Shane is one of the newer members of the Benztown family and someone I work very close with. Shane is a really talented, maybe the most versatile and flexible composer I know in the business. The great thing about this fact is: Shane is MY GUY. A guitar hero, a multi instrumentalist and the son of a former Pro Wrestler. No matter, if Dubstep, Country, Rock, Urban, Soul, Funk, World music, Pop, Dance, House, Trance, News…….(the list is endless): Shane can deliver. Together with me and Oli he ist he heart of all the musical work you can listen to on all Benztown libraries. Learn what gear Shane is using, what tricks you can steal and why his dad still has a wrestling ring in the backyard? Get a composer with Shane Drasin!
How do you start building a song / musicbed?
Nine times out of ten I like to start with the drums. I have a good idea where I’m going musically when I already start programming the drums. I like to get the sounds and levels/compression set from the start. I’m always kinda mixing as I record, It helps layering parts and finding the right tones and where to fit them in the mix.
What instruments do you use? Do you use any specific for specific formats? Do you use any outboard gear?
Well for the Speakertoyz library I picked up a used Akai MPC 3000 drum machine/sampler. The unit was in mint condition and owned previously by Earth Wind and Fire. That machine is special in the sense that it adds more punch and grit to the drum samples, plus the swing feel is legendary.
I mostly always use a line 6 pod for the guitars. I can’t play with latency thru plugins. I will process stuff later through guitar rig and Waves plugins. My main guitar is a Les Paul Custom. For the twangy Country beds, I tend to use a start or telecaster.
For the Classic Hits library, I use a Moog Slim Phatty bass and lead synth, there’s nothing like a true analog bass
What Production System / DAW do you use?
I’m using Pro Tools 10 with tons of plugins. My favorite is the UAD stuff. The studer tape machine is amazing, great on drums and guitars. I use that on a lot of the Rock beds. Also the SPL stuff is really nice. My main soft synth is Reason 6. I started with the first version and I’ve built up my sound libraries and just got accustomed to the interface. I have tons of the refills.
Mastering? What PlugIns, Tools do you use. Do you have any tricks to share?
For mastering I started using Ozone5. The presets are great starts to mastering a bed. I tweak them slightly but they sound great.
One trick I do a lot is to load my drum samples straight in the session on the grid and then cut and paste them into a beat. I feel like i have more control and precision over the samples then if i was dealing with midi.
What do you love about working in a job like now?
I love the constant production and writing every week. You really have to use your creativity to the max and not try to repeat yourself and make sure all the beds sound different.
Who are Favorite musicians / composers / songwriters?
I started producing music because of Michael Jackson, production wise I was obsessed with his albums and would try to recreate them on my first roland xp80 synthesizer. Guitar and songwriting wise I really admire John Mayer.
What are your favorite formats you write music for?
I enjoy all the formats because I love all music. I never like to listen or stay in any specific genre for too long, so making all these different styles weekly really keeps it fresh. I always get a good kick out of making the Country beds for some reason.
Thanks to Shane for taking the time and sharing his knowledge with us.