New Friends: Aldo
For the past couple years I've lurked Youtube watching every Aldo video that was published. A mix between chill beats and inspirational sound sculpting through a variety of desktop devices. I recently had the pleasure to sit down with him and pick his brain regarding his creative journey, musical process and more.
Tell us a bit about yourself and your creative background:
I’m 29 and I currently live in France. I started playing guitar with some friends when I was 13 and played in various rock bands until I left Paris for the seaside in 2016. I was suddenly away from my friends so I started messing around with DAWs, tape recorders, loopers and a MPC 2000XL. Then I moved to London and grabbed an Elektron Digitakt. Life there was a bit stressful and I felt like I had to stick to a creative routine as hard as I could if I wanted to stay sane. That was in early 2019, for 6 months I released a video on Youtube every week, mostly weird ambient and generative stuff. After a while I started doing small jams with my live-looping setup and my guitar. At some point one of my videos blew up pretty hard which led to some cool opportunities. That was 2 years ago and today I’m kinda making a living from all this? I don’t really know yet, I’m pretty damn broke right now, lol.
You are one of the more rare Youtube artist’s who simply plays music. Rarely if ever is there a product demo or other types of content. Was this intentional from the beginning?
Not talking or showing my face was part of my unspoken rules from the very beginning, mostly because I wanted to keep the focus on the music itself. That said, I’m definitely a gear nerd and I like sharing knowledge. I actually made 2 tutorials on Youtube when I first started the channel but I quickly realized I wasn’t getting much satisfaction from doing this so I stopped. I do make educational content on my Patreon though, and I really enjoy answering gear related question in the comment section or my inbox.
Let’s talk about the creative process. Walk us through how you typically begin writing tracks:
I’ve been in a guitar mood lately so I often use a riff or a chord progression as a starting point. I don’t really have a specific method but generally speaking I build my jams and tracks in a chronological way. I use my newly-found guitar or synth part as an intro and ask myself « Okay so what happens next? ». The next move usually comes naturally. I sometimes have a reference track in mind and I try to replicate an idea like the structure, a sound, a general vibe, etc.
Who/What is your big inspiration:
I draw inspiration from pretty much everything I listen to but recently I’ve been admiring quickly, quickly’s approach to sound design and groove in general. I also like how his music doesn’t really sound like any specific genre. I believe he’s from Portland by the way! Listening to anything from Daniel Lopatin/Oneohtrix Point Never is usually super inspiring and motivating too.
If you could collaborate with any artist in the world who would it be and why?
Jacob Collier, mostly because he seems to be the nicest guy on Earth.
Favorite album of all time?
I honestly can’t pick an all time favorite. In recent memory I’ve been absolutely in love with the album « songs » from Adrianne Lenker.
Do you feel that Youtube helps you stay consistent with creation? Do you ever get overwhelmed by the record button?
The Youtube algorithm punishes you pretty hard if you’re not releasing stuff all the time so… yeah? It’s a bit stressful but in a way it’s motivating too. I also enjoy the freedom that comes with the platform, you don’t have to make your music fit into the single/EP/LP formats so you can do pretty much anything you want. I’m starting to get used to the record button but I did experience some pretty stressful recording sessions along the way. At some point I was always trying to push my limits, especially with my (pretty average) guitar skills. These days I try to take it easy and rehearse more!
What’s next for you?
I’ve been moving around a lot these past few months so right now I just want to go back to my old routine : recording plenty of jams, doing some side projects and collabs. I also have an EP on the way which I’m pretty excited about! Not sure when it will be ready though.
Any tips or tricks for aspiring artists / musicians / youtubers out there?
Don’t think too far ahead and just go for it. Maybe try to stay consistent in terms of quantity, that should please all those nasty algorithms (but obviously don’t torture yourself and take breaks when needed). As for the Youtube part, I would say lower your expectations as much as possible, aha, making descent money off this platform is pretty damn hard. Money is overrated anyway.
Anything else you’d like to add?
Thank you for having me and have a wonderful day everyone<3