We asked some of our 'Power Users'
how they got involved in music and how they use FL Studio.



Blake is best know as Synthetic Orchestra, making beautiful and playful classical/film-score/game genre music. Not only that but Blake makes his own vector-art to accompany his musical work and finds time to plumb the FL Studio SDK for custom functionality with the program. Blake managed to squeeze a few minutes into his day, sometime around 4 am, to answer our questions.

 

 

Tell us about yourself and how you got into music?

 

I first got into music back when my parents bought me an Atari ST. I used to spend hours making rather dodgy sounding remixes of popular songs as well as my own music. It was always just a hobby though, and I ended up with a career in video game development as a programmer, working at Electronic Arts for around 10 years.

 

 

Over time, music slowly became even more interesting to me than video game development. A couple of years ago I finally said goodbye to the games industry and got a gig scripting and creating virtual instruments and sample libraries for some of the big names in the music software industry. I started to compose big orchestral video game remixes to test out the sounds I was developing and it slowly grew from there. I've just now released my 130th remix through my site, The Synthetic Orchestra, and plan to continue for as long as I have the spare time. I'vealso just released my first album of original orchestral music and have started on my next.

 


Tell us about 'Spitfire Albion'

 

When I'm not composing, I'm hard at work developing commercial and private sounds and sample libraries. I've been involved with companies such as CineSamples and Spitfire Audio and helped to develop the tools that many professional composers use in big Hollywood scores and mock-ups.

 

 

The project I'm most proud of working on so far has been Spitfire's Albion library, a collection of epic cinematic instruments for film composers. As a musician as well as a programmer, I have quite a unique workflow when it comes to sample development. I utilised FL Studio quite heavily during the development of Albion, both to get a feel for the product as an end-user, and to automate and test various aspects of the software. The tools provided, such as the FL Dashboard, let me generate really efficient templates to test the software I was creating and ensure an optimal sound.

 

We are fascinated by the artwork that accompanies your music, is that yours too?

 

 

It is. I like to try and sketch out the scenes that were in my head while composing to give people something to look at while listening. It's funny - a lot of the time this art takes longer than the accompanying piece of music to write. I use a basic vector-art graphics program and draw in the silhouettes then add a little shadowing underneath to add some contrast. I really like vectors and the way they give you complete control over the lines and shapes. I'm also a fan of minimalistic artwork and so clean white shapes on blocked colours really appeals to me.

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How did you start using FL Studio?

 

I used to use various DAWs and sequencers and would always get frustrated with the traditional track-based method of working and the pain of having to switch between tools on the piano roll. A friend suggested I take a look at 'Fruityloops' and I was instantly hooked. Not only did the patterns in the playlist feel just right, but the piano roll was more powerful than anything I had used before. Years later and it's still the piano roll and the tools around it that have cemented FL Studio's place as my go-to DAW - Everything else just feels sluggish and counter-productive.

 

 

The FL SDK has proven invaluable, too. As a software developer it's great that I've been able to develop my own custom plugins and tools to optimise my workflow.

 

Tell us about your production environment & toys?

 

 

 

Hardware wise, I was a big Gigastudio fan back in the day and used to have a small collection of dedicated sampling machines. However, with the way technology has changed I've managed to streamline my workflow and I'm currently running FL Studio and all my audio software on a single i7 with 24gb of RAM & twin 23" video monitors.

 

 

I have an old RME HD9652, A CME UF7 MIDI controller and an SE2200T microphone for when I need vocal recordings. For monitoring I use Sennheiser HD 265's that are actually close to dying they've had so much use and a pair of Yamaha MSP5s.  

 

Also, as a developer and obsessive collector of sample libraries, I keep my virtual instruments on a large array of solid state drives. 

 

 

Do you have any links you would like to share?

 

Synthorchestra is the main website for my music. I keep this up to date with the remixes, covers and original releases.

