Adele, Ed Sheeran, Coldplay, Amy Winehouse, Sam Smith, James Bay, Ellie Goulding – the modern British pop wonder is more than a fact, it’s a force in motion, unstoppably charging through the worldwide charts. Inspired by this wealth of music, the UK Pop EZkeys MIDI pack dives headfirst into the treasure chest of British pop to come up with new ideas that you can use to craft your tracks from.
Expect classy, timeless pop with a modern twist and, of course, that unmistakable UK pop feel.
When and how did you discover your passion for music?
Ever since childhood, music has always been a big part of my life. The radio was always on and we had a piano and an old nylon string guitar at my house which I just started playing around with from an early age.
How come you ended up playing the keyboard/piano?
Playing piano was what came the most natural to me and what I fell in love with the most at the beginning. Being a solo artist was never my goal, but accompanying a singer or playing in a band and being creative together is what drives me. Today I find myself playing guitar, bass or drums just as often, but always together with other people and always trying to complement my band mates or the singer I’m with.
Growing up, the available tools for recording and songwriting were very different compared to now. These days, one can produce professional records right from the bedroom. How important do you think the technical evolution has been to overall musicianship, creativity, learning and songwriting?
Whether it comes to learning an instrument, recording an album or creating music, I think the tools that are now available are of great value. Nowadays you don’t have to have a big budget, book studio time or purchase all the expensive hardware you needed in the past to be creative and record music.
I think this has allowed more people to discover the joy of making music, and at the end of the day I do welcome the technical advancements we’ve seen in the last decade or two.
What do you hope end users will take away from this collection?
First and foremost I hope they can feel inspired. Just as I love being a piece in a bigger musical puzzle, I hope these grooves and melodies can complement the music and songs they maybe already have started writing but need that little extra something, or inspire to create new songs based on the MIDI in this pack.
This is your first EZkeys MIDI pack. What was the experience like? Explain a little about your through process going in.
To get in the vibe and to map out the direction, I started with a big playlist of music that we wanted to use as general inspiration. Then I wanted to cater to different needs and make some of the variations more packed with melodies and chords to fit more piano-based songs as well as make some less busy variations to fill that space next to a guitar or other instruments without taking over.
What was some of the inspiration behind this collection?
Oh, just to name a few that I associate with modern pop from Great Britain I’d say Adele, Coldplay, Amy Winehouse and Ed Sheeran.
What’s your own connection to pop from Great Britain?
Beside the more modern ones I mentioned above, I also have to mention some of the ”older” bands that always have followed me around. Playing large stages, small stages, pubs, restaurants or bars for more than half my life you can not escape the Beatles, Oasis or the Rolling Stones (if you include rock as well). These are bands that will always have a spot on the setlist.
Name five favorite songs of any genre or era where the piano is the undisputed star.
I listed six songs below and whether or not the piano is the undisputed star in these songs may be up for discussion as it battles against world-class vocalists and other instruments that make these songs what they are. But they are songs I really like where the piano is an essential part of the overall sound and feel of the song.
“Ordinary People” by John Legend
“Tiny Dancer” by Elton John
“Superstition” by Stevie Wonder
“A Thousand Miles” by Vanessa Carlton
“You’re The Inspiration” by Chicago
“Love Song” by Sara Bareilles
This video series demonstrates the workflow of writing music with EZkeys. Learn how to add a piano to match your guitar track, how to find new song parts how to work with several instances of EZkeys.