Regular Jer Blog readers may recall we spoke to Jem and Dan of Law of Numbers a while back, when they were first asked to provide music for Miami Medical.
For those new to the blog, Law of Numbers is the moniker for Melbourne (Australia) songwriters and producers Jem Carp and Dan Karni. The duo wrote, produced and recorded their debut EP, Shadows, with singer Emilie Gassin (France) in 2009. What started out as a home studio musical experiment has now achieved international recognition and exposure. Their music video clip for Superstar has been played on ABC’s RAGE, Foxtel’s Music Max, with a remix reaching 4 on the KISS FM chart and remained in the top 10 most downloaded tracks on Dance Music Hub for a month. The single was also globally selected for Apple iPhone’s first DJ application, Touch DJ.
As we’re nearing the season finale which will feature one of their tracks, it seemed a great time for another chat…there’s been lots happening!
I caught up with them last week…since we last spoke, you’ve been busy in the studio, and you have recorded 11 new tracks with various artists. Can you tell us about that?
We planned to attend the ASCAP “I Create Music” Expo in LA in April and wanted to showcase some new music there so decided to put together a “Promo CD”. So on 23 December, we shut the blinds and locked ourselves away in our studio and commenced writing. I suppose we had a lot to say because in the end we walked out with 11 new tracks plus a ghost track which was actually a track we recorded with Emilie Gassin but never released. There is a real mix of music styles on the CD from acoustic ballads to synth-pop to more R&B style contemporary pop. We brought in some guest musicians including Adrian Elton and Alex Bagg. Two of the songs were written for release by other artists – we wrote “Wishing for You” for ARIA nominee Candice Alley (and fortunately she loved it) and co-wrote a song called “The Aftermath” with Kim Cooper (Australian Idol 2009) which we hope will appear on her debut album coming out very soon.
How did you guys get together in the first place?
Dan and I attended the same school and we knew of each other but our paths crossed again on another music project. Dan won “Triple J Unearthed” in Australia in 2004 so I knew he was a talented musician and producer and we clicked from the moment we met.
Can you tell us about your inspirations?
We simply love music and strive to write the best music we can. We are inspired by people, places and life and that’s what we write about. We take great inspiration from the likes of Linda Perry and Quincy Jones, both of whom we were fortunate to have met at the ASCAP expo and who have definitely inspired us to be real, daring and honest in terms of songwriting.
Can you tell us about how the creative process works for you? Who does what, and how does a piece of music come together?
There is no formula, that’s for sure. Songs tend to be a visual thing so often a word, a line or an image will appear that will trigger a bigger picture with a character that may be me or someone else. Sometimes I will bring Dan a song on acoustic guitar and he will then play bass or drums and come up with a melody. Other times, Dan will come up with a hook or a chorus and we will work from music up. In LA we wrote with a brilliant songwriter (Femke) and artist (Katie Marino) – all four in a room thrashing out ideas and then layering those ideas with music (in this case piano). That’s not something we usually do but at the end of the session we think we have walked away with a killer track! Today we are actually writing with Femke over skype as she lives in LA.
Sounds like it went really well for you in US…
The trip was fantastic. We anticipated that the ASCAP expo would be great but it exceeded our expectations. We were able to rub shoulders with the best musicians, songwriters and producers on this planet for 3 days and we felt just like kids in a candy store. John Mayer, Justin Timberlake, Quincy Jones, Bill Withers, Dr Luke, Linda Perry, Jason Mraz to name just a few attended the Expo and either performed or spoke of their experiences in the industry.
We were fortunate to sign a licensing deal with Firewire Music in LA, had some great meetings with the TV networks (CBS and NBC) in terms of further music placement and met some great US artists who we are very keen to continue collaborating with.
At the Expo, we also met LA-based Dutch songwriter/producer Femke and we hit it off immediately and commenced writing in Femke’s Los Angeles studio with talented US singer Katie Marino (toured with Jessica Simpson and Rascal Flatts as backing vocalist). We approached Katie on Twitter from Australia, sent her some of our new music and after a brief meeting she suggested writing right away…the next day we were in Femke’s studio and walked away with a song we are all very excited with. The inclusion of Femke now means that we have a satellite studio in the US and are working with one of America’s most talented young songwriters.
While you were in the US, you got to see a couple of episodes of Miami Medical. What did you think? Favourite character/s?
We really enjoyed both episodes actually and couldn’t help but think how difficult it must be to write such a clever show with so many sub plots so full credit to the very talented writers. The show is really well cast…favourite would have to be Jeremy Northam as the incomparable Dr Proctor of course!
Your song, 7 Seconds, is going to be featured in the Miami Medical season finale, An Arm and a Leg, and another track, Superstar, in one of the further five episodes to be aired June/July. Have you seen how 7 Seconds will be used? And how are you feeling about 6 million odd people hearing your track??
Yes we are thrilled to have “7 Seconds” played in the season 1 finale of the show. We are told that the song will be played towards the dramatic end of the episode in a scene where Zambrano (Lana Parrilla) is heading to the elevator when she notices Vanessa and Elroy in Ryan’s hospital room. “7 Seconds” is one of the first songs we wrote and recorded together as Law of Numbers and it is certainly crazy to think that over 6 million people will be hearing it in the US on 21 May.
If Miami Medical viewers enjoy 7 Seconds, where can they find out about and buy your music?
The song can be heard on our myspace page and will be available for download on itunes very shortly. We will be uploading some of our new music on that page in the coming weeks as well. Our debut single “Superstar” which we also licensed to CBS for Miami Medical can also be heard there together with its music video.
What’s next for Law of Numbers?
We literally just stepped off the plane from a very busy trip in LA and it seems that we are going to be pretty busy for the rest of the year. In Australia, we will be finishing the release for Candice Alley and Kim Cooper and have been approached to also work with another up and coming female pop singer so that’s pretty exciting. Further collaborations with Femke and artists such as Katie Marino and US singer Brooke Ross (whose debut EP was produced by Lady Gaga’s legendary producer RedOne) is also on the cards.
Thanks so much to Jem and Dan for the update, we wish them continued success! Don’t forget to watch Miami Medical on CBS this Friday at 10pm and listen out for 7 Seconds.
Here’s Superstar, which will feature in one of episodes of Miami Medical to air June/July.