Making music is something the world has a romantic perception of, which means that giving up is typically looked at as a sign of weakness. But make music long enough, and you’ll soon see that scaling back, changing course, or quitting in music is essential at times. Here are three times when taking a break from music makes sense.
There’s a stigma amongst musicians about performing on stage with a backing track for the simple fact that most artists are largely expected to be the ones responsible for generating all the sounds coming from the stage. But with things like bedroom producers gaining popularity and more solo artists looking for ways to save money on the road, the use of backing tracks is becoming a more frequent occurrence on stage. Even traditional bands are beginning to broaden the creative potency of their live sound by way of backing tracks. But stigmas aside, playing to a backing track can be complicated, frustrating, and possibly detrimental for an artist’s live performance.
For many musicians, songwriting is a reliable way to escape their current circumstances. This especially applies to those living in places they don’t like. But whether you love or loathe where you currently live, where you’re located has a big impact on the music you’re making. Here are a couple of ways how.
Creating music is something that’s hugely rewarding and cathartic for most musicians, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy to make. For some, the pressures of family and non-musical careers slowly edge out music-making priorities until there’s no resources left to devote to it. Others step back from music because of the innate and unavoidable challenges that come along with it. If you’re someone that’s taken a break from music and wants to get back into the swing of things, there are things you can do to make it a part of your life again. Here are five tips:
With the way the music industry has transformed to favor the instant gratification of playlists over the past couple of years, musicians are rethinking the ways they work in some significant ways. Chiefly, the breakdown of the album as music’s main music-listening format is forcing musicians of every stripe to approach making and releasing music differently to cater to music-addicted audiences with perpetually diminishing attention spans. Releasing more music more often is the only way to keep listeners engaged, conventional music industry wisdom dictates. But for as much as a non-stop musical race might sound doable to some musicians, it’s an approach that isn’t likely to work for most of us.
Filling a blank computer screen or piece of white paper with original song lyrics is no easy task. Some songwriters struggle with the thought that what they write might be too revealing while others fear that what they come up with is too boring, cliche, or dull. The lyrical part of songwriting proves to be the most challenging for many otherwise talented songwriters, which means it’s something we should talk about.
No matter what your unique challenges are for writing great song lyrics, one thing is sure to help: paying attention.
Creative risk-taking flies in the face of so much we think, feel, and do as serious musicians. The process of learning an instrument, making music, and sharing it with the world requires a great deal rigid predictability––regular practice, lots of discipline, showing up to shows on time, playing the same music over and over again until you get it right. Predictability and sticking to the rules is great as far as learning an instrument and maintaining a musical project goes, but if you’re interested in writing creative music, it can be much more of a hindrance than an asset.
Songwriters often struggle with not knowing what to write music about. For some readers, lyrics and written material for songs is something that comes naturally, but for others, finding out what to write music about feels like an insurmountable challenge. If you’re a songwriter that can’t find anything to write about, here are four tips to help: