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Staff Spotlight ~ February 2019 ~ The Musical Show feat. LadiesMan217
Forum Index - Sunken Ghost Ship - Display Case - Interview Archive - Staff Spotlight ~ February 2019 ~ The Musical Show feat. LadiesMan217
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It's time for February's Staff Spotlight! MajorFlare sat down with one of our musical magicians, LadiesMan217, and talked with him about making music, his inspirations, and more.

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Major Flare: Good day, ladies and gentlemen! With me, there is one of our resident music moderators, author of a bunch of nice soundtracks, a hard-working, cool dude, known as LadiesMan217! How are you today, dude?
LadiesMan217: I'm good, thanks! What about you?
Major Flare: I'm doing nice, too, thanks for asking.

Major Flare: Starting things as usual, let's talk about your origins. How did you come across SMW Hacking and, by extension, SMW Central?
LadiesMan217: Hhhmmmm... I want to say it was around maybe 2008? I remember going on YouTube and seeing a playthrough of Kaizo Mario World and I loved the idea of a hard Mario game. Digging up a little more I found out it was made through an editor called Lunar Magic. At this point in time I didn't have my own computer so I had to use my parent's but even then there were limits as to how long I could use it and absolutely no downloading anything. Regardless I still downloaded Lunar Magic lol for a quick peak. I saw many screenshots online and wanted to see it for myself but when I opened it I saw it was completely blank. I didn't know what a ROM was at the time so I shrugged off as idk wtf I'm doing XD. I began drawing levels on graphing paper and time would go on before I'd start using the computers at school and downloaded Lunar Magic again but kept it in my iPod Shuffle (I'd use it as USB bc I didn't really like music at the time aside from a single album from my favorite band). During this time I'd connect the shuffle on school computers and start making my levels and that's around the time I found SMWC was when I'd need help doing some stuff. I didn't register but was a long time lurker. I want to say I first found SMWC around 2010 if memory serves right.
Major Flare: Oh, nice, so you're in fact pretty experienced with Lunar Magic.
LadiesMan217: Minus Overworld lol. To this day I've never edited anything aside from level names and messages which is quite embarrassing hahaha
Major Flare: Hahahaha, pretty like me in my earlier days :D

Major Flare: Moving along... music, the main topic of our dialogue. When and how did you get the inspiration to pursue the art of music in SMW Hacking?
LadiesMan217: This all started when I was making a level for my Kaizo hack which utilized the unused layer 3 cage. During this time Lunar Magic didn't have native Layer 3 ExGFX support so I used a patch and terra stripe to recreate what I thought the cage would look like. For some reason I heard in my head the Yoshi's Island Music Box song and wanted that as the bg music. I went to the music section to see if there were any YI song and saw a lot of Jimmy's unsampled songs but didn't find that song. There was a remix version of it but I wanted the ORIGINAL. I began searching through threads and saw a lot of mentions of him releasing the YI ost on something called C3 but I also saw a lot of people mentioning it breaks SFX. I honestly didn't care bc I simply wanted the song to use in my level. After more searching I found the C3 thread but the download link didn't work. Luckily I found the link in his userbin lol. I opened up the zip and saw text files and these things called spc files. I had no idea what those were or why there were text files so on to Youtube I went to see how to insert music.
LadiesMan217: The example was an unsampled song but it didn't help at all bc the ost was sampled and I had no idea for the life of me how to insert it. I later found out what the SPC files were and downloaded the SPC700 Player and heard the songs. I was under the impression the songs would sound exactly like the originals but they didn't so I set myself to try learn how to port. Digging a lot around SMWC I found out loveemu's SPC2MIDI programs and found one in particular that pretty much did 75% of the work for me, NintSPC. This bad boy could take an SPC and convert it to a text file HOWEVER it used the AddmusicM format which was beyond foreign to me in terms of learning how to use it for sampled music. More and more looking around I found in the AddmusicK thread when it was in the making and there was already a beta. I used it to start making the music and I got the results I wanted and that's where my first ost came to be. Looking back at it I can say I'm happy bc it's what got me into porting and now I understand a ton more than I did back then. However with said knowledge I cringe at the current submission I have of the YI ost bc it's badly mixed and really inaccurate (which is why I'm redoing it rn).
LadiesMan217: Honestly I don't care, you can be the best porter in the entire world and there's no shame in using tools that help speed up the process bc that's what they're there for. As long as you don't claim to be the best or brag about it from using automatic converters bc honestly, people like that suck.
LadiesMan217: Oof, what I wall of text! Didn't mean to get carried away like that O_o'
Major Flare: No problems, dude xD Also, interesting to hear how you developed your music abilities over the time, you've got a quite interesting evolution here.

