FeM Synth Lab

FeM Synth Lab is a low-cost recurring monthly night for womxn and non-binary folx to learn how to use hardware for electronic music production, meet others, and make music together. See below for upcoming programming!

FeM Synth Lab Lending Library & Website Walk Through (via Crowdcast)
Thursday Jul 23, 2020 // 7pm
Presented by Fem Syth Lab
Free

Join FeM Synth Lab as we unveil our new project–a synthesizer and music equipment lending library for womxn and nonbinary folx in Los Angeles! A collaboration with Resource Residency, this program allows our community members to borrow equipment for up to two weeks in exchange for a small deposit via our forthcoming website. In this informational session, we’ll be showing you how to reserve a synthesizer, talking you through the lending process and answering any questions.

FeM Synth Lab is a femme-centered co-learning space for audio and community synthesis. Instagram // Facebook

Intro to Songwriting in Ableton Live + Community Check with Neyva (Online)
Thursday June 18, 2020 // 7:30pm–9:30pm
Hosted by FeM Synth Lab & Neyva
100 participant maximum
Free (suggested donation)

Ableton Live is a powerful and versatile tool that enables beginners and advanced users alike to dive into the details of composing or remixing. In this online workshop, Neyva will guide us through the basics of songwriting in Ableton Live–including a look at the new Wavetable synth. We’ll also be taking a moment to check in with our community during this unprecedented time. Beginners welcome!

This event prioritizes femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not sign up, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

Neyva is an artist/producer who showcases their eclecticism through their music, production, lyrics, and emotional vulnerability. They strive to create their own personal and emotional musical universe that resonates with the world with their captivating voice, resonance with trauma, as well as share their knowledge through music production/mental wellness workshops as well. Notable performances that they’ve had so far include: DTLA PROUD, Queer As Punk, Queer Monday’s LBC, Club Surge, Club sCUM, and HEAV3N. They curate their own shows/festivals such as their upcoming annual pride festival “Neyva’s Kikínceañera” and biweekly party “puro pinche parí.” They strive to continue to create authentically safe spaces, give true queer latinx representation, destigmatize mental health stereotypes, and ultimately aid to create a better world. Instagram // Bandcamp // Soundcloud

Field Recordings with Callie Ryan (Online)
Thursday May 21, 2020 // 7–9pm
Hosted by FeM Synth Lab & Callie Ryan
Free (suggested donation)

What are field recordings? How can they be used in music to evoke emotion, nostalgia, or bodily functions? What are best practices for capturing the sounds around you using your phone or microphone? 

In this highly-interactive workshop, Callie Ryan will be walking us through all of this and more. Callie is a producer and vocalist who works extensively with field recordings to create emotional worlds in sound. First, we will begin with a brief introduction to the basic concept of field recordings. Then, Callie will guide all participants in a deep listening exercise that we will each do together in our own homes. We will reconvene and share our reflections. From there, participants will be invited to go into their spaces and collect a sound found or made–tapping on a table, the creaking of a door, the siren outside a window, a cat’s purr. Participants will then be invited to email their recordings to Callie, who will show how she manipulates field recordings in Ableton via screenshare.  Callie will reveal some simple tips and tricks using Ableton presets that can make your recordings sound great in any DAW. Together, we will produce a beautiful quarantine collage of recordings from isolation 🙂 

This event prioritizes femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not sign up, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

Callie Ryan is a Los Angeles based electronic musician and vocalist who creates textured compositions with a vulnerable and intentional foundation whilst aiming to invoke feelings of tenderness and self-reflection. Her projects document the search for a balance between the masculine and feminine, as well as presenting fluid feelings of ever-changing physical, emotional, and sexual anxieties and gratitudes alike. Exploring our abject and unaddressed internal anatomical systems and their connection to our feelings and actions is a core foundational brick for Callie’s compositions. She works to express tangible gut responses through emotive and detail-oriented sonic production. She hosts two shows on Dublab, CUTS.01 and Storage Container, which explore the above and more.
Instagram // Dublab // BandCamp

Intro to Modular Synthesis with Felisha Ledesma (Online)
Thursday April 16,2020 // 7:30pm–8:30pm
Hosted by FeM Synth Lab & Felisha Ledesma
Free
(suggested donation)

What is a synthesizer? How do they work? And why do we want to use them in the first place? In our first Zoom workshop, producer and curator Felisha Ledesma will walk you through the basics of this and more with modular synths. On their Eurorack setup, Felisha will talk through the basic components of synthesis, demonstrate how they work basic and answer questions from attendees. No experience necessary–complete beginners very welcome!

