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Q&A with Zhang Yang

Q&A with Zhang Yang

Zhang Yang (also known as Yang Zhang 张旸) doesn’t only produce a broad range of music but she also has an extensive knowledge and background in the music business too. Pursuing a multi-faceted career which has seen her broaden her horizons beyond EDM to becoming an entertainment executive, music publisher as well as film composer.

The classically-trained producer has already travelled from her LA base to Europe to perform at contemporary music festivals and broadcast in France, Italy, Belgium and Holland. It’s sounds like it’s already been quite a journey for Ms Zhang Yang and we feel it’s not nowhere near over yet. Find out more below.

As someone who has released music within a variety of genres, what would you say is your preferred musical style?

I would say that my preferred musical style is any undefined genre which can blur the boundary, re-define the music category by infusing and exploring a variety of music elements. For instance, I am in the process of exploring multiple film scoring production styles by infusing various EDM music elements. At this point, it’s hard to tell whether it is film score or EDM production style, or somewhere between. I guess I have to say, to build a seamlessly organic concretion with a variety of music elements in an attempt to create a new genre is my preferred musical style, regardless genres and categories.”

How has having a BA degree in composition and overall stellar musical education contributed to your EDM career?

You know it’s funny, all your education has NOTHING to do with your instinct, gut feeling about EDM music, your first instinct about music pulse, ambience, the sensitivity of sound, etc. But it has something to do when it comes to the technical part, how you leverage every aspect of skills sets to produce the sound closer to your mind.”

What was the electronic music scene like in Shanghai and Beijing whilst growing up?

It’s interesting that I grew up with subculture influences, those rave scenes of 90’s kicked off EDM culture in China, then shifted from minority influence to a growing mainstream pop culture during the past ten years. I still can remember that my DJ friends played the coolest beats collected from all over the world during that time. We span all kinds of parties from underground club to outdoor rave scenes; it has become massively commercialized since the first EDM festival appeared in China and now it ’s growing one of mainstream genres in today’s pop music markets in the cities I grow up.”

Through the years you’ve been involved in various different projects such as the Asian Future Sound. Can you tell us more about that?

Sure, Asian Future Sound was my first electronic music album project back to 2008, I have sparkled the idea of describing a cinematic landscape laced with the touch of electronic music texture and the essence of Asian folk music elements. For this album, I selected finest folk musicians and singers to be involved and was endorsed by Universal China Record. The single “The Road To Wutumeiren” was released in 2009. After that, I have been pursuing my career in film scoring, scored a couple of indie film projects after signing my management contract with Ed Steinberg. I produced the original theme track and ending title track for Flint Dille ’s trans-media projects in 2012, then have been in various collaboration with numbers of Hollywood-based top music publishing companies such as Megatrax, Fine tune since 2013 onward.

You’ve noted techno godfather Richie Hawtin’s album “Closer” as a major influence? But what other artists have helped shape your career?

Yes, you know those 90’s electronic music heavy hitters sparked me to jump into EDM production world, other artists such as Talvin Singh, Lamb, Guy Sigsworth,  Massive Attack, to name just a few. BT is one of exceptional music producers in U.S I feel musically deeply connected. Well, I can put a long list here if I can add up other artists from indie electronic music genres and film score composers.

The music available on your Soundcloud page varies from dubstep, drum n’ bass and house. What’s next in your musical journey?

I am in the process of preparing my next digital album project with the focus a collection of soundtracks. Certainly, it will be more chemical electronic touches. More details need to be revealed in near the future.

Do you have any advice for any other inspiring female producers?

Well, if anything specifically only for inspiring female producers.:-) First, regardless female or male producers, develop your own unique sound regardless genre is No.1 thing to do. Then build your community, we are in the digital era in which artists today need to build their own digital ecosystem where they can produce, promote and distribute music and monetize every aspect of revenue streams through your various rights. But, distinguish your voice is the first step to go.

And finally where do you ideally find yourself in 5 years from now?

I hope that I can develop and dig my music career along with the new digital music ecosystem for which I am building now. Not only to deeply dig my music voice but also to develop a digital ecosystem where we can interface music production, technical solution, industry network opportunity, distribution, music proprietary into a fully integrated circulation.

You can check out Zhang Yang official website here.

About The Author

Dan Hudson Smith

London based electronic dance music blogger, supporter and biscuit enthusiast. Get me...

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