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LIA Insider: The Rise of Audio Vol. 2 - Brian Yessian, Tamon Fujimi and Anthony Aston

11 June 2020

 

The RISE OF AUDIO IS UPON US

Music & Sound from all corners of the globe

We continue to bring you stories on the audio world of music and sound. This week we are featuring the voices of Brian Yessian, Yessian Music; Tamon Fujimi, MassiveMusic Tokyo and Anthony Aston, Rumble Studios Sydney.
 

FROM DETROIT BRIAN YESSIAN
 

Brian is partner and CCO at Yessian Music in Detroit - NY - LA - Hamburg

 

Music - Hope / Protest / Healing / Resolve

2020 - A new decade. New opportunities. The world economies continue to rise. Let’s make this the best year ever.

At Yessian Music, we just came off of a banner year in 2019 with our eye on an even grander year for 2020. Our entire first and second quarters were packed with all types of projects from commercials, immersive experiences, live shows to themed entertainment. We were wondering how we were going to handle it all.

Then came COVID. The world stopped. How would we move on?

We immediately set up our studios in our composers’, sound designers’, mixers’, producers’ homes and were able to carry on.

Then came the unconscionable murder of George Floyd. The world stopped again. This time with sadness and anger, rightfully so.

At heart, I am a musician. I started to think about how music has the power to enrich our soul and is a thread woven into each one of our lives. It comforts us, it gives us hope, it helps us to rise up, it can heal, it brings joy and it even promotes resolution.

During this time, we have had the opportunity to dive deep into our souls and find ways to utilize our craft, creating music in our case, and apply that to help heal this world. We need to rid this world of racism, inequalities, prejudice and hate. We need to protest what is happening in this world to promote change in peaceful ways. We need to teach people what being a good person means, why we should love one another and above all, respect each other. Music has the power to inspire people to do all of these things. Through lyrics, through melodies and through lush musical textures.

We as musicians can utilize our musical talents to create joy, resolve and healing for those who need it right now. We can give people and their communities a voice. 2020 is a calling for us all to make a change and respect one another. We need music more than ever to highlight our oneness and human connection.

Our Yessian Music supervisor, Lars Makie, produced a playlist called Songs of Protest and Hope. Let these lyrics and melodies be our guide to healing and change.

As Alicia Keys said this year at the Grammy’s: It’s a new decade. It’s time for newness. And we refuse the negative energy. We refuse the old systems. We want to be respected and safe in our diversity. We want to be shifting to realness and inclusivity.

Yessian Music is an independently owned music and sound design company with studios in New York, Detroit, Los Angeles and Hamburg. We are a team of producers, composers, engineers, sound designers and creatives who specialize in original music composition, sound design, music research & licensing, onsite mixing and location recording for television, commercials, VR, themed entertainment and immersive experiences around the globe. www.yessian.com

 

 

 

FROM TOKYO - TAMON FUJIMI


Tamon is the Director of Creative Development APAC at the MassiveMusic Tokyo office. After graduating in Sociology at the California State University in Northridge, he toured around the US, playing music in front of big crowds. The stage is his element, whether it’s performing live or speaking at a creative festival

 
 
Tamon talks about music as a healing tool in uncertain times

Healing through music, now more than ever. Music is magic. It must be. It has this ability to impact human behavior, to move us to tears and on the dance floor.

It’s something that I’ve thought since I was a kid. Yet, 3 years ago, when we decided to open MassiveMusic Tokyo, the Japanese branch of 20-year-young music agency MassiveMusic, all my assumptions were confirmed. We experienced first-hand how music can completely change the mood of a commercial, how it can shift the vibe of an advertising campaign. And now that we’re facing this surreal global situation, we’ve seen how music can bring peace.

At MassiveMusic we’ve always been ambassadors of the power of music – and I mean, how could we not be? As we’ve always shown in our Music x Mind related projects, music truly is a healing tool. It calms us down, it relieves anxiety, and it makes us feel connected, something that has always been extremely important for humankind and that has taken on an even more significant meaning as we speak.

No matter the culture or the traditions, music is the most universal language ever. No matter if at home or at work, music makes us humble.

It pushes us to stay curious, to always look for new solutions and ways to grow.

Even the sense of togetherness that we experience at MassiveMusic, despite being based in 6 cities all over the world, well, I ‘blame’ it on music. It’s the glue that keeps us together.

During these times, lots of people are finding out what is necessary and whatnot. Change, the only constant, pushes us to do so. Yet, we can’t help but have music as constant too.

