Thanks to the huge variety of tools at affordable prices it is now easier than ever to produce music. You can produce from your home studio from day 1.
Since the barriers to producing music have been lowered, you can get started today with just a few simple items and tips. We’ve collected some tips for all the new music producers out there who may be overwhelmed by the ever expanding world of music production. If you’re an aspiring music producer wanting to make records, this list of tips will help you get started. In time you’ll learn even more as you produce music and collaborate with others.
Let’s get the music production journey started! Here are our tips for new producers:
Find your inspiration.
Your inspiration will drive you to create music and achieve your best.
We all find inspiration by listening to other musicians so keep your ears open when listening to all types of music. Make sure you vary your tunes to listen to songs from the past and present. Having a connection to music from the past will inspire you and help you create music for the generations to come. Keep an open mind and look for inspiration everywhere in all types of genres and and artists.
When you find something that inspires you, take note!
Realize that this isn’t easy.
Settle in for a bumpy ride because producing music isn’t always easy.
As a new producer you are probably dreaming of future GRAMMYs and an long career filled with fame and fortune. Unfortunately that doesn’t come instantly and you’ll have a long period of learning and working first. In the beginning you might think your work sucks. Other people might agree.
You’ve got a huge learning and experience curve when you’re new so it will probably take you months if not years to get to the point where you think what you are doing is worthwhile.
Educate yourself on producing.
While you don’t have to go to school to produce music, you should definitely work on educating yourself about producing.
Continually learning about production and audio techniques will help you be a better music producer. There are many valuable resources available online and offline for producers to learn about music production. You can choose to watch videos or read content about music production.
Watch tutorial videos created by talented producers on how to use plug-ins and how to produce specific genres of music. Subscribe to our YouTube channel for Musistic University recording tutorial videos.
Whether you learn best by reading or watching content, you need to make sure you dedicate some of your time as a new producer to learning about music production.
Study your favorite artist’s work.
We all learn first by copying. Looking to the great master producers and analyzing how they created sounds will help you learn quickly.
When you find an artist you love, listen to them and analyze the sounds and how the tracks are laid out. Try copying your favorite song as a learning exercise. Even better, analyze the song and then remake it yourself. You’ll learn a ton by doing this from song structure to sound design. Research and study your favorite artists to learn their process so you can apply it to their own. Try to get inside their heads and break down their music to learn as much as you can from someone who is doing it well.
You won’t want to imitate other people forever but it’s a great exercise for beginner producers who want to learn.
A great resource to help you learn from others are the “How’d they get that sound?” videos from Reverb:
- How’d They Get That Sound? Studio Tricks on 6 Famous Records
- How’d They Get That Sound? Part II: The Gear Behind Three More Distinctive Records
- How’d They Get That Sound? Part III: More Famous Studio Tricks (That You Can Try)
- How’d They Get That Sound? Part IV: Uncovering Studio Magic on Four Records
Learn sound design.
Learning sound design from day one as a new producer will help you tremendously.
You can get plug-ins and synths with amazing presets, but it’s a lot better if you know and understand sound design and synthesis. As a producer you should learn the basic principles of sound design and audio synthesis as soon as possible. Learning about the types of waveforms, how sounds are created, how synths work and all the aspects of sound design will help you be a better producer and stop you from relying on fully automated presets for everything. Research psychoacoustics, because knowing how we process sounds and how they cause us to react can lead to new insights on the craft.
Remember, educate yourself!
Work with the gear you have.
When you are new it is very tempting to go out and buy every synth, plug-in and sample pack that you can get your hands on. Save your money until you are a bit more experienced by using what you’ve already got on hand.
It’s better to learn how to produce with just a few simple tools so you can learn how to fully utilize the tools you have. You can start with one synth, a DAW, and just a few plug-ins. Masters of their craft take the time to learn how to fully utilize all their tools which is why you should do this in the beginning as well. Read the manuals, explore all the options, and then practice using everything for hours. Remember that buying a new $200 plug-in won’t magically make you a great producer.
Commit yourself to mastering the tools you already have to create amazing music.
Keep yourself organized when you are working.
Staying organized and naming your projects logically will save you a lot of time and hassle in the long run. Creative chaos is common when you’re caught up in the moment during a session but it’s easier to come back and work on a track when it’s labeled and organized. Organize your tracks by labelling them and coloring audio files during or after your session, depending on which works best for your workflow. Clearly labeled sessions will help you later when you return to work or if you plan to collaborate with other artists.
It’s crucial so get in the habit of staying organized from the beginning as a new producer.
Collaborate with other musicians.
Producing music might start with you, but collaboration is where you’ll learn to shine.
Collaboration allows you to learn how to produce faster than if you were just creating music on your own. Each time you collaborate with someone on a track you’ll learn new ideas and workflows that can help you be a better producer. Reach out to producers who are better and more experienced than you and ask to collaborate on a project together. With Musistic you can reach out to and work with producers you admire in other cities or countries. You’ll learn something new every time you collaborate which is a huge benefit to new producers.
Producing music is a lifelong journey so you will always be learning and collaborating.
Seek out feedback.
Keeping your early work to yourself is a mistake. Get your work in front of people so you can get feedback. Let the feedback teach you and guide you as you grow.
Seeking out feedback constantly from other musicians and producers will help you grow quickly much like collaborating will. Be polite when asking for feedback and don’t resort to spamming people asking for their opinions. When you do send a link to your music to producer friends and colleagues, include a note with a polite request asking for feedback. A lot of producers are willing to answer questions and give feedback but no one likes to be spammed.
Work on your craft.
Practice, practice, practice.
Practice really does make perfect. It helps you learn your tools and it helps you cultivate a habit of creativity. Get yourself into the habit of creating beats and experimenting with sounds every day. Create a schedule for yourself so you spend time in the studio every day for at least an hour. Creating this schedule and having a more disciplined approach will allow you to grow and become better at producing music faster.
Work on your craft daily and you’ll see huge gains as a new producer.
Enjoy yourself and make some awesome!
While it will involve a lot of learning work, producing music should be enjoyable. Remember to enjoy yourself. Let yourself savor the music you listen to and create on your own.