a couple of random tips: how to make music you'll enjoy more

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Johnisfaster
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a couple of random tips: how to make music you'll enjoy more

Post by Johnisfaster » Thu Jul 17, 2008 10:04 pm

I'd like to start a collaberative list of tips on how people can help themselves write songs that they feel more. I'm always making a mental list of things to keep in mind and I figured I'd share and also would like to hear others.

this isn't a list of how to make awesome tracks, it's intended to help you enjoy what you make more.

1) stop trying so damn hard and accept the fact that whatever you make (good or bad) is an extension of you and therefor a good thing.

2) if you love a certain artist to death, maybe look up what kind of gear/vst's they use. not that gear fixes everything, but sometimes you fall in love with a particular sound that you just aren't getting with your current stuff. basically the idea here is "it worked for my favorite artist, it should work for me" and the familiarity of the sounds will most likely inspire you

3) this one proves to be true in myself, the harder you try to make it good the less good it's gonna be. just let it be what it is.

thats all I got for now. I'd love others to contribute.
It was as if someone shook up a 6 foot can of blood soda and suddenly popped the top.

Johnisfaster
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Post by Johnisfaster » Thu Jul 17, 2008 10:07 pm

oh yeah

4) sometimes going back to basics is the perfect thing to do, vintage drum machines have been useful for tens of thousands of artists, so why not you? go download vintage drum samples and use them as a kit (ie don't mix 707 and 909 sounds for now) just pretend you're using a 707 and use a sample set from it. it's limiting, and good. and it frees you up to think about the important stuff in the track (all the stuff that isn't drums)
It was as if someone shook up a 6 foot can of blood soda and suddenly popped the top.

nebulae
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Post by nebulae » Thu Jul 17, 2008 10:10 pm

Great thread idea! Let me add:

1. Take the pressure off. Not every piece will be a masterpiece.
2. Create ideas and save them. Not every idea will be a song today. Then again, great ideas today may become great songs next year.
3. Get less anal about the exactness of settings, and let your ears drive the music. I see too many people get caught up on making sure, for example, that the filter is cutting exactly at 5khz...get over it. Set it to where it sounds good and move on. Come back when it needs re-adjusting.
4. We now have an infinite number of options, which is daunting. Fortunately, we also have a lot of ways to correct or replace sounds/patches/settings that need to be fixed. Instead of being intimidated by a daunting sea of infinite possibilities, JUST START. Put sounds down and cook ideas. You can always replace parts as needed.
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Post by Moody » Thu Jul 17, 2008 10:14 pm

Art and Music are about communication; figure out what you are trying to communicate.
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Johnisfaster
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Post by Johnisfaster » Thu Jul 17, 2008 10:37 pm

Moody wrote:Art and Music are about communication; figure out what you are trying to communicate.
but keep in mind that if you don't know what you want to communicate you can still make a track :) a lot of artists have no idea what they are trying to say.
It was as if someone shook up a 6 foot can of blood soda and suddenly popped the top.

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Post by nebulae » Thu Jul 17, 2008 10:39 pm

Johnisfaster wrote:
Moody wrote:Art and Music are about communication; figure out what you are trying to communicate.
but keep in mind that if you don't know what you want to communicate you can still make a track :) a lot of artists have no idea what they are trying to say.
and in that event...just evoke the mood your in...for example, if you're angry, just dial in a little more Saturator :)
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Post by Poster » Thu Jul 17, 2008 10:48 pm

nebulae wrote: 4. We now have an infinite number of options, which is daunting. Fortunately, we also have a lot of ways to correct or replace sounds/patches/settings that need to be fixed. Instead of being intimidated by a daunting sea of infinite possibilities, JUST START. Put sounds down and cook ideas. You can always replace parts as needed.
4.b

bounce to disk or freeze/flatten those VST's..

the thought of "..I *could* adjust that synth later on.." is always a distraction..

also a sign of you not making decisions..

tweak it till its good, then bounce, so its a finished chapter..

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Post by nebulae » Thu Jul 17, 2008 10:49 pm

Poster wrote:
nebulae wrote: 4. We now have an infinite number of options, which is daunting. Fortunately, we also have a lot of ways to correct or replace sounds/patches/settings that need to be fixed. Instead of being intimidated by a daunting sea of infinite possibilities, JUST START. Put sounds down and cook ideas. You can always replace parts as needed.
4.b

bounce to disk or freeze/flatten those VST's..

the thought of "..I *could* adjust that synth later on.." is always a distraction..

also a sign of you not making decissions..

tweak it till its good, then bounce, so its a finished chapter..
+1 nice ...let me embellish a bit...

MAKE DECISIONS and live with them. Every decision you make is progress, however small, and will eventually add up.

Nice one, you sexy Italian bitch!
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Post by Poster » Thu Jul 17, 2008 10:54 pm

Poster wrote:
nebulae wrote: 4. We now have an infinite number of options, which is daunting. Fortunately, we also have a lot of ways to correct or replace sounds/patches/settings that need to be fixed. Instead of being intimidated by a daunting sea of infinite possibilities, JUST START. Put sounds down and cook ideas. You can always replace parts as needed.
4.b

bounce to disk or freeze/flatten those VST's..

the thought of "..I *could* adjust that synth later on.." is always a distraction..

also a sign of you not making decisions..

tweak it till its good, then bounce, so its a finished chapter..
4.c

don't be afraid of audio..

I always felt MIDI meant total freedom, as in, nothing is definite yet..

though I learned along the way that audio chopping/editting opens up a whole new world of freedom..

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Post by nebulae » Thu Jul 17, 2008 10:56 pm

^ 4c(1) - Resampling is your friend. You can take a simple piece of audio and change things entirely by resampling with effects and tweaking them while resampling.
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Post by Poster » Thu Jul 17, 2008 11:00 pm

don't try to do that one 'perfect' take over and over again..

just hit record, and try to forget record is on..

then do multiple takes/tryouts in one go..

make a mess.. take out the best parts.. which could very well be the messiest parts..

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Post by nebulae » Thu Jul 17, 2008 11:01 pm

werd +1
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doc holiday
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Post by doc holiday » Thu Jul 17, 2008 11:02 pm

when you have an idea you spent some time on, but decide it totally sucks dirt, put it away. six months later when you pull it out you may find yourself thinking "dang i was really on to something here"

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Post by glitchrock-buddha » Thu Jul 17, 2008 11:02 pm

Something I've found out recently:

-If you're into improve and jamming, find a control surface setup that works for you and that you don't have to think too hard about when you want to ride the controls and improvise.

When I play guitar, I don't have to consciously think about what note is where before I play it. That means less logic, more instinct. When you try to do too much with a few controls, or it's hard to remember what's controlling what, it always takes those extra few seconds before you can tweak a parameter. By that time, it's not as instinctual.

I suggest setting up controllers so that you don't need more than a button press to tweak some setting.

Also important is to setup a template before hand with as much mapped out as possible and your restrictions laid out.

I find jams are so much more fun when you can just grab multiple parameters at the same time (like sends and volume as well as send effect parameters simultaneously)

Now that I've sat down and figured out what are the most important things I want to be able to control, and figured the best combination of physical controls to do that, it's much more fun.
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Post by Poster » Thu Jul 17, 2008 11:04 pm

nebulae wrote:^ 4c(1) - Resampling is your friend. You can take a simple piece of audio and change things entirely by resampling with effects and tweaking them while resampling.
ooh did I learn to do that..

its like a whole song down the mangle in one go.. resampling is great..

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