1. Uncategorized

RAC Spotlight: Ryan Tram

Rapid-fire questions

Age: 24

Birthplace: Toronto, Canada

Favourite artist: Porter Robinson

Number of unfinished beats on your hard drives: 358

Favourite piece of audio gear: Launchpad X

Time worked at RAC: 1 year, 4 months

Zodiac sign: Cancer

RAC: How long have you been working in the audio engineering world? How did you get your start? 

Ryan: About 7 years or so. I started recording myself first in a simple home setup. I later branched out and helped with setups at live events. A lot of the concepts crossover from a simple 2-in, 2-out interface to a console.

RAC: Do you have an area that you’re an expert in or a position that you particularly like (i.e.: audio engineer, producer, beatmaker, instructor, etc..)?

Ryan: I love working with MIDI! From bluetooth rings and guitars, to expressive MPE controllers, to programming Launchpad Lights, and turning video game controllers into musical instruments!

I’m an Audio Visual Artist, I like to create my own visuals and perform them live with my own music!

RAC: What is your favorite memory at RAC?

Ryan: My favourite memory at RAC is watching my students perform at the Artist/Producer Concert we hosted at the Toronto campus. Students learned how to create their own live visuals and how to take their songs from the DAW to the stage over a course of 10 weeks as part of a workshop series I hosted.

RAC: You were recently named The International Live Beat Champion (congratulations!). How long have you been making beats for? How did you first start?

Ryan: Thank you! It’s been such a pleasure to take home the title! I’ve been making music for about 12 years; I started off with video game arrangements, and musical composition while in school! I later on picked up the DAW, using it for about 7 years.

RAC: You also create your own visuals, particularly analog glitch art and video footage. Do you work on these separate from your music or do you usually have a visual component to the audio you’ve created? If so, what do you start with – the audio or the visual? Which takes the greatest importance? Why?

Ryan: I always start with the music first. Before anything else, I am a musician at heart and the music is where I can pour my soul into. The visuals are used to enhance the auditory experience. That said, the visuals shouldn’t be looked over. If you put in lots of details and ear candy in the music, I expect the same level of care and eye candy in the visuals. 

I first started off with integrating visuals with music with Launchpad lightshows. It was later when I went to Berklee to learn Projection Mapping that I could bridge the gap between my visual animations and my music. The glitch art is something new I’ve been experimenting with 🙂


analog experiment 3. Finally got a working colour tv! Experimenting with the blend of the previous two techniques camera-feedback and video-feedback. Behind the scenes look at the end.#glitch #glitchart #glitchaesthetic #videosynthesizer #videosynthesis #videofeedback #videoart #videoartist #analogfilm #analogvisuals #analogvideo #analogvideoart #animeedits #crttv

♬ Shelter – Porter Robinson & Madeon

RAC: Do you think it’s important for students to develop visual media skills as much as your audio skills? Why or why not?

Ryan: The world around us cannot rely on just one medium, there are plenty of gateways into easy visual creation systems that will only help to elevate your music. The more sensory experiences you can give the audience/your listeners, the more you can invite them into your world.

RAC: What’s been your favourite project to work on so far? Can you share some details about it?

Ryan: It’s hard to pick one, but one of my favourite projects was developing my first sample/preset pack! It features presets for various synths like Serum, Vital, FM8, Tone 2 Gladiator, as well as a drum kit that combines synthesized drums with my own beatboxing. I liked creating a body of work that showcases the presets while also capturing the new step forward in the sound I am pursuing. Even if you don’t have these synthesizers, there are oneshot samples provided for you to throw into your favourite sampler as well! You can find this pack as well as FREE Serum and Vital skins. Made by yours truly on my store.

RAC: Would you rather play only one video game or only be able to watch the same anime series forever?

Ryan: That’s such a tough question. I think I would stick with only one video game. While video games are so important to me, there’s such a plethora of anime out there that I’ll never run out of entertainment!