This event prioritizes femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not sign up, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

Felisha Ledesma is an interdisciplinary artist and organizer. Felisha was Director of S1, an artist run space in Portland, Oregon, that focuses on experimental sound, critical contemporary art, and non-traditional education. Felisha also co-founded the Synth Library – a low-cost resource for hands-on access to synthesizers, DJ gear, recording equipment and other electronic musical instruments for people of all experience levels. Felisha most recently started Resource Residency, a program that connects artists with modular synthesizers and other electronic instruments to experiment, explore and create new work. Felisha has been exploring field recording and tape collage, modular synths, and the sound of secrets.

FeM Synth Lab: Intro to Octatrack with Ghorba
Thursday, March 19, 2020 // 7:30pm–9:30pm
Hosted by FeM Synth Lab
Max participants: 40
$3
(no one turned away for lack of funds)

This event is now online only. Watch the live-stream here on IG Live on Thursday March 19 at 7:30 pm PST.

The Elektron Octatrack is a super powerful sampler that is great for both the studio and live performances. In this workshop, you will learn how to use the Octatrack to sample in real time, so you can record other instruments into it; how to manipulate those samples; how to structure tracks using the machine and some cool tips and tricks for workflow. The details of what’s covered will be Octatrack specific, but this will also be a very useful session for learning about samplers more generally and the role they play in music production. If you’ve been interested in sampling, this is the session for you! All levels welcome. 

This event is for femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

Ghorba is a Los Angeles-based producer, live act and DJ. She organizes a party, FM+, for womxn and nonbinary people, hosts a radio show on Dublab and helps run FeM Synth Lab. Her debut album, Zero Threat to the Rave, was released on Jacktone Records; it was included in Fact Mag‘s best house and techno of the year.

Thursday, February 13, 2020 // 7:30pm–9:30pm
Hosted by FeM Synth Lab & Sharmi Basu
Max participants: 40
$3
(no one turned away for lack of funds)

Sound is often an expression of our psycho-somatic makeup. We are constantly making sounds, whether or not we are consciously doing so. Our bodies act as active transducers, transforming electric energy into physical energy and vice versa. 

This workshop tests the theory that we can find ways to heal and understand ourselves by using sound as an active processor of our individual and collective struggle and experiences. As sound, art, music, and creativity are the processes of turning the context of our lives, skills and experiences into something new and external to our individual selves, this process of making art and sound is ideal for healing and restoring presence. Sound, as both a material and immaterial object, is in a unique position to help us move through the most difficult experiences. 

In this workshop, we learn about the basics of sound and use a number of improvisational scores and exercises as a mode of self-investigation.

This event prioritizes femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

SHARMI BASU (she/they) is a multi-media performance artist, curator, and composer. She creates work that addresses vulnerability, accountability, and experiences of millennial diaspora through creating narratives of decolonial thinking toward individual and collective liberation. She attempts to catalyze a political, yet ethereal aesthetic by combining her anti-colonial and anti-imperialist politics with a commitment to spirituality within the arts. Beast Nest, Sharmi’s primary performing project, utilizes an unwavering depression and restrained horror to channel left-eyed spirits. She is an MFA graduate from the Center for Contemporary Music at Mills College in Electronic Music and Recording Media and has worked with Fred Frith, Roscoe Mitchell, John Bischoff, Pauline Oliveros, Chris Brown, Maggi Payne, and more. Her performances and sound pieces show us that the abstract and immaterial experiences of trauma and pain can be liberated through our abstract creations in art and sound. She believes that transcending the emotional landscape is the key to accessing multidimensionality, and works with these ideas in her Decolonizing Sound workshops and her improvisation group, the Mara Performance Collective. She hosts a number of workshops that center on sound healing and self-accountability, as well as technical skill-shares world-wide. She is also a certified mediator focused on interpersonal healing within Queer and Trans BIPOC communities. Her ultimate goal through her work is to cultivate a sense of vulnerability and empowerment for herself and her community.

Femme House, FeM Synth Lab & Moog Present: The Art of Synthesis
Wednesday, January 29, 7:30–9:30pm
Hosted by Femme House, FeM Synth Lab & Moog
Max participants: 40
Free ~ RSVP required

What exactly is synthesis? How do synthesizers work? Why do we use them for music? FEMME HOUSE, FeM Synth Lab and Moog are teaming up to answer these questions and more. First, learn all you need to know about these mysterious machines from four powerhouse producers: LP Giobbi, Minibear, Felisha Ledesma and Ghorba. Then, break out into groups for direct instruction and interactive play with the most cutting edge synths Moog has to offer–the DFAM, Mother 32, Grandmother and Matriarch.

FEMME HOUSE is an educational platform created to address the lack of representation and equity in electronic music by empowering womxn to learn the language of the studio. With DJ, producer and label head (of Sofi Tukker’s Animal Talk Collective) LP Giobbi at the helm, FEMME HOUSE leverages her rich network of artists to lead immersive workshops on practical recording skills—covering everything from using MIDI to how to work with vocalists. Instagram // Facebook

FeM Synth Lab: Sync with Katy McIlvaine
Thursday December 12, 7:30-9:30pm
Hosted by Fem Synth Lab x  Katy McIlvaine
Max participants: 40
$3 (no one turned away for lack of funds)

What is sync and how does it work? Music supervision and sync expert Katy McIlvaine returns to do a deeper dive into the world of music publishing. Join us as she demystifies sync and answers all your questions about how to get your music into movies. Beginners welcome!

This event is for femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

Katy McIlvaine has worked in many facets of music supervision and licensing. Starting on the supervision side working in trailers at mOcean and then TV at Warner Bros. Television and Format Entertainment, she is now pitching a catalog for Sugaroo! Music as well as supervising independently via her company Alphabet Supe.

FeM Synth Lab: Maschine Beatmaking
Thursday, November 21,  7:30-9:30pm
Presented by Fem Synth Lab x Angelica Rodriguez
40 participant max
$3 (no one turned away for lack of funds)

Producer and Maschine expert Angelica Rodriguez will be covering the basics of beat production in Maschine software with the Maschine Mikro Mk3. If you’ve wanted to know how to build ideas using Maschine hardware, and how to arrange those ideas into full productions, this is the workshop for you. Beginners to seasoned producers are welcome!

This event is for femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

Angelica M Rodriguez (@amrmusic) is a songwriter, producer, DJ, and multi-instrumentalist. She works in technical support at Native Instruments.

FeM Synth Lab X shesaid.so LA: Intro to Sync, Contracts and Licensing
Thursday October 24th, 7:30pm–9:30pm

Presented by FeM Synth Lab X shesaid.so LA
Max participants: 40
 $3 (no one turned away for lack of funds)

We’ve all heard the starving artist cliche, but let’s be real–we love to eat. So is it really possible to make a living through music? FeM Synth Lab welcomes experts Michèle Vice-Maslin, Katy McIlvaine and Katy Alimohammadi to explain how sync, contracts and licensing can help you do just that.

This event is for femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

Michèle Vice-Maslin is an Emmy Winning, #1 hit music producer, songwriter, publisher, public speaker. She composes both music & lyrics and produces/arranges for artists/ films/ TV / ads /promos / games, etc. She has had numerous hit songs and cuts all over the world as well as over 5000 media music placements with her companies Mob Force Productions and Sweetersongs. Her music airs on TV/radio everyday /365 days a year.

Katy McIlvaine has worked in many facets of music supervision and licensing. Starting on the supervision side working in trailers at mOcean and then TV at Warner Bros. Television and Format Entertainment, she is now pitching a catalog for Sugaroo! Music as well as supervising indie films independently.

Katy Alimohammadi is an entertainment attorney who represents filmmakers in all aspects of the entertainment business, including production legal services, rights clearance and distribution. Upon graduating law school, Katy joined the law firm Donaldson + Callif, where she has served as counsel to a wide range of content creators, including in film, television, podcasts and museums.

FeM Synth Lab: Listening Session
Thursday, July 25, 7:30–9:30pm
Max 10 Participants
Free / RSVP required (above)

FeM Synth Lab’s quarterly listening session is back! Need some fresh ears for your sonic project? We’re asking that our community members bring something recorded (a finished track, stems, a project file, a bassline, etc.) to play in return for constructive criticism from an audience of peers!

This event is for femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

FeM Synth Lab x Signal Flux: Intro to Modular Synthesis with stud1nt
Tuesday, July 16, 7.30pm-9.30pm
Presented by FeM Synth Lab
Max 40 participants
$3 (contact us at femsynthlab@gmail.com if you’re unable to pay!)

FeM Synth Lab teams up with New York’s Signal Flux to present an introduction to the practice of modular synthesis. Led by Izzy Ocampo, also known as stud1nt, participants will learn the fundamentals of the electronic synthesis of sound, modular hardware, as well as digital emulators like VCV Rack.  Some sound art or musical experience is helpful but a willingness to think systematically and work through challenging concepts is key. We will be using a Moog Mother 32, so if you’ve been wanting to learn how to handle one of those, now is your chance!

