Old 11-03-2009, 08:28 PM   #81
yep
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 2,007
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by west_west View Post
This is my first post, and the only reason for it is that I've read through Yeps: WDYRSLA to the point where this spin-off was created and this thread to end and actually has something to say/share

There has been a lot of discussion about feedback, which has been very interesting to read, but slightly over-emphasized in my opinion. I want to go back to the practical talk about how to actually try to be the producer for yourself. I want to to this by sharing a bit of my own experience.

I am a young and novice self-producing singer-songwriter. I own one of the cheapest home-studios in the world (simply because I still studying). One of the most important things In my opinion has been the talk about something is better than nothing (independently how perfect the vision and intention for the nothing-result-project was). Another thing was the talk about goals. Setting up goals for each session

Since I only got myself to play with the recording phase often contains a lot of creativity, because it's at this stage I can start thinking about if I need a synthpad and how the electric guitar solo are supposed to be like and so on. In my case I've found that a good way to keep myself from being sidetracked by this process of arranging during tracking and mixing is to set up goals for each session. I often find myself on the way to school thinking about the goals for next session. And when the session takes place I make sure to reach the goal. A goal might be to figure out a solo by jamming with the record as well as it can be to record a voice.

Another thing that I've discovered is that it is often more fun to build the song by first recording a drumloop (I prefer drumloops over metronome to keep everything at about right tempo) and then record the intro, all instrument (except voice - which I often do at the end) and rough mix, then go to the verse doing same thing and so on. I am aware of that this method somewhat violates some rules about the recording/mixing process, but for me it is a way to make the bricks that are going to be laid down in place.

One thing that another member here brought up (I can't remember the name tough) was the point that this planning thing tends to stretch the starting distance before the actual recording can takeoff. My goal is to have to use as short bit of the runway as possible before my plane rotates of the ground (sorry, I'm into flying and airplanes and such too). For a self-producing home recordist that only uses himself I don't think the schedule is necessary as long as you remember to set sessionbased goals for at least the next session, and have a deadline when you say that you have to be done. This way I've created some for my level of experience fairly good records. Almost or completely on time.

I don't know if this is useful reading to anyone, but as this thread was about sharing I thought that I might just as well share what I have experienced.
Great post.
yep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-04-2009, 09:29 AM   #82
Tedwood
Human being with feelings
 
Tedwood's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: South Coast UK
Posts: 14,303
Default

I'm glad I found this thread, it inspired me to approach a young man I heard singing at an outdoor event I was coordinating last year. For my money he should have won the talent contest but he came third and missed out on the first prize - which was "recording time in a local studio".

I saw that studio, and met the "engineer" - I felt quite sad for the winner!

So I thought I probably have enough expertise and good enough equipment to "produce" at least beyond this level in my home studio, even though my best mic is a Rode Nt1a and I have budget monitors (m-audio bx5a) are not great.

However, I do have a well treated room and an 5 ft X 5ft isolation chamber for vocals.

Someone said (might have been yep) it is more important to know what you are doing, where you are going, and to have talent than good equipment. Mind you I do have very nice guitars and plugins, and I know how to use REAPER

What this young lad lacks is equipment (of any kind) and experience, so he doesn't really know how to plan. So I can plan, and I can help him to focus, and I can help steer him to where he wants to go.

I never produced anyone before - and he never made a demo before, so we will lucky if it is fantastic, but the boy has talent and I have knowhow.

I guess people might think I'm mad but I said I'd do it for nothing if it costs me nothing (cos it's my first producer thing) .

Mind you I'm now thinking I should allow for the possibility that he might be able to sell the results - in which case I really should get more than 2% - or a proper rate.
__________________
The grass is greener where it rains
Tedwood is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-04-2009, 10:16 AM   #83
stupeT
Human being with feelings
 
stupeT's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: frankonia
Posts: 1,996
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tedwood View Post
Mind you I'm now thinking I should allow for the possibility that he might be able to sell the results - in which case I really should get more than 2% - or a proper rate.
AFAIK: 2% is average fee for average producer - in case the studio cost has been paid by the musician (via advance from the label).

Top producers get more anyway. And in your case it was your studio. So you should get much more.
__________________
------------------------------------------
Don't read this sentence to it's end, please.
stupeT is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-05-2009, 05:21 PM   #84
yep
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 2,007
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tedwood View Post
...Mind you I'm now thinking I should allow for the possibility that he might be able to sell the results - in which case I really should get more than 2% - or a proper rate.
Get a music lawyer if you intend to write a percentage deal. And never, ever do a percentage deal without getting it in writing and all lawyered up (really, I mean, do not even accept it if the guy offers, just do it for free and hope he gets famous and hires you on). It will poison his career and probably ensure that the record never makes any money, since no "real" business wants to touch something where a third party has some nebulous percentage and ill-defined claim. Besides, asking him to give you 2% of record he sells at a bar or whatever is more trouble than it's worth, and that technically puts him in breach of contract.

