Tell us about yourself.

I’m Alexander Padei (you can call me “Padei”). I’m half black and half Caucasian, a lifelong musician and, more recently, an entrepreneur and Harvard graduate. I live to get up and engage with music, whether I’m listening or making something, myself. Since graduation, I’ve been working to bring music education to college students in Boston and push forward a music career of my own!

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Tell us about yourself as an artist. 

I’m a producer, songwriter, singer and rapper. I’m influenced by a really wide variety of sources, but I’m deeply interested in the power of music to bring people together and make people dance. Every genre from conscious hip-hop to unruly EDM bangers has the power to do this in their own way, so I have an unusually wide range of sounds. Luckily, I produce myself so I get the first and last word on where my sound goes!

Music moves my soul in a way that other forms of communication often can’t. I often say that people who go into music do so because they HAVE to. They couldn’t live a satisfying life without music. I’m one of those people, for sure.

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Tell us about the genre of your music. 

Right now, it’s roughly R&B/Hip-hop. I’m heavily influenced by Dancehall, Reggaeton, Funk, Gospel, Trap, Future R&B and even EDM, at times.

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Tell us about the story behind your song.

I was thinking about how important guy time is for me… but also how masculinity can pressure us guys to trade guy stories that show how cool we are because girls are attracted to us, etc. I had a moment with one friend where I was just like, “No, you know what? I could talk surface level about flirting with this cute girl or I could be honest and admit that I’m actually really into her, maybe more than I expected.”

I think there’s a lot of tension in a moment like that. I think it’s worth talking about because vulnerability is such a critical aspect of being a happy person. Being able to share my real feelings and dreams with my boys is huge for me. So I wrote this song!

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Tell us the challenges you are facing as a musician. 

Honestly, it’s all about the work and becoming fluent in the process of song-making. I just held a Q/A with Laidback Luke and he said to these students in the audience: “How long does it take for you to finish a song?” The fastest time in the audience was 3 weeks. He then informed us that he can generally finish a song in 4 hours.

I’m trying to organize those skills, right now, from songwriting, singing and rapping to production and mastering. I want to be fluent enough to efficiently crank out multiple bangers per week, especially since I have limited time with other projects on my plate. Long story short, I’m trying to get in my 10,000 hours because I know that all the other things (finding my sound, marketing decisions, etc.) will follow naturally. Also, we live in a world where people get bored if you don’t put something out every 2 weeks!

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Tell us about the recording and production of the song. 

This was produced and recorded, front to back, by me in my basement. I used a $150 Large Diaphragm Condenser Mic, a basic Focusrite Audio Interface and Ableton 9 Live.

As far as sound proofing is concerned, I used mattresses, blankets, carpets and furniture to lower room reflections. Then I sang really close to the mic to get the most localized sound possible! This is an important part of my story for me. I want to make music on a low budget to show other musicians that they can achieve a professional sound without relying on a studio or a music label!

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Tell us the names of blogs, radio or TV stations that have supported you so far. 

Not many! This is one of the first songs that has really hit the nose on quality and a really deliberate, particular style. I’ve gotten many “no”‘s up to now. Luckily, it hasn’t stopped me.

Eternity Network did support my work on my last track, “Tip Toes”! Shoutout, fam!

Anyways, thanks for being one of the first, Broadtube!

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Tell us what inspires you to write, compose and sing. 

How about the selfish reasons, first? It makes me happy and helps me reflect on myself and my life. Writing has been huge for my development as a human being. I really do connect with the words and beats of records on a visceral level. Sometimes I write about relationships, other times I write the song I need to pull myself out of a funk. Regardless, I almost always have a deep emotional connection to the songs I make.

I also believe in the causes of entrepreneurship and musical democratization. I think that the drastically lower costs of music-making, along with self-development are really valuable paradigms to impart on others. My self-driven work in music has actually led to a lot of other great work and I think it’s ultimately made me a much more valuable professional.

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Tell us the secret behind making a hit song. 

Gotta stay humble here. I definitely haven’t had a hit yet. That said the best advice I’ve gotten is this; “Quality comes from quantity”. For each of the hundreds of hits Mozart penned, there were another hundred we never heard about. As a beginner, one’s goal should be to develop themselves through countless hours of writing / producing, etc. Once you’ve achieved fluency in your skill sets, continued quantity becomes about finding the true gems. So, if you wanna find hits, stop obsessing over a single project, stop pouring your entire being into it and focus more on cranking out quantity. The hit is exponentially more likely to come, that way.

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Tell the kind of advice you will give to an upcoming artist. 

Stop waiting. Take responsibility for your own music, marketing and business. Gone are the days where labels pick up a singer-songwriter out of a Jazz club and pour resources to turn them into an Elvis. They want to see fans, business infrastructure and a radio-quality portfolio of songs that have been released to critical success. Look at Gucci Gang. Look at Post Malone. Look at Chance. All self-starter projects.

Go read Ari Herstand’s “How To Make It in the New Music Business” as well as Donald S. Passman’s “All you need to know about the music business.” Reading the latter was the best decision Taylor Swift ever made. She cites it as a critical reason why she made it. (I’m generally not a fan of her music but she absolutely deserves all the success she’s had).

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Elaborate on your music careers, albums, songs, tours, recognition or awards you might have obtained. 

I spent almost 15 years playing the cello from childhood. I was part of a program called “Project STEP” and was lucky to work with some of the top musicians in the game. (Keith Lockhart, Yo-Yo Ma).

After that, I toured across the world with an a-capella group in college called The Harvard Krokodiloes. That was my first big tour experience. I also did some fun gigs with them like singing the National Anthem at a Red Sox / Yankees game.

Meanwhile, I focused on DJing and original music. I held a couple nightclub residencies in and around Boston. I also started a nightlife brand called “The List” and, separately, a private event DJing service. I basically poured that DJing money into developing my own studio over the past few years. After 3 test EPs, I’m finally at a point, now, where my stuff sounds really clear, professional and well written!

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Tell us how you write your lyrics, compose, sing and record in the studio. 

I’m a more fluent producer than songwriter, so I generally start with the beat. I generally approach my voice like a rhythmic instrument the way Drake, Chance, The Weeknd or any other R&B singer/rapper would do. I often find the flow before the words. If you’re in the room with me, you’ll hear me scat like Ella Fitzgerald, sometimes even record it and come back to the words a bit later.

I find myself coming up with the hook before the verse, most times, too, but there are exceptions to this rule!

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Name five biggest artists that you like. 

Drake, Chance, Snakehips, SZA, John Mayer.

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Name the artists you have collaborated with before in your songs or artists you are willing to collaborate with in the future if you have the chance to do so. 

I’m working with (or trying to work with) more local artists, at the moment. So far; Alexa Cahill, Tatiana Lyne, Michael Wingate, Señor Slice and Kyle Ray.

Gotta show some love to some local guys I hope I get to work with someday, though! BDMP, Richard Fraioli, Super Smash Broz, I’m hoping we connect musically soon! Also Chicago’s Sir The Baptist! He’s killing the game with his gospel rap thing. Producing him would be a dream.

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State the links to your social networks and stores for the purchase of your music. 

It’s all here – http://alexanderpadei.com

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Tell us about your happiest day and saddest day. 

I think my happiest day was getting into college, feeling like I had a bright future ahead of me. My saddest day may be when my grandfather (huge father figure) died a couple years ago.

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Tell us how you will spend a million dollars.

Half would go into Ethereum/Bitcoin. A good amount would pay off my student loans. The rest would go into basically bankrolling my continued music training, marketing and networking to push my career forward!


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