Producer Profile: Jordi Up Late

How Jordi Up Late Expanded into Sync and Stays Organized With DISCO

“The organizational aspect of DISCO is huge."

Producer, Jordi Up Late
Jordi Up Late is a true polymath. Growing up in Los Angeles, the singer/songwriter/producer embraced music and the visual arts in equal measure — by the time she was a teenager, her self-expression began to extend to songwriting.

“I’ve been a visual artist my entire life,” Jordi tells DISCO. “I’ve been painting since I could hold a paintbrush, and music actually came secondary to that. But creativity was already something that was inside of me.”

Picking up the piano when she was only five, Jordi learned via a method called “Suzuki,” which emphasizes understanding sound before learning to read music on the page. “It’s kind of like learning music as a language,” Jordi says. “I didn’t know I was writing music, but I was writing music as a kid. I just experimented on the piano. I would go to my piano lessons, and my teacher would say, ‘Watch my hands, listen to the music, feel it, then quantize it.’”

Jordi ultimately gave up on lessons when she was paired with a teacher who took a more traditional sight-reading approach, but she never actually stopped playing. “I would just play my mom’s grand piano, look up songs on YouTube, learn songs I actually wanted to learn,” she says. “But I never learned how to read music. I still don’t know how to read music. I play by ear to this day.”

Burgeoning Bedroom Pop Star

When Jordi turned 14, she started tinkering with creating music on GarageBand, which later evolved to using Logic. “I didn’t put out music until I was 22, so that’s eight years my brothers and my dad nicknamed me ‘MIA’ for ‘missing in action,’ because I was just always in my room,” she laughs.

Drawing From A Wide Range Of Influences

“I remember having a huge Beatles phase,” Jordi tells us of what she grew up listening to. “I thought, ‘I know the Beatles, I know a lot of their songs, but I don’t know a ton of their discography. If they’re regarded as one of the best bands in the world, as a musician, I should probably look into that.’”

Diving into the Beatles in her mid-teens, Jordi cites George Harrison as her favorite songwriter “of all time,” adding that she became so enamored with the group that she “couldn’t listen to anything else for probably a year… I fell so deeply in love with their music. Everything else sounded bad.”

Also taking cues from her brothers, Jordi began listening to dance music, from dubstep to trap and electro pop. “Sometimes I’m a little darker, a little edgier,” she says. “I like drum and bass influences. I come from the era of dubstep. Those are my roots — the old Skrillex days.”

Jordi’s Studio Sounds

“I make all types of different music,” the producer and songwriter tells DISCO. “I work in sync now, too. I’m making hip-hop, alternative rock, folk — whatever they want. My roots are in pop and electronic music, but I’m all over the map, since it’s hard to get a hit. You make a lot of music and you don’t always get the job. It sits in the library, and then hopefully one day someone will pick it up, which has happened to me.”

On Creating For Sync Briefs

As she progressed in her music career, Jordi quickly realized that it would be beneficial to not only make music for herself and other artists, but to pursue a career in sync. “It’s definitely hard to make a living as a musician,” she concedes. “I was just looking for other ways to monetize and found a sync team through my label… I just knew that writing music for [sync] briefs was a skill that I had. Based on going to film school and writing music for people, scores and films, I already knew that I had that ability, and it was something that intrigued me. [It] could help me sustain my life as a musician.”

Discovering DISCO For Sync Opps, Organizing, & Backing Up

Reflecting on how she got started writing music for sync, Jordi says she began attending writing camps with publishers, who introduced her to DISCO. “I had already known about [DISCO], but I hadn’t [used] it in a professional capacity until I started working in sync.”

Meanwhile, as a creator, Jordi has multiple artist projects going simultaneously — one is more pop-oriented, and the other “I haven’t put out yet, but it’s going to mainly focus on electronic music.”

“And then I have the music that I’m doing for sync, and the music that I produce and write for other people,” she says. Having that many spinning plates in the air would be a lot for anyone to handle, but Jordi says DISCO has been a huge help in keeping everything organized and backed up.

“I’m a big organizational freak when it comes to music,” she says. “I have my drives, my computer, and DISCO. It definitely gives me peace of mind that if I lost my computer [and my] drives, that I just constantly upload things to DISCO… I try to keep everything up to date and backed up through DISCO.”

Sending Music Back & Forth With DISCO

Jordi wears many hats in the music realm, from writing her own material to producing work for other people. Not only does she stay organized with DISCO, but she regularly uses the service to send music over to supervisors — and friends.

“The organizational aspect of DISCO is huge,” she says. “A lot of people these days, if they’re working professionally in music, have DISCO, which is nice. I can also send my biography to people I might want to start working with, and they can go through my music [to see] what I’m doing, what I’m writing and producing for other people.”

Jordi can also get a quick bird’s-eye view of where tracks are in the composing process. “I can just see it all in one place: What are the things that are in demo phase? What are the things that are done [and] need to not be mixed? What are the things that need to be mastered?”

On The Go With DISCO

Finally, Jordi likes that the DISCO mobile app will let her take her music anywhere. “I like listening to my music in the car,” she says. “I’ll pull up my DISCO and play my mixes on my car speakers. I’m constantly wanting to take the music with me, which is why I’m always uploading the current version so I can hear the mix.”

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