January 14th, 2021 | Updated on June 28th, 2022
If you are an aspiring musician, learning production is now non-negotiable. With unprecedented technology at your fingertips, it’s well within your reach. Some choose to enroll in a music institute that offers practical and theoretical knowledge, while others opt to self-study music with the internet’s help. One-on-one mentorship is also a wise investment, with instruction tailored to your goals and abilities.
Eventually, your skills will put you on pace with the great artists and producers of our generation. At present, Mark Gillespie is one of the music industry’s biggest names, having worked with several veterans and exciting new artists. To walk in his footsteps and give yourself the best chance of success, here is a general game plan to follow.
Key Steps To Learning Music Production
1. Sharpen Your Skills
At the core of every electronic track, hip-hop beat, or classical piano piece is music theory. Master the fundamentals and build a strong foundation as early as possible. Learn how to play at least two musical instruments and keep a MIDI keyboard within arm’s reach at all times! This process will help you harvest samples, mix beats, and make compelling tracks from scratch. Repetition is the mother of skill.
Likewise, you need to develop your technical vocabulary, learning the ins and outs of compression, arrangement, and reverb. Before you move on to the next step, make sure to understand all these aspects in detail.
2. Use The Web To Your Advantage
You can learn from online videos of in-studio music production. From hardware and software to tactics and techniques, you can never know enough. Even the world’s top producers consider themselves students always willing to learn more.
Similarly, make an effort to learn how to use the latest music production programs. The updated software has sophisticated features that will serve you well in the long run. Once you know the software from top to bottom, it will be easier to produce more elaborate music creations. Follow your favorite instructors on social media and be part of the conversation.
3. Set Up A Home Studio
Beginners need not invest in sophisticated tools to produce music. With that said, you will need a laptop, a digital audio workstation (DAW), and reliable studio headphones. Before purchasing a DAW (digital audio workstation), make sure to compare it with at least three other software applications.
Each product has its pros and cons and will be more or less conducive to the style of music you wish to create. They can also be quite pricey, so choose wisely.
4. Learn More About DAW Features
The bulk of your time will be spent locked into the DAW interface, so get comfortable! Simply spending time in the studio seat will familiarize you with the technology, even if it doesn’t feel immediately productive. Lean into the feeling of frustration because it’s part of the music production process we all experience. Revelations are often right around the corner.
The more you experiment and take risks, the faster your progress will be. The creative process will become more comfortable and natural, like an extension of yourself. Likewise, you will be able to use different DAW plugins with dexterity, both in-studio and live.
5. Use Tracks For Reference
Whether you are into rock, pop, or hip-hop music, it is essential to study the tracks you love. Analyzing all the elements of a hit song will give you tons of knowledge and insight to work with.
From there, you can apply these findings to your music to make it more engaging. You can even use reference tracks for composition, mixing, sound designing, or mastering. Even if a song is outside your comfort zone or preferred genre, make an effort to dig deep into its layers.
You can fill your home studio with thousands of dollars of equipment and hire the best instructors in the world, but recognize that hard work is the only key to create excellent music. These steps provide a solid outline, but your dedication and consistency matter more than anything.
Build up your theoretical knowledge, master your instruments, and learn the DAW interface like the back of your hand. With persistence and focus, you can achieve your highest musical goals and bring amazing tracks to the masses.