There are many music producers out there that I admire not because of their status or popularity as a producer, but because they have the ability to be unique with every beat that they make.
Some of my favorite producers are Quincy Jones, Dr. Dre, Butch Vig, Dave Sitek, Danger Mouse, Timberland, Rick Ruben, and David Foster. These producers all have a unique way of creating sounds and laying them out into master pieces. But what were the ingredients to them becoming prominent music producers?
How did they go from unknown producers to multi-platinum selling producers producing for some of the hottest music artists out there?
In this article I’m going to list 6 simple methods you can use to become a better music producer. Let’s get into it.
Get Proper Equipment
Having good quality equipment can allow you to produce quality sound beats. Now I know what most of you are saying that it doesn’t matter about what equipment you use a music producer should be able to create good beats on any software or midi controller he uses. This is only partially true. Some equipment produce better sounds than others, and some equipment is limited in the things it can do in comparison to others. For example a MPD 18 can not do half the things an MPC 1000 can do. Like wise a Keyrig -49 can not do what a Motif FX can do, right? Ahh you guys thought I didn’t know my midi controllers huh? lol I do some music production from time to time, been doing it for years!
So you’re only half right when you say that it’s the producer not the equipment that makes a dope beat, but keep in mind that in order to produce great work your equipment has to compliment your skills as a music producer. So make sure whatever software, midi controller, microphone, instrument etc you get is of good quality. You want to produce the beast sounds so get the best equipment, don’t short change yourself by being cheap. Artists or companies do not purchase poor quality beats. They purchase the best sounding instrumentals.
Have Sound Engineering Knowledge
All the top music producers in the world have music engineering skills. They know how to mix and master their beats; it’s really a trait that separates a producer from just a beat maker. Not knowing how to mix and master your beats can limit you from so many more opportunities in the music industry. The top producers that are sought out to handle big projects, working with big industry names are all producers who can produce and engineer their own music.
Another added benefit of knowing how to engineer your own music is saving money. you don’t have to hire someone to do something you can easily do your self. As a full scale music producer you can not only charge people for your beats but also charge then for your engineering services as well. Again, you will b e able to create unlimited opportunities as a producers you has sound engineering skills than one who doesn’t.
This is one of the most important factors in becoming a great producer. You have to be unique in order for artist to want to work with you. Artists want to work with producers who can produce fresh ideas and provide them with fresh sounds. Artists want to connect with producers that can create a beat that compliments that artist’s expression through words. More people will become attracted to your sound if it’s unique because people will always be attracted to something different and unique.
There is nothing more annoying than turning on the radio and hearing songs that sound the same. Most of the producers out there, especially the producers that create rap music, sound the same. They see one style of production that works for one producer and they copy the same style. This is what kills music! Stop being the same as everyone else! Be different, be unique, and you will become great.
Learn How To Customize Beats
I have been in the studio with many up and coming music producers and cringe in disappointment in them, when an artists asks for them to customize a beat and they say they don’t know how to make custom beats. It’s disappointing because they loose out on a paying client and put a small dent in their reputation as a producer. Customizing instrumentals to the way that your client wants it is an essential trait to have because most artist are going to come to you for this service. Again, I have been in many studio sessions where artists have asked for this and only a few producers were able to say yes.
If you want to be great you have to develop this skill, you don’t want to make it in the biz and have a famous artist standing next to you asking you if you can customize a beat for her, and you say no. That would be embarrassing, you’ll loose out on a client and lots of money, and also potentially hurt your credibility as a real producer.
Create A Brand and Market It
This is where the business side of you must come in. it’s not only sufficient to create instrumentals but you should also know how to brand your beat and market it in a way that it gets attention of potential buyers. If you’re really striving to make it it’s not good enough to create beats and sit on them, or only let your friends hear them. you have to create a brand around your beats and market it to the world. A brand is more than a logo, a brand is a promise to your clients that you will produce a quality service for them. In your case it’s going to be quality beats.
When your brand of beats start to get the right expose and listened to by the right people you will gradually gain reputation as a good producer. This is not going to come over night, just like anything else in life you have to work hard at it. but if you’re good enough and you market and network in the right way, you will achieve success!
The last thing you can do to become a great producer is practice in order to make progress. how often should you practice? Practice until it hurts:) no really, practice as much as much hours as you can, as often as you can. You don’t want to slack off on this part because your competition never sleeps. yes competition! You might think you have none but let me be honest with you, for every one producer that makes it millions don’t! I know many good producers that didn’t make it and are now working in factory jobs.
Not that there is anything wrong with that profession, but it’s not a career they wanted to be in. They slacked off and didn’t practice to cultivate their skills, and they didn’t bother to showcase their beats. As a result of that not many people heard their music, and within three years of starting they gave up. Don’t be one of those producers that fail. If you’re going to be great it takes discipline, focus, ambition and action! Take this seriously and do what needs to be done in order for you to get the results you want.
Stay strong, work hard, make the right connections, and the world will listen to your mater pieces!