Perhaps you are a songwriter who wants to get your music out but can’t bring yourself to perform it yourself?
Traditionally, you would have to get someone else perform your music but what if you didn’t need to.
What if you could do it on your own without having to collaborate with anyone at all?
What if that moment is already here?
Enter “vocaloids”- the precise answer to all those “What ifs”.
The voice synthesizing program by Yamaha Corporation combines real human vocals with the use of androids to sing your tunes for you.
It lets you put a voice to your songs and melodies, without having to sing a peep.
Currently, there are more than 40 different Vocaloid programs, each with their own anthropomorphic personification.
What’s more, this type of niche music has its own fan following all over the world.
Within our shores, Pangeran Wiguan from Miri, Sarawak, is one such Vocaloid music creator.
The 28-year- old full stack software developer created his first Vocaloid music in 2012, using the Sonika program of the Vocaloid series.
“I consider myself a creative media person, having studied Film and Television as my major.
However, I could only land a job in programming, hence I became a full stack developer.
Despite that, my passion in creative media such as videography, photography and music remains,” said Pangeran.
He had formerly taught classical guitar before settling as a hobbyist music producer.
He also used to play at clubs and bistros and actively joined the band at Sunday church services.
Having prior musical training made it all the more easier for Pangeran to create music through the vocaloid.
He reckons it makes him feel almost deified.
When you create something that people consume, the feeling is so satisfying.
I love it when other fans of vocaloid enjoy the songs I made.
“My favourite genres of music are pop rock, rock and love songs,” said Pangeran.
The more prominent fan base for vocaloid productions however, is centred in Japan.
“The Vocaloid I’m using, Sonika, is an English-capable voicebank instead of Japanese like most of the more popular Vocaloids.
I can’t read or write in Japanese.
“Many people go quite crazy to the point of devotion for one of the cute vocaloid personas, Hatsune Miku but I simply see it as a tool to unleash the creativity I have.
“Once I wrote a song with lyrics from a girl’s perspective, which was not suitable for me to perform as a man so I used the Vocaloid program to provide the voice.”
Pangeran says making Vocaloid music can be time-consuming, just like with real artists.
It usually takes him up to a year to create an album project.
“I find inspiration everywhere; from the people around me, watching anime even the tears I sometimes shed. I notice each feeling and channel it into making a new song.
The biggest challenge he faces, is the common one shared by most if not all musicians; to be taken seriously and recognised by professional artists and music producers.
“I have a hard time explaining what a Vocaloid is, to people unfamiliar with anime or Japanese pop culture.
Many just laugh and think it’s merely a toy, or have the opinion that what I do isn’t ‘real’ music.
“Personally, I don’t consider Vocaloid music to be its own genre, rather a virtual instrument to assist in making all types of music.
“Using Vocaloids, you can make jazz songs, blues, rock, pop rock, even hip hop and rap.”
He was however quick to point out that not all vocaloid productions are taken as a joke.
Among the success stories include the Japanese band Supercell, who had started out by utilising the Hatsune Miku Vocaloid for their songs in online videos.
These had also played a role to influence Pangeran’s own composition.
He also counts Linkin Park, One OK Rock, SCANDAL, Silent Siren, and The Gazette as his repertoire of music influences.
Pangeran deeply believes in the Do-It-Yourself route to making music.
He also intends to help other like-minded musicians by becoming a label publisher for Vocaloid music.
“I hope to achieve this in the next five to ten years,”
He encourages all with such interest to start as there is never a wrong time.
“Just do it! Don’t wait! It’s never too late to release your first single, even if you are 50!”
Check out more of Pangeran’s DIY music here, here and here.You can also get it on itunes and spotify
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