Frequently Asked Questions
Please consult the primary about us page for details on what the Sormena project is all about. If you have additional questions, contact us. We have dedicated FAQ pages for membership and courses. These are generic project related FAQs focused on philosophy, goals, and direction.
This is the sort of question that could take pages to answer fully, but we know you have music to make so we’ll keep it as brief as possible. There are a lot of sites dedicated to a particular software or courses that promise you’ll be a super producer by just simply buying their 20 minute tutorial. It’s this trend of online education that we find to be super alarming. Learning any new skill takes a lot of time and practice. No 20 minute or 20 hour course will change that. We are not promising anything because ultimately it’s your hard work that makes the difference not ours.
There are a lot of fantastic resources out there but we hope to bring something new to the table. Courses structured in the classic MOOC style but created by regular passionate individuals. As crazy as it sounds this website is designed to hopefully inspire others with a deep passion and knowledge about a topic to do the same. It just so happens computer music is what we know best.
Education these days seems a lot more about the ME ME ME and a lot less about learning for the sake of learning. Unfortunately this trend has lead to the quality of education dropping rapidly (especially online). Instead you find aggressive sales pitches and flashy logos that distract you from what’s really important, dedication and hard work. There is no bureaucracy here, no board to answer to, no shareholders to appease, just two guys who love music, trying to inspire others.
Pretty lofty goals, eh. At the end of the day Sormena exists and we hope you are able to learn something new and maybe have some fun along the way.
Who is the Sormena Project for?
Anyone and Everyone. We are building content from the ground up which means you can come to this website with zero knowledge about music or how to use the computer to make it. That being said, the articles and tutorials we post are designed for amateurs and professionals alike. And even if you are not coming to this website for the content we hope you that you will share the music you are creating and will interact and help others when you can. This website is designed to be a safe space for creators to share their music with one another. Posting things generically on the web is great but the people listening very rarely share the same passion for sound that you do (or understand the blood sweat and tears that often goes into it). The style of music you are into doesn’t matter. Someone’s who’s an expert on Bach has just as valuable an opinion as someone who loves Katy Perry (and everything in between…which is quite a bit). There is a lot to be learned from both and it’s important we don’t let our own tastes get in the way of that. “Our dream” would be to see people of all disciplines, levels of experience, etc. interacting and helping one other. You’d be surprised just how much a fresh perspective can inspire you.
Do I need to buy specific software to follow along?
We will use and cite a variety of software in the various courses and articles. Some of this software will be freeware, some will be very affordable, and some will be high end (expensive). That being said there is nothing you ever have to buy in order to follow along. BUT we want to make it crystal clear that every piece of software is capable of making/manipulating sound to make really interesting music. You do not need to invest any money in music production software if you do not want to. It is a myth to unequivocally state that one plugin is "better" than another. It is all about how you use them.
ALWAYS read the manual of anything you do purchase or use. We are not a tutorial website and we are not going to waste your time turning knobs and “listening” to what happens. Sometimes this is unavoidable but we are not and never will be a plugin review site. How can one person judge how useful or valuable something is when it is being used to make art? Rather we want to use that software to make something not talk about all it's features. You are all capable of turning knobs, reading the manual, and figuring out what a parameter does. This website is about combining parameters to make something unique.
What is the long-term goal/plan?
We want to create a strong community of passionate music lovers eager to share, learn, and collaborate on music. The long-term plan really depends on how many people get involved. Many updates and new features to the site will develop based on what you want to see and what we are able to afford. Never hesitate to contact us with ideas and features you would like to see.
How can I help?
If you think we are doing a good job please be an active participant. For example completing final projects in courses, commenting on articles, posting in the forum, participating in the “producer challenges” (when they go live), etc.
We are two people with very high standards and a limited amount of time. For that reason we are unable to spread the word as much as we would like. Please pass on this website to anyone who you think would be interested (and even those who you may not think would be). The beauty of computer music is that anyone with an Internet connection can do it!
From a financial standpoint we will be accepting donations and offering premium membership options. This is done out of necessity to keep the site alive and growing. By supporting us financially you help the community as a whole and for that we are all eternally grateful.
What does the name "Sormena" mean?
The word is of Basque origin and loosely translates to “creativity” in English. This is a website about making and manipulating sound which is all about creativity. It might be kind of cheesy but it works for us and we like the way it rolls off the tongue. How you actually pronounce it is totally up to you.