This week on UE University we got a chance to chew the fat with Matt McCoy of Loop Community. Loop Community is the premiere resource for loops, multitracks and sounds for worship. It also is a phenomenal storehouse of tutorials and training for live performance for houses of worship. The community is exceptionally vibrant as well.
Hi Matt, Tell us a little about your background.
I was born and raised in San Diego, California as a pastor’s kid. My mom and dad were both musicians who played guitar and piano. I grew up surrounded by music, specifically in church. I’ve been singing since I could make noise and started playing guitar when I was in 6th grade. Since high school I’ve been on staff at churches, writing music and performing live with my band. We travel all over the country playing at churches, youth camps, conferences and other faith-based events. I moved to Chicago 6 years ago to be on staff at Willow Creek Community Church, and am currently at Harvest Bible Chapel. I love writing songs, recording and traveling with my band. By the way, my preferred in ear monitors have always been Ultimate Ears UE-7s. When I’m not doing that, I’m running a website called LoopCommunity - which is a music distribution platform for multitracks and loops.
How did Loop Community come about?
I’ve been using loops, multitracks and Ableton in live performance since 2003. It’s incredible how much technology can enhance a live bands sound and live performance. One of the main reasons people don’t utilize technology in performance is because they are intimidated by it, or worried about the learning curve that may come with it. My passion and goal is to break down the barriers for people (specifically church music directors) and make it simple to use tracks in live performance. For a long time, there wasn’t an easy way to find multitracks for songs. Back in the day you had to scrounge around internet forums, search blogs, or phone-a-friend to MAYBE find the track you’re looking for. Most people would make their own, using software like Reason or Ableton Live. A few years ago, I got tired of searching everywhere for tracks and decided to build a website where musicians could upload and sell the tracks they make. Loop Community is a community of musicians who make tracks for songs and share them with others. If you don’t know how to make tracks, you can go to Loop Community and buy them. If you know how to make tracks, you can sell your tracks on Loop Community.
How has Loop Community grown over the years?
It’s been really cool to see Loop Community expand. The special thing about the site is that it’s not just an e-commerce website, like so many other web stores. We’ve worked really hard to create a community. We offer free training webinars, an entire Loop University, 1-1 personal training, an interactive community forum called Blocks, comments feeds, profiles, etc. The people who are a part of LC (Loop Community) are proud to be a part. There is a sense of ownership. They feel like they are really making a difference for other churches and music directors… and they are. Literally around the world. Loop Community has only been around for a few years, and in that short time frame we’ve grown leaps and bounds over any competitor. I think it’s mainly because we are a community… not just a stale web-store throwing products at you. It’s the people on our site that mater and make up who LC is.
Loop Community looks to be an extremely active community, how did you get the word out?
The word has gotten out mainly by word of mouth. Our contributors and community members are our biggest advocates and help us spread the word.
Your song catalog is very impressive. Can you explain the different products you carry?
Our main product is what we call CommunityTracks. These are tracks that anyone can upload. If you created a backing track for a song, you can upload it to the site and sell it. We also can distribute the original session file from Reason, Logic, or Ableton. All of the songs on our website are properly licensed from the music publishers. We take care of this on behalf of our users. Another product we carry is called MasterTracks. These are the original tracks from a record label or artist recording. For example, we carry the original studio tracks for all of Phil Wickham’s studio recordings. We work closely with artists and labels in distributing and promoting their projects. We also have a product called SoundPark. This is a section of our site where users can upload and share software instrument patches, presets, samples and sounds for their favorite music software.
You also have a foot controller and app - tell us about those.
Earlier this year we launched a USB MIDI Foot Controller called Looptimus. Looptimus is the easiest foot controller for running tracks in a live performance. It’s plug and play - no software or programming needed. You can use it with any music software, like Ableton Live or MainStage, to control your multitracks and loops. Last year, we also launched a free iOS app called “Prime”. If you’re just getting started in using tracks in your live performance, Prime is a great way to begin. It’s very user-friendly and easy to set up. You can create a setlist and playback all of your tracks. You can also use it as a metronome for your band.
It looks like one can upload their music productions as well as receive training. Can you tell us a little more about your vision for future enhancements / programs?
We offer a variety of training. You can check out LoopUniversity and watch a ton of free videos on how to get started in using multitracks in your live performance. We also have a full team of certified trainers that can give you 1-1 training via Skype screen share. On our YouTube channel (loopcommunity2), we offer free live webinars every week about various topics. If you’d like to contribute your tracks to Loop Community, we make it easy. Just click the “Upload” button at the top of our website and submit your tracks. We want everyone to be involved, no matter what musical background or genre you belong.
Check out Prime iPad / iPhone App for MultiTracks at http://loopcommunity.com/prime
Check out the Looptimus foot controller at http://looptimus.com
Follow Matt on twitter: @mattmccoy or @loopcommunity
Listen to Matt’s music at http://mattmccoymusic.com