In the past, finding sounds and samples as a producer required hours trawling through message boards, only to download a “Kanye West Sample Pack” with a few measly kick drums and tinny snares. Companies like Splice are changing that, offering well organized, diverse sample libraries all created by artists, and a whole lot more, too.
“A third of the world tries to make music and we know not all of them end up doing so successfully, but we think they would if they didn’t hit obstacles along the way,” says Laura Zax, Splice’s VP of Marketing. “We saw an opportunity for technology to help tackle and break down the complexity of making music, and at the same time tackle that self doubt component.”
The company’s flagship product is Splice Sounds, a subscription service which gives you access to millions of samples and loops, as well as specially designed packs by heavy-hitters like Scott Storch, Southside, and Murda Beatz. Beyond the big names, Splice Sounds is also providing musicians the tools to make a stable income by designing sounds and samples themselves.
“KARRA, a vocalist who was a manager at Jersey Mike’s when she released her first Splice sample pack, now has a publishing deal and her own studio,” says Zax. “She just started her own sample label on Splice where she’s finding and helping other vocalists.”
Beyond Splice Sounds, the company has Splice Studio, a cloud-based collaborative platform compatible with most digital audio workstations (DAWs) used by artists and producers, as well as Splice Plugins, which are available on a rent-to-own model. They even offer the same financing on Studio One, a professional quality DAW.
"What makes Splice so powerful is that bedroom producers making their first beats or beats that will never even hit SoundCloud are using Splice and so are the top producers in the world." – Laura Zax, Splice’s VP of Marketing
“I think what makes Splice so powerful is that bedroom producers making their first beats or beats that will never even hit SoundCloud are using Splice and so are the top producers in the world,” Zax says. “They’re using the same exact product, same library, paying the same price.”
With the coronavirus pandemic hitting the music industry so hard, Zax says Splice is employing a “two pillar” approach to artist aid. First, they’re making sure creators can work, sourcing more audio content, with a focus on musicians who are affected by canceled tours and performance opportunities. They’re also transitioning some of their advertising money to pay artists to create Splice tutorials through a new program. The company has even launched Splice TV, which features daily weekday programming aimed at education and community building, through Twitch.
Zax says Splice, which has paid out more than $25 million since launching the Sounds collections in 2015, strives to create “an open music ecosystem.” In this fraught time, few companies in the music innovation world are doing more to create revenue for artists and producers than them.