Beat-a-Day (BAD) Challenge
The BAD challenge is a 30 day challenge that tests your beat-making, skratching, videography and editing. The goal is to make a beat in 1 hour then film a freestyle skratch video to it and get it edited all in one day, for 30 days straight.
My experience with the BAD Skratch Video Challenge
The first day I didn’t really know what I was doing. I just decided to go for it and do a 30 day beatmaking/skratch video challenge. I knew I wanted to make a bunch of beats and provide some consistency for my Instagram followers. I made a promise to myself and my IG followers that I would post a BAD Challenge video daily for 30 days.
I put all my funk, jazz, and soul record crates on the floor. I took a cat toy, spun around with my eyes closed, and threw it at the crates. I then chose a record from the crate the toy landed on. I set a timer for 12-18 seconds and ran one finger across the records in the crate with my eyes closed and chose the record my finger was on when the timer stopped. I then flipped a coin to determine which side of the record to sample. Heads for the A side, tails for the B side. I put the record on the turntable. With eyes closed, I moved the needle back and forth with another 12-18 second timer set. Wherever the needle was when the timer stopped is where I took the sample. I did this process for all of the sample beats in the challenge.
Day 2 – “Do My Thang”
I love skratching phrases and I especially love skratching James Brown!
Day 3 – “Get Up”
I’m skratching James Brown again! This James Brown greatest hits record is the very first “skratch” record I ever owned. I love it!
Day 4 – “Nasty Slow Funk”
This some 68 BPM mad funkiness! I’m skratching a Bob Hope radio show record that I got for $0.25 on record store day when all their dollar bin records were %75 off! Woo!
On day 5 I learned to go with the flow and let the funk show. When I first picked a random sample I wasn’t really feelin it. I almost chose a different sample, but then I thought, “No, stick with the plan. The universe wants you to take this sample.” By the time I finished the beat I was really feelin it. Then I started cuttin a Jo Ann Jones acappella over the beat and I was like, “YESSSS!!!!” This is why I live. To amplify the funky transmission.
Day 5 – “I Don’t Need Your Love”
I was really feeling this one! I love that deep diva type stuff! Enjoy my lip-syncing!! 🙂
Day 7 – “You Never Knew How Good You Had It”
I had a lot of fun cuttin up this Lisa Lisa vinyl. Lisa Lisa is my jam!! My CULT JAM!! I also laid down some funky synth keys.
Day 8 – “JUNGLIST BOH BOH!!”
Sometimes my random samples got so twisted out I don’t even know what they started as. But I don know I love this WICKED JUNGLE MUSIC SELEKTAAAAA!!!! MO FIYAH!!
Day 11 – “The Footwork Skratch”
I decided to switch it up. I didn’t start with a random sample. I made and all original deep footwork track. I used the long tone of the serato control record to make a bubbly synth sound to go with the music. I used a triplet bubble-tapping technique I call “The Footwork Skratch”. I also busted out some of my footwork dance moves.
Day 15 – “Always Get it Poppin”
Back to the random samples. This one is real funky! I’m skratchin’ Tash from The Alkoholiks.
Day 16 – “Dino Breaks”
I made and original breakbeat and did a layer of drum skratching to it. I skratched a record called “A Day in the Life of a Dinosaur”.
Day 19 – “Time For Me To Shine”
This is a re-imaging of a footwork track I made called “Hustle N Shine”. Click here to listen to it on my bandcamp. I’m skratching Grym Reaper from The Gravediggaz. R.I.P. to the Grym Reaper aka Poetic.
Day 20 – “License Fee”
No random sample fi dis wun! It’s %100 Original ZSonic Dub Flava!!
The Wreck League got me feelin this Dub style!!
Day 21 – “I’m Stupid Dope”
This is some straight up 90s B-boy style hip-hop with fonkee skratch shredzz!! I even got it lit with my crazy dumb dance at the beginning!!
Day 22 – “Delayers”
I was really feeling these dub stylings. No random sample on this either, just original beatz. I did some cool chord delays. I used the Kaoss Pad to make live delays on my skratches. It was lots of fun!
Day 23 – “Rock That Beat”
This is some 90s head-noddin chill funky hip-hop. I skratched MC Sway from an old Sway and King Tech record. It’s so dope on wax!!
Day 26 – “I’m The Flyest Rapper”
This is my first all-skratched compostion. The melody, bass, and drums are all from “Bollywood Breaks” by Enduser, which is some crazy awesome breakcore. The vocal is Tash from the Alkoholiks. I wore the same black shirt for skratching the melody, bass, and drums. I wore a different shirt for the vocal skratch. I was thinking of it like a band where the frontman would stand out. This was the most challenging of all the BAD Challenge vids. Especially for the video editing!
Day 27 – “Dubwork”
This is another all original beat. I used the techniques I learned from making the Dub style videos and made a 160 BPM footwork beat. I used the serato control record again to do the Footwork Skratch. I had to have those Kaoss Pad delays on there as well. Lots of fun!!
This was a tough challenge. I learned so much from it and had a lot of fun!! I feel it levelled me up in many production attributes.
– Style +15 –
I have been producing music for over 15 years and have always struggled with my musical identity and my personal style. This challenge really helped me to hone in on my style and what I enjoy producing and performing the most. That’s why I chose to only include the videos that I feel best represent me and my music for this blog post.
– Speed +15 –
I levelled up my production speed. It improved the quickness of my decision making, which is great! Production is basically just a series of decisions. The quicker I can make decisions and the less I over-think them, the more I get in the zone. I have more fun and improve my output.
– Video +8 –
I got faster and a lot more familiar and confident with filming and using Final Cut Pro.
– Confidence +10 –
The great feedback I got from my videos on instagram really helped me feel good about myself and my music. Watching my own videos and feeling good about my skill level was very encouraging.
Try it for yourself!
I encourage you to give this challenge a go!
Please contact me if you have any questions. ZSonic@ZSonicSound.com
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