First BPMstr.com EDM Blog Post from Luke Kelvin
EDM (electronic dance music) is what I love, and this EDM blog is where I share my story. I was born as Alex, but when on stage, my name is Luke – Luke Kelvin, or simply BPMstr – the Artist of the Tempo. My website BPMstr.com is finally up, and this is officially the first week of my quest to make at least three new tracks every month. Do you think I can do it? We’ll see. But I do need your help to succeed. If you take a few minutes to browse through the photo gallery included in this EDM blog below, you will know all the relevant marks in my life that lead to today’s undertaking. Or if you want the long version, please read on: my progress will be 10-fold faster if someone follows me and helps me along – and that would be you.
The story of my past life (which is not the topic of my blog) is simple and in some ways easy to relate to: I had a perfectly normal childhood for an Eastern European child: I had some fun, played ball, and got good and bad marks in school. I usually worked hard at things I did, and some of my activities I pursued with more passion than others. At the age of seven, I started learning piano and music theory,….. and then I evolved in my own strange but simple ways – a sports champ, an immigrant, a college student, a marketing specialist, and then later a real estate technology consultant, a hi-tech geek, a decent cook, and a few other things. And today, I am also doing something else – I produce music – Electronic Dance Music (also known as EDM). This is the kind of energetic dance music you hear in clubs and venues all-over the world.
So, last summer (2012) I rolled up my sleeves and did the following to get started (skip this if you don’t want to get technical): I rolled up my sleeves and tuned my bass; bought music gear, including a mixer, a couple of MIDI controllers, a keyboard; I also acquired three-way KRK studio speakers, a pair of DJ headphones, an Apple MacBook Pro; and finally, I purchased the most awesome professional music production software called Ableton.
Next Comes the Music Making
Photo: BPMstr’s New Studio
The rest was a matter of several sleepless weeks, lots of caffeine, and hard-core creativity. The creativity is the easy part for me: I always come up with tunes – they come up naturally to me, and that’s how I got the idea that I need to write music. Sometimes I wake up at night when I “hear” a melody, and sometimes I sing (usually in my head) a melody that I already know well and find a cool tangent in it that I transpose into a new song. When this happens, I need to write down my idea as sheet music or record (usually whistle) it on audio. And then I need to develop this idea into a multi-track song, which I now can do with Ableton Live (thank you Ableton and thank you Jeremiah DiMatteo, who taught me how to use it!).
So, as of a couple of weeks ago, I signed up for Facebook and Google+ accounts and a few other social networks and built this WordPress website for my EDM blog. I first tried to hire this one chick to help me, but that became a travesty because she wanted five thousand dollars for her services and didn’t know left from right, and so I just installed and configured it all by myself, which was a huge pain for a slacker like myself… but I managed.
Ready to make Electronic Dance Music
Photo: This is who I want to be when I grow up
So here we go. I am all connected with the rest of the world, I know how to write music, and I am ready to get going with my little project – to become one of the best electronic music producers in the world. I think I will do well because… well, because I am serious about this. As Hunter Thompson once said, “anything worth doing is worth doing right,” and I am committed to doing just that. Please follow my progress on this site, log in to this EDM blog network to post a comment and ple-eease follow me on my social networks – this will be a HUGE motivation for me. Please give me about a week, and I will be posting my first song – here and on my YouTube channel.
Why Luke Kelvin is BPMstr
Now, one last thing: why I call myself BPMstr. This is because I believe that the defining force in music is its tempo. Tempo is measured in Beats Per Minute – hence the term BPM. So, my name is now BPMstr | The Artist of the Tempo. You can also add an ‘e’ and call me BPMstEr (if “you’d like to ‘buy’ a vowel”). But I like the short version with consonants only.
My Future Posts
Photo: Amsterdam Dance Event
I will post at least one entry on this EDM blog site – an article or video or a story. This is Week #1, and so this is my first post. In the next two weeks, I will be in Amsterdam for the Amsterdam Dance Event – perhaps the best annual conference for EDM musicians. I will Tweet regularly when I am there and will have a plenty of new and exciting material to post – both for EDM lovers and for professionals.
Stay tuned, check out the photos from my past life, and please scroll down to use my social links.
- My childhood was wild. Between the ages of 7 and 14, I learned to play the piano and a few other instruments. And when I was about 14 (here), I started playing this bass. I looked really cool with a bass. But I couldn't stand up easily with it because it was really heavy.
- My progress in music was a bit slow in part because I participated in these obscure competitions. This one I won. The fellow on the left - Evgeniy Braslavets - is twice olympic champion and twice world champion in sailing. Yes, behind us is indeed a large air carrier... how cool is that?!
- This is me (#912) when I am 12. I actually learned to sail at 8 but learned to swim at 10. Again, where I was raised, sailing lessons didn't cost much, and so I could afford a long learning curve. Eventually, I became the national team member... but then came immigration and college and chicks, and my pro sports career ended.
- When I immigrated (with my family) from Eastern Europe to the USA, we lived in Italy for 7 months, where I made money playing music in the streets and in cafes. I was young and cuddly and this was a profitable trade. But one day, some old lady paid me (for playing harmonica near Piazza Venezia, not for anything else) with this travesty - a government savings certificate worth 100 Lire (worth less than a box of matches).
