nothing about syncing video into Logic or creating a tempo map to map the downbeats to picture events. That was definitely the one project I learned the most from.”

What project are you most proud of?

“The one I’m most proud of is my first EP, ‘The B.O.L.D’, that I released in April 2017 because I did everything on my own from producing to mixing, publishing and creating visuals. It was one of those projects that I look back and think; ‘Damn, I really made that!?’”

What was your highlight at NAMM 2018?

“Oh wow there were so many! From the amount of networking, the NAMM breakfast seminars and performances, meeting amazing musicians like Anomalie and Rob Araujo & running into T-Pain and hip hop producer, Focus, to getting some productions tips from those guys at the Waves booth. I felt so inspired after NAMM. The best was running into you and the Bax Music team! Much love to you all!”

See also

» What do you need to produce music?
» Recording and amplifying vocals for beginners
» How to become a DJ

» DAWs
» DJ gear
» Studio monitors

1 response
  1. Sean says:

    I love her !

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