Following the release of his artist sample pack for our Original series, we caught up with Italian producer, DJ and sound designer Christopher Ledger to discuss the process of creating the pack, his musical influences and favourite studio gear.


'Starting off, could you tell us how you got into production and how you have developed your sound over the years?'


I started producing approximately at the age of 13 or 14, when I eagerly explored the realm of digital audio workstations (DAWs) - Fruity Loops was the first software I’ve ever used. At the time, my exposure to music was primarily limited to hip hop till my first encounter a couple of years later with Rome's nightlife, which opened my senses to the captivating allure of House and Techno. In tandem with this newfound passion, I transitioned to Cubase Sx 3.


Around the age of 18, I started working as an assistant at a renowned mastering studio in Rome, led by the person who would become a mentor in the years to follow, playing a fundamental role in shaping my journey. This marked a pivotal phase where I engaged with music production on a larger scale, delving into diverse genres and embracing the intricate world of mixing and mastering.


These formative years offered profound opportunities for learning and growth. Yet, it took time for my artistic voice to fully crystallize. It was during my stay in Berlin, around the age of 20 in 2011, where I truly began to comprehend the essence of my own musical identity. I found inspiration in the sounds championed by the Arpiar crew and the immersive experiences at renowned venues such as CdV or Panorama Bar. With this newfound clarity, I embarked on a creative trajectory that would lead me to produce tracks like 'Lost with K,' 'Metonimia,' and 'Try Edit,' to name a few. By then, you could already see that my sound was based on the fusion of minimalistic, yet engaging, grooves accompanied by deep musical elements.


To this present day, I persist in my pursuit to discover the hallmark of my distinctive sonic identity - the exploration of my own sound has been a challenging and interesting adventure, an ongoing quest to push boundaries and create sonic experiences - and I remain steadfast in my commitment to evolve and refine my artistic expression, allowing my music to traverse uncharted territories while staying true to my core vision.



*Image Credit 043.soundlab.


‘Can you tell us a bit about your workflow and the process of creating your artist sample pack?’


In my creative workflow, I integrate both digital and analog equipment, a harmonious mix that underpins the genesis of my artist sample pack. The privilege of accessing an array of analog instruments and gear at the 043 Soundlab in Rome, owned by Gabriele Manzi, a dear friend, has afforded me the invaluable opportunity to immerse myself in their sonic capabilities.This fortunate access not only facilitated my utilization of various synthesizers but, more crucially, enabled me to develop an intimate understanding of their inner workings and seamlessly incorporate them into my creative process. 


With a propensity for exploration and endless curiosity, I delve into each plugin and hardware component with an open mind, unrestricted by preconceived notions of specific outcomes. This approach allows me to both master the tools at hand and surprise myself by crafting unique sonic landscapes that might not have materialized within the confines of a predetermined context or the conventional use of specific tools for predefined purposes. This methodology pervades my entire approach to music production, whether it involves the creation of a sample library or the composition of a track or a full EP. An integral aspect of my creative journey is the presence of a healthy dose of enjoyment, blended with a commitment to continuous learning and discovery. I love to experiment and for example, generate a pad out of a simple percussive element or create a kick drum starting from a pad or texture - I can assure you that the results are quite unique. Sometimes they are pretty good, sometimes not as much as I wish, but what I want to achieve is a more and more unique sound aesthetic and I think this process is helping me day by day.


‘Breakbeat, Deep Techno and Minimal seem to play a huge influence on your current sound with deep atmospheric pads, dubby chords, trippy synths and broken beat drum grooves. How did you try to portray these sounds in your artist sample pack?’


I’ve tried to be as loyal as possible to my current sound aesthetic and It brings me great joy to finally present this meticulously crafted artist sample pack. Recently I’ve been diving more and more into the broken beat realms, with deep atmospheres and a good dose of trippy/psy synths or with the accompaniment of some piano bits here and there, and I’m very happy with the result and how I managed to include all of this into a single library. I hope that those who explore this collection will find inspiration, unlocking new realms of creativity, and discovering their own sonic expression within its depths.


‘Apart from your artist pack for our Original Series, you have also produced a number of packs for our in-house labels Hyper, Abstract and Weismann. From Electro, Breaks and Minimal to Experimental, Atmospheric Drum  & Bass and Old School Tech-House, your creativity knows no limits. How do you approach the process of creating packs for different genres?’


When it comes to delving into the intricacies of a particular genre, I firmly believe that alongside possessing a robust skill set, a profound understanding of that genre and an extensive knowledge of some crucial artist’s discography, pioneers of said genre, is paramount. 


Throughout my artistic journey, I have consistently immersed myself in a diverse array of electronic music, a practice that I continue diligently on a daily basis. I firmly believe that exposing oneself to a vast spectrum of genres, characterized by exceptional production quality and boundless creativity, has the potential to ignite fresh ideas within a producer and serve as a wellspring of inspiration. However, knowledge alone, while valuable, is incomplete without the unwavering curiosity to explore further and the audacity to apply that knowledge in new ways, and that’s what pushes me every day to dive into unexplored 


Christopher Ledger Studio Image 2

*Image Credit 043.soundlab.


‘What is your current studio set-up? Are there any bits of gear or stand-out plugins you use time after time to get a certain sound?’


The current studio set-up at 043 Soundlab where I jam most of the time is a balanced combination of modern and vintage synthesizers, from the most recent Elektrons to the classics such as the Roland JV-1080, 5080, or the Korg Polysix, M1, and many more.The instruments named above have become my go-to choices and are frequently used to achieve the desired sounds in my productions. In the digital realm, I find great creative inspiration in various Max for Live devices. One plugin that holds a special place in my heart is Tantra 2, which I often return to, alongside plugins from Soundtoys and Output, more than others. When it comes to audio treatment, I consistently rely on brands such as Brainworx, Dangerous Music, Mäag Audio, AMEK, Digital Slate among others. Their tools have become my favorites for shaping and refining the audio in my productions. Everything runs in a MacBook Pro 15’’ mid-2015 that allows me to travel and produce anywhere, and a Windows 10 that I mostly use for mixing and mastering.


What can we expect from you in the future?


I am excited to continue collaborating with Sample Market in the future, not only for Sample Libraries but also for Video Tutorials - some of them have been already published on the Youtube channel - and other formats that I believe will provide great value and interest to the customers.


As for my artistic career as a musician, I have a good amount of music that I am currently working on and will be released in the coming months. I have a couple of EPs already lined up for release on my new record label. These releases consists of original club music with remixes by artists that I have a lot of respect for. In addition to the club-oriented music, I am excited to venture into diverse musical territories with these releases, exploring genres such as IDM and Ambient among others. Additionally, I have two other EPs set to be released on labels owned by my friends and two tracks as CLJL composed with my dear friend Jamie Leather that will see the light soon. 

One track that holds special significance to me will be featured on the 4x12’’ compilation celebrating the 10-year anniversary of Pressure Traxx label. This compilation includes esteemed artists such as Ricardo Villalobos, Tobias, Edward, Dan Andrei, Arno, Frost, Polyfan, and many more. To add to these exciting projects, I am currently working on an ambient album that incorporates synths and piano. This is something I have always wanted to do, and I feel that the time is approaching when I can finally share it with the world.

Furthermore, I am enthusiastic about continuing my studies, learning, and experimenting with music. I am confident that this ongoing growth and exploration will be reflected in my productions and DJ sets