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In The Studio w/ Sultan + Shepard | Armada University

Who better to learn from than a Grammy nominated duo who have worked with and remixed practically every household name in EDM and Pop? From tracks as songwriters with David Guetta and collaborations with Dillon Francis and Tiesto to remixes for Bruno Mars, Coldplay, Lady Gaga, and don’t forget their own huge anthem, "Walls."  Forming officially as Sultan + Shepard in 2010, It’s clear that Ossama Al Sarraf and Ned Shepard’s, project has gone stratospheric. 

Now with a multi release deal with Armada Music and back-to-back huge releases, we go in the studio to reveal the making of their track Head Over Heels. Watch step by step as they build the track from scratch, reveal their production techniques, compositional and melodic methods before for explaining how they mix and process tracks to get their Grammy nominated sound.

Click here to learn about the "Head Over Heels" Remix Contest!

The Making Of Head Over Heels

Chapter 1:  Writing the Bass Hook.

Learn how to start with a melody, program the perfect swing settings and then find the perfect sound to start the track with a killer bass hook.

Chapter 2: Getting started with master bus preset and transposing the musical hook.

Understand why to set up your master bus early on and how to use transpose to get the best tone on the hook.

Chapter 3: Creating the first Elements

Learn how the crucial first elements form the bones of the track and how to start piecing them together.

Chapter 4: Kick Drum Design

Using a combination of samples and a kick plugin, learn how to tune and shape your kick to sit alongside the bass perfectly before moving on to the rest of the drum parts.

Chapter 5: Claps & Other Drum Parts

Learn a simple but effective technique for perfect placement of the clap sound, then watch and learn how to add the right amount of reverb to create space.

Chapter 6: Creating Piano Chords

Now the track has a hook and a basic groove, the chords are create. The duo explain how the chords themselves can change the mood when played against the hook while making sure there’s still enough room for the kick to punch through.

Chapter 7: Layering Bass Sounds

Watch the duo showcase a great technique for spicing up your basslines without over-complicating the melodic elements. Then they demonstrate how to layer multiple sounds to get a perfect marriage between the sub and kick.

Chapter 8: Creating More Melodic Layers

Learn how to take the simple piano chords and turn them into something much more modern and original. Use synths to redefine the chords and then process them to sit perfectly with the other elements.

Chapter 9: Adding Drums & Percussion

The duo will show you how they continue to add to the drums and percussion, working up sample hits, then cutting small elements from loops, quantizing them to work perfectly in the track.

Chapter 10: Building the Arrangement & Adding More Parts

Going deep into blending different club styles, the duo explain how to add rhythms and techniques from tech house, tropical and future house into one form. Get to know the ultra useful quantizing feature to get unique grooves.

Chapter 11: Creating the Breakdown & Buildup

Learn how to get a dreamy breakdown and use all the tools available to you for making a huge build up. Sultan + Shepard explain how they use arpeggios, automation, delays, reverbs, and many more techniques to build tension.

Chapter 12: Adding The Vocal Elements

The duo explain how they integrate vocals using an acapella and show you how to tune, retime and make a vocal fit perfectly into your track before rerecording a final, resung version and importing back into the track.

Chapter 13: Final Arrangement & Automation

The Head Over Heels arrangement starts to take shape. Get the knowledge of a great arrangement and see their arrangement tips and how automation plays a crucial role in the overall arrangement dynamics.

Chapter 14: Creating The Mixdown

Take a look at the mixing techniques that give Sultan + Shepard their signature sound. Learn how they balance the elements into a solid mix.

Chapter 15: Final Arrangement, Automation, FX, & Mastering

Go deep into the details as the final track comes together. See how Sultan + Shepard focus on small changes, with effects, detailed automation and then final work on the master bus all leading to a complete and polished mix.

Total running time - 2hrs 42mins

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