Music Production. Help me Please.

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
zXShadow
Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Jan 28, 2016 8:39 pm

Music Production. Help me Please.

Post by zXShadow » Thu Jan 28, 2016 8:48 pm

So about 2 years ago I bought a launchpad and ableton live. In 2 years I haven't made a song, I haven't made a sample, I have gone absolutely nowhere. I have watched many,many,many.... Online tutorials and listened to every genre of electronic music. I even purchased a set of tutorial videos in hopes of that helping. I thought it might be because I lacked a synthesizer so i bought a Roland JDXI and Massive. Even with the synths i go nowhere. I sit at my computer for how ours working and working, trying to create even just sound that doesn't sound cheesy. I honestly don't know what to do. I've spent SO much money on equipment and software and tutorials and yet i still have gone nowhere. I dont know how to mix sounds, I dont know how to make a good sample, I dont know how to properly make any sections or genres of electronic music even with countless tutorials. I understand music theory (I play flute and have played in a band), It just doesnt make any sense to me. I look at massive and all its little knobs and features and I can't understand it at all. All of the different sounds....pitch....all of it.... WHAT DO I DO? I have almost given up my hopes of being a successful electronic music producer because I cant make any progress no matter what i have tried. I really need suggestions and explanations to maybe help me in a way. I got into electronic music and the launchpad from Sonevable and Monstercat on youtube. I'm interested in creating Glitch hop and Electronic genre music. I am most interested in utilizing the user 1 mode on the launchpad s. Here is the equipment i use:

Roland JDXI Digital/Analog Synth (Not a plug in),
Massive Plug-in Syth,
Launchpad S,
Asus G751 laptop w/ 16 gigs of ram,
Ableton live 9 Pro edition,
Shure in-ear studio earbuds.

Thank you, Please help me out... anyone.

theswiftone
Posts: 84
Joined: Tue Jan 05, 2010 5:35 pm

Re: Music Production. Help me Please.

Post by theswiftone » Thu Jan 28, 2016 9:17 pm

Ahhh the feeling of frustration and the longing to be good at something instantly...... We've all been there. Sometimes having a musical background, then coming into music production is actually harder than starting off with no musical theory knowledge at all. It took me six years before I made anything I was actually happy with and now I listen to that knowing I could do better. I guess what I'm saying is that it takes a long time to become proficient. You are doing all the write things. Read as much as you can, watch tutorials, mess around as much as you can with the software. Stop investing in gear! Learn what you have already purchased. Buying something new is not going to help you suddenly become a pro. I wouldn't normally endorse sites, but for you I believe Sonic Academy tutorials would be good for you to follow and copy. Anyway good luck, and just continue on your journey of learning.

yur2die4
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Re: Music Production. Help me Please.

Post by yur2die4 » Thu Jan 28, 2016 9:32 pm

Take a break from the pressure of expectation.

Be content with your cheesy work, and make more cheesy work. Over time, things will get closer to what you prefer.

You said you've spent hours watching tutorials and still don't understand massive. This is a sign that you're overwhelmed by information that you haven't necessarily applied.
The easiest way to be able to learn from those tutorials is to be familiar with the devices Before you watch them. The familiarity is best learned by literally fucking around with it and pushing it to its limitations in the most absurd and disgusting ways possible.

Also, in the realm of electronic music especially, 'musicality' can only provide so much. A lot of it has to do with timbral fuckery over a span of time. Don't be afraid to start really simple and obvious. Some people ride a bike after falling a few times. Some people won't ever get there without first having dorky training wheels for a few months. But at least they eventually get there.

Practice finishing songs. No matter how bad they are. And if you're just beginning, make it quick. Your ideas as you start out probably won't be as badass as further down the line. Even if they were, you haven't developed the 'experience' to know how to exploit it. So make terribly mixed, terribly arranged tracks now, churn them out and make ALL the mistakes now.

Later... you can make more music. You can listen to your old music with a certain kind of fondness. And if you come across something you know you could redo better, you can always do that :)

ash1
Posts: 195
Joined: Mon Oct 09, 2006 9:11 am

Re: Music Production. Help me Please.

Post by ash1 » Thu Jan 28, 2016 9:57 pm

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DStOTw4rPT0

hope this link helps a little then go to techprotorial

good luck :)

youtube is your friend

beats me
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Joined: Fri Mar 30, 2007 6:39 pm

Re: Music Production. Help me Please.

