d4vd on creating music using BandLab: “I literally just looked up: ‘How to make music on iPhone’”

The 18-year-old released his debut EP just last week.

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Credit: Jonathan Weiner for NME

Rising singer/songwriter d4vd has revealed how he started making music, after writing his first songs, and even 2022 hit Romantic Homicide, in his sister’s closet using just his iPhone.

Last year, Romantic Homicide went viral, accumulated hundreds of millions of streams, and entered the Top 40 after doing the rounds on TikTok – and all the Houston prodigy used were a pair of EarPods and BandLab, a free iPhone app.

But its success was practically an accident – he wrote the song to pair with his Fortnite videos, which were getting taken down from YouTube because he was using other artists’ songs.

In a new interview for NME’s On The Cover series, d4vd explains how that gave him the idea of making music: “I told my mom about it, and she was just like: ‘How about you make your own music then?’ I thought, man, the way technology is now, I could probably do that!

“The next day I literally just looked up: ‘How to make music on iPhone’. This app called BandLab popped up. I downloaded it, and the next day, in my little sister’s closet, no studio, no professional mic, I made my first song, Run Away.”

Now, after releasing his debut EP, Petals to Thorns, he admits he still used his phone to record some of it.

“I was like: ‘Bro, I don’t know how to use this,’” he said after being offered a $4,000 Neumann microphone to use for recording. “I pulled out my phone and I was in the booth, in front of the mic, using BandLab!”

The songwriter eventually became familiar with more typical ways of recording music, after he was granted access to New York’s Jungle City Studios, a facility owned by longtime Alicia Keys engineer Ann Mincieli. “I kind of overcame that and figured out how to work with producers and engineers,” he says. “I was trying to figure out how it is for the quote-unquote ‘normal’ artist.”

Editor’s note: MusicTech and NME are part of NME Networks in the Caldecott Music Group, which is also the parent group of BandLab Technologies. 


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