‘Pakistan’s first musician to use Smartphone to record music videos and produce songs’
Arslan Asif a vocalist, guitarist, song writer and music producer, started his career with an underground band, performing as a lead vocalist in Islamabad. In 2007 he released his official debut track “Chu loon main Asamaa”. He emerged as a solo singer and in 2009 he released his second track “Char din ki chandni”, which was later sponsored for a video in 2011. Arslan Asif has been working more on motivational music and songs based on socio political issues, including his upcoming song “Apnay Karam”. His unique characteristics are recording his first video with iphone and not using any professional instruments.
Today Flare’s team is talking to this young talent about his experience and reason for using iphone for his video recordings.
1-What is the role of technology in your music?
For decades technology has been playing a vital role in music, everywhere from studio recording to live performance it is an essential need of a musician. If we talk about music production there are sound cards, mixers and software which are used to produce music. Companies affiliated with this field art providing new versions of hardware’s as well as software’s to make it more efficient, time saving and easy. Even music equipments are based on electrical guitars, keyboards and drum pads now a day.
Adding on, one can play drums, guitar or piano on a personal gadget like phone or a tablet which is very helpful for a creative person in a way that now he/she does not has to wait to go to studio and get their hands on an instrument to make a tune or a melody. They just need to pop out the gadget and play their desired instrument.
Are there any specific features/apps/gadgets that you use to help produce and record music? Can you tell us a little about it?
I use iPhone for my music recording & production due to its easy interface and user friendly apps specially related to music.
First of all the widely used apps on my smart phone are the ‘guitar tuner’, with this one need not to carry an extra tuner with him anymore. One just has to install the free app and covert his smart phone into a guitar tuner. Then there is another App called ‘voice recorder’ that is available these days in almost every phone whether it is smart or not. It is the best way to record a new melody by signing or by playing an instrument anywhere anytime.
Talking about music production the app I just love is ‘Garage Band’ which features 8 layers digital as well as live instrument recording options and if that not enough one can export the file to any OSx version of ‘Garage Band’ on any Mac device to treat and record the song further with even more ease and wide options. Mobile app versions include few tap to play basic instruments like drums, guitars, keyboards and strings.
Have the use of smart phone in recording your first video proved to be useful?
I, in collaboration with Boxtix motion pictures managed to shoot my debut song ‘Chu Loon Mein Aasman’ music video using iPhone 4’s 5 megapixel camera and an improvised camera stabilizer that allowed to shoot smooth, great-looking scenes on the go. Modeled somewhat after the steadicam, a film industry standard that puts motion-absorbing technologies in between the lens and the camera operator’s body to allow smooth image capture during mobile shots. Our outstanding achievement is that the music video is 80% shoot on the chroma technology with eye catching effects in it.
It is useful in a way that we have shown the world that a good idea and a beautiful thought doesn’t need to be stopped because of any equipment limitation. One can shoot a music video, drama or even a film to entertain people within the available resources if put struggle in the right direction. We shoot a chroma technology also known as green screen technology video with iPhone 4 which is obviously a very tough job.
4- Have you used your gadget/iphone for recording and editing as well?
Yes, I use my Smartphone to generally edit my live performances or to shorten the length of my videos. One is always comfortable with his own editing tool so yes, I also find using my iPhone more smart, efficient and quick way for editing. Sometimes, I even import videos to my phone in order to edit because it’s a trouble free procedure.
5- What made you choose this specific device / gadget / iphone to record your ever first music video?
A- You can say that to some extent it is brand loyalty which made me so committed to the functions, features and friendliness of iphone that I chose this device to shoot ‘Chu Loon main Aasman’. Plus, it was the best phone back in 2012-2013 with max pixels available and with latest camera technology to shoot a video.
6- Do you foresee yourself using these mediums in your music?
A- Currently I am not using my Smartphone for my new projects but yes I keep on checking if any of the apps is compatible with my project. I never depend on the market of DSLR cameras or special light setup for the action. Instead I appreciate using advance mediums and who knows in near future mobile cameras take the market of DSLR camera and come up with more powerful apps for video shooting which would help the new music artist more comfortable to work as professionals rather than dummies.
How does your device/gadget/iphone help you to promote your music other than recording?
As a Pakistani musician the only major platform available to promote music is social media because there are very few entertainment channels left. In my case I use my phone to post almost 80% of my music related stuff for fans on social media whether its facebook, twitter or instagram. In order to intact with fans and keep them entertain I almost make daily posts on social media using my phone. I can share maximum moments on social media due to my smart phone which was not possible and easy few years back.
Tell us about your latest music video?
My Music video is based on the concepts of Valentine ’s Day. This song is inspired by the 3rd century sacred act of saint Valentine who supported the weddings of general public against the will of the king of that time. Saint valentine was caught later and was murdered. The basic purpose is that the concept of valentine day is not only celebrate this day for fun but remember the sacrifice of that person who gave his life for the promotion of legal relations and marriage in the society.