- This is me at 18 or so, when I was into techno music. In my right hand is a rigged Technotracks tape.
- Graduated from the University of Houston and stuff.
- My parrot Bucho. He sucked because the avian store where I bought him said he would live to be 35, but at 13 he died of thyroid cancer, which parrots rarely get. I loved this little man. By the way, I named him Bucho because I liked the movie 'Desperado', where Bucho was the bad guy.
- So, as soon as I became severely overweight, I went to work at GE Electric for a while after graduation, where I got stiffed for a 6000-dollar commission by my boss Kim. And so I left to work for myself.
- In a few months, I became a real estate agent at RE/MAX, and someone put a photo of me and a few other rookies in a major paper (News in a Classified section? Cewl!). I am on the left and clearly look like I am with the mafia, but not on purpose. By the way, the fellow in the middle is Reggie Phillips, a former NFL defensive back who played (and played well) for the Bears and the Cardinals. And please don't ask why 4 of the five guys in the photo have a mustache - beats me.
- And then somehow, when I gained a little more weight, I met this gorgeous chick and succeeded (so I thought) at convincing her to like me back. Niiice.
- Anyway, then I got bored with selling houses and got into this Internet thing: I founded a transaction management company and became rich... well, spiritually.
- These are two of my three business partners. This is not the best photo I have with them, but it portrays the spirit of our enterprise - as in, "Uuuh, hello, we are, like, business people and stuff, huh-huh..."
- When we went to our first trade show in New Orleans, our 10-meter RV docked in an RV park next to the Girls Gone Wild bus. Pretty cewl. By the way, the fellow on the left is just an old friend who came along to help (a lot of good people helped me become who I am today, and I will sometime soon talk more about them).
- Now, this dude in the middle is also one of my friends, who was my third business partner. He lives in California, and this is his wedding day (I think this is why he looks a bit shocked). By the way, this is the day I realized that people with short hair - whether on purpose or not - tend to socialize with others like them.
- This is what my Nissan Pathfinder SUV looked like when I went to these bloody tradeshows to sell a nickel for a dime to unsuspecting people who wanted to use our services. Most of them didn't buy jack, but those who did loved what we had to offer and gave compelling testimonials. We even signed up an entire state of Rhode Island to use our service.
- This is me and my grandma - we hang out from time to time.
- This is a random shot of me - this time inside a demo sports car at a major auto show, where I obviously didn't want to go very much (sleep deprivation is a pain, and it gets to you when you run your own business). This clearly isn't one of my best days, but you need to know all my sides.
- I like anything that "don't talk", and this exotic Costa Rican frog is a good example.
- This one also didn't talk. I grew up with this guy, and he was extremely cool and lived to be over 18 years old.
- I like playing pool. This game went "a la" Hunter Thompson style.
- I like anything that don't talk... except spiders I think. This one was found waiting to freak me out right inside my swimming pool.
- Me and my sister at Ultra Music Festival in Miami.
- This is my successful at-home shitake mushroom cultivation.
- This is hail. When it starts falling from the sky during a hurricane and you say "Oh my God, it's hail", Texans think that you are about to start talking about going to church more often ("hell" and "hail" are pronounced almost identically in most parts of the big state).
- Hanging out with grandma and cousins D and G. For the record, Svedka IS the best vodka: look at grandma rolling her eyes! And D's hand is in cast because that's how he smuggles emeralds into Colombia.
- This chick I met a few years ago was so sexy that I realized she was either an angel or an alien. Do you believe in aliens? ...I believe in illegal aliens.
- This is her real alien face and true hair: I suspect that to this day she only shows her true identity only when absolutely no one is looking.
- And I like to go crazy... whether someone is looking or not.
- No, I don't go to that church. And I don't really go to churches. I just thought that it was cool to stop near a random church in the middle of... uuuh, New York? Madrid? Rio?... and to take this photo at about 3 in the morning.
- I am a good cook. At some point I ventured to make this prosciutto right in my kitchen... and it didn't suck.
- And this is me in-between parties somewhere in the Carribean. What am I so happy about? I can't remember!
- Could it be because I am tipsy after clubbing out with my sister until dawn?
- Could it be because I found a photo of myself at a WWII memorial somewhere in Eastern Europe?
- Could it be because I am on a short vacation but can't stop thinking about my work? …but at least I lost some weight (by the way, I have now completed two 21-day water fasts - yes, this means just drinking water for 21 days - very healthy: just comment below if you want a link to my fasting videos on YouTube).
- Could it be because it's time to party again?
- Could it be because I hung out with my grandma and my mom the day before? (by the way, I have a father - and he is awesome - but I don't have any cool photos of him handy to show).
- Eureka! I am happy because I got rid of my day job and finally have the time to do something about becoming this cool dude who produces dance music and wears headphones. All I need is to grow more hair and get the headphones! So, I am working with a stylist and already bought the gear!
- So, here is my music studio when I just set it up. By now I have new KRK speakers and other little gadgets - more photos coming soon. Anyway, this is my new workspace, and I love it.
- But I have to tell you: producing music is no picnic. Each minute of a quality track equals about 10+ hours of non-stop work for me. So, Monster (not the alien type - the one you drink) is my friend. Please comment below, like me on Facebook and on my other social networks to motivate me, and please come back often. My official first song release is coming in no time.