If you want to get paid, just write down who owes what to whom and put a price and terms on it, making sure to put in terms that you own the recordings until final payment is made. Might be $500 or $500,000, depending on everything else.

If the guy really wants to give you a piece of something, get a piece of the songwriting. All you need to do is write down the name of the song, the lyrics, and that you own X% and the other person owns Y%. Then both of you sign copies, preferably with a credible witness, and you all keep a copy.

As an aside, if all you are doing is recording and mixing, then you're just acting as an engineer and there is no reason to mess with producer credits.
yep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-06-2009, 02:49 AM   #85
Tedwood
Human being with feelings
 
Tedwood's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: South Coast UK
Posts: 14,303
Default

I think I know where you are coming from Yep. That's probably good advice on the whole.

The last thing I want to do is poison a young man's career, but I don't really have that ability. Not meaning to be rude, I think it must a cultural thing. Here in the UK people are still old fashioned and think nothing of offering to help out free of charge and trusting that if there is a payoff people would do the decent thing. Thinking about it, that's what I like so much about the Cockos ethic - I just don't see where the poison thing comes into it.

It's just facts of life, some people care and others don't, in most quarters of the UK just talking about a lawyer is enough to sour the arrangement, and the god's honest truth here is that after many happy musical years working on stage, in studios, and with a few producers and everything based on trust the only really bad experience I had was with the lawyer types - just once, but it was sufficient to poison, or turn against the whole music business a good number of people I knew. Most of them gave up, not being quite as stubborn or as addicted to music as me.

Personally I just don't even want to talk about music lawyers at this level. Maybe if I had my heart set on being a producer I would look into it, but really all I'm trying to do is give someone a helping hand and make the point that if he makes money out of the arrangement when I didn't it's only right and proper he should have a guideline to share it with me in a reasonable proportion.

In fact by the same token, one might say that forcing someone do the honourable thing (rather than allowing them) could poison them too
__________________
The grass is greener where it rains
Tedwood is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-06-2009, 12:22 PM   #86
nickm
Human being with feelings
 
nickm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 107
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tedwood View Post
The last thing I want to do is poison a young man's career, but I don't really have that ability. Not meaning to be rude, I think it must a cultural thing. Here in the UK people are still old fashioned and think nothing of offering to help out free of charge and trusting that if there is a payoff people would do the decent thing. Thinking about it, that's what I like so much about the Cockos ethic - I just don't see where the poison thing comes into it.
It's not you or the talent that pose the problem here, it's when the big multi-national record label shows up and frankly doesn't want to deal with an artist that has a producer with a vague contract. It's purely from a business level and no level politeness or decency will fix it -- these guys are here to make money, FTW.

yep covered it pretty well in the post above, but I would emphasize that you need to make a firm decision: is this business or mentoring? Trying to have it both ways is not a viable option, someone is gonna get hurt in the end. Take the money or take the good karma of helping someone out.
__________________
nickm - endless blue - triphop from milwaukee, wi
www.endlessblue.com
www.myspace.com/endlessblue
nickm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-06-2009, 03:18 PM   #87
Tedwood
Human being with feelings
 
Tedwood's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: South Coast UK
Posts: 14,303
Default

Like I said, I think there must be a cultural gap or some hang up on semantics here. You guys seem to be saying it is not possible to "produce" someone on a one off gentleman's agreement without one of the parties coming to grief because there is a loose arrangement.

This simply will not happen. I have been "produced" or had a producer work on recordings without the need of a lawyer contract and everything was very amicable, my career was not poisoned.

I think we just called the guys in and they got paid a flat rate. So I could do that, but what I am saying is I want to help this dude because he could use a leg up, then if he makes any money on sales from that single recording, (not the material) then I would suggest he gives me a cut, it's up to him if he decides to not do so, that might be hurting himself, unless he just doesn't give a damn, but from my angle it's common kind of risk risk we take as human beings all the time.

Sorry, I know this will certainly attract flack, but I'll call like I see. It's only Americans that seem to want to have everything sewn up and protected with contracts and insurance, god forbid that sort of attitude will permeate the the culture I have grown up in

I think Cockos trusts people to upgrade to the pro license if the they make more than $20,000 in one year don't they, but nobody dies or has their career poisoned when and if those rules are not strictly adhered to. Probably people buy the pro license and don 't make that much money after expenses, probably some people make more on the non-commercial license, but on the whole the idea seems to work

As I said the only poisoning I ever encountered came from the direction of the guys "in the business". The crooks in the business were aided and abetted by their contracts.

