I really like watching my friends grow creatively. Seeing WIP drawings from David Hellman, or weird music tracks from Zak McCune please me, because I know they’re going to transform into something. I know that my friends are obsessive enough that the skeletons I see are going to be fleshed out into some glorious monsterbeast, even if said beast is not released “professionally” or “officially” in any capacity.

This is why I very much enjoy these videos of my friend Tanguy getting acquainted with the OP pocket synthesizers from Teenage Engineering. Here, you’ll see him poking at the thing, figuring out what sorts of sounds and rhythms feel good, and how to make them, punctuated by satisfying stingers and some modulation. It’s clearly an early poke-around.

Now, we have more instrumentation and a semblance of melody. It’s building and growing from that initial pokearound, now that more sounds are known, and the device is a bit more familiar. We have swells of synth with a lot more melody and a jaunty New Jack Swing-style beat, and some Justice-style modulations, squashes, and stutters.

Lastly, we see it all sort of come together. The song is still rough, somewhat improvised, and very live, but now we have two devices on the table, working in concert to create what feels like a proper song. It builds, it has structure, and on the whole it’s fully enjoyable as a piece of music.

It can be appreciated on its own, but with the context of the prior two, it reminds me that people don’t just start out with The Good Stuff. They build to it and poke at it and obsess over it and get excited about it (look at his jaunty hand movements at 1:57) and something you might not have expected results. This is of course supplemented by knowing the person and seeing their character come through int he product, but also in seeing how they defy your expectations. So encourage your creative friends! Making things is great!