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Exploring Interpolation: Combining Lil Nas X with Nirvana

At Point Blank Music School, we thrive on creativity and innovation. In a recent exploration, we delved into the fascinating process of transforming classic tracks into fresh, contemporary beats. This journey, documented in our latest video tutorial, showcases the seamless fusion of iconic melodies with modern rhythms, epitomizing the creative freedom inherent in music production.

This video is from our Production Styles module featured within our Music Production degrees here at Point Blank Music School. This module is made to develop your understanding of how successful music is created through a process of analysis, research and practical application. If music is your passion and you want to take the next step for your career and skillset, take a look at our degrees and apply now!

For this tutorial, our curriculum manager, Chris Martin, works to incorporate the melody from a classic track into Ableton Live 11. The melody of choice was from Nirvana’s timeless hit, “Smells Like Teen Spirit.” The objective was to blend this iconic tune with the stylistic elements of Lil Nas X’s “Panini,” creating a unique musical hybrid that resonates with both nostalgia and contemporary flair.

The process involved several detailed steps, from selecting and importing the right MIDI files to adjusting the melody and chords to fit the desired harmonic structure. One critical aspect highlighted is the transformation of the melody through various modifications, including transposition to change the key, rhythmic adjustments for a tighter groove, and octave shifts to alter the tonal quality. These changes are crucial in ensuring that the melody complements the overall mix, providing a cohesive blend between the old and the new.

Chris also showcases how additional elements like synth arpeggios, wobbling pad sounds, and basslines can be integrated to enrich the texture of the track. These components, inspired by the ’80s synth aesthetic and modern trap influences, contribute to a fuller, more complex sound.

The final product is a testament to the endless possibilities in music production. It’s not just a beat; it’s a creative homage that bridges generations of music, demonstrating that with the right tools and a bit of imagination, the boundaries of music are truly limitless.

At Point Blank, we continually strive to push these boundaries, encouraging our students to explore, innovate, and redefine the sounds of tomorrow. If the thought of becoming a world-class music producer excites you, take a look at our degree offerings and contact our team to find out which one is best for you.

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When you register with Point Blank, you access an array of free sounds, plugins, online course samples and much more! Simply register below and visit our Free Stuff page to get your hands on a range of exclusive music-making tools and tutorials provided by the team. Fill your boots!

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