Time to cut of of this thread now because I am beginning to feel the effects of a similar type of poison
__________________
The grass is greener where it rains

Last edited by Tedwood; 11-06-2009 at 05:14 PM.
Tedwood is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-06-2009, 08:12 PM   #88
nickm
Human being with feelings
 
nickm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 107
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tedwood View Post
As I said the only poisoning I ever encountered came from the direction of the guys "in the business". The crooks in the business were aided and abetted by their contracts.
Yeah, that's what we're getting at. It's not you and it's not your talent that are the problem here. Maybe it's best explained with a little scenario:

You and Bobby Nonose (That's what I'll name your guy) make a gentleman's agreement. You shake on it -- you produce him and help him out with the understanding that you'll take 2% of his sales. No lawyers, no contracts, bada-bing. So Bobby starts making a buzz around, and Wallace, the A&R rep from MegaRecords, wants a meeting with him. Bobby meets the guy, talks shop, and then you come up -- essentially he says this lovely chap is helping him out and that the two of you have an agreement on points. When Wallace asks Bobby to produce the contract, Bobby says sorry, we're upstanding Englishmen and have no need for lawyers and contracts and the like. At which point Wallace walks. He can't proceed with Bobby until he has all the parties within the law so he doesn't get sued. And he can't be bothered by having to call you (some third party that in his eyes is "amateur hour" because you didn't write up a contract) and sort this mess out. Bobby misses out on his big shot.

Yeah, it's a drag that things play out this way, but that's business. If that doesn't jive with you, then *don't deal with the business aspect*. That's the way I roll, frankly. I happen to have an artist that I'm producing and recording essential pro-bono (he buys me beer). The assumption is that he'll kick me some money if he ever gets big, but I certainly don't talk points and sales thresholds with him -- that would start me down that business path and I'm not interested in that. We just putz around the studio and get hammered.
__________________
nickm - endless blue - triphop from milwaukee, wi
www.endlessblue.com
www.myspace.com/endlessblue
nickm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-06-2009, 08:58 PM   #89
yep
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 2,007
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tedwood View Post
...Here in the UK...
Seriously, what you think you're talking about has nothing to do with it. My younger sister lives in London and sits on the board of directors of a UK record label. And although she knows zero about music or recording, she knows an awful lot more about the business than most people on this forum.

If you want to produce someone in the UK or the US or Ghana or wherever, and you want to do it for free in the hopes of possibly getting something in the future, then just do it. Produce it for free, and shake hands with a gentleman's agreement that if the artist ever makes any money they'll send you a fruit basket or a million pounds or whatever seems appropriate to them at the time. And then you are free to rely on their on their good English manners to take care of you appropriately when and if the time comes, according to their own discretion.

You freely give them a gift of producing their record now, and they can freely give you a gift when and if they ever get rich from it. No harm, no foul, no commitments.

But in English Common law, a contract is a binding agreement, whether verbal or written (except in real estate, where it must be written). A first-time artist who owes a 2% of gross producer royalty to a third party is practically untouchable. For one thing, the artist himself may never see 2% of gross on the first releases, or may have it entirely spent on advances, promotion, touring, and video costs. For another, the label or distributor who signs him does not want to be on the hook to you for all the nebulous gray-area sales that artist made on his way to getting signed in the first place, but they may be, whether or not you care about pursuing it. It's not some anonymous bedroom producer they're scared of, it's his brother-in-law lawyer or whoever that overhears "you know, I produced that record..." when the song comes on the radio.

And you can post on forums and genuinely mean it when you say that you're a good and decent fellow and a true Englishman would never sue for more than he's entitled to, but a legitimate business has an obligation to the law and their shareholders to assume that legal obligations are real obligations.

Seriously, if you want to get paid for something, charge up-front. If you want to it for free in hopes of some future consideration when and if it makes any money, then do it for free, and then hope for some future consideration when and if it makes any money. The worst business situations in the world (and the world includes the UK) are situations where people signed or committed to agreements that they didn't really "mean," or where there are a hundred unspoken ifs, ands, or buts that are not explicitly agreed to.

Honest business is not like credit-card agreements, where the legalese is just there to screw the poorer party. In honest business agreements, the purpose of the written contract is to spell out what was agreed to in principle by the two parties over a handshake, and to make sure there are no misunderstandings. The role of a lawyer is not to set up traps and legal "gotchas," it is to prevent them. The lawyer knows what kinds of details can sometimes turn into a million dollar difference for their client. The lawyer knows what kinds of ambiguities and loopholes the other party's lawyer will exploit when and if there is ever real money on the line.

And remember, it's not your client, but his label's lawyers who will decide what you are entitled to, and whether the agreement is acceptable. *If* you produce a great record and it gets traction and a major label or distributor decides to release it, *and* your client legally owes you nothing, then at least you get a producer credit on a commercial release (and whatever your honorable English client decides to send you in thanks). But if, on the other hand, you and the client have some vague royalty agreement, then best case is the label's lawyers will tell them to pay to re-record it so that you can be cut out.

More likely, they will determine that record can't safely (legally) be simply "re-recorded," since production is not just engineering, and you may well still have a legal claim on a remake of the record that you produced. Moreover, an artist with a ready-made record, ready for release, is a totally different prospect from an artist who needs to have a whole new record produced. It's a whole different ballgame. This is what I mean about "poisoning" a career. Englishmen may be men of honor, but I can tell you from experience that English lawyers do not rate honor very highly when advising their clients on whether to risk real money.

It's not just about you and your client. It's about everyone else that might affect your client's future, but who has zero relationship with you.

Lastly, it's way past time to take this discussion into another thread, since it has nothing to do with the topic.
yep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-06-2009, 09:54 PM   #90
Tedwood
Human being with feelings
 
Tedwood's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: South Coast UK
Posts: 14,303
Default

You guys are so obviously talking at cross purposes I wish I could bo back and un-post my post.

the law is not involved here, it's just a simple human principal we grow up with and adopt - known as "you scratch my back and Ill scratch yours" in fact if yo know much about nature that's what primates do. sorry to be patronising but it seems I need to point out that simplicity of it.

So I if may offer up a scenario of a similar type, lets' say my neigbour can help me one way, and I can repay him in kind another way, we don't tell anyone that does not need to know. If my neighbour then tells the tax man I did some work for him, but he did some work for me he would be a fucking idiot, and I would have spotted that in the first place, wouldn't I?

The fact that you know people that work in the UK Yep does not mean that you can pick up the culture by some sort of symbiosis, you still have the world view as is conditioned in you, to think otherwise would be quite arrogant, and that's what I take issue with.

It's very simple, we just agree on a plan and try to be decent about it. If one party is not up to it then the relationship breaks down. It's the way of life, I know this because I have been in business for many years. Most people people will actually prefer not to even think about law and contracts because of the constricting effect it has, they only fall back on those things when they need to, such as in the ownership of land and property etc. This is not anything of the sort. There is no property at stake, it's just work

It's an arrangement between two people. You seem to be obsessed with some postulation of what go awry in the future but that would only happen if one of the parties was an idiot and said something the would make a future negotiation difficult, but that should never happen because whatever deal we come up with will automatically be in the past and not worthy of mention

Yes I agree it's past time this moved on to something useful, but "seriously" Yep, maybe you should have started a new thread yourself about law and contracts and I would never read any of it
__________________
The grass is greener where it rains
Tedwood is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-06-2009, 10:51 PM   #91
yep
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 2,007
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tedwood View Post
...
Yes I agree it's past time this moved on to something useful, but "seriously" Yep, maybe you should have started a new thread yourself about law and contracts and I would never read any of it
Maybe I did, before you ever posted OT (and maybe it has already been vouched for by lawyers from the UK):

http://forum.cockos.com/showthread.p...light=business

Or maybe you should never have asked for legal/business advice since you are so certain you don't actually need it, and since it has nothing to do with the topic at hand.

You keep talking about culture but contracts are about law. You know nothing about me or how I do business or keep promises, you simply set me up as a target to accuse for things you think shouldn't be so about the world of business.

What I am telling you is not how things should be, not what I think will happen or would like to happen, nor what I would do or how I would approach anything. What I am telling you is how actual global businesses with real money at stake approach things. Maybe you will only work with clients who will only ever aspire to sell records to honest Englishmen in the UK, and who would not deign to do business with Universal or Virgin or any other global company that hired lawyers. That's fine. Do whatever you want.

You asked for advice, I offered some, free of charge, at my own expense, based on long experience. You clearly decided, without having any knowledge of where I've lived, where I was raised, what I know, or anything else about me, that I am culturally incapable of understanding the nuance of how business legal dealings work in the UK. Whatever. You are entitled to your own presumptions and prejudices.

It is clear that you have already decided the answer you want to hear. You were asking not for advice but for affirmation. In any case, the quality of the thread has been significantly degraded by the whole aside (my responses included).

I'm done with this aside. Have at it about how decent and honest Englishmen are compared to the rest of the world, and about how contracts and business law don't really matter in the UK.

