An Interview with American Synthwave Producer Dream Shore
Dream Shore is a synthwave producer based in Miami. He seeks to create cinematic imagery that evokes scenes of a city that's a place of "dreams and leisure" surrounded by a "glamorous subtropical paradise" during the day and a place of "mystery and adventure" by night. In an emailed interview, he told me about his creative roots, his latest musical productions and shared his views on the current synthwave scene.
Karl Magi: Why did you start making music to begin with?
Dream Shore: Music was always been a part of my life. Several family members were also musicians during my childhood which inspired to do the same. I started playing the bass guitar at the age of 11. Year after year, I started learning new instruments which then lead me to the world of recording music with DAWs like FL Studio and Ableton Live.
KM: Talk about the musical and thematic elements that attracted you to making synthwave music.
DS: The lush pads, strong basslines and drums with a nice reverb effect attached to the snare. Every track I make, I try to have a different direction for it whether it's the sound or structure of the song.
KM: Which music creators have inspired you?
DS: Composers such as John Carpenter, Paul Hertzog and Jan Hammer are big influences on what I've done on my previous records to this very day. There are so many other artists out there that I enjoy listening to who have also helped me increase my knowledge of music production. The list of people is too long to name them all here.
KM: I'm curious to know about where the ideas behind Ocean Overdrive and Runaway came from and how you went about creating the tracks?
DS: Ocean Overdrive is a song that I wanted to create which was fast paced and exciting for the listener. Miami Vice car chase scenes and video games like Outrun were a big part of the making of this song. Being a car enthusiast, I wanted a song that I could listen to while driving down the highway. Runaway was originally created back in 2016 but was only released recently along with the remixes. I had been debating when it was the right time to release it due to many different and personal reasons. During that year (2016) I was going through a bit of a rough patch and decided to write a song that could remind me of what I enjoy and want as I progress further with what I do with my life. The main message behind Runaway is to tell everyone that, regardless of what life brings you, you need to keep pushing towards the things that you want for yourself and for the people that you surround yourself with.
KM: Where do you see your musical career going in the future?
DS: After my debut, getting back on stage for future events and continue on doing scores for film.
KM: The global synthwave scene seems to be in a state of growth. How do you feel the scene is doing? What are its pros and cons?
DS: Video games, movies and TV series have come to life due to the growth of interest in the synthwave community. Over the past ten years, the synthwave music scene has grown immensely and I believe it will continue to grow as time goes by.
On the pro side, it's a new genre for listeners who enjoy electronic music and can be added to their daily lives. The major con is that due to the convenience of what is required to make music nowadays, almost everyone wishes to create music related to the genre. Eventually aspiring music producers will come and go. Only a few will still push on and some will move forward into creating other types of music.
KM: What do you do to recharge yourself creatively?
DS: I go and enjoy the ocean, since I live in Miami its a place where I find tranquility. It's like therapy for the soul.
KM: Tell me more about how you create new music in general.
DS: Right now, I use Ableton Live 10 for all my music production purposes as well as for live performances. The way that I start to create music is by thinking of a theme for each trackm. Melodies are huge part of the process which then leads to forming a chord progression. Time after time, I'll listen to music from the '80s and '90s to give me a way to bring out a nostalgic element behind each track that I create. Of course, there are times where I change things up when I have lyrics already in mind and begin writing a track that way. In conclusion, it varies.