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 Post subject: Has this happened too you?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2013 5:52 am 

Joined: Wed Sep 07, 2011 9:42 pm
Posts: 29
So I'm pretty new to music production. I've only been working on Ableton for a year, and ProTools a little shorter than that..

I'm starting to really get into my projects with Ableton and I thought I was about ready to start recording my first "song".

But as I was experimenting, fixing a few things here and there, a synth I had originally loved in the song now became something I didn't want. It went from the one thing aspect of the song I really liked, to something I said I could live without.

Upon thinking about removing the synth, I then stumbled into something that I liked more than that original synth that I have loved for weeks.

I feel almost discouraged because I went from LOVING it, to saying forget it - i don't want it.

So I come here to ask: Has this happened to you?

I know it can't be a bad thing, but it's really buggin' me. It may be because I have been sitting here working for hours and I'm tired.. but I don't know..


thanks everyone. :wink:

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 Post subject: Re: Has this happened too you?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2013 7:04 am 

Joined: Mon Jul 11, 2011 3:51 pm
Posts: 106
It's called "perfectionism". It's a blessing and a curse :/


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 Post subject: Re: Has this happened too you?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2013 7:11 am 

Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2012 1:34 am
Posts: 829
I just scrapped a song I've been working on for a week and only kept the drums.

Sometimes shit just doesn't work.


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 Post subject: Re: Has this happened too you?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2013 7:42 am 

Joined: Thu Oct 29, 2009 1:58 am
Posts: 92
Location: Atlanta
infernal.machine wrote:
I just scrapped a song I've been working on for a week and only kept the drums.

Sometimes shit just doesn't work.


I have completely scrapped songs that i have been working on for a few weeks and kept nothing. :lol:

He's right. Sometimes it just doesn't work out the way you planned it. (and that's a good thing :wink:)

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 Post subject: Re: Has this happened too you?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2013 11:33 am 

Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2008 9:47 pm
Posts: 1536
Location: Plymouth the great
Yep. Its often worth keeping these song discards either as instrument racks or clips, there was obviously something about it that you liked- but its not working within the context of the track. Perhaps its another track, or another section to the composition its currently been exiled from. This happens to me all the time. Start off with an idea, pile stuff on, find something that works without the original idea. Because music happens in time its good to spread your ideas out across a track, rather trying to get everything to work together at one. Megacounterpoint is really hard

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 Post subject: Re: Has this happened too you?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2013 12:42 pm 

Joined: Tue Dec 15, 2009 10:43 am
Posts: 123
I guess that's a part of the creative process. It happens to me all the time, i've now understood that it's my way to work on tracks. I usually work on something i'm quite happy with then i don't touch it for 1 week or 2. When i come back to it, i start to change things, mash it, resample tracks, experiment with effects and sounds and in the end i have a new track that is often better than the original.
It can be hard to know if a track is finished but sometimes you'll just to let it go.

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 Post subject: Re: Has this happened too you?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2013 3:19 pm 

Joined: Fri Jan 07, 2005 11:46 pm
Posts: 12971
Location: Seattle
It happens to me constantly it's called "editing". I always come up with way more ideas than I need when writing a song, and then it's a matter of taking away the things that don't work so well to give the important stuff the room it needs to be effective.

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 Post subject: Re: Has this happened too you?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2013 5:18 pm 

Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2003 3:46 pm
Posts: 70
Tarekith wrote:
It happens to me constantly it's called "editing". I always come up with way more ideas than I need when writing a song, and then it's a matter of taking away the things that don't work so well to give the important stuff the room it needs to be effective.


Great point. At first, the feeling that I needed to use every single scene I made in Session view caused those early arrangements to be less focused, too many changes, the groove didn't have time to set in. Now I just leave those rows alone... It's all part of the process. I think going through it quickly is the key. Become more prolific. If something isn't doing it for you, put it away and make a new thing. You can always save those ideas and come back to them later.


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 Post subject: Re: Has this happened too you?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2013 5:42 pm 

Joined: Fri Jan 07, 2005 11:46 pm
Posts: 12971
Location: Seattle
Exactly. The longer I write music, the better I get at not getting attached to things and wasting too much time on the stuff that just isn't working.

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 Post subject: Re: Has this happened too you?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2013 6:02 pm 

Joined: Wed Jan 05, 2011 7:25 pm
Posts: 193
Location: berlin
...kill your darlings...

is a basic rule...so congrats, you're just getting closer to be a pro...


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 Post subject: Re: Has this happened too you?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2013 7:08 pm 

Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2007 12:50 am
Posts: 100
Location: Cornwall UK
Sometimes it is your favourite part that is holding the whole back, like he said, kill your darlings!

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 Post subject: Re: Has this happened too you?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2013 7:41 pm 

Joined: Wed Oct 12, 2011 3:53 pm
Posts: 52
Location: Vienna
A certain feeling or vibe that you have when making music is not permanent. So one way to catch it is to be really fast and record all the important parts of the song before it is gone. If I take too long, usually when losing time on details, the doubts get more and more. I once read a good description for this on the net and saved it. Maybe it even was from one of you guys here:

"When I make a track I feel it's like getting on a train and then getting off at the right stop. If you miss your stop the train keeps going and you end up lost. Keep with it and eventually the train does a full circuit and you get your chance to get off the train at the right stop again, but the train probably has a different driver at that point and a lot of new passengers." Unknown (Ableton forum?) author

If you can't be fast and precise, be merciless to your sounds. Make more than you need, like Tarekith says, and then throw away everything that has no unique function in the song. I start the selection by muting all tracks and then unmuting one by one. Usually everything is fine in the beginning and at some point the loop feels too crowded and loses the nice air it had before. This tells me that the last introduced sound is clashing with something else. So it has to go or I have to find out what else to kick. This helps to make decisions easier. Sometimes it is necessary to kick out the most important sound that I have spent a lot of time on, because it turns out to be the most important sound to me, but not the most important sound for the song.

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 Post subject: Re: Has this happened too you?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2013 9:00 pm 

Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2012 1:34 am
Posts: 829
Great post ^


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 Post subject: Re: Has this happened too you?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2013 11:08 pm 

Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2006 5:19 pm
Posts: 23575
Location: SF, CA
I save off revisions of a track when I take it in another direction or at the end of a long session when I'm tired, full of beer and have ear fatigue. leave yourself breadcrumbs.

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