Last edited by yep; 11-06-2009 at 11:32 PM.
yep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-07-2009, 05:04 AM   #92
Tedwood
Human being with feelings
 
Tedwood's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: South Coast UK
Posts: 14,303
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by yep View Post

You asked for advice, I offered some, free of charge, at my own expense.
No I didn't actually, I think you may have assumed I needed it because I had entirely made up my mind. This thread started going OT when you started telling me what to do IMO
__________________
The grass is greener where it rains

Last edited by Tedwood; 11-07-2009 at 05:16 AM.
Tedwood is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-10-2009, 12:45 PM   #93
thinking allowed
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 43
Default

If it were me, I'd do it for free, or maybe some hopeful arrangement on someone's word. If the recording went platinum, and the artist dissed me, I wasn't compensated with some friendly bonus or leg up, I'd hire a lawyer and make a case. My case would be very hard though... no paperwork.

Maybe you should discuss your agreement during the tracking phase?
(oops ...left the mics on)
thinking allowed is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-10-2009, 02:52 PM   #94
west_west
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 5
Default

If this guy sold platinum and doesn't want to share the profit you would probaly get your fair share of it anyway. You would most likely be able to market yourself as the producer and engineer that got his career started and get a way in as independent producer/studio. That's just what I think.

Anyway I think it's time to leave this topic. I feel that this is totaly of topic and basically just ruins the good atmosphere that was here before. I would like to get back to the producing thing. I don't have a lot of questions, but I think that is because I'm too stupid to know what question to ask. But I long for more.
west_west is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-10-2009, 03:35 PM   #95
Toft
Human being with feelings
 
Toft's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 287
Default

I'm with westy. I do have a question, though.

One of the roles I imagine a producer has to take on pretty regularly, is that of coach/encourager/inspirer. You know, the guy saying "that take was great, now take it up a notch, really let me have it, I want to feel the pain" etc

Does anyone have any suggestions as to how to make this work as a producer of yourself? I know it's popular for sports stars to hype themselves up - does anyone do this while tracking?
Toft is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-10-2009, 04:09 PM   #96
Tedwood
Human being with feelings
 
Tedwood's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: South Coast UK
Posts: 14,303
Default

Toft, that's what I am about - encouraging the lad.

Do people seriously think I came here to shoot down the thread.....I'm baffled!!!

If people think I steered the thread off topic I don't know how, I was just talking about producing - and my situation is not exactly million miles from "producing yourself" (thread title).

It hasn't been nailed down yet, but it's about as near as you can get to producing yourself, on this sort of level.

For those people that can't read between the lines, there would be a verbal agreement between me and the talent (verbal contract) and I would produce a written contract, just to remind us what we agreed to in case we forgot - that makes everything legal. The only difference is that we won't have to pay some music lawyer to do what we can agree to ouselves

To stop any more so called "off topics" what I have in mind but have not agreed yet is that if the dude wants to sell the recordings anywhere he should pay me a perecentage of his profit (since I did it for free), I might help him to sell them, and if we get on we get more pro about it, let's cross that bridge when we get there, but like I say this is something I will agree with him and his dad in writing - all legal see!

The main portion of interests is in "seeing the project through" and being some kind of partner, if for a short time - then you let it go

Maybe he should read this thread, I certainly would not mind - I even thought about sending him the link but I thought it might poison his career

...as for all the talk about musicians going platinum, you have been well and truly sucked in. Who did you meet casually that went platinum recently and is worth chasing for a piece of the action? you have much better chance on the lottery - with no effort involved.

Nobody really gives a shit about record labels any more or if they do they are barking up the wrong tree
__________________
The grass is greener where it rains

Last edited by Tedwood; 11-10-2009 at 06:29 PM.
Tedwood is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-10-2009, 08:23 PM   #97
nickm
Human being with feelings
 
nickm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 107
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Toft View Post
One of the roles I imagine a producer has to take on pretty regularly, is that of coach/encourager/inspirer. You know, the guy saying "that take was great, now take it up a notch, really let me have it, I want to feel the pain" etc
I'd say that this is one of the primary jobs of a producer. Getting the most out of the talent is an art, and the best producers are excellent at it. Every artist has a different set of "buttons" that will make them shine, and the producer needs to find them and push them.

yep had some great ideas on this regarding vocalists in WDYRSLA, lemme see if I can dig 'em up.