 

I also sell my original music on Bandcamp

 

and of course I have the following

 

Blake @ YouTube - the first place I usually post my orchestrations and remixes.

 

Blake @ Facebook

Blake @ SoundCloud

Blake @ Twitter

 

Bonus Plugin

 

Get it here

 

BRSO Articulate is a free plugin I've developed for FL Studio 10+ that simplifies the process of using 'Keyswitches' in your compositions. It allows you to utilise any of the 16 Voice Colours in the piano roll to activate a particular keyswitch, mod wheel value or UACC code in your sample libraries. Think of it as an FL Studio version of Cubase's VST Note Expression mapping.

 

 

Blake.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 






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POWER USER LIST


Oliver Heldens
"I like how I can draw my idea's in it really quick"

Chris Noxx (from Tha Piece ...
"I found myself glued to FL studio for days at a time"

Andrew Maze
"FL Studio ... can help you to create every kind of music in absolutely every genre, the only limitation is your imagination"

K-391 (Kenneth Nilsen)
"I released a song called 'Electro House 2012' which passed 500k in just some weeks"

Rich Kidd (Ritchie)
"makes the work flow quicker"

Aryay (Mickey Karbal)
"FL means everything for my productions"

Polar Youth (Elisabeth)
"FL Studio means everything to my creativity"

Hellberg
"I've tried other DAWs, but none have suited me like FL Studio, it's something about it"

Heatbeat (Matias & Agustin)
"...we work 100% on FL Studio, we don't even need another software to master the track..."

Arno Cost (Vadim Constantin)
"With FL studio, everything is simple, intuitive but you can also push your mixing, your mastering, your editing very far."

Julian Jordan
"All my tracks are made in FL Studio and I still learn a lot from it"

Mightyfools (Jelle & Andy)
"As both of us know all the ins and outs of the program, a basic beat, sketch, melody or idea is done in minutes"

Billain (Adis Kutkut)
"FL Studio studio is my main operating system for music composition, it is where literally everything happens"

PIXL
"What I loved the most how intuitive the UI on FL Studio was and the ease of using the Piano roll..."

Tucandeo (Daniel & Kevin)
"FL Studio's slick, easy to use interface was most comfortable for us"

Zardonic (Federico Agreda)
"FL Studio means EVERYTHING to me"

David Morris (Boy 8-Bit, R ...
"The piano roll is miles ahead of any other DAWs out there"

WondaGurl (Ebony Oshunrinde)
"FL means everything to my productions."

SeamlessR (Stephen O'Leary)
"FL Studio is the center of everything I do."

Martin Garrix
"If I have an idea I want to be able to work it out really fast..."

Adam Szabo
"FL Studio popped up. After trying it out, my mind was blown..."

Aura Qualic
"I don't know how you folks at Image-Line made it so good..."

Sarom Soundz
"So you can say right now that FL Studio is my life and the main tool to my livelihood."

Ummet Ozcan
"I don't do any additional processing it's all FL Studio even my mastering."

eoslinz (Lindsay Hawkins)
"The interface made perfect sense to me immediately and allowed me to create music within a matter of hours"

Walden
"...once i started getting used to the program, well lets just say that I've never looked back!"

Louis La Roche (Brett Ewels)
"FL Studio: I found my workflow a lot quicker and so I stuck with it

Camo & Krooked (Reinhard & ...
"FL Studio...we have been hooked on it. It’s the only DAW we are using"

Cazzette (Alex & Sebastian)
"The workflow in FL is incredible"

Bare (Sean Rodela)
"There might as well be no BARE if there is no FL"

AaronicStuff (Aaron V)
"[FL Studio] really shows how flexible the software can be"

Savant (Aleksander Vinter)
"I work FAST, FL Studio is the only DAW that can keep up with me."

Maor Levi
"I could never have inspiration that quick if it wasn't for the amazing engine of FL Studio"

BT (Brian Transeau)
"FL is such a fresh approach to composition. It literally blows me away every time I work in it."

