These days, it seems like anywhere you turn you encounter prophecies of doom about the state of modern music.
Label execs with money on their minds see shrinking sales and panic. Tastmakers see hit factories churning out the same songs again and again and decry the end of creative expression.
But from our vantage point, we see an entirely different world.
Every day at Soundfly, we find creative musicians making crazy new sounds and songs, from a dad and his kids covering Depeche Mode in Colombia to a bunch of bearded Brits turning a flock of pigeons into an instrument. We talk to regular people who manage to lead a musical life AND make a living.
Most of all, we encounter more and more people who are pursuing the act of making music simply for the love of it, who are taking advantage of the fact that it’s easier than ever to create music, and contributing their voices to the world’s symphony. From where we stand, things look pretty much the opposite of what the analysts are saying. If you love music, there’s no better time to be alive than right now. And we’re here to help today’s musician find their sound.
Today, we’re launching our first season of creative musical courses to help you find your sound and share it with the world.
Touring on a Shoestring
Ever wanted to head out on the road and organize your own tour? Join instructor Jeremy Young and a host of bands including Lymbyc Systym, Evolfo, Great Caesar, the Love Experiment, and more, as they help you navigate booking a tour, marketing your band, and making the most of your shows. This course is for any musician who wants to learn how to book gigs, improve their live show, or join a community of touring musicians to share the lessons you’ve learned on the road.
The Improviser’s Toolkit
Improvising on your instrument can be one of the most daunting, yet rewarding challenges. Soundfly instructor Mahea Lee gives you a basic framework you can use to start improvising and improve your solos. This course was built with beginner to intermediate pianists in mind, but is a great tool for any musician who needs a little improvisational encouragement! Join our community of aspiring improvisers and take on progressively more difficult challenges until you feel confident jumping in and taking a solo.
Building Blocks of Piano
In this course we take a sweeping approach to learning the piano without reading any sheet music. This course is for people who want to be able to sit down at the piano and play whatever they dream up, whether their own version of someone else’s song or something entirely new. We focus on the fundamentals of piano theory and practice so that you will be able to learn whatever you want going forward, without relying on sheet music.
We’re out to create courses for the modern musician, and because of that, we’ve decided to go about things a little bit differently. We built our courses on a few core ideas:
- A focus on creative expression over technical chops. We’re as impressed as the next person by feats of finger dexterity, but in talking to the musicians around us, even the virtuosos, we often hear that the key to success is about doing something different and letting your personal voice ring out. We want to focus on that—helping you do you.
- Learning music doesn’t have to be a straight path. Most of the musicians we know play multiple instruments in multiple styles—whatever it takes to achieve their sound. It’s just not as common anymore to lock yourself in a room playing scales on the flute til your fingers fall off. So we don’t lock you into just one instrument or one technique. We want to give you the tools to explore and chart your own musical path.
- What you do with your music is almost as important as the music itself. We know too many musicians who have graduated from music school capable of virtuosic feats but unable to get a gig. When the world is as saturated with wonderful musicians as it is today, musicians need to learn not just how to play music, but how to be a musician. We’re committed to giving students the business tools they need to get out in the world and share their sound.
- We’re always learning. Many of our courses are able to reach multiple levels of musicians, in part because we recognize that the best musicians never stop learning.
- No music snobs allowed. We love music and value it in all its forms. If someone has the courage to put forth their voice for the world to hear, we’re on board. Because of that, we’re creating courses for people like us, who just love music and want to explore it in more depth. If you want to play “Mary Had a Little Lamb” on the nose-whistle, we’ll be in the front row cheering you on.
Today, we’re extremely excited to be launching three new courses: Touring on a Shoestring, The Improviser’s Toolkit and the Building Blocks of Piano. These courses are the result of months worth of work, discovering our voice as a company, testing various approaches, and getting ideas and feedback from our community. Each course reflects something we love doing as musicians: hitting the road with a band on a DIY adventure, improvising over a set of chord changes, and developing a fundamental understanding of an instrument that will give you the freedom to play what you want.
Most importantly, we hope that these courses, and our community, can help you meet your musical goals more quickly and easily than ever before. In today’s musical world, we believe that anything is possible. And we’re here to help.
We hope you’ll join us and participate. If you have ideas for future courses, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us by email or in the comments below! We’d love to hear from you.