ALECARD has produced music for artists in his hometown of Bogotá, Colombia as well as in Miami, and after writing many songs for the Latin Market, he decided to record his own material. ALECARD’s roots dig deep into electronic and pop music, having been influenced by One Republic, Calvin Harris and Max Martin. His debut single, “You Were The Fire” feat. Makoto represents a crowning achievement of his production skills. The song features big pop hooks with swirling synths, and a punching beat, behind the big voice of Makoto. This is EDM made for the Top40 Charts. Now ALECARD and Makoto have recorded an acoustic version of the song. We spoke to ALECARD about this brand new version, and the song in general.
- Your single “You Were The Fire” feat. Makoto has been a great success. Where did the inspiration for the song come. Is this a true story?
ALECARD: Thanks Rick, “You Were The Fire” is basically a break-up song. It’s a true story and I wanted to freeze the feeling of getting over a relationship in a song.
- Makoto seems to be a perfect choice for the song. How did you find him, and did you try other singers for the vocal part before choosing him?
ALECARD: I was writing pop songs and needed a singer to record the vocal part of demos. A good friend recommended Makoto. We started recording and I was stunned by his vocal range and talent. He’s also a sound engineer and producer, so, it’s very easy to work with him. I did try other singers, but it was clear that nobody fitted the song like Makoto.
- Did you compose both the lyrics and the music for the song?
ALECARD: Yes, with the help of my friends. I worked on the track with Belmont- who is a new producer; he helped me with the track and melody. Then I wrote the lyrics with Camilo Donado. While recording the vocal part of “You Were The Fire” Makoto helped retouching the top line melody. Finally, I hooked up with Nicolas Ladron de Guevara who co-produced the song and re-shaped the sound in his recording studio (5ta Estudio).
- How long did it take you from composing the original song to recording and producing the final version?
ALECARD: “You Were The Fire” took about four months. For the original song; we re-wrote the music and lyrics several times. We also spend time designing the sound track.
- As an electronic music producer, people will be surprised to know that you actually play real instruments and are not just computer orientated. Which instruments do you play and on which did you initially compose “You Were The Fire”?
ALECARD: I play piano and guitar -songwriter level-. It’s very useful when writing the melody and harmony. For “You Were The Fire” I used both instruments.
- You have just released the video clip of the acoustic version of “You Were The Fire”. Why did you feel the need to do an acoustic version of the song?
ALECARD: The original version has no acoustic guitars. While writing the song I liked how the song sounded with just guitars and vocals. At some point I thought we must use the acoustic guitar on the final version of “You Were The Fire” but it didn’t quite fit. So, I decided to record this version with just vocals and acoustic guitar to reach another type of audience, for people that prefer the unplugged sound over the electronic production.
- Will this new acoustic version of “You Were The Fire” be released as a standalone single?
ALECARD: No. It’s like the little brother of the original song.
- Do you have any thoughts of performing this song live, maybe in an unplugged situation, just vocals and acoustic guitars?
ALECARD: Yes, I would like to perform “You Were The Fire” unplugged, and maybe add the piano to this performance.
- Looking back on both versions, which ingredients do you think makes these tracks so endearing to the ear?
ALECARD: Thanks for saying that. I think the music ingredients are the top line melody and the vocal interpretation of Makoto.
- Did you have to change anything in the original arrangement to suit Makoto’s interpretation, or was the song sung exactly as it was composed?
ALECARD: It was sang almost exactly as it was composed. Makoto enhanced the vocal melody while recording the song.
- Will the idea of acoustic versions of your electronic releases continue in the future or was this just a one off idea for now?
ALECARD: Definitely, I will continue releasing acoustic versions of every release. I think it’s a very cool way to perform the song under another light.
- What was the hardest part of recording or producing this song?
ALECARD: The hardest part was the instrumental part called the ‘drop’. There were various versions of this part but the ‘drop’ concept didn’t seem to fit the song. Finally, we repeated the chorus melody and discarded the idea of the ‘drop’.
- Are you also involved on the mixing process of the song?
ALECARD: For sure, for me it’s a fundamental part of the song. I usually mix the raw material but not the final mix. I believe the song sounds best when a sound engineer with fresh ears do the job.
- With both the electronic and acoustic versions of “You Were The Fire” completed, do you ever listen to these tracks and think you should have changed or added something different. Or are you happy that both versions came out just the way you intended?
ALECARD: Sometimes I think I should have done something different here or there, like a particular sound or groove. But I also feel happy because at the time I was writing and recording them I enjoyed the process as much as I can.
- How long will fans have to wait until your new single drops? And do you have any info about who will be performing on it?
ALECARD: I’m very excited about the new single. It’s very different from “You were The Fire”, it has a dance vibe. It will be released on June 2017. The track is almost ready. I’m working on the vocal part right now. When it’s done we’ll decide the singer that best suits the song.
- Why are you trying to achieve something different from “You Were The Fire” with this new single you are working on?
ALECARD: Because I want to deliver a dance song this time, in contrast of “You Were The Fire” that I consider an electronic ballad.
- Do you have any intentions to release an EP or full album any time in the near future?
ALECARD: Yeah I’m going to release an EP that will include five songs including “You Were The Fire” and the new single I’m working on. I’m putting a lot of effort and time on it.
- What is your musical background?
ALECARD: I studied classical music and then started to write and produce Electronic, Pop, Rock and Latin music.
- Who is your biggest music inspiration, do you have any idols?
ALECARD: Max Martin is a constant inspiration to me, and to many musicians who admire his songwriting skills.
- What are your dreams in music?
ALECARD: My dream is to write songs that are evergreen musically and lyrically. It would be awesome to be heard by large audiences, and that many people listen and enjoy my music.