Project 46 (Thomas & Ryan)
"It is the cornerstone of our productions and without it we would not be able to make the music we do."

Dot Rotten (Joseph Ellis)
"It pushes me as a producer, it never fails me, its also a program that helps create success over the years."

Sacco (Matias Monteagudo)
"I have yet to find a software that is as cool and has such a fast workflow as in FL, and believe me I tried everything."

Ronald Jenkees
"...I don't really endorse anything, but spreading the word of FL Studio has been a no-brainer because it's given me so much"

Tritonal
"FL Studio has been the powerhouse behind many of our productions as Tritonal and remains a go-to production tool"

SoundTakt
"FL Studio helped us realize our creative potential and hone our skills"

Tom Swoon
"It's so addictive! There's too many awesome features to list"

Marcus D
"A fellow Seattle producer introduced me to FL Studio ... I grew up on the cusp of the digital production age and didn't have the money to buy hardware, so naturally software was my go-to move"

Synthetic Orchestra (Blake ...
"Not only did the patterns in the playlist feel just right, but the piano roll was more powerful than anything I had used before"

Seven Lions
"It has the best work flow and out of any DAW I have used"

Tristam
"The pattern/clip set up is amazing, I mean 'make unique' is just bliss!"

Phoenix (The Sound Killers)
"It's simple at the end of the day. Everything they [other DAWs] can Do FL can do better"

Naden (Daniel Taranger)
"Ever since i tried fl studio, the program and I just clicked"

Amirhossein Zolghadri‏
"FL Studio has a great environment and makes it so easy to be in touch with the tools"

Indivision
"we haven't met any other sequencer which would help us to lay down our ideas so quickly and simply"

Protafield (Jayce Lewis)
"[FL Studio] really has become a big part of what I am as an artist"

Dexplicit
"FL Studio is without a doubt the most important tool in my inventory"

Mick Gordon
"I use it [FL Studio] for scoring, sequencing, designing sounds, and musical sound design. It's just so easy to work with, and work with quickly"

Madeon
"...with the incredible depth of the software, I never feel like something isn't achievable"

Mehran (Mehran Abbasi)
"My dreams came true when I was introduced to FL Studio. This software has formed a big part of my life & I am so glad because of it I am enjoying my music."

Richy Pena
"Before you know it I was playing the keyboard, recording melodies on to FL Studio and creating songs"

Ephixa (James Leusink)
"I have never left FL because of my love for the piano roll"

Varien (Nick Pittsinger)
"I tried other DAWs like Live and Reason, but nothing got my ideas out faster and better than FL Studio"

Boi-1da (Matthew Samuels)
"A friend had told me about FL Studio, I ended up going out and getting a copy of it and using it ever since "

Danyella
"I loved the user-friendly layout. Just a few months later my tracks were already signed away to labels "

audiopeel (Kieron Gore)
"The fruit however struck a chord. It's interface and workflow, everything seemed logical."

Rodney Anonymous (Dead Mil ...
"I still consider Fruity Loops the most addictive substance I've ever been exposed to"

Cyriak Harris (animator)
"Most of my videos start months before I even realise it. That's when I make the music that will eventually inspire the visuals of the video"

Ajurika (Akitaka Tohyama)
"I am instantly able to achieve the desired result and also to create the sound I am looking for."

Veela
"I quickly came to realize how complex and beautiful the program really was"

Andrew Aversa (Zircon)
"Trying to use any other piano roll after working in FL was like having my mouse dipped in molasses"

Hitfinders (Andrew, Luca & ...
"We noticed it [FL Studio] while reading a producers forum, and were instantly hooked"

Pete Marriott
"When I realized how I could use it as a sound design and production tool I became hooked instantly"

The Flashbulb (Benn Jordan)
"Nuendo and Pro Tools wasted a lot of my time, and I started noticing that FL Studio was blossoming"

MdL (Mason Levy)
"FL Studio is the fastest and most inspiring piece of software in my workflow."

