I specialise in writing radio ready hit songs for all continents. I work with platinum award winning songwriters and a select team of vocalists/fellow top line writers to create outstanding tracks with the best production quality available. I write and produce for Universal Music, Avex Music as well as remixing for chart topping artists.
My name is John (Kerfo) & I'm a songwriter/producer from rural Derbyshire in the middle of the United Kingdom (I know right, not London for once!) I play drums, piano, guitar & I sing.
My background is in live performing. I have played and toured with bands to Europe and the US, from big band jazz, funk and swing to being lead vox and guitar for a rock band, writing all of the original material for the band.
I completed a first class honours degree in Music Production & Sound Engineering from Point Blank Music School in London in 2018.
I now run my own studio songwriting, producing and recording specialising in writing energetic & emotional pop music.
My sound can be heard here. I really hope that you like what you hear & you'd like to work with me. :)
I have written & produced for:
Universal Music - Hadi, Wissam Hilal, Anthony Touma
Avex Group - Ballistik Boyz, The Rampage
Sony Music - Taylor Jones
BlackHole Recordings - Markus Schulz
Independents - Buryana, Leena Voxx, Shuba
I work with:
Streets Music Publishing
Boost Music Publishing
Starlab Music Publishing
I really appreciate you guys checking out my page. Thank you very much for taking the time & I look forward to hearing from you soon. :)
Send me an email through 'Contact' button above and I'll get back to you asap.
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Interview with Kerfo Music
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: -Songwriting catchy and energetic radio ready songs in all popular styles (see reference tracks) -Producing full, vocal and radio ready instrumentals in all popular styles (see reference tracks)
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: Max Martin, Zedd, Dannic, Stevie Wonder, Virtual Riot, Steve Mac, Red One.
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: I have a home studio setup where I do all of my recording and producing from.
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: I'm totally flexible to however the client would like to do things in their own creative way. My workflow is entirely suited to you.
Q: What do you bring to a song?
A: Emotion and energy together. I love to combine the two for a greater effect. When writing a track, I always love to make sure that the track is making me dance around the room, or alternatively making me well up with tears, or both at the same time! That's the only way that I know a tracks songwriting, top line and production choices are fitting together. I can't explain it, you just know. That said, I'm really not afraid to tell myself that something I have created is rubbish, or to change that "bit" in the track whatever it may be. There is no such thing as that'll do, I can't stand that every time I hear the song on the radio! :)
Q: What's your strongest skill?
A: Knowing what to do with the simplest idea and working it up from the very bottom into a full finished production.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: It's not about EQ compressor makes and models, none of that matters if the initial song idea isn't good enough, no matter the style of music. Begin with an amazing idea and you will end up making the right production choices. Let the emotion in the music lead you, not scientific choices on how something should sound.
Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?
A: `No names in particular, I'd love to just work with any amazing artists out there who are really driven, confident in their style, have a vision for where they want to be and that want to really make it in music, a successful and happy career as well a financial living.
Q: How would you describe your style?
A: Emotion and energy combined, not one or the other. I love to try and write/produce in a way that will make people euphoric as well as jump up and down, scream out the top line when they hear it on the radio. My productions, unless working on a ballad or similar style, are always full of groove and funk. If it doesn't make me move then I'm not happy with the track.
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: Professionally songwriting and producing - 7 years. It began with EDM releases back in 2012 on independent labels and grew from winning remix competitions and then getting those remixes released on Universal. Performing in live bands and DJing - 11 years Playing instruments - 17 years; It all started at the age of 4 with a set of cardboard boxes and old pots and pans tied up with string! That was my first ever drum kit.
Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A: I'm here for the music and for individuals careers. There's no such thing as succeeding alone in this business. Having an amazing team around you as an artist, songwriter, producer or manager is everything you need to ride the ups and downs and stay motivated. If you are driven, and know that you will one day succeed no matter how long it takes, then I would really love to help you in any way that I can and be a part of your team.
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: This is usually song specifics and tying in song ideas with their artist image and asking them what they want to express through the music. That's the most important thing, as music is an emotional release, not just a beat. It has the power to change our emotions in a second, so I always make sure I ask prospective clients what their musical goals are to make sure that I would be a good fit to help them in the stepping stones of their career.
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: It doesn't matter, as long as it suits what you are trying to achieve musically.
Q: Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
A: I am working on a really great project with a fantastic artist signed with Sony Music, writing with him as a platinum songwriter is great fun and I have 4 tracks releasing with him. I worked on 2 remixes for artists signed to Universal Music and was really happy with the results and they were released on the label.The tracks where originally from artists Anthony Touma and Wissam Hilal; 'Walk Away' and 'Harmony'.
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: Pop, Electro pop, Dance, RnB, Country, Hip Hop, Dubstep. - Anything that has a mix of emotion, but is also full of energy and will make people sing and move. Those are my favourite projects to work on. Please do check out my previous work on my profile.
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: An acoustic guitar, a drum kit, a bass guitar, a multi-instrument keyboard and a singer! No distractions, right? ;)
Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
A: It's just a formula. If it was just a formula, everybody could make hits. The right song and production has got to be a perfect mix between what people know and surprising them. 90% predictable, 10% new. It also has to tackle a current issue or have a sentimental meaning that millions of other humans have also felt or are feeling in their lives. To top this off, the correct sounds, rhythmic feel and harmonic/melodic content, that actually complements and supports the initial song idea, mood and theme of what you are trying to say is vital to a songs worldwide success.
Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: What job? :) Every single day is so different, even if I'm just working with the same genre. But most of all, I love to hear the excitement and passion from a client when a finished project is delivered to them. As well as this, the feeling that the music we write together will end up being played to people all over the world to sing along to and feel good is a sensation that you just can't get anywhere else.
Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?
A: You will be happy with the result. :) That's my promise, and I won't stop until you are happy, be it a full production w/vocals, a top line, mix or fully produced instrumental. By the time the track comes to you, it will be ready for release and for the radio, written, produced and mixed to the highest possible quality. With the help of my major label songwriting collaborators and singers, let's make your track a hit.
Q: What are you working on at the moment?
A: I've just finished writing 4 tracks for Sony Music UK and am now currently writing for a number of Japanese & South American acts for their new singles and album tracks. I am also delivering tracks to 2 publishers, one in Sweden and one in the UK. As well as this, I'm writing brand new music for an artist signed to Universal Music based in Dubai. They plan to release an album early next year.