Celebrated instrumental hip-hop producer RJD2 has launched his first-ever online course in partnership with music education platform Soundfly.
This in-depth course, RJD2: From Samples to Songs, guides students through RJD2’s unique approach to chopping and flipping records, and how he arranges samples into fully realized songs.
Known for his groundbreaking albums—including Deadringer and Since We Last Spoke, as well as for composing the theme song to AMC’s Mad Men and collaborating with countless rappers and vocalists—Ramble Jon (RJ) Krohn has long been heralded as one of the pioneers of instrumental hip-hop beat making, helping to bring the art of sampling to new genres and audiences.
In his new course, RJD2: From Samples to Songs, RJD2 opens up his creative process — sharing his perspectives on crate digging, listening, and finding samples, and walking students through the process of turning chops and loops into sequences, and arranging those parts into thoughtful, dynamic tracks. He demonstrates how he works with the AKAI MPC2000XL and how to achieve similar effects in the DAW.
RJ also opens up the Pro Tools sessions of some of his most iconic tracks, including “Smoke and Mirrors,” “Descended From Myth,” and “Let There Be Horns,” and many others, going into elaborate detail about how the songs came together.
RJD2: From Samples to Songs features nearly 40 videos, filmed in RJD2’s own studio, as well as readings, downloadable tracks, creative prompts, and access to Soundfly’s online Slack community where students get feedback on their work. It joins Soundfly’s extensive subscription library of creative music courses for both amateur and professional-level musicians.
What’s in the Course?
This course is for anyone interested in producing compelling instrumental music drawing from a sampling tradition — no previous experience or MPC required. You’ll learn new approaches to sampling, songwriting, and arranging, and how to make instrumental beats that capture someone’s attention from start to finish. Along the way, RJ will share with you his wisdom, perspectives, and advice for fulfilling your creative dreams.
Here’s what to expect:
- The history and background of sampling and how it evolved,
- RJ’s creative process and how he comes up with ideas,
- How RJ uses his MPC to capture and manipulate samples (and we’ll show you how to do it in the DAW, as well),
- RJ’s approach to chopping samples and turning them into a beat,
- A deep dive into the process and sounds behind some of his most well-known songs, and
- A wide variety of different arranging techniques RJ uses to keep his music sounding compelling throughout.
Sections Include: The Art of Sampling
- Songwriting & the Creative Process
- Loop-based Sampling
- Chopping & Arranging Samples
- “Let There Be Horns” Breakdown
- “Smoke & Mirrors” Breakdown
- “Descended From Myth” Breakdown
- And more!
“I think one of the most common obstacles that artists fall prey to is being too delicate with their own music. I hope that one of the things I can do with this course is to provide the encouragement for students to think big, be bold, and be drastic when it comes to their recordings. I’d encourage students to find that boundary at which they might think something is ‘acceptable’ and blow right through it,” said RJD2 about the inspiration behind the material.
“By the end of the course, I hope you’re excited to sit down and make music.”
“Creating this course has changed the way I think about the building blocks of music,” said Soundfly CEO Ian Temple. “I’ve shifted from focusing on notes and pitches to considering music to be chunks of manipulable sound. It’s been a fascinating change of perspective and I’m excited for the music it inspires in our students.”
With Soundfly’s all-inclusive subscription, you can get unlimited access to our premium music course content and our active online community for as low as $19 per month.
But that’s not all, subscribers also receive an invite to join our private community Slack channel, exclusive perks from partner brands, and exclusive access to livestreams, office hours, and contests. Plus, you’ll be entitled to a 25% discount on custom Soundfly mentorship sessions.
Sign up for RJD2: From Samples to Songs to start learning how to write and arrange music drawing on the power of sampling records and a collage-based mindset. Drop that needle and let’s get started!