We’re back with another deconstruction, this time with our Head of Education and Curriculum and master of Track Deconstructions, Ski Oakenfull. In this video, Ski breaks down Lil Louis’ classic track, ‘French Kiss’. If you’re new here and not familiar with what a deconstruction entails, it’s where we take a well-known track, break it down to its core elements and recreate it before your very eyes.
Released back in 1989, ‘French Kiss’ is the house hit by American DJ and producer, Lil Louis. Championed for its innovation at the time, the track is based on a single note (F-natural) and distinctively slows down to a complete stop before speeding back up again. A club favourite, ‘French Kiss’ spent two weeks at number one on the US Billboard Dance Club Songs chart and even peaked at number 50 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and number two in the UK charts.
During the deconstruction, which was filmed live at Brighton Music Conference (BMC) earlier this year, Ski gives a brief overview of Ableton Live, before running through some of the track’s music theory. He records in the main riff, using his trusty Push, followed by the classic Roland TR-808 and TR-707 drum elements, including the bass drum, hi-hats, snares, claps and percussion. On to the strings – Ski uses one of his favourite plugins, the TAL-U-NO LX, to get the desired sound, before adding the song’s synth stabs and melodies. To finish off, he shows how you can slow and speed up a track in Ableton Live and drops in a Candi Staton acapella to taste.
Feeling inspired to learn the ins and outs of making music of your own? Kick start your music career from home by taking one or more of our award-winning Los Angeles and online courses. Plus, we’re currently offering 25% off our online diplomas, as well as 10% off our Los Angeles courses until 31st October using the codes DIP25 and LA10 – so there’s no better time to sign up than now.
These deconstructions are a tool we use frequently to teach elements of composition and arrangement but to get the full picture we recommend you study with us. The most comprehensive study we offer is our flagship degree programme, the BA (Hons) in Music Production and Sound Engineering (also available online).
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