When writing music, its obvious that you will start out wanting to sound like someone else (can anyone hear the mf doom/aphex twin/boards of canada in my music?). Today I will talk a little on developing your own style.
We always start in a similar way. We get inspired by someone to make our own music. As artists, we crave to find our own way of doing things. Innovation is what drives us to be the best we can. It becomes easy to get trapped in thinking that if something doesn’t sound like (insert record/artist) then it isn’t up to scratch. So the first thing you need to do is to acknowledge that in order to be the best musician you can, you need to separate yourself from your influences.
This can be achieved in a simple way in my opinion. Vary your influences to a level where you no longer see a narrow view of what the musical possibilities are, but rather the full spectrum. Listen to classical music, jazz, blues, rock, metal, pop, michael jackson (yes, he gets a genre of his own).. everything. NO DISCRIMINATION.
At the end of the day, in western music, there are only 12 notes. Yet, there are millions of combinations. So get as much music into your system as possible
Secondly, you need to make as much music as possible. I mean so much that it will make your head spin. Make music all day every day if you can. By the act of creating, as you learn new things, you will become bored of doing things the same way. True innovation doesn’t just come out of nowhere, it needs to be achieved by hours of hard work. It won’t be easy. As you incorporate different elements into your music, you’ll add things that nobody will have ever thought of before, and explore realities which were never heard before.
Lastly, you can not give up. If you want to sound like Skrillex, great. There are tutorials on youtube that will have you making derivative crap in a few days. But you shouldn’t strive to sound like anyone else, because you have a voice of your own. Let it be heard.
The latest instrument from our Discovery Series focuses on the rich and inspirational traditions of West Africa. The iconic sounds of the region have been carefully sampled in incredible quality, and include 26 percussion and 8 pitched instruments playable solo or in ensembles. A built-in sequencer allows one touch triggering of authentic pre-programmed poly-rhythms, perfect for adding depth and character to everything from film scores to cutting-edge dance floor music.
DISCOVERY SERIES: WEST AFRICA* is available now from the Online Shop for $119 / 99 €.
Looks and sounds tasty!
We’re all music makers. A few of you have already contacted me about this because of me mentioning it on the forums, but I probably should let you know here as well.
I want to promote music on the blog. All of you have excellent music to show the world. Let me know about it.
Please check out the podcast page for all of the info.
Please retweet this, post this to your facebook and get the word out as much as you can. The more people know about this, the better the podcast will be!
My sincerest apologies for the lack of postage last week. I was busy with other important things (such as plotting something which I’ll reveal in the next post which I’ll write soon after publishing this).
There will be some little changes on the blog. I will now post editorial type articles on Monday and Friday, instead of Monday Wednesday and Friday. I am cutting this down because of two things. Firstly, I want to avoid running out of things to say anytime soon, and I worry sometimes that I might be repeating myself. Secondly, I want to write better quality articles for you all. A little longer, a lot more informative.
I hope you understand.
Lastly, please check out these songs that I made. I’d love some constructive criticism on them, as I’m trying to fix them up for maybe a little release in a few months.
Today we will speak a little about promoting your music within the sites that its already posted on. Namely: Tagging.
Without adding the appropriate tags to your songs on soundcamp, bandcamp, youtube or wherever else, nobody will find your music. That’s not even a statistic. Its a fact.
Your goal naturally, as is mine, is to have as many people as possible listening and talking about your music, so tagging is vital. Use a combination of tag words and tag phrases that are descriptive of your music. Other than the obvious choices such as the genre of the song and a few descriptors such as “Chillaxed” or “Space cock”, consider adding the name of the software you made it in (particularly useful on youtube) or the names of a few of your favourite artists that sound similar. Even if not very similar, fans of those artists will see your songs and with a little luck give them the time of day required for you to convince them you’re the greatest producer since Aphex Twin.
What are your techniques when it comes to tagging your music on music sites? What have you had most success with?
Let me know in the comments!
Steinberg HALion is now available. This is the press release:
After winning plaudits at the Frankfurt Musikmesse for presenting the new HALion 4 VST sampler and sound creation system, Steinberg is now shipping the latest version of its acclaimed virtual instrument.
In its fourth incarnation, HALion has undergone a massive overhaul and shift to an entirely new sampling and sound creation environment. With a cornucopia of creative capabilities, including a top-notch synth section, advanced tools and an inspiring sound library, HALion 4 is a truly universal tool for producers, sound designers musicians alike. The future-proof sample engine and a modular and efficient workflow approach, make HALion 4 an indispensable tool for creative professionals.
HALion 4 is now being shipped to our distributors worldwide* and is also available in the Steinberg Online Shop.