California Dreaming

el.: My name is LaShawn (“el.” for short), currently based out of Arizona. I have a degree in Digital Media Production but music has become my focus full time. As far as aspirations go, traveling the world to share my music with those who appreciate it is my ultimate goal. I genuinely enjoy talking with fans of my beats online and I plan to make that an in-person experience (touring, collaborating with other artist all over the world, etc.) one day. In the meantime, a short term goal of mine would be to make the jump from a beatmaker to a full fledge producer/songwriter. There’s so many concepts and ideas involved in the process of making music and it would be amazing to one day bring these ideas to life. A lot of my favorite producers (Dilla, Madlib, too many others to name) not only have beats that will forever be known as classic, these guys also have incredible songs…albums even. In my opinion, that’s an exclusive club to be apart of, and eventually I want my music to hold that type of status and hopefully inspire the next generation of beatmakers/producers. 

Karanikolov: I’m an architect with passion for travel and aerial photography. In recent years I’ve been traveling on specialised photo expeditions around the world, trying to capture authentic environments / people and unusual perspectives with my drone.

What has your craft taught you? Do you manage to transfer some of the lessons learned while creating your art in your daily life?

Karanikolov: There is no borderline between both… I keep myself involved only in projects that I love working on.

el.: Patience. Over the last decade, we’ve had the privilege of being exposed to so much music from our favorite artists in a short time span via the internet. You’re hearing so many different sounds and styles that I’ve started to take my time lately and ask myself “how can I make something that stands out?”. With that being said, I’m learning chords, learning to mix & master, and connecting with different artists so I can create a lasting impression with every project. 

What time of the day do you feel more creative and why?

Karanikolov: I’m definitely not a morning person. Although I wish I was. I feel most productive in the evening.

el.: That’s a tough one. But since my last project, “Closer2U” was started and worked on mainly late at night, I’ll say night is when I feel most creative… currently. That could change tomorrow, though. 

Do you sometimes rely or take into consideration chance and accidents when creating?

el.: Yes, often. I don’t quantize my drums and rely heavily on “feel” and sometimes a few sounds are slightly off. It used to bother me until I realized that mistakes are okay if the groove still feels good. Mistakes are pretty much guaranteed when experimenting with anything you’re not an expert in, and sometimes great things result from it. I like to think my “style” of drum programming is the result of just forgetting about grids and metronomes and focusing more on how the groove compliments the melody, whether it’s original or sampled. 

Karanikolov: Oh totally! Traveling and travel photography is all about lucky coincidences… I also rely a lot on my gut feeling.

What does real accomplishment mean to you?

Karanikolov: Being present…being at peace with yourself, something I’m still working on! 🙂

el.: In my opinion real accomplishment means  getting your ideas out to the world, no matter how far or short the reach is. I make music that feels good to me and whether you (the listener) think it’s good or bad, all that really matters is I felt confident in releasing it and can live with that. In 20 years, a producer could come along and say they started making music after hearing my work, which could bring a new relevance to my material. But those things don’t happen unless I take the chance and put something I believed in into the world. So, yeah. Having an idea, bringing it to life, and sharing it with those who care to listen is a grand accomplishment to me. 

Get in touch.

Karanikolov: Instagram / Facebook / Behance

El.: Bandcamp / Soundcloud / Instagram