Friday, May 29, 2009
Ryan Leslie Making "Gibberish"
Ryan Leslie is one of the best musicians out today. He's a songwriter, producer and R&B artist who appreciates the subtle aesthetics and details of music. I love this video of him recording the song, "Gibberish" from his self-titled album, Ryan Leslie. When I first saw the name of the track on the back of the CD case, I wondered what the song could be about. Once I listened to it I realized the song is exactly that - gibberish.
There's no actual real words in the song. There's only syllables used to give the person singing the song an idea of how real words can be used with the song and what they might sound like. Apparently, songwriters do this, only they don't make the song like this and put it on their album.
What Leslie did is make gibberish a work of art. He recorded every sound in the song himself, as he often-times does with all of his songs. It seems like the song originally contained words, only he used gibberish instead. Nonsensical words never sounded so good. Here's a brief explanation of the video in Leslie's own words.
Songwriters sometimes sing unintelligible syllables to lay down a guide melody during the creative process. Here's an amusing example of this with my voice running through a very strict pitch correction processor.