Whether we’re working on a sonic brand identity for O2, on combining music curation and creation for Chiquita, or on a list of resources that can make us feel better, music is always by our side. We even coloured outside the lines – literally I’d say, and gave life to a colouring book that features legendary icons such as Lady Gaga, Prince and Freddie Mercury. Colouring does wonders for the mind, true. Yet, we couldn’t help but pair it with music.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not simply because we’re a music agency. We see it all around us.

From how people turned their balcony appointments into musical experiences to all the innovative opportunities that people are coming up with to counterbalance the impossibility of having concerts for the time being.

And it doesn’t have to be big, you know? Small gestures are what make us feel the most empowered right now. I have to think of the customised playlists we at MassiveMusic Tokyo curated and sent over to our network of directors and creative directors. Or the DJ sets we’re setting up to keep people company while at home.

There are so many things we can’t control, but we can always decide to focus on what we can do to make us even better than before. We have to do a little work by being open-minded, flexible, creative. We have to keep on nurturing the relationships we have, whether personal or professional. Most importantly, we have to be willing to stop romanticising the old normal, which wasn’t that healthy after all. And we have to do it together.

That’s what music is all about. Striking a chord, sharing moments, moving forward.

Tamon’s...
First record:
‘Get A Grip’, Aerosmith Favorite album: ‘Abbey Road’, The Beatles Favorite noise: The sound of Tokyo?
Skills: Being your friend

Feel free to stalk him on LinkedIn or Instagram

 

     

FROM SYDNEY - ANTHONY ASTON

Tone is an award winning sound designer, creative director at Rumble Studios.  A boutique music and sound studio, creating music and sound design for the advertising, television and content industries.

 

 
 

The search for authentic voices

In a world of fake news, phishing and click bait, only authenticity can be king. Which is why brands are searching for it, creatives are demanding it and yes, we at Rumble are scanning the world for it. But why now? Storytelling... that’s why.

A good old fashion story told well appears more truthful and more relatable... whether it is a 6 second Facebook ad or a 7 season 68-episode epic on Netflix, a story can help to Trojan Horse the sell to consumers. We don’t need to smack the audience around the ears with a gold plated shiny voice artist over-selling every pronunciation.

Gone is our plastic fantastic single serve ‘I want it now’ society as we lean harder into brands, products and even foods that are real and tactile and artisan. Which is weird right? Because we are living more and more of our lives online. Wait... maybe that’s not weird. That’s exactly why.

The best bit about authenticity is we can all be authentic. Every person on the planet is unique, so only they can truly be them, it’s our inherent superpower. And this is so relevant in the world of voice acting. Every voice actor has the ability to be authentic, it’s when he or she try and be someone else, we can have a problem in the studio. I’m a big believer in; cast well and you’ll need to direct less. Find the right voice actor to bring their touch to the script and sometimes the best take is the take before the practice. When the voice actor is reading the words for the first time, they’re experiencing them for the first time and understanding them like their audience will. Over the years we have learnt to record everything from the moment someone enters the booth.

So how do we find, cast and record authentic voices? Well, we scour small and leading acting schools, comedy clubs, universities, theatres, TV, and even our local cafe´s and company reception desks. And source connect, ahhh it’s a beautiful thing, allowing us to connect to virtually anyone, anywhere. And once we have our voice actors in the booth we have a few simple techniques we use to get the best out of them. We try and minimise feedback and micromanaging, create a scene for the voice actor to act in or move them on and off the mic. But no one knows their voice like them, and some voice actors will have their own techniques to get their best sound. For example, we work with one legend that takes his shoes off when he gets in the booth, so he can feel a greater connection to the earth and it works a treat.

For one ALDI Christmas brief we would have auditioned over a hundred voices (felt like more) before one of the actors told us he knew a guy who could sound like ‘time’ itself and gave us the phone number of the great Australian actor of stage and screen Kelton Pell who went on to nail it, and many more, because of his beautiful, rich and authentic delivery.

But unfortunately, the more you hear the same authentic voice, the less authentic it sounds, which is why Rumble is always on the lookout for new voices to tell new stories like no one else can.

Technology has made the world a smaller place and voice actors from all over this tiny spinning rock can be cast and recorded by a sound studio in Sydney down under, because to be honest, nothing brings us together like a good story told and recorded well.

Rumble is a full-service music and sound design studio based in Sydney Australia. Armed to the teeth with a team of talented and passionate composers, sound designers and producers, Rumble specialise in creating unique and engaging soundscapes across a range of media.

 

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