There are so many elements that can ameliorate your productivity ( I’ve been known to be pretty productive). One of those is speed. Another is knowing music theory or at least reaching an intermediate level of knowledge.
This instructional will be applicable for many different styles of music but most
applicable for electronic music as that is my domain.
These are some tips to help make the production process faster and get you
into the habit of writing more and being more efficient. These are some tips
that I would give for the developing a beginner also.
Setup a list of the kind of tracks you want to create
Make a to do list of the kind of tracks/themes you want to do. Write out on a notepad, “I will create 5 tracks today, one will be ambient, dubstep, industrial etc.” Or something like this ”
I will create an emotionally sad charged song, a track with a theme of bravery, and an upbeat track” These are some examples of how I lists and get shit done.
I’m of the school of thought that YOU CAN FORCE CREATIVITY.
Do try to have deadlines and time constraints for several tracks. Say you must do
5-10 tracks by the end of the week. That is a good start for a beginner to
Even if it is just the shortest track as a beginner, what you
want to have are solid IDEAS. Ideas can later evolve into something great. All
you need is an IDEA. It can be step by step but you have to make an earnest effort to
starting the step.
Do know music theory
Get reading some basic/intermediate music theory. Get fascinated and
obsessed with chords and their functions, usage and their sequences. Check
out youtube videos online, your resources are abundant on the web (I wish I
had the same resources starting out).
Mix last. If the music is good it is good
At a beginner and intermediate level I would say to mix everything last (I used to
usually mix and go) but when you are starting out make sure the bulk of your
music production is actually music rather than production.
Too many times, as a beginner you will be messing around to get the perfect snare, or the ideal sound in your head, and forget about actually writing music down. So mixing
will be last as should anything highly technical. Just make sure you have a
Musicality first, ignore fx and fills
As per the last point, don’t fret about fx and even drum fill. just a basic beat,
chords, melody in a sequence should be great start in to getting to where you
need to be.
As you progress you can and will do this faster, simply dropping
everything it needs to go like raided dead flies.
Because electronic music allows to work in so many different ways, working
non-linear is a godsend.
You can come with chords/bass/melody individually separtely, together, and sequence each individual part, say intro, main beat,
drop, what have you.
You don’t have to do first part first, or the last part last. You can organize it all later.
Copy, Paste and Other Tools
There are so many tools in music writing and editing on the computer, use
them to your advantage.
Different Digital Audio Workstations may have
different tools and shortcuts you will want to learn all those shortcuts by heart,
by mind and on your tongue.
Try to master doing a shortcut on one hand andsequencing with the mouse, and queing your keyboard all at once ha! Notexactly like that but do use shorcut tools for copy+paste and other ones foundon your DAW’s
This one may seem harsh. If you have a gf/bf/friend and you think they are stopping you from achieving your musical goals put them on the backburner for a little bit.
You can’t get any good if you dont practice at least an hour or more a day. You may want to disable your social medias and anything in and around that. Try to move away your distractions, this may help out.
Work in the dark?
It’s been known to aid in creativity. So try working in the dark if you have LEDS that may be helpful. Dim Lighting Sparks Creativity: http://www.psmag.com/blogs/news-blog/dim-lighting-sparks-creativity-60437
Do Use Brain Enhancements
Coffee, Tea, Vitamins, Omega3 supplements, Nootropics anything that can boost the mind.
I personally like to have really nutrient dense foods and 90- 100% Dark Chocolate as my drug of choice.
I feel more creative with it and it gets blood and oxygen pumping to the brain more readily.
I also chew gum when I’m on a musical roll. It helps you concentrate, apparently: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130308093933.htm
That adds more blood to the brain, making everything flow. Which is IDEAL in finding the musical sweet spot.