Major Flare: As one of our resident musicians, would you like to give some tips for aspiring porters and music enthusiasts?
LadiesMan217: Start with songs that utilize the N-SPC engine and use NintSPC. Study the text and mess around with it. Always keep an eye on the values in the SPC700 Player. You can get a ton of information. You can see the volume for the left and right channels, as well as see how vibrato affect pitches, how tremolo affects volume, etc. It's REALLY important you watch for that stuff bc that's what'll sharpen your skills when porting from other SPC engines songs. Once you've familiarized yourself with what does what, move to another engine you think you can tackle. Don't go overboard UNLESS YOU ARE COMITTED. For me my first song outside of N-SPC songs was Stickerbush Symphony which uses the RareSPC engine. Major props for Masterlink on feedback while I was working on it and helped sharpen my skills on other things to look out for. After that I took on 2 Jurassic Park songs which uses the Ocean engine. If there's anything I learned form those 3 songs, it's you need patience bc almost every small detail will be trial and error but the result is its own reward!
LadiesMan217: You must never think porting is a waste of time if you get no feedback bc what you get out of it is practice. As long as you've gained practiced, and learned, you're not wasting time.
Major Flare: That's interesting to hear; music too has the old phrase 'practice makes perfect'.
LadiesMan217: Oh boy, yes it does -_-

Major Flare: A more personal question: which music style would define you the most?
LadiesMan217:
LadiesMan217: That's a good question. I really can't say off the top of my head but if you've ever heard the album Torches by Foster The People I'd say like that.
Major Flare: Cool.

Major Flare: Now, about our line of work, being staff from SMWCentral. What things motivated you to be one of the music moderators? Surely the desire to help would be a main reason, since you are a fairly active staff member.
LadiesMan217: Interesting question with quite a bit of back story. I first joined SMWC on 2013 bc I needed help with something that'd involve ASM. After that is p much my music story and then we get into some personal irl stuff. At first I was feeling really down and the lack of feedback on my SPC thread at times wasn't helping. It may have been around 2014 that I started getting on and off and wasn't active like I was when I first joined. Ofc I'd check up on the site and reply to a thread if I saw a question I could answer but I was really down at the time and was going through a lot of personal stuff. I think the only relevant time I came back was when I asked to get my name changed to LadiesMan217 and then I was off again.
LadiesMan217: After getting my life back in shape I came back May of 2018 and was committed to finish the SMAS ost I started around the time I left. I think it was around that time I submitted my Jurassic Park ports or a maybe a few weeks prior which is important. I joined the SMWC Discord and I started engaging with the community. i was nervous af bc I didn't know anyone outside of posts on forums but it was nice getting to meet how people were. I was no different being the character I am lol. I ended up getting a DM from nameless asking if I wanted to be a Music Mod and I was very unsure about it. I didn't feel confident in my abilities to moderate music (hell sometimes I still don't). Out of curiosity I asked why I was asked (bc it seemed outta nowhere to me) and more or less with C3 and remoderation discussion around the corners they needed another music mod, and idol like my Jurassic Park ports and mentioned that to nameless and well here we are!
LadiesMan217: tfw your summaries are entire books
Major Flare: Hahahaha xD
Major Flare: Nice story, dude. It's nice to hear how your talent was acknowledged to the point you've got an invitation to be a mod.

Major Flare: You mentioned earlier how you perceive music's visibility in SMWCentral. Any more input on it?
LadiesMan217: I can only say what I see and based on my personal experiences. It seems music never gets any recognition on the music threads. There seems to be quite a bit of music requests yet like most seemed to be ignored (unless I'm horrible at noticing the submissions). ASM tends to get a lot more love and feedback. This is apparent on what I've seen on C3 threads. Even the "best" music threads are nowhere near the average number of replies on ASM related stuff such as sprites, tools, etc. Speaking of tools, I can't remember the last time AMK even got an update. Sa-1 is awlays on the works, there's a new UberASM Tool update, new sprite tools, and tons more resources for everything of that nature minus updates on current music tools or even new ones. Its like SMW Music hacking gets the short end of the stick. I've stopped caring about feedback and have learned the best way to get feedback is to save everything and not say much of it and then release a bundle of good, quality ports on a C3. And even then you gotta almost pray you get some descent replies.
Major Flare: Oh, it seems that music really got the short end of the stick. A pity indeed, I'm saying this as a music enthusiast myself.

Major Flare: Continuing about our line of work. How do you see yourself being a staff member?
LadiesMan217: Oof, I can't say I feel like I contribute much aside from trying to keep the music queue clean lol. When it comes to important stuff I don't feel like I have any useful input to give and prefer the bigger boys handle it. With free time limited with juggling school, work, personal time, keeping the music queue at minimum is the least I could do.
LadiesMan217: If I had the free time I had back in my high school days, I'd probably would be invested in a lot more.
Major Flare: Well, you already partake into a challenging mission, what with the music section being one of the sections harboring more than 2000 files.

Major Flare: Would you like to add any input regarding the staff or SMWCentral in general?
LadiesMan217: Don't take a staff position! They're after innocent people to kidnap! BEWARE OF STAFF! THEY KIDNAPPED ME WHEN I DIDN'T KNOW WTF WAS GOING ON!
LadiesMan217:
Major Flare: Hahahahahahahahahaha nice, really nice
LadiesMan217: Jx doing my part to keep people pure
Major Flare: Yeah, I know.

Major Flare: Let me ask you my last question: Do you have any final words to our readers?
LadiesMan217: From our family to you, keep your pants dry, your dreams wet, and remember, hugs not drugs.
Major Flare: Hahahaha I'll keep that in mind. So, here we are with our nice music moderator at the end of another Staff Spotlight interview. Remember this ladies, he's all yours xD
Major Flare: Stay tuned!
I gotta say, you are one with the music sections, both as a moderator and a contributor. You take your music moderator duties very seriously, and you impress me with how many submissions you handle within a span of time. Plus, you have submitted some of the most impressive soundtracks to the sections, including the granddaddy that is the SMAS soundtrack.

If there's any new songs that may be in SMM2, I hope to see you port them to SMW too. You're one of my favorites, and this is very deserved Staff Spotlight. Congratulations!
Twitter
Congrats lewdy Rem, good work with the music section too!
Layout made by MaxodeX
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Major Flare: Would you like to add any input regarding the staff or SMWCentral in general?
LadiesMan217: Don't take a staff position! They're after innocent people to kidnap! BEWARE OF STAFF! THEY KIDNAPPED ME WHEN I DIDN'T KNOW WTF WAS GOING ON!

oh okay then LUL

Anyways, that was a nice interview! Hope to see more of them soon.

Also: Congrats, LadiesMan217! Keep it up!
Reporting for you for this year’s E3. Catch it on 6:00 PM PHT.
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I bless the rains down in Africa, gonna take some time to do the things we never had...♫♪
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Major Flare: Would you like to add any input regarding the staff or SMWCentral in general?
LadiesMan217: Don't take a staff position! They're after innocent people to kidnap! BEWARE OF STAFF! THEY KIDNAPPED ME WHEN I DIDN'T KNOW WTF WAS GOING ON!

Oh I don't know what you're talking abo-

Oh crap! I hear knocking. I am scared!

A bit late but wanted to add that this is an excellent interview. Lots of work was made for sure. Congrats! ^.=.^

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