Izzy Ocampo is a multi-instrumentalist, synthesist, and educator that also goes by stud1nt. They have taught classes and workshops on creative production and synthesis at Moogfest, Ableton Loop, Pioneer Works, Vassar College, the New School, and Recess Art. They are cofounder of Signal Flux. Previously, they held a monthly ambient residency at Nowadays and an art residency at the Post-Contemporary in Troy, while managing operations for the eurorack company Mannequins. A member of the collectives #kunq and Discwoman, their work attends to the politics of queerness in relation to sonic space.

Signal Flux aims to expand access to and literacy about sound / video art and technology through inclusive, student-centered collaborative workshops, individualized one-on-one tutorials and curricula, and engaging public event programming. We hope to catalyze passion for the sonic and visual, whether they be newfound interests or enduring practices.

This event is for femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

FeM Synth Lab 2 Year Anniversary Showcase at Coaxial
Saturday June 29, 8pm (please note date change!)
Coaxial, 1815 S Main St, Los Angeles, CA 90015
Free

Celebrate 2 years of the FeM Synth Lab community with a night of weird and wonderful, experimental and otherworldly performances at Coaxial.

FeM Synth Lab: MIDI Guest Session with Liquid Asset and Isabella
Saturday, June 22, 3-4pm
Presented by FeM Synth Lab
Max 40 participants
$3
(contact us at femsynthlab@gmail.com if you’re unable to pay!)

What is MIDI and how does it work? FeM Synth Lab welcomes two hardware experts to explain it all. This is the place to ask for every question you’ve ever wanted to about MIDI. The pair will be presenting on how to use MIDI in performance. No experience necessary, beginners welcome.

Liquid Asset is the hardware techno project of Alene Marie,. Utilizing modified 909, 808, & 303 clones she handbuilt, she focuses on pressing the instruments through their modifications to make music that is alien & mutating of classic sounds. She has released on New York Trax and Jacktone Records, among others.

Boston-based Isabella is known for her ever-changing live sets of high energy rave sounds. She has released with Börft and Peder Mannerfelt, and toured across the U.S. and Europe.

This event is for femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

FeM Synth Lab CDJ Workshop with DJ Suga Shay & Bored Lord
Wednesday, May 22, 7:30-9:30pm
Presented by FeM Synth Lab
Max participants: 40
$3 (contact us at femsynthlab@gmail.com if you’re unable to pay!)

Wanna learn how to DJ? Now’s your chance. FeM Synth Lab is happy to host two of our favorite Los Angeles-based DJs who will be teaching you the ropes of CDJs, an industry standard piece of equipment that plays digital music.

Philly native DJ Suga Shay is known on dancefloors nationwide for her cross-format style of club, ballroom, hip-hop and much more that combine to get feet moving. In addition to touring across the country, she co-hosts a monthly show on NTS called Club Aerobics.

Producer and DJ Bored Lord peddles an infectious club sound that has earned her shows nationwide. She has released several EPs including tracks that have been featured in “Broad City” and played in clubs across the world; her debut album, Transexual Rave Hymns, was released by Knightwerk Records in April.

No experience necessary, beginners welcome.

This event is for femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

FeM Synth Lab: Drone Alchemy With Vveiss & Open Meeting
Thursday, April 11, 7:30-9:30pm
Hosted by FeM Synth Lab
Max 50 participants
$3-RSVP required for workshop
(contact us at femsynthlab@gmail.com if you’re unable to pay!)

Workshop: 7:30-8.30pm
Open Meeting: 8.30-9.30pm

Founding member of the party and mix series XMPC, vveiss is a New York-based vocalist, organizer, producer and DJ that delivers sets of unpredictably traversing techno, house, trap, industrial, noise, and drone all strung on a taut thread of brutalism. They studied composition and raga singing through a discipleship with La Monte Young and Marian Zazeela, whose “Dream House” sound and light environment in NYC has inspired generations of important musical artists.

They will share insights about what can be gained from using drones as a therapeutic tool and a grounding point for self-referential awareness. Based on studies in sound as yoga and part of an inherently spiritual path, they will explore methods to easily create drones and psychoacoustic phenomena with any basic analog or digital synthesizer, voice or other instruments. How can drones be a musical palette cleanser? How can they serve as a lifestyle tool for tuning the mind and enhancing creativity? These are some of the questions we will be exploring in this hands-on workshop.

