ski

Welcome to the official Ski Oakenfull Website.
Ski is an Artist, Keyboard player, Producer, Remixer and Composer living in London. Having started his career with The K-Creative who were signed to Gilles Peterson's Talkin' Loud label in 1991, he went on to release two solo albums, Life Changes & Rising Son, play keyboards with bands such as Galliano, Raw Stylus & Two Banks of Four, remix over 50 tracks, and work at Xenomania. He currently releases music on his own label, Primaudial Records, plays live with The Bays, writes & produces with artists such as Incognito, Joey Negro, Valerie Etienne. He has an Ambient Electronic project called Ayota, and also does a bit of DJing in his spare time. Alongside his production work, Ski holds the position of Head of Education at Point Blank Music School where he writes courses in electronic music for their BA (Hons) degree programmes. He has also made over a hundred videos for the school’s YouTube channel which have racked up over six million views.. Please have a look around this site, and feel free to leave a message.

Friday Forum Live! - Creating Rises and Sweeps in Ableton Live - 26th October 2012

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This was my third Point Blank Friday Forum Live! session in which I demonstrated how the new Point Blank Max for Live Riser Device which you can download for free here.. http://ow.ly/eHMbO
The aim of these sessions is to give people a taste of how the online school masterclasses work as a method of feedback and interaction, whilst providing an opportunity to ask live questions to the Point Blank team.

Article on Ableton's recent Live 9 Update and PUSH from Point Blank Blog

This article was written by Ski for the Point Blank Blog and published on 29th October 2012

Live users have been anticipating the announcement of version 9 for over 3 years now, causing some intense speculation about what new features might be added.  So when it was finally announced last week, you can imagine the frenzy of excited tweeting and status updating that took place. Ableton’s biggest surprise however, was the announcement of a brand new hardware controller entitled ‘Push‘. On reflection it seems like natural move for Ableton to introduce their own controller, especially when you consider other companies such as Native Instruments andAkai who have been doing this for a quite a while now. Both NI’s Maschine and Akai’s new MPC Renaissance come with their own standalone DAW software, providing some real competition for Ableton. Push however, raises the bar, and by benefiting from it’s predecessors, the APC40 and Launchpad, has combined all the best features to create what seems to be a unique new controller. Let’s have a look at what it has to offer..

ableton push

Amsterdam ADE pics

Here are a couple of pics taken in Cafe Cox at the Amsterdam Dance Event last weekend by James Humby from Point Blank. James & Ski are currently editing the videos of the 3 seminars, and will let you know as soon as they are up on YouTube..

Amsterdam ADE pics
Amsterdam ADE pics

Maschine Update 1.8 (pt.2) Article in DJ Mag Weekly 123

The Maschine 1.8 (pt2) Vocal Timestretching Tutorial video I made for Point Blank Online College was published recently in the DJ Mag Free online edition. You can check it out here: http://www.djmag.com/djweekly/ Its DJ Weekly 123.
I'm also attaching the offline version for you to download. You'll find the attachment underneath the picture..

Maschine Update 1.8 (pt.2) Article in DJ Mag Weekly 123
AttachmentSize
DJW123.zip11.69 MB

Maschine Update 1.8 (pt.1) Article in DJ Mag Weekly 122

The Maschine 1.8 (pt1) Conga Loop Timestretch Tutorial video I made for Point Blank Online College was published recently in the DJ Mag Free online edition. You can check it out here: http://www.djmag.com/djweekly/ Its DJ Weekly 122.
I'm also attaching the offline version for you to download. You'll find the attachment underneath the picture..