Post by beats me » Thu Jan 28, 2016 10:57 pm

I’m going to go against the grain here and say I think what you might need is some one on one tutelage in person with somebody who has more experience. Your experience is the perfect example of how some people can’t learn everything (or even anything) simply by watching videos or reading about it. Maybe see if there are trainers or classes available in your area. It can help to have somebody give you real time feedback when you are hitting those brick walls. It also sounds like you are overwhelmed and could use some focus and achievable goals instead of trying to go straight from no knowledge to electronica hit. A class or trainer can help you with that too.

sana48
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Joined: Sun Mar 01, 2015 12:16 am

Re: Music Production. Help me Please.

Post by sana48 » Thu Jan 28, 2016 11:50 pm

Success is relative...

Pressure and expectations are counter-productive.

Comparing yourself to others is a recipe for discontent.

You mentioned flute, do you enjoy it? Record some flute then add some bass, pads, or other instruments.

Production for me is a passion, I do not care about success or recognition, the process of producing is a meditation for me. I often spend hours working on a track then delete it when I'm done. This way I learn to appreciate the process without attachment to the product, but I am Bhudda "reincarnated" and this is easy for me.

Sounds like you just want to sound like everyone else, if this is the case then maybe revaluate your approach.

musikmachine
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Re: Music Production. Help me Please.

Post by musikmachine » Fri Jan 29, 2016 12:24 am

First don't despair, i think a lot of producers have been there at the beginning. I'll reply tomorrow but in the meantime watch this: https://vimeo.com/85040589

+1 to what yur2die4 says, kinda covers what i was gonna say! Also check out this guys channel for a different approach. https://www.youtube.com/user/startnowfinishfast

And a couple of resourcesmay be of use: http://mikemonday.com/the-cure/

Division Monarchy
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Re: Music Production. Help me Please.

Post by Division Monarchy » Fri Jan 29, 2016 4:43 am

It takes years. 2 is not enough. Stop focusing on making a sample and making presets. Start working more on the fundamentals of a song, get a bass or guitar and learn to write a song on that first. It's all about fundamentals. From there, record your song as a rough take to a metronome, use it as a canvas and start painting in the colours with different sounds. Don't worry about the mix yet. Don't be afraid to experiment. If you like, try the exercise of doing a cover song, just to get into the production process and to improve songwriting skills. No amount of gear you have or amount of money you spend will take the place of experience. Online tutorials help, but learning to apply them only comes from experience.

zXShadow
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Joined: Thu Jan 28, 2016 8:39 pm

Re: Music Production. Help me Please.

Post by zXShadow » Fri Jan 29, 2016 5:45 am

Thanks so much for all the awesome replies guys. I will take everything said and try it all and see where I go. Again thanks so much.

ZaBong69
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Re: Music Production. Help me Please.

Post by ZaBong69 » Fri Jan 29, 2016 2:05 pm

Dear zXShadow,

I have started out recently as well (only 1 year so far), but there were some times when I got stuck. Do not despair, there is usually only one serious reason for this: way too many options. Which synth to use next, which FX to try out, which tutorials to read, what kind of music to write... all this becomes overwhelming when you have to choose between hundreds of alternatives.

There is a trick which helped me a lot: set yourself restrictions. Even one restriction can be enough to get things going. Some examples:

o write different 8 bar house grooves using only BD, snare, hihats and one bass synth
o try to make a groove using only one synth (e.g., Operator, synthesizing everything including the drums)
o only allow yourself 10 Minutes of time for programming a drum loop, 10 minutes for the bass, 10 for a lead
o restrict yourself to one task per day, such as selecting samples for a drum rack or programming an FM bass
o only one tutorial per week, and only when you directly use what it contains
o make a complete song using only simpler and 10 samples
o no VSTs or external synths for one month - only Ableton synths and FX

I still use only 8 fixed tracks in my Ableton live setup (2 drum racks, 2 bass lines, 1 chord synth, 3*melody/misc) plus 3 FX send/returns to simplify work with Push; everything is more efficient when there are less options to think about.

Hope this helps a bit,

K

zXShadow
Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Jan 28, 2016 8:39 pm

Re: Music Production. Help me Please.