This is also one of the difficult hurdles to overcome when producing yourself -- it's hard to walk the fine line between not trying hard enough and obsessing about your sound. Taking a step back and assessing your personality and motivation is helpful but can only take you so far. I have a much easier time coaching my vocalist than judging my own parts and production. Similarly, it seems to really help to bounce ideas for arrangement and mixing off her just to see if I'm going in the right direction or if I'm totally in left field.
__________________
nickm - endless blue - triphop from milwaukee, wi
www.endlessblue.com
www.myspace.com/endlessblue
nickm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-10-2009, 08:36 PM   #98
nickm
Human being with feelings
 
nickm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 107
Default

Here's the two "Better Vocal Recordings" posts. While they get pretty into the actual recording theory, there's a lot of nuggets that would apply to being a producer. The whole reason I remember these posts was that I copied and mailed 'em to my singer, who I often bring in as a vocal producer when recording other bands...

http://forum.cockos.com/showpost.php...&postcount=364

http://forum.cockos.com/showpost.php...&postcount=365
__________________
nickm - endless blue - triphop from milwaukee, wi
www.endlessblue.com
www.myspace.com/endlessblue
nickm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-10-2009, 08:55 PM   #99
yep
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 2,007
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Toft View Post
I'm with westy. I do have a question, though.

One of the roles I imagine a producer has to take on pretty regularly, is that of coach/encourager/inspirer. You know, the guy saying "that take was great, now take it up a notch, really let me have it, I want to feel the pain" etc

Does anyone have any suggestions as to how to make this work as a producer of yourself? I know it's popular for sports stars to hype themselves up - does anyone do this while tracking?
What makes a great coach, boss, or producer is somewhat nebulous. Some absolutely abysmal human beings that nobody likes still manage to inspire superhuman results from the people they work with. Others are like a best friend and secret muse rolled into one. Others still are simply workmanlike and detached. Some create pressure and negative energy, some create bliss and positive energy, some just help everyone to keep an even keel and a focus on results.

Likewise, some musicians may respond better or worse to some managerial styles. A good producer or coach is not necessarily the one who keeps everyone happy, she is the one who gets the best results, preferably in a time- and cost-effective way.

So this is something you will have to feel out for yourself, to some degree. As both athlete and coach, so to speak, you are relying on yourself to sort out your own "style" from possibly two different perspectives. I.e., you need to not only perform at your best, you also need to find the best way to evaluate and direct your own performance.

Some pieces of advice I would suggest are:

- Work on a schedule, and make deadlines. You may not always meet every deadline, but you will at least start to have a sense of what is working as expected and what is not. If you set yourself a goal of blocking out basic arrangements for song one on tuesday, song two on thursday, and song three on sunday, and Sunday comes around and you're still trying to figure out the intro for song one, then, if nothing else, you know it's time to take off the performer hat and put on the producer hat and ask yourself what's really the problem here.

- At the beginning and the end of every session, take a deep breath and think about the results you want to achieve in a clinical way. If today's job is tracking vocals, is the objective to record the greatest vocal performance of all time (that is a perfectly legitimate goal), or to get enough decent takes to comp together something passable and roughly in time/tune, or to nail the high notes/difficult passages and then fill it out with double-tracks or punch-ins later, or to get a decent bed that you can embellish or re-record later, or what? Making those decisions intelligently might depend partly on the schedule and session goals, and partly on your mental and physical state and other realities. One of the greatest benefits of having a good producer is simply having someone who knows when to say enough is enough, and how to make on-the-fly adjustments without totally abandoning the plan, and so on.

- Avoid, or at least minimize the temptations of superstition and circumstantial thinking. Maybe your last great vocal track was recorded at 3am when you came home drunk and exhausted, or maybe it was recorded one day when you woke up early and couldn't get back to sleep. Whatever. That does not mean that you need to be in that condition to get the "magic."

- Play to your strengths, rather than trying to overcome weaknesses. Real accomplishment is different from school, where nobody pays attention to the "A" you got in one subject if you failed another. Do you worry that your songs all seem to be in similar keys, or all seem to have similar structures, or all use the same instrumentation, etc? Well so do many of the most successful albums of all time. A record should be a *record* of what you do well, rather than a showcase of what you are capable of. It's not a resume, it's the actual job. There is nothing wrong with being a one-trick pony, if it's a good trick. Watching a great card magician perform a bunch of great card tricks is a lot more enjoyable than watching him perform a few great card tricks interspersed with a lot of other mediocre tricks. This does not mean that you should not aspire to grow and develop as a musician, just that actual produced records are not the place to do it.

-Last but most, separate "production" from "working out ideas" (a.k.a "pre-production"). Seriously. Do not get caught in the trap of coming up with a cool idea and then spending forever trying to make it sound like a finished song. When experimenting, I like to just record all the ideas, however hodge-podge or disjointed, in one project file, and keep scrolling past the old stuff and recording new versions starting after the last, so a single project file might have five or ten different versions all in sequence from oldest to newest and the last is always the newest (not necessarily the best). At some point, it starts to feel "right" or very close to, and then I'll save as a new project, deleting all the other versions, typically using the rough version as a bed/scratch track to start recording the "real" version.

