Learning music theory is a tough sell for some musicians. Since music-making is a rebellious creative pursuit for many, the idea of letting a determined set of rules inform the songwriting process can be unattractive. But the truth is that music theory doesn’t exist to confine or limit musicians. It’s a set of musical principals that are designed to explain and clarify the music we make and hear in the world around us. Musicians lose a valuable tool in their songwriting arsenals when they don’t bother to learn about music theory. If you’re a songwriter interested in learning about theory, here are three basics every musician should master:
One of the biggest problems that music producers face when mixing their music is creating a clean, clear, and present mix. If you are looking to create a professional-sounding mix, then having a clean mix is a must.
Nothing feels better in music when your work genuinely clicks with an audience. Many of us make music in the hopes that what we create will go on to help listeners feel understood in some way, and seeing that happen can be an incredible payoff. So incredible, in fact, that a song or album’s success can inform the creative decisions we make in the future. The frustrating thing is that copying the songwriting formula that made an old idea successful and pasting it into a new songwriting context probably won’t result in more great music, and can actually work against you in a big way.
Music production tips and tricks are being released on a daily basis. By doing a quick search on the web, you can find countless articles and videos that go over the latest and best mixing tips. While these tips may be helpful to you in the mixing process, they often just help you mask the fundamental errors that you have in your mix.
Below I have gathered five of the most important and fundamental mixing tips that you aren’t using to help you improve any mix that you are working on.
When you think of a mastering engineer, you think of someone tucked away in a studio filled with hardware and expensive equipment. To many, mastering can seem like a dark art. With the advancements made with music production tools, all you need is a set of basic plugins that your DAW offers and a few guidelines on how to tackle the mastering process. In this article, I am going to go over a step-by-step process on how you can use your native DAW plugins to master your own tracks.
Audiences have long relied on music to get them through some of life’s most painful and exciting moments. People turn to music to celebrate births, weather devastating breakups, and to navigate the day-to-day emotional rollercoaster that is adolescence. With emotion playing such a huge role in the relationships’ audiences form with music, some musicians draw the conclusion that great music can be made only while being in a highly emotional state, but this creative approach can be bad for you and your work.
Humans are habit-forming creatures, which can be both good and bad for musicians. Routines are ideal for stuff like practicing an instrument or getting plenty of rehearsal time in for an upcoming performance, but they can wreak havoc on a person’s creative potential. Habits stifle creativity when they remove the potential of risk and newness from the music-making process. If you’re someone who struggles with succumbing to bland routines and predictable habits in your songwriting efforts, we’ve got three tips to help:
One of the more fascinating transformations happening in music today is how insanely easy it’s become for anyone with a laptop and microphone to create, record, and release music. A big impact of this trend we’re beginning to see is the widespread blurring of lines between songwriter and producer. Cheap DIY recording gear and easy access to digitally driven sound effects and synthesized instruments are putting production power into the hands of millions of musicians who wouldn’t have had it in the past. Here’s three ways songwriters are taking on music production roles: