ALUMNI ACHIEVEMENTS: GEEK_FAM
ALUMNI ACHIEVEMENTS: GEEK_FAM has seen his career go from strength to strength over the past couple of years. He completed our advanced programme in Music Production and Audio Engineering in March 2022. Now, he finds himself with a platinum record in Ye x4 by none other than the hit-sensation Blxckie. We caught up with Geek to revisit his first encounters with music and find out what he’s been up to since graduating.
Hi Geek_FAM, thanks for taking the time to catch up with us and give us a peek inside your world today. I’d like to start by going back to the beginning. How did you get into music, production and engineering?
Hey, I’d like to start by saying thank you for giving me the opportunity to share some of my journey with you, it’s an honour. It all began on my morning trips to school, at the back of my mom’s car. I’d be getting my daily dose of my favourite artist at the time, Skrillex. It felt like the sounds he used were speaking to me. This was the first time I felt goosebumps listening to music. It was then that I realized, that if I can master the art of manipulating frequencies then I have acquired an actual superpower. The power to convey emotion through sound, the power to make people feel good.
What is your approach to producing a track and how has it changed since you completed your studies?
When I produce it feels a lot like painting, the blank project file is my canvas and the studio is my palette. Every sound is a colour and the way in which I decide to use them are my signature brush strokes. Having said that, I feel as if studying at Abbey Road has opened my eyes to a whole new colour spectrum and given me a much steadier hand if you will. I came from a place of primarily working with virtual instruments, so being able to experiment and work with some of the finest instruments in such fine facilities was definitely a paradigm shift.
Tell us a little bit about the process of getting to produce for Blxkie?
Working with Blxckie is an absolute pleasure. One of the reasons I enjoy working with him is that he always knows what he wants a record to achieve before we’ve even started. I believe that’s how Ye x4 came about. He shared his vision with me and I knew exactly how to execute it. It’s a synergy we’ve been blessed with.
What is your take on the music industry in South Africa today? What do producers need in order to get ahead of the game?
I feel as if South Africa is in its musical prime right now. With so many local acts going international, it’s all eyes on us. There’s never been a better time to express yourself musically.
From what I’ve experienced so far, my advice to producers is to never stop crafting and polishing your sound, take inspiration from wherever you can just make sure you make it your own. Spice everything up with a little bit of you, because you’re the main ingredient at the end of the day. As well as finding artists that compliment your sound, you never know, it could be you.
What did you find to be the most valuable part of completing your studies with us?
The musical wisdom and knowledge I’ve acquired, as well as the way it was given to me. World-class information given to you by world-class individuals is what I always say. As well as the relationships I’ve formed during my time at Abbey Road. It’s honestly a blessing to be around such like-minded people every day.
Do you prefer writing and collaborating with other artists or your own work?
It all depends on the record and the message I’m trying to convey through it. If I feel like there’s someone who can help me convey my message or complement it, I’m gonna share my vision with them. Although, there are many times when I find myself with a piece that I feel I can do justice to. It really comes down to what I feel would be in the best interest of the record.
Where do you draw inspiration from for your music, and fashion choices ;)?
From all those who’ve achieved greatness through their art form. I believe it was the fearless expression that drove the pioneers. And the product of everything I do is the pursuit of such fearless expression.
What’s next for Geek?
Those who know me are mostly familiar with my productions, but in my pursuit of fearless expression, I found a need to put myself on display vocally. I’m putting together a body of work that will put who I am and what I’m about on display, as well as what I have to offer musically.