Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Cornerstone Cover [feat. Rhett Dela Cruz]

Click here to hear the cover: Hillsong United - Cornerstone [A Cover by Justin Tjoandi & Rhett Dela Cruz]

Background story:
I met Rhett for the very first time in the Every Nation Church at downtown Toronto. Pastor Jay informed me of this "other musician who leads worship as well". We introduced ourselves and listened to each other's sample recordings. I knew we had to collaborate one day...

After the Harvest Institute in Montreal (that was around August of last year), we agreed on doing a cover together. But which song? I first suggested "Man of Sorrows" but we were both unfamiliar with it, so we decided on "Cornerstone".

Months went by and we can't seem to find the time to get together and record it. I started on making the background instrumentals first. Strings, drums, guitar - all completed within a month. Finally, reading week came... For those of you who do not know what this is, campuses take a mid-semester break to let the students "catch up" with their readings. Well, we took advantage of this break to finally record the vocal parts for the song.

I went to Rhett's place on Thursday expecting a lengthy recording session as I have with most of my recordings. It was quite the opposite, really. We finished recording within two hours. Professional singer right there, mates! After a few edits the next day, it was finally published... Our first collaboration and it was quite the project. Hope we can do more covers, Rhett!

EXCLUSIVE INFO FOR THOSE READING THIS BLOG ENTRY: I kinda cheated on the vocals during the second chorus. As you may notice, I was doing the harmony in the background. If you listen close enough, you'll be able to hear my voice being auto-tuned. How I love our modern technology! Shhhh! Don't tell!

Monday, December 9, 2013

"Clarity" by Zedd - An Acoustic Cover

So I heard this song in the radio alarm one morning last week. Shazam-ed the tune and found this song. I've been listening to it repeatedly throughout the week and decided to put it into a cover. So here it is, "Clarity" by Zedd.


Friday, May 10, 2013

Project 513: Another Day


This song was inspired by listening to the synth parts of The Wanted's "Glad You Came". I initially thought of doing a cover of it but I got distracted. Oh wells... it happens.

In this song, I used a few drum and synth samples from both Garageband and online. My keyboard is an M-audio Keystation 49e played through the recording software (Garageband). I duplicated the tracks with the distorted synth to make the sequence precise. For the first bar of the intro, I tried finding something smooth. The "Planetarium" is the closest sound I can find (sort of like the intro to Katy Perry's "California Gurls").

Unlike my previous electronic composition, "Another Day" has a unique pattern. In "A Sight of Paradise", I used the pattern of intro->verse->Chorus->verse->Chorus->Bridge->Chorus/Outro. The new song goes: Intro->Verse->Chorus->Verse->Bridge (or Pre-Chorus)->Chorus->Verse/End. The unusual-ness of it gives a sort of trademark. Me and my wild ideas, right?