James Schneider

A New Challenger Approaches!

Hey there! I'm James, but my musician name is Bits & Pieces. I'm a video game music lover who happens to make video game music. I don't do covers, but take heavy influence from some of the SNES-era stuff I grew up with. I've got a goal of getting some of my stuff into actual video games, and have released two albums so far, Loch SNES Monster and Infinite Continues. I love what I do, and even though this is a hobby, I always keep the possibility open that this could turn into something more!




What is music to you? What does it give you?

As cliche as it might sound, music is one of those things that I like to think of as being the language of the soul. There's something about hearing a certain song or musical piece that sends chills down the spine, or makes me remember something from so long ago. It also gives me a really big sense of accomplishment when I create something new, even if it isn't my best work. Just the fact that I had this idea in my head and managed to put it into an audible format is quite exciting and inspiring!

What is your music dream?

Honestly, I'd love to get my music into video games. While I know the 16-bit era isn't as prominent as it once was, nothing would make me happier than to hear some of my work in something that hundreds, even thousands of people will play!

If you could change the world - what would you start with?

I'd start with an initiative to make even the poorest and least fortunate of countries be sustainable in terms of food, medical treatment, and education.

Which is the most memorable song from your childhood?

Pretty much, anything by The Eagles when Don Henley was part of the band, and a whole lot of other bands that were prominent in the 70s and 80s. My parents always listened to them on the weekends, or on long car rides. I didn't really come to appreciate the music until I went to college and met some people who had an extremely broad taste in music (I was a heavy/alt rock fiend in my adolescence).

Who are your favorite musical artists or bands?

Fleet Foxes is by far, my all-time favorite band. I cannot explain it, but their folk style and their vocals/harmonics are top notch, and their lyrics are astounding. I've got a giant list of other bands as well, but ti'd take too long to list them all here! ?

What inspires you to make music?

My love for video games, as well as my need to be creative. Writing used to be my only creative outlet, but when I got back into making music almost three years ago, it sparked something in me that I didn't know was possible. I love bringing back some of that nostalgia to my fellow gamers who grew up in the eighties and nineties era of gaming!

What is the message you want to send with your music?

I just want my listeners to get both a feeling of nostalgia and a need to rock out and say, "This is AWESOME! What game is this from?!"

How do you feel when you perform in front of an audience?

I actually haven't yet performed in front of an audience yet! I use DAWs to make my music and have never tried a live stream or a blank slate in front of others. I'm sure I'd be pretty anxious, though!

How do you see the musicians’ reality nowadays? What could be improved?

I find it to be quite difficult, mostly because there's always that possibility that your music will sound too much like everyone else's, running the risk of it getting lost in the shuffle. I've also noticed that those who are not musicians sometimes offer either a, "Hey, this is awesome!" or "Oh, I don't like this song!", or will immediately compare it to something else. There's sometimes a huge lack of music feedback that most musicians desperately need in order to improve their skills. I'd love to see a sort of feedback program where fellow musicians don't just offer some advice to improve a track, but they could somehow show it (video, screenshot, etc.). I am part of a live stream that does this, and it helps immensely!

What do you think of Drooble?

Having been here just over a week (as of 03/31/19), I'm diggin' it! It's nice to not be spammed by robots or invites to go "Premium". And the community here is really supportive and awesome!

What frustrates you most as a musician?

People who tell me I'm not very good or that I can't really be a musician because I either "don't have any music theory knowledge" or because "I just use a computer to put sounds together." Just because I can't necessarily play an instrument or always read sheet music, doesn't mean I'm not a musician.

Do you support your local scene as a fan? How?

Of course! Every Thursday evening, there's a local Open Mic Night that I make a best effort to attend. I also have some friends who are musicians and are trying to break into the scene, so I try to help them out as well by either attending shows or sharing their events.

What qualities should a musician nowadays have in order to get their music heard by a larger audience?

I think in this day and age, it goes much further than throwing music tracks up on YouTube, or Facebook, or wherever else, and just going, "Hey, listen to my stuff and buy my album!" It again makes you blend into the crowd. I think fans and people who are even just discovering musicians like to feel a little more connected with them, and this can be achieved by making short videos. What are your struggles? What are your upcoming projects? Maybe share a demo you've started, so when you release the finished product, fans can see how far you've come. Also, being able to take constructive feedback. This doesn't mean you should let someone tell you, "Your music sucks!" without elaborating on they "Why". But, it does mean if a fellow musician offers some advice, take some notes. Even if you don't necessarily agree with what they have to say, keeping an open mind could open the door for new sources of inspiration.

Share some awesome artists that we’ve never heard of.

Falling From One, Midnite Mike and the Bent Blinds, The Fever 333, to name a few!