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6 ways to add ear candy to your music

To make music more interesting producers add something known as ear candy. Ear candy consists of small elements and sounds that create a texture and keep the listener focused. In this blog you'll learn 6 ways to add amazing ear candy to your music.




Table of Contents:

1 - Percussion

2 - Reverse

3 - Formant & Pitch

4 - Noise

5 - Delay & Reverb

6 - Contrast


 


1 - Percussion


Percussion is probably our favorite way to add rhythm to a section and to make the whole production feel more interesting. Percussion can really add a groove and make a huge difference. We personally like the percussions from the KSHMR packs under the "Acoustic Drums" category. When you implement them make sure you add a lot of panning. For example some on the far right, on the mid-right, the mid-left, and some more in the center. Make sure you level them right in the mix. You usually want them to sit a bit more in the back and quiet because they shouldn't be the main elements of your drum pattern. They just add the groove. Anyways, don't overcomplicate or overdo them since things can sound all over the place fast.


Percussion


2 - Reverse


Adding reversed elements is a great way to make transitions more smooth. A great way to do this is to export elements of the song and see if you can create a creative transition between different sections like the build-up and drop. Sometimes they even create a nice pad. Same rule as always, get creative. You can do this trick with anything, leads, vocals, percussion, you name it! As often found in radio bass house, you should try to implement reversed bass shots in your tracks too! They create that big and pumping bass feeling in todays music.


Reverse


3 - Formant & Pitch


A lot of producers know about the normal pitch shift but there is also a formant shift that creates a cool effect. What it does is it changes the tone of the signal without changing the pitch. Often used on backing vocals for a fuller sound and for adlibs.


Changing the pitch of selected parts of a vocal can be great to highlight different words or phrases which end in a more alternately vocal. Sometimes you could even pitch down drums to add a deep groovy feeling.


Formant and Pitch.


4 - Noise


Noise is a great way to add ear candy and has gotten more popular over the last few years since Lo-Fi got more attention. Make sure it's super quiet and stays more in the background to avoid harsh frequencies. Of course this tip is again super genre specific, it usually works best on chill and more quiet songs. For creating such noise, we would recommend the plugin RC-20 Retro Color. There are also loads of noise samples available on Splice.


Noise.


5 - Delay & Reverb


Delay is one of our favorite effects. We personally love Valhalla Supermassive which is free and crazy good in creating super creative delay sounds. Another great way to add ear candy with delay is by using a ping pong delay. The delay will feel like it's bouncing from ear to ear. This works especially great with plucky sounds. Two of the most versatile and creative delay plugins are Echoboy and Crystallizer. It truly is like magic what you can create with them.


Reverb is awesome when you're working with transitions. Maybe you heard of the plugin endless smile which you sometimes put on the master bus to create hype throughout the build-up. You can do something similar with reverb. Use reverb automation to create a rising effect. The same works with reversed reverb shots which are created to introduce a new part or vibe.


Delay & Reverb


6 - Contrast


When we're talking about making things more interesting, don't just think about adding elements. Creating contrast between more aggressive parts and chill parts is super important as well. Nobody wants an aggressive vibe throughout the whole song. A cooldown is important to keep your music interesting, but the same on the opposite of course. So make sure to keep this value between aggressive and chill balanced. A great way to increase the contrast is to spend a production session on just removing elements. Say you have a guitar and a piano playing throughout the whole song. Take the piano away on a certain section and see how that brings more contrast.


Contrast


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