Post by zXShadow » Fri Jan 29, 2016 3:45 pm

Does anybody know any good classes that teach electronic music? Im not talking about a youtube tutorial, I mean meeting with, or talking to someone real time for a lesson. Skype works too.

Fugazi81
Posts: 52
Joined: Sat Dec 03, 2011 6:38 pm

Re: Music Production. Help me Please.

Post by Fugazi81 » Fri Jan 29, 2016 4:08 pm

Hi.

don´t panic and never put yourself under pressure.
One thing you should never forget -> gear does not make music for you. (exection -> tyros / kronos :P )

Synthesis is a science and from my experience, you won´t get satisfying results if your only approach is try and error. Knowledge is the key.
Don´t underestimate happy accidents, but don´t count on them neither.
zXShadow wrote:Does anybody know any good classes that teach electronic music? Im not talking about a youtube tutorial, I mean meeting with, or talking to someone real time for a lesson. Skype works too.
Syntorial
http://www.syntorial.com/try-for-free/

i never used it myself but i only hear praises from my friends who used it to learn their stuff.


"Computer Sound Synthesis for the Electronic Musician (Music Technology)"
by Eduardo Miranda -> http://www.amazon.com/Computer-Synthesi ... 024051517X
is a pretty solid foundation.

"Making Music Creative Strategies for Electronic Music Producers"
by Dennis DeSantis -> https://makingmusic.ableton.com/

That should help you at least to get an overview , but remember producing music is a never-ending journey 8)

Have fun and all the best.

Mauro05
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Dec 12, 2015 11:01 pm

Re: Music Production. Help me Please.

Post by Mauro05 » Sun Jan 31, 2016 8:08 pm

Hello,
just two advices:
1. Stop looking at tutorials and make music...just do it
2. read this, also the free sample is enough: http://www.amazon.com/Music-Habits-Elec ... sic+habits

let us know!
Mauro

jestermgee
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Re: Music Production. Help me Please.

Post by jestermgee » Mon Feb 01, 2016 3:56 am

There are exceptions to the rule but to put it bluntly:

You will not be the next big producer. You will not progress further than the few people you know. You will never master the art, the software, the instruments or the process no matter how many tutorials you watch or time you spend trying to learn. If you ever manage to create anything it will probably never be heard by anyone outside your own circle of friends and family.

If you can simply accept all of that and still feel the need to keep at it then you probably have what it takes to actually enjoy creating.

Personally I believe my skills are way far behind many of the people I look up to and I accept I will probably never be at that level... ever. Still for 20 years now I have plugged away for the simple fact I love to create things. I have the same issues as you facing creativity, we all do, but it's the moments when you happen to be mucking around or have a glint of an idea back there somewhere and actually manage to get that down and make something of it. If it isn't happening, do something else for a while (week/month/year). I just got back into actual DJing simply mixing and beat matching, not producing, just as something different. I have also started on some stop-motion video work with my daughter as something different too so I can leave my studio for a week or 2 and come back fresh.

Just treat it as a hobby just like collecting coins, painting or writing a book. It keeps your mind ticking over, builds up your skill each time and it is something that never ends. What you believe to be cheezy may be interesting to someone else and they may actually wish they could even get to that level. Don't stress the stuff you don't understand, just play. Load up a preset and tweak a knob. Listen to what happens. Look at how the control is routed. Things will click eventually.

I still have the first electronic piece I ever produced in WAV format I keep as a reminder. Produced in 1995 when I was 14 years old with zero knowledge and using just 6 samples (fasttracker). It was the tune of mary had a little lamb and it sounds absolutely shocking just as do almost all my tracks from the first 5 years of my production life. But I can look back and see my progression over the years and also just how much I have learned.

Less is more as the saying goes. Honestly, don't bother with plugins and hardware as it's all more to learn. I used the same handful of samples for a year since the internet was barely a thing back then. In a way that helped me to focus less on the technicals and more on how the sound and the patterns of music actually worked. Something that does get lost these days.

sana48
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Re: Music Production. Help me Please.

Post by sana48 » Mon Feb 01, 2016 4:14 am

jestermgee wrote: You will not be the next big producer. You will not progress further than the few people you know. You will never master the art, the software, the instruments or the process no matter how many tutorials you watch or time you spend trying to learn. If you ever manage to create anything it will probably never be heard by anyone outside your own circle of friends and family.
Listen to Jestermgee.... he is an agent of truth...

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