THEN I will start to record with all the guitars fresh-strung and scrupulously set up and tuned, and all the mics and levels carefully placed, the drums tuned correctly, etc. Working this way has two advantages: I don't need to worry about the sonic details while experimenting, AND, by the time the project is really "production ready," everyone has developed a pretty good ability to play the whole thing through, more or less.

The above methodology might or might not be ideal for anyone else, but the point is to avoid the trap of recording one killer measure or verse or whatever and then somehow trying to stretch that recording into a finished record. Sometimes the first recording is the best, but often it's not. Howard Hughes in his later years got to collecting all his urine and such, thinking every drop was a precious gem. Don't be like that.
yep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-11-2009, 10:20 AM   #100
nickm
Human being with feelings
 
nickm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 107
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by yep View Post
THEN I will start to record with all the guitars fresh-strung and scrupulously set up and tuned, and all the mics and levels carefully placed, the drums tuned correctly, etc. Working this way has two advantages: I don't need to worry about the sonic details while experimenting, AND, by the time the project is really "production ready," everyone has developed a pretty good ability to play the whole thing through, more or less.
+100000000

On all my self-produced albums up to now I've taken a "record and mix as you go" mentality, and I think it is a detriment to the final product for all the reasons above. An additional problem I've run into is that it is really difficult to change the arrangement of a song that you've put a lot of time into. That chorus you spent hours getting to sound just right needs shortening, but you feel a distinct urge to resist the changes...

On my latest project, I've mentally flipped a switch and have spent zero time polishing tracks that are still being written. Not until I have all the scratch tracks for the entire album ready to go will we switch gears and do real tracking. Sadly, wish I had the luxury of deadlines... Damn you real life!
__________________
nickm - endless blue - triphop from milwaukee, wi
www.endlessblue.com
www.myspace.com/endlessblue
nickm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-11-2009, 02:40 PM   #101
jussi
Human being with feelings
 
jussi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 311
Default

We are all unique individuals, we should praise that uniqueness instead of letting our ego compare us to what we are not. If you're striving to achieve someone's uniqueness, the best you can get is a representation of what that person means to you (and to lots of people it is a known artist).

"Great, now I know to record/mix just like X and I write/sing songs that sound exactly like band Y, I can even fool people into thinking my songs are from that band's next unreleased album... so...uh.. now what?"

Shut your ego and all the things that prevent you from being YOU and transposing YOUR life into YOUR music and productions... meditate on that and don't miss out the wave when you are in the "ultra zone" of composition/recording/mixing/farting/whatever.


My cents (of Euro)

jussi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-11-2009, 02:44 PM   #102
Bubbagump
Human being with feelings
 
Bubbagump's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Posts: 2,024
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by yep View Post

Where people get bogged down and overwhelmed is when they try to write the song, record the drums, change the guitar sound, experiment with drum samples, mix the drums, and change the bassline ALL AT ONCE.
Ding.... I seem to take on the producer role quite frequently. If I am lucky I can pull the "I am a mystic born of the spirit world... just trust me and all will be well." This is great as things can be managed easily. However, you get the folks that want to finish a song at a time which is really pretty inefficient.

For instance... I have a current project of about 20 some songs. The one band member was starting to freak out that progress was not being made as "We only have 3 songs 100% complete!!!" I had to sit him down and explain the method to the madness. Listen, I have a dead line of April 2010. We have horn sections, strings quartets, arrangers, backup vocalists and a dozen other balls in the air. To complete a song 100% one at a time is not practical. A song may sit and collect dust for 3 months until some arrangement or musician is available. What WILL happen is that it will all come together towards the end. Start with the basic rhythm tracks and preproduction. Preproduction dictates what the arrangements will be and what arrangers need to be hired, what outside musicians need to be hired and scheduled etc.

It is a bit of a hurry up and wait process for many people involved in the process... but the producer is the poor guy that is making sure it all comes together in the end.... the best analogy I can think of is a general contractor. You have to make sure the plumbing, electric, and drywall are all done at the right times and often times around each other so one doesn't slow down or create rework of the other.
__________________
www.theslang.com
Bubbagump is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-11-2009, 03:03 PM   #103
spaz bouviere
Human being with feelings
 
spaz bouviere's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 58
Default

thank you so very much indeed yep, you have not only enlightened me on new techniques but have clarified so many things that i kind of new anyway. you have a natural gift for explanation and i'm honoured to have been on the receiving end of it. as a result, i now work faster and with better results. i cant express my thanks enough :-)
spaz bouviere is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-24-2009, 08:01 PM   #104
Smurf
Human being with feelings
 
Smurf's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 2,171
Default

OK new yep threads are up, including the STS & the updated producer thread! Over 300 Pages in both PDF & RTF formats!

