Lo-Fi Culture invites you to listen to some of our personal favorites by Rook1e!
Spotify (Spotify pays your favorite artists!!)
Intro of Rook1e
This week’s Lo-Fi artist has been featured on Youtube’s music promotion channels like Ikigai, Ambition, and SteezyAF. This artist runs with the alias “Rook1e”, and is also the starter of the Dream Easy Collective. This is a group of over “twenty-something” musicians and artists who have a kick out of making lo-fi beats for our happy consumption. I’m glad to have Rook1e featured on Lo-Fi Culture since i first stumbled upon his work in 2017. After reading and listening to the song titled, “Grape Soda” I was instantly taken back to days when my cousin and I obsessed over Welchs’ Grape Soda. It’s songs like these that don’t wear out on me very easily which is why I’m glad to share this artist with all of you.
Rookie’s Discography 2017, which includes the song “Eden”.
What is your full name? Do you have a picture of yourself you’d like to show viewers?
My first name is Brandon as many people know – only a few know my last name but if you know, you know.
What’s your schedule like on a typical day?
My summer schedule has been pretty relaxed and dull to hear about. I’ve just done a lot of going to Portland & local events, finding new places to eat, new shows to watch, and all other things in that lazy category. There were some somewhat cool things I did like camping, hiking, swimming, etc. but the absolute highlight of my summer would have to be Disneyland with my girlfriend. It was a dream of mine that I’ve had for over a year and it was only possible thanks to the support & love from my music that I cannot express in words how much I appreciate.
2018. Rook1e wishing Instagrammers a “happy valentines day” by dropping some beats.
How old were you when you found a passion for creating lo-fi beats?
I would say when I was around 16 since I started making beats roughly two years ago.
Who helped you pursue your lo-fi music career?
I first discovered a video of “two sleepy” on Twitter live-performing a track with his beatpad. Immediately I knew I wanted to do what he was doing. My dad bought me my first and only MIDI keyboard, the AKAI MPK Mini which I remember being so vividly excited about.
In addition (after finding two sleepy), discovering the great classics like tomppabeats and jinsang really got me into the genre as a whole that I didn’t know existed before.
How long does it take to make one of your tracks if you really focus? How long does it take when you collab?
If I procrastinate a track it could take me months. If I really focus on a track but I’m struggling, it could take me like two weeks. If I’m really digging how a track sounds and everything goes smoothly maybe a day or two. It all depends, really.
When you collab with other artists, how do you tend to divide the workload? How do you handle musicians/artists when they tell you how to produce your music?
Collaborations with other artists usually consists of finding a sample, looping or chopping it, adding a beat, and other sounds & details. How you split that up just depends.
No one really tells me how to produce music but other producers say nice things to me about my beats which I’m frankly surprised about because I think they’re [my beats] only alrighttt. I also like asking other producers about their process and sounds just because everyone’s so talented and I’m curious of how they did what they did.
For people who want to use your music for their own (rapping over it, leasing it, etc) do you normally charge a flat rate? Does it depend on the artist and the project they’re looking to make?
If you want to use it for your Youtube videos/school & noncommercial projects, go ahead just credit me. If you want to use a beat for a rap or song, you gotta lease it and those are $15, fam. (It’s been a while since someone paid for that! I’m generally nice about it though sometimes I think I should just come after everyone who doesn’t *angry face emoji*). The most I’ve ever charged for song use is like $50 and that was to a small company who wanted to use my beats for their new game. 🙂
How have you developed from being Rook1e and what has been the biggest change in your life from being this personality?
Rook1e has been a very big part of my life these past few years and for that I’m forever thankful. It has opened up new connections, ventures, and opportunities. I’ve started an incredibly talented collective and managed a *very* small little business out of it (but hey, it’s something, right?). And I’ve just had a lot of chances to do things most teens wouldn’t be able to. I’m not rich or anything, but monthly Spotify checks let me eat out every week so SHOUTOUT TO THEM and all of my LOVELY LISTENERS. You all look very nice today.
On a more serious note – as some of you may or may not know, I have basically stopped making beats (I may release some periodically, but…eh). I just don’t find myself as passionate for music anymore unfortunately but I will continue to learn music whether it’s through piano, guitar, etc. throughout the rest of my life I’m sure of it. There may be a resurrection long in the future. I also want to experiment with synths and other things when I’m ready to, again
Where do you see the genre of lo-fi going and how do you think you’re going to transition with it/from it?
The lofi community has become very oversaturated in my opinion. There’s so many new Soundcloud profiles with like thirty followers making lo fi beats reusing samples I’ve heard a thousand times (Is that too mean? idk). There’s nothing wrong with sampling, don’t get me wrong – in fact, it’s great! That’s what I do most of the times, too. I’m just saying there’s so many people in it right now. I also like the shift towards non-sampled beats. It’s refreshing and unique to hear!
In regards to the sampling versus non-sampling “debate”, one isn’t really better. Music is music no matter what form it comes from and I enjoy both. I still think channels should support those artists with sample-based beats, though.
Do your friends treat you differently seeing the music you’re able to create? Is your musical talent public in your private life?
Pretty much all of my family and friends know that I *used to* make music and things like that. I used to be scared of showing people but now I actually go out of my way sometimes to show people LOL. They don’t really treat me different except for when they bring up my bank account because my parents like to boast about that. I feel like I don’t deserve what I’ve made sometimes or that’s all people really care about. Oh well.
What kind of instruments, tools, equipment, programs, and inspiration do you use when making your music?
A have an AKAI MPK Mini, a ukulele, melodica, and guitar. The MPK plays piano and everything else super cool in the DAW via plugins so it works out. You can also find and download drum kits pretty easily with a few searches.
Kontakt (plays a bunch of digital instruments)https://www.native-instruments.com/en/products/komplete/samplers/kontakt-5/
FL Studio (my choice of interface for producing)https://www.image-line.com/flstudio/
Would you ever think about having another interview with Loficulture? 🙂
Yes, I would do another interview with you guys.
END OF INTERVIEW
*If any purchase is made with the Amazon link then it will help contribute to GridAlternatives, a charity focused on helping lower income communities switch to solar energy!
That’s it for this week’s interview! Shout out to Rook1e for being a feature at Lo-Fi Culture! I hope we can get another interview some time in the near future– perhaps in person? Thank you for taking part in this project, I’m sure it will help the future of the community.
Let’s discover more about the lo-fi genre together and learn new things on our journey together. Let us know how you liked this week’s guest here on Lo-Fi Culture.
Also, shout out to all of you guys who took my survey on how we can make these interviews more interesting! If you want to help Lo-Fi Culture make better content and earn a follow at the same time, fill out this survey and help me learn more about you. [Link to survey]
If you liked the interview and the music, come follow Rook1e and his musical journey! Although he’s taking a little break from music, be sure to keep an eye out when he makes a come back! You might hear from this guy again in the near future…