After that, stay for FeM Synth Lab’s open meeting! Here we’ll discuss upcoming sessions for FeM Synth Lab and start planning our one year anniversary party.

Open meeting is free to attend. All donations go to the guest artist.

This event is for femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

FeM Synth Lab Informalities #1: Casual Listening and Jam Session
Thursday, March 21, 7:30-9:30
Presented by Celia Eydeland
Max 40 participants
Free with RSVP

Get together at the Women Center for Creative Work for a chance to hang with new and old members of the FeM Synth Lab community. We wanted to provide an informal chance to share rough sketches, meet other collaborators, share knowledge, ask questions, exchange music you’re listening to, and jam if you’d like!

No experience necessary! Just bring any instrument, playlist, recording, or idea you’d like, or feel free to just come hang.

This event is for femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

FeM Synth Lab: Listening Session
Thursday, February 21, 7:30-9:30pm
Max 10 Participants

Free with RSVP

We’re back with our quarterly listening session! Need some fresh ears for your sonic project? We’re asking that our community members bring something recorded (a finished track, stems, a project file, a bassline, etc.) to play in return for constructive criticism from an audience of peers! 🙂

This event is for femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

FeM Synth Lab Open Meeting & Modular with Alissa DeRubeis From S1
Thursday, January 24, 7:30-9:30pm
Workshop 7:30-8:30pm, Meeting 8:30-9:30pm
Free with RSVP

We’re SO happy to welcome modular expert Alissa DeRubeis. She currently resides in Portland, OR, where she works for 4MS and S1. A co-founder of the S1 Synth Library and Synth Library Prague, Alissa enjoys teaching intro workshops, improvised music, and patching pre-amps and resonant filters.

In this beginner friendly workshop we will take a look at some simple patches you can make with 4MS modules. We will have the unreleased Spherical Wavetable Navigator to patch and explore with, and we will have hands on time to try different modules and to co-patch all together.

After that, stick around for FeM Synth Lab’s first open meeting of 2019! Here we’ll discuss future plans for FeM Synth Lab, brainstorm session ideas and potential facilitators. We want to hear from YOU about what you want this space to be! So join us to guide the direction of FeM Synth Lab.

This meeting is for femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

FeM Synth Lab Guest Session: Chucha
Thursday, December 6, 7:30-8:30pm
Max 50 participants
$3-RSVP required
Contact us at femsynthlab@gmail.com if you’re unable to pay!
All donations go to the guest artist.

Chucha is a Los Angeles based producer who creates a range of sounds, not specifically tied to any genre, allowing experimentation to be the pilot. For Chucha it is a way to deal with reality. In this guest session, Chucha will walk through her production process using her monomachine sfx 60+, and her digitakt sampler.

This event is for femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

FeM Synth Lab Guest Session: Russell E.L. Butler
Thursday, October 4, 7:30-8:30pm
Presented by FeM Synth Lab
$3-RSVP required (contact us at femsynthlab@gmail.com if you’re unable to pay!)
All donations go to the guest artist

Russell E.L. Butler is an experimental artist and DJ based in Oakland, California. Originally from Bermuda, Russell has developed a process of improvisation through modular synthesizers that draws from a rich cultural history rooted in their island and the black, queer diaspora.

In this guest session, Russell will talk through their production process, their modular set up and their unique view on music-making.

For the past few years they have been producing a brand of stripped down machine techno that has evolved rapidly with each successive release. Transplantation, evolution, and healing are themes in Russell’s music. They based their 2015 album, “God is Change”, on Octavia Butler’s Parable series of novels, in which these are central tenets of the philosophy that the books explore. Since its release “God is Change” has received major acclaim, with NPR naming it one of their top 10 favorite electronic albums of 2015. In 2016, Russell released “Visions of the Future” on Jacktone Records, which is a collection of improvised modular synthesizer sessions. A month later, Russell’s follow up to “God is Change”, “The First Step”, was released on Black Opal. “The First Step” is dedicated to the “…black, brown, trans, queer, and gay folks of Oakland” and posits that “…sometimes to resist oppression, all we must do is simply exist. That is the first step. Let us strive to walk without fear.” Russell’s newest record, “I’m Dropping Out of Life”, was released on January 30th via CGI Records and received praise from NPR, Fact, Thump, and The Fader, with early play by DJs like Nina Kraviz, Umfang, and Powder.

This event is for femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

FeM Synth Lab Listening Session
Wednesday, September 26, 7:30-9:30pm
Presented by FeM Synth Lab
Max 10 participants
$3-RSVP required (contact us at femsynthlab@gmail.com if you’re unable to pay!)