Yep Threads - Up To 11-24-09, Thread # 1014

Sorry it has taken so long, still unpacking! LOL
__________________
Yep's First 3 Years in PDF's
HP Z600 w/3GHz 12 Core, 48GB Memory, nVidia Quadro 5800, 240GB SSD OS drive, 3 480GB SSD Sample/Storage drives, 18TB External Storage, Dual 27" Monitors
Smurf is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2009, 11:18 PM   #105
johnnymosh
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 10
Default YEP

I love this tune...tis the epitomy of production...and bless ya for waking the masses!!!!!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vjc-FuyDgaA
johnnymosh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2009, 06:08 PM   #106
yep
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 2,007
Default

I recently read an article on the development of the video game Half-Life 2 (released in 2004). For those who don't know, Half-Life 2 is widely regarded as the best video game ever made, with an unbeaten, near-perfect score on review-aggregate sites such as metacritic, and a general reputation for having elevated the art of video games to a level yet-unmatched. Total revenues are unknown, but every indication is that HL2 has made as much or more money than all but the biggest Hollywood blockbusters, probably somewhere in the order of $700m worldwide.

It also had a very long and notoriously troubled development history that included multiple delays, many, many millions of dollars in cost overruns, having the source code stolen and released publicly by a hacker in a case that led to international intrigue and press, one of the original partners quitting the company, and all kinds of flame wars and feuds in the video-game world.

In the article, one of the developers says something like: "in any creative effort, there is a point where you're halfway through and you start thinking: why are we even doing this? But you just keep going, and that doubt makes it better. And somehow in the end you create something better than original vision."

I think that often, the most talented and original people are most susceptible to this "halfway frustration" and self-doubt. Bad musicians often have no qualms whatsoever about playing the loudest and most insistently. Those who give up when they are closest to achieving something meaningful are often those who are most ambitious and most capable, since they are also the most demanding critics. Where the incompetent hack sees nothing wrong with sounding halfway as good as the worst song on the radio, the skilled visionary starts to think himself a failure for not being categorically better than the best stuff ever recorded.

The value of having a producer, or even of simply being able to put on a workmanlike "producer hat" is that it keeps you moving forward. There is the old adage: "obstacles are the things you see when you take your eyes off the goal". The people who make things happen are those who, instead of asking: "can I do this?" ask: "HOW can I do this?"
yep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2009, 06:28 PM   #107
DerMetzgermeister
Human being with feelings
 
DerMetzgermeister's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 1,392
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by yep View Post

In the article, one of the developers says something like: "in any creative effort, there is a point where you're halfway through and you start thinking: why are we even doing this? But you just keep going, and that doubt makes it better. And somehow in the end you create something better than original vision."
One of my personal heroes is Werner Herzog. The scope of his ambition and artistic integrity always amaze me.
Did you see "Fitzcarraldo", or the documentary made about the production of that movie, "Burden of Dreams"?
Every time I'm delayed by some factor outside my control (most times another band member that doesn't take things seriously) I say to myself, "Well, at least I'm not dragging a hundred ton ship over a hill in the Amazon.."
I don't know what else I will have to do to complete this record I'm working on but if that includes making someone work at gun point (as allegedly Herzog did with Kinski in the set of "Aguirre, Der Zorn Gottes"), well... Phil Spector did exactly that a number of times. You got to do what you got to do.
DerMetzgermeister is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2009, 07:04 PM   #108
Sigilus
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 2,763
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by yep View Post
I think that often, the most talented and original people are most susceptible to this "halfway frustration" and self-doubt. Bad musicians often have no qualms whatsoever about playing the loudest and most insistently. Those who give up when they are closest to achieving something meaningful are often those who are most ambitious and most capable, since they are also the most demanding critics. Where the incompetent hack sees nothing wrong with sounding halfway as good as the worst song on the radio, the skilled visionary starts to think himself a failure for not being categorically better than the best stuff ever recorded.
:O

This is me.
Sigilus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2009, 07:06 PM   #109
yep
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 2,007
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by DerMetzgermeister View Post
One of my personal heroes is Werner Herzog. The scope of his ambition and artistic integrity always amaze me.
Did you see "Fitzcarraldo", or the documentary made about the production of that movie, "Burden of Dreams"?
Every time I'm delayed by some factor outside my control (