In this interview, we sit down with Jack O’Kings, a talented and rising DJ and Producer, to delve into his creative process, production techniques, and valuable advice for aspiring musicians, join us as Jack shares his experiences and insights into the world of music production, from his beginnings in music production to his go-to techniques and essentials for producing a powerful track.
Hello Jack O’Kings! How’s everything going?
Hey, I’m doing amazing! Thank you for asking and having me! I’m so excited to talk about music production, and I’m working on some super great things in 2024!
What is your favourite DAW?
I originally started producing in FL Studio, then shifted to Ableton and Logic then swapped back to FL – however, I have recently moved back to FL Studio and have produced a lot of songs within that DAW mainly.
What would you say is the best starting point for producing a track?
I would say the initial or best starting point for producing a track is getting the overall vibe of the track down, whether it is getting the initial chord progression down or a catchy melody. I always say getting the vibe down is the best part for producing a track, as I like to make sure I’m telling a story around my track to hook the listener in.
Do you have any go-to techniques that you always use to elevate your productions?
A technique that I love to use to elevate my productions, and make them stand out is granular synthesis. I primarily love the technique as I can create melodic patterns and leads and unique patterns and textures.
What’s your take on samples? Do you use them?
As a producer, I’d like to say that samples are an incredibly valuable tool in music production. Samples are extremely versatile as they can be used to create a wide variety of sounds, from classic drum hits and basslines to more unique and experimental textures.
In your opinion, would you say it’s necessary to know how to mix and master your own music?
I’d say that it isn’t necessary to know how to mix and master your own music, but knowing how allows a producer to have more control over their sound. As a beginner, it’s good to know the basics of mixing and mastering but that may not have the same quality as a professional sounding mix and master. I always recommend learning from professional mix and mastering engineers as they have trained their ears to be able to polish and make a track sound loud!
What advice would you give to your younger self, just starting out in your production journey?
If I could give my younger self some advice on their production journey, I would tell them to never stop learning, and always be open to experimentation and exploration, and finding what the next thing would be to take their tracks to the next level.
What would you say is important to keep in mind when producing?
For me, the main principle that I always stick by and keep in mind when producing new music in the studio is having a clear vision for my music. I always try to ensure that I’m asking myself the key questions when producing like what emotions I’m trying to evoke in the listeners. Allowing me to have a clear vision helps me with making decisions about the direction I’d like my music to go.
How do you stay inspired and motivated?
With staying inspired and motivated, I enjoy getting out of the studio and going for walks in the Peak District, it helps me to connect with nature and helps me improve my mental clarity and creativity. I also am a big foodie, and I’d say my best dish is either a baked New York cheesecake or a freshly handmade pizza, but I treat cooking in the same way I produce music, helps me to understand the ingredients to cooking a good meal and on the music side, the ingredients to produce a professionally sounding track.
Lastly,which plugins and effects would you say are essential for music production?
In terms of production, there are many plugins that I’d say are essential for music production. EQs are essential for sculpting the soundscape of the music, and making sure that each instrument has its own space. Compressors are also essential in reducing the dynamic range of a sound, making it louder without clipping. Compressors can really help in making the mix sound more balanced and polished. Finally, saturation is essential in adding harmonics to a sound, making it sound richer and fuller. I always try to use saturation in my tracks as I find it to be useful for adding warmth and character to my sounds.
We wrap up extending our gratitude to Jack O’Kings for sharing his genuine perspectives and practical insights into music production. His grounded approach to creativity and inspiration, coupled with his dedication to his craft, offers valuable lessons for fellow producers and Electronic music enthusiasts alike. We look forward to witnessing the continued growth of his musical journey in the months to come.
Jack O’Kings Online