Maschine Update 1.8 (pt.1) Article in DJ Mag Weekly 122
AttachmentSize
DJ122.zip11.83 MB

Ski at the Amsterdam Dance Event 18th-20th October

Ski will be hosting 4 EMC based seminars at this year's Amsterdam Dance Event. They will take place at Cafe COX as part of the Akai Professional and Numark Playground. The dates are 18/19/20th October (Thursday to Saturday).
Hope to see you there!
UPDATE
Here's my schedule and topics for the seminars..
Thursday 18th
2-3pm : SBTRKT - Wildfire
Friday 19th
2-3pm : Mr Fingers - Can U Feel It
Saturday 20th
1:15-1:45pm : Mr Fingers - Can U Feel It (Revisit)
6-7pm : Justice vs Simian - We Are Your Friends

Ski at the Amsterdam Dance Event 18th-20th October

NI Maschine 1.8 Software Update (pt 2) Time Stretching a Vocal Acapella

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Ahead of the imminent release of the new range of Akai MPC hardware, Native Instruments have introduced MK2 of their hugely popular Maschine, and also updated the associated software to 1.8. It boasts many new useful features that not only exploit the colourful second incarnation of their Rhythm Machine, but breathe new life into MK1. 

In part two of this series of tutorials, Ski continues his look at the new Time Stretch function by attempting to get a Vocal Acapella (of a different tempo to his original beat) in time.

You can check out loads more tutorial videos at Point Blank Online.

NI Maschine 1.8 Software Update (pt 1) - Time Stretching a Conga Loop

See video

Ahead of the imminent release of the new range of Akai MPC hardware, Native Instruments have introduced MK2 of their hugely popular Maschine, and also updated the associated software to 1.8. It boasts many new useful features that not only exploit the colourful second incarnation of their Rhythm Machine, but breath new life into MK1. These include New Analog sounding Effects, Time Stretch and Pitch Shift, New Browser sample preview mode, Sample play position indicator to name but a few.

In this tutorial video, I'm going to focus on the Time Stretch function which has been probably the most sought after feature since the last update.

To get things started, I created a house groove using drum sounds from my library, combined with Bass, Pad and Rhodes sounds all sourced from Native Instruments' own Absynth and Kontakt libraries. I particularly liked the sound of Maschine's own 'ICE' Reverb used on the Rhodes stab.

In order to put the new Time Stretch feature to the test, I looked for a Conga loop from my library which I knew was at a different tempo to the tempo of my track. Firstly I created a new 'Group' and then dragged the audio loop onto the first available 'Sound' slot. After clicking the 'Sampler' button which brought up the waveform display, I selected the 'Edit' tab which reveals the small clickable menu on the right hand side. Clicking on this displays a list of all the available sample editing functions, including the new 'Stretch' feature at the bottom.

After selecting this, a box appears which gives you the option of adjusting the Pitch and Time of the sample. Amazingly it had calculated the original Source BPM very accurately, and automatically inserted the New BPM, meaning all I had to do was click on 'Apply'.

The functionality was incredibly slick, and sounded perfectly in time. Now that the conga pattern was sitting well with the beat, I decided to Slice it up so I could have the individual hits spanned across the Pads, which again was a very quick process.

I was really impressed with this new Time Stretch feature, and the speed of workflow rivals that of Ableton, with the added advantage you can work away from the computer screen if necessary. I can't wait to check out some more secrets of Maschine 1.8 very soon!

You can check out loads more tutorial videos at Point Blank Online.

EMC Tutorial #6 - Deconstructing Orbital's 'Chime'

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This is the sixth in a series of tutorials from Ski Oakenfull covering a variety of aspects of electronic music composition. Point Blank want you to get involved in this series, so if you can think of well known track for Ski to deconstruct musically in the next tutorial then hit us up on twitter with:

#emcrequest @point_blank + your suggested track title

In this tutorial he recreates Chime by Orbital in Ableton with the help of an Akai APC40.

You can learn more techniques like this on Point Blank's new online Electronic Music Composition course which has been developed by Ski himself. The course will show you how to develop the musical aspects of your tracks in an easy to understand way without getting bogged down with too much scales and theory.

Check out Ableton's blog piece about this tutorial..

Friday Forum Live! - Working with an Acapella in Ableton - 7th September 2012

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This was my second Point Blank Friday Forum Live! session in which I demonstrated how to get an Acapella in time, and then start writing some chords to go underneath it. It is a taster of the Electronic Music Composition course that I have recently developed.
The aim of these sessions is to give people a taste of how the online school masterclasses work as a method of feedback and interaction, whilst providing an opportunity to ask live questions to the Point Blank team.