For more information on the founder and the beginnings of Beatshop check out this interview on Kidult.com, a website created by Pharrell Williams, a Grammy Award winning Producer, rapper and songwriter.
Check out our Youtube page for video tutorials to get a feel of what the class is like HERE
The Heartbeat of Beatshop
“If children hear fine music from the day of their birth and learn to play it, they develop sensitivity, discipline and endurance. They get a beautiful heart.”
Beatshop is a music workshop that teaches basic composition, music theory and piano via technology. Propellerheads Inc., a renown music software company based in Stockholm, Sweden, helped two Berklee College of Music graduates start Beatshop in 2010. Together, Beatshop and Propellerhead are advancing music education through a hybrid approach of traditional methods paired with innovative technology. The curriculum is designed to introduce students to elements of rhythm, melody, harmony, sound design, arranging, and collaboration through playing together. Propellerhead’s software program, Reason, is the most popular today among beginning composers because of its intuitive visual interface, vast instrument library and its unique virtual wiring layout that teaches students about the flow of audio signals from the sound source to their headphones.
This workshop features a brand new studio, student lab, and music technology facility equipped with state-of-the-art hardware and software. With locations coast-to-coast in San Francisco, CA and Boston, MA, we are able to provide aspiring musicians the needed expertise, studio time, and lab facilities to learn 21st century skills.
We take students of all backgrounds and ages and provide scholarships for those in need. No experience with music required. In addition to teaching the technical aspects of music making, we incorporate traditional music theory concepts, like harmony, melody and rhythm. We cover topics such as: sequencing, MIDI, synthesizer programming, drum programming, sampling, equalization, compression, delay, reverb, song structure, mixing, basic signal flow, and recording audio, in particular, vocal production. There are also events, activities, field trips and special guests, artists and producers from local studios.
We also spend a lot of time playing together. The founder’s design background has allowed the workshop to experiment with different ways of playing together by networking the computers to the teacher’s station. This creates a more dynamic band/group setting, where each person plays an important part of a group composition. Furthermore, the teacher can now act as the conductor and in some cases the composer.
What you will learn
Here are some things you can expect to learn from the workshops:
- Improvising and recording ideas; building rhythm, bass, harmony and melody tracks
- Programming patterns and relating these to musical bars and beats
- Learning to play to a metronome
- Traditional music theory concepts: Scales, major and minor triads, beats and bars
- Exploring sounds and textures, using a range of supplied sounds
- Creating form and structure
- “Musical” editing to create contrast and variation
- Creative work with loops
- Using effects for composing and production
- Shaping sound using the controls on realistic synths, samplers and other devices
- An introduction to mixing – balance, EQ, panning
- Automating mixer and device parameters for additional production ideas
- Using technology to develop musical concepts and ideas
- Applying techniques in a creative context through project work
- Compiling a CD portfolio of coursework
During the final weeks we design and master our own CDs, create a free Beatshop Mixtape for digital distribution via the web and study different internet marketing techniques.
If you would like to participate in the workshop in Boston, San Francisco or Oakland go to:
A video made for community TV on Beatshop SF
Our Beatshop Boston video