Afrojack (Nick van de Wall)
"Don't let people tell you that Logic or other programs are 'superior' "

Feed Me / Spor (Jon Gooch)
"Despite working on other platforms occasionally I still find FL the fastest and most powerful way to get my ideas down."

Porter Robinson
"At first, FL stood out to me just because it was vastly more intuitive and usable...there's way too many awesome FL Studio features to list"

Avicii (Tim Berg)
"It's so easy and quick to use ... I literally couldn't shut the program down."

Anurag Dixit
"I’ve used every damn thing that can make music, but nothing comes close to FL."

Alex Medina
"I was first drawn to FL Studio's when a friend introduced me to it and taught me how to make hip hop beats. To this day I have used FL Studio..we are one :)"

Matthew Dear
On FL Studio: "It came highly recommended through various artists I'd meet on the road. I finally gave it a shot, and it immediately enhanced my production techniques..."

Infinity
"It means Everything, without FL i wouldn't be producing."

Ripley+Jenson
"When I took a look at a FL demo version in order to understand it, I discovered that it was the software I always had been looking for."

Nely (Arma Secreta)
"For me FL studio is the easiest way to project your ideas and anybody can lay out any musical ideas."

Big Giant Circles (Jimmy H ...
"FL has always been centric to my studio. It's the cornerstone of my creative process"

Jay Frog (ex-Scooter)
"The fact to compose songs and quickly notate ideas on the road within FL Studio was a real innovation for me."

Secret Cinema
"I bumped into Fruityloops at version 3 and Immediately loved it!"

AudioJack
"We are known for having an individual sound to our music and FL Studio has been a key part to shaping that"

Tom Ellard
"It was the Fruity Scratcher that finally convinced me to use FL Studio... It feels like I'm using the hardware but I can save the whole patching system to hard drive."

Jeff Samuel
"Once Fruityloops started to use audio and sampler channels, I switched and never looked back! It was tremendously powerful just with those features but no one really realized it until years later."

Meg Hentges
"FL Studio (plus a wave editor) is the only software I ever use ...and since FL added audio recording, my rack mounted hard disk recorder rarely gets switched on."

Franchize Boyz
"Franchize Boyz and Fruity Loops"

Seismic Crew
"I used the demo of FL a lot back before I was making any real money with my music. I had been using the old software drum machine Hammerhead, but FL offered endlessly more flexibility and power."

Toby Emerson
"I found the demo while searching on the internet for a program that I could create drumloops with. I ended up finding FL studio and have been hooked ever since. It is more addictive than crack (not that I have tried that)."

Peter Presta
"A friend of mine introduced me to FL Studio and I instantly fell in love with the sounds you could create as they ALL sounded so BIG. I was Totally Hooked on FL Studio from there!"

Doug Lazy
"... stumbled across FL while surfing. I tried it and immediately Loved it. I was still into hardware at the time but slowly over the last few years have transferred my work to PC exclusively with FLS."

Mark Tinley
On Fl Studio: "It means I can create multi-track drum loops, music loops or even entire songs and dump them straight into Pro Tools for further mixing."

Steve Duda
"FL means a whole lot, if I were restricted to one item of music software on my PC, it would certainly be FL."

Justin Lassen
"Probably around '98, a friend showed me FruityLoops. I just thought it was the coolest piece of software."

Basshunter
"A friend of mine showed me Fruityloops when I visited his place for a LAN party, and I got hooked right away."

DeadMau5 (Joel Zimmerman)
"It’s ease of use and fast results are what get the ideas down as fast as they come to my head, and that’s really important for me"

9th Wonder
"The programs we use are Cool Edit Pro and FL Studio. Those are the two programs that we use, and that's what we did the whole album on."

Mike Oldfield
"It is very good to see a product like FL Studio which is available to all and doesn't cost $10000000000 of dollars"



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