Need some fresh ears for your sonic project? This month, we’re asking that our community members bring something recorded (a finished track, stems, a project file, a bassline, etc.) to play in return for constructive criticism from an audience of peers!

This event is for femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

Fem Synth Lab: DJing with Ableton Live ft. Maral
Thursday, August 23, 7:30-9.30pm
Max 40 participants
$3-RSVP required ~ all donations go to the guest artist
(contact us at femsynthlab@gmail.com if you’re unable to pay!)

At this month’s fem synth lab, Maral will show us how she uses the popular program Ableton Live to produce her extremely rich and varied mixes!

Exploring and transforming the sounds of Iranian music, Los Angeles-based artist Maral has formed a unique vision of club music, one that embraces her heritage and recontextualizes it for a new audience. Featuring rich vocals drenched in bass and distortion, Maral’s sound manages to take the audience to unfamiliar places in the familiar context of the dancefloor.

This event is for femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

Fem Synth Lab: Sound Design
Thursday, July 26, 7:30-9.30pm
Max 40 participants
$3-RSVP required (contact us at femsynthlab@gmail.com if you’re unable to pay!)

What is sound design? How can you record samples to make your own unique sounds? LA-based electronic producer and DJ Alexia Riner will help us answer some of these questions, as we learn how to build sonic elements through sound design and sampling.

Since the release of her debut album “Darknet”, Riner has performed both in the US and internationally, produced for artists such as Madame Gandhi, worked on sound installations, and done freelance work for Native Instruments. She is currently finishing up her second solo album, continuing her work with sound installations, producing for various artists, and DJ’ing.

This event is for femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

** Contact us at femsynthlab@gmail.com if you’re unable to pay! All donations go to the guest artist.

FeM Synth Lab Guest Session: Umfang
Sunday, June 24, 2-4pm
$3-RSVP required 
(contact us at femsynthlab@gmail.com if you’re unable to pay!)

FeM Synth Lab welcomes producer, DJ and Discwoman cofounder Umfang to a guest session! Umfang will talk through her production process, the equipment she uses to make and record her music, and her unique approach to techno.

Umfang was born in the Bronx, grew up in Kansas and has been living in Brooklyn since 2010. She holds a monthly residency, Technofeminism, at New York’s Bossa Nova Civic Club, focusing on emerging talent and an affection for vinyl. She enjoys playing with people’s expectations of how a techno set can be defined. Her amorphous polyrhythmic techno productions have been released by 1080p, videogamemusic and Phinery; Ninja Tune put out her most recent album, Symbolic Use of Light, last year.

Founded by Frankie Decaiza Hutchinson, Umfang (Emma Burgess-Olson) and Christine McCharen-Tran, Discwoman is a New York-based platform, collective, and booking agency that showcases and represents talent in electronic music. Started as a two-day festival in September 2014 at Bossa Nova Civic Club, Discwoman has since produced and curated events in 15+ cities—working with over 250 DJs and producers to-date.

This event is for femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

$3-RSVP required (contact us at femsynthlab@gmail.com if you’re unable to pay!) All donations go to the guest artist.

FeM Synth Lab: How to Get Stage-Ready
Thursday, June 21, 7:30-9:30pm
$3-RSVP required 
(contact us at femsynthlab@gmail.com if you’re unable to pay!) 

Need some help getting yourself and your music ready for a live show? In preparation for FeM Synth Lab’s 1 Year Anniversary Showcase, local alien Kimi Recor (of Draemings & Play Like a Girl LA) will provide some key tips and tricks to get yourself and your sounds stage-ready!

This event is for femme-identified womxn and non-binary folx, but is open to all who are not cis men. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is overwhelmingly dominated by cis men.

FeM Synth Lab: Intro to Ableton Live
Thursday, May 24, 7:30-9:30pm
40 participants maximum
Hosted by Natalie Robehmed, Sophia Elliot, and kora colasuonno
$3-RSVP required 
(contact us at femsynthlab@gmail.com if you’re unable to pay!)

Ableton Live is a powerful and versatile tool that enables beginners and advanced users alike to dive  into the details of composing or remixing. Through skill sharing and discussion, you will learn the basics of Ableton Live.

This event is for womxn and non-binary folx, *especially* those who are femme-identified. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is very much dominated by cis men.

Accessibility info for this event:

WCCW has a 36” wide ramp at our front entrance and a stairway with 8 steps and a rail. There are 2 gender neutral restrooms. One restroom is wheelchair accessible, with a handrail. We provide scent free soaps and encourage guests to attend our events scent free. If you require ASL interpretation, CART, interpretation for a language other than English, supervised childcare, or have any other access needs or questions, please contact info@wccw.us at least two weeks in advance. It is our practice to do everything we can to create a safe and accessible space.

Advanced Modular
Thursday, April 26, 7:30-9:30pm
40 participants maximum
Hosted by Natalie Robehmed, Sophia Elliot, and kora colasuonno
$3-RSVP required
(contact us at femsynthlab@gmail.com if you’re unable to pay!)

Modular synthesis can open up your music-making to a range of new sonic possibilities that otherwise wouldn’t be possible, or at least wouldn’t be immediately apparent just by using most standalone hardware synths or plug-ins. Following our introductory modular synth session, this workshop will get into more advanced techniques for modular synth users.  

Joining FeM Synth Lab this month is Naomi Mitchell, who makes synths as omiindustriies and releases music as Poor Impulse Width Modulation.

This event is for womxn and non-binary folx, *especially* those who are femme-identified. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is very much dominated by cis men.

One-on-one Modular Troubleshooting
with Naomi Mitchell, who makes modular synths as omiindustriies
Thursday, March 29, 20 minute slots between 4:30-6:30pm
Free with RSVP

Having trouble getting one module talking to another? Not sure how to use a module or a specific feature of a module? Need a little help just plugging stuff in?

Bring your gear early on March 29th – sign up for a free 20 minute one-on-one with Naomi Mitchell, who makes synths as omiindustriies and music as poor impulse width modulation!

One-on-one Modular Troubleshooting takes place right before Fem Synth Lab: Intro to Modular Synths on March 29th. If you’d like to stick around for this regularly scheduled Fem Synth programming, purchase a ticket below! 

Intro To Modular Synths
Thursday, March 29, 7:30-9:30pm
$3– email femsynthlab@gmail.com if you are unable to pay!

Modular synthesis can open up your music to a range of new sonic possibilities that otherwise wouldn’t be possible, or at least wouldn’t be immediately apparent just by using most standalone hardware synths or plug-ins. How does patching together these often wildly different modules generate audio, and how can you control it?

Through skill-sharing and discussion, you will learn the basics of what modular synthesizers are, how they work and some ways to make music with them.

Joining FeM Synth Lab this month is Tierra Williams, an experimental musician who performs in the Los Angeles duo Moment Trigger. Tierra currently uses modular and semi-modular synthesizers, in addition to midi controllers, drum machines, rhythm and synthesizer apps, and software such as Ableton Live. She is also the co-creator of DIY label Fatt Grabbers, as well as the monthly experimental music series Stranger.

This event is for womxn and non-binary folx, *especially* those who are femme-identified. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is very much dominated by cis men.

**All proceeds go to the guest artist**

Tierra Williams is an experimental musician who performs in the Los Angeles duo Moment Trigger with partner Chris Lazard. Formed in 2005, Moment Trigger produces and performs experimental electronic music such as techno, industrial and textural noise. Tierra currently uses modular and semi-modular synthesizers, in addition to midi controllers, drum machines, rhythm and synthesizer apps, and software such as Ableton Live. She is also the co-creator of DIY label Fatt Grabbers, as well as the monthly experimental music series Stranger.

Adding Effects
Thursday, February 22, 7:30-9:30pm

Effects, such as reverb and delay, can both subtly enhance and/or completely overhaul your sounds. In this session, we’ll explore these common and powerful effects, how they work in pedal form for hardware set-ups, and how these effects can be applied, digitally, via plug-ins

Through discussion, skill-sharing and hands-on experimentation with equipment we will provide, you will learn the basics of how to hook up and use effects pedals for gear like synthesizers, drum machines, and mixers, as well as how to apply effects in DAWs such as Ableton Live. We’ll also go over an example of a mixer with built in effects and how you might use that in your music-making or DJing.  

This event is for women (trans & cis) and non-binary folx, *especially* those who are femme-identified. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is very much dominated by cis men.

We hope to create an inclusive space for exploring music production. Absolutely no experience is necessary!

How-To: Humanize Your Synths
Thursday, January 25, 7:30-9:30pm

Do your synth lines sound a little too rigid and computerized? We’ll show you a number of simple but powerful techniques to help make your computer music sound a little more organic!

Through discussion, skill-sharing and hands-on experimentation with equipment we will provide, you will learn the basics of humanization and related music production skills.

This event is for women (trans & cis) and non-binary folx, *especially* those who are femme-identified. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is very much dominated by cis men.

We hope to create an inclusive space for exploring music production. Absolutely no experience is necessary!

FeM Synth Lab with Bergsonist
Wednesday November 1, 7-8pm
All donations go to the artist

In our first guest session, Brooklyn-based producer Bergsonist will talk through her production process, what software she uses to record her music, and give a demonstration of her live, hardware-based, setup.

Brooklyn-based, Moroccan-born Selwa Abd uses the fictional character Bergsonist (derived from Gilles Deleuze’s Bergsonism) as her musical guise. Abd is an artist and musician based in New York using multiple mediums to investigate social resonance through divergent conceptual aesthetics (minimalism, techno, music concrete, to name a few). Her practice utilizes her trained design sensibility to filter the objects of intuitive exploration, guided by an impulse to detach subjective meaning from found sonic fragments. Notions of identity, memory, social politics and the ambiguous long-term reliability/stability of our digital networks drive this process.

She has released on Börft Records, Clan Destine and Styles Upon Styles, among other labels.

https://soundcloud.com/bergsonist

This event is for women (trans & cis) and non-binary folx, *especially* those who are femme-identified. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is very much dominated by cis men.

SOLD OUT: Intro to Sampling
Thursday October 26, 7:30-9:30pm
Sampling can open up your compositional process to a whole world of new sounds – undisguised samples can reference work, chopped and screwed samples can spice up a dull beat, and samples can even be used as building blocks for synthesis!

Through discussion, skill-sharing and hands-on experimentation with equipment we will provide, you will learn the basics of sampling and how you can leverage it in your music.

This event is for women (trans & cis) and non-binary folx, *especially* those who are femme-identified. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is very much dominated by cis men.

We hope to create an inclusive space for exploring sampling. Absolutely no experience is necessary!

June 29: Synthesizers

What are synthesizers? How do they work? What can synths sound like? How can we use them to make electronic music?

Despite women’s roles in pioneering these machines, they remain largely invisible in the cis-male-dominated field of synth-based electronic music. But women like Elysia Crampton, FKA Twigs, Antenes and Aurora Halal continue to push the boundaries of what’s possible with synths. And there are so many more femmes to be heard.

This is a hands-on introduction to using synthesizers to make music. Through discussion, skill-sharing, and experimentation with equipment we provide, you will learn what synthesizers are, how they can make sounds, and how to use those sounds in your own music-making.

This event prioritizes femme-identified women and non-binary persons. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is very much dominated by cis men.

We hope to create an inclusive space for exploring what’s possible with synths. Absolutely no experience is necessary!

July 27: Drum Machines
What are drum machines? How do they work? What can drum machines sound like? How can we deploy them to make electronic music?

This is a hands-on introduction to using drum machines to make music. Through discussion, skill-sharing, and experimentation with equipment we provide, you will learn what drum machines are, how they can make sounds, and how to use those sounds in your own music-making.

 This event prioritizes femme-identified women and non-binary persons. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is very much dominated by cis men.

We hope to create an inclusive space for exploring what’s possible with drum machines. Absolutely no experience is necessary!

Aug 17: Intro to DAWs

Digital Audio Workstations (DAWs) – like Ableton Live or Logic Pro – are computer programs that allow us to record and tweak the sounds of synthesizers and drum machines, as well as to control software instruments. These powerful tools can translate your hardware-bound sounds to the digital realm, and even expand your music-making beyond the boundaries of physical devices. They help you not only polish, but have complete, fine-grained control, over the music you want to produce.

This is a hands-on introduction to using DAWs to make and record music. Through discussion, skill-sharing and experimentation with equipment we will provide, you will learn how two popular DAWs (Ableton Live and Logic Pro) are used to record instruments and control software instruments, and how you can employ these programs to fine tune your sound.

This event is for all (trans & cis) women and non-binary folx, especially those who are femme-identified. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is very much dominated by cis men.

We hope to create an inclusive space for exploring an introduction to DAWs. Absolutely no experience is necessary!

Sept 21: Intro to Composition

Composing a track can be a daunting process, but there are several formulae that can help keep it simple! We’ll go over a little about how that can work for a basic synth- and drum-based techno track.

Through discussion, skill-sharing and hands-on experimentation with equipment we will provide, you will learn the basics of structuring tracks!

This event is for women (trans & cis) and non-binary folx, *especially* those who are femme-identified. We ask that our cis male allies and friends respectfully do not attend, as we recognize that electronic music is very much dominated by cis men.

We hope to create an inclusive space for exploring track structuring. Absolutely no experience is necessary!