This music producer masterclass lets you in on all the tips and tricks there are to know about creating music. It’s necessary that you take the time to research and learn as much as you can to hone your craft, whether you’re an amateur or an expert.
In today’s time, anyone can literally open their desktop, download an audio editing software, and produce music. Something to remember is that good music is relative to each listener. The most important part of music production is that you make music that expresses your creativity and talent.
Essentially, a music producer takes care of all the nitty-gritty details of a song unless directly specified by his/her contractor. These details include instruments, lyrics, rhythm, and sometimes vocals. There is no limit to a music producer’s job; creativity is his best friend.
You’re probably full of inspiration, and your fingers are itching to translate everything in your head into actual music and melody. Some people find it hard to start producing music. Before we get to composing, let’s make sure that you have all the things you need for the actual music production.
In every profession, there are tools that are used. In this case, a music producer needs a couple of things in his workspace.
1. Desk – Or more specifically, a dedicated workspace where you will not be bothered. It’s also good to have a bit of space on your desk to write on or place a touchpad if necessary.
2. Computer – The most essential tool is your computer. You don’t need to buy the most expensive one, but make sure you have a decent processor and relatively big memory.
3. Digital Audio Workstation Software (DAW) – This is the second most essential tool for a music producer. It’s used for recording, editing, and mixing audio. For your home studio, you need to invest in a good DAW. There are many for you to choose from online that includes a one-month trial period. If you like the software, then you can purchase it for full access.
4. Audio Interface – This has the sole purpose of providing connections from your instruments to your computer. There are many audio interfaces in the market that you can choose from, ranging from less than $100 to as high as $400. It’s advised that you get one that isn’t too expensive but still does the job.
5. Microphone – If you plan to record your lyrics, then investing in a microphone is a good idea. You’ll be hitting two birds with one stone if you also plan on recording live instruments.
6. Virtual Instruments – Your DAW will most likely have some pre-installed virtual instruments in its kit. Don’t hesitate to play around with these. Who knows? You might actually like a few of them and use them in your mixes. It’s handy to familiarize yourself with virtual instruments so that your music has more variety.
7. Plugins – These are added effects that you can download off the internet. Your DAW will probably have its own set of plugins, so make sure to explore those when you have the chance. There are many free plugins that are available to download off the internet. CamelCrusher, Saturation Knob, and Tritik are the three essentials that you should have on your desktop. This is because they’re the most lucrative ones that you can use in any of your mixes.
8. Templates – These are your customized plugins that you can record, use, and reuse in your mixes. They save you a lot of time in the arranging process.
Now that we have discussed all the necessary tools that you need, we can move on to the actual music production. There are six stages of music production:
1. Songwriting – The first step in the music-making process is composing the song. This is your chance to showcase your creativity. Songwriting doesn’t only focus on lyrics, though. It also includes musicality, harmony, and how the lyrics and melody work together.
While there are many people who are gifted with songwriting, it still takes a lot of practice. Make sure that you list down all the ideas that run through your head and find a way to incorporate them within the song. Bear in mind that while a song also has a pattern (first verse, chorus, second verse, chorus, bridge, chorus), you don’t necessarily have to conform to that. After all, you know what will sound best for your song.
2. Arranging – This is what makes your song interesting and catchy. Some music producers overlook this step and they tend to end up with songs that sound the same throughout the whole 3-4 minutes. Arranging gives your song diversity and shakes things up a bit. You can add vocal harmonies in the second chorus, or perhaps more synths in the bridge. This is where your musicality as a music producer will come in.
3. Tracking – This is the time when you record the various instruments needed for your song. There is a difference between composing your song and recording it(y). You want to nail every chord and beat to create the perfect rhythm and sound.
4. Editing – Take advantage of the DAW you paid for! Keep in mind, though, that you should not edit while you are composing, arranging, or tracking. When you edit your song, it should already be the complete song, but you have to treat editing as “working out the kinks.” You shouldn’t edit every single part of your song either. If it sounds good, then leave it as is. You’re saving more time that way and avoiding undoable errors.
5. Mixing – It is considered as one of the most enjoyable parts of music production. This is your opportunity to turn your song into a masterpiece. This means that you’ll finally get to hear all the compiled elements together.
6. Mastering – This is the process of making all the songs in your album sound coherent and the same. However, if your intention is only to produce singles, then you don’t have to get a mastering software.
Since you are now familiar with the gear and processes, here are the last two tips you should keep in mind on producing music:
Something to avoid in music production is “overdoing.” It means that there are so many elements in your song sounds very disorganized and confusing. What you want to do is keep it simple and subtle. Let your lyrics and harmony shine.
There are thousands upon thousands of books, articles, guides, websites, and videos at your fingertips! Don’t forget to stop looking up new techniques that you can learn so you can gain new knowledge and apply that into your mixes.
That being said, here’s the perfect Music Production Course that you can take. It includes so many things like the best software to use, several useful techniques for you to master, how to develop your musical ideas, and more! Ultimately, it’s still your determination and hard work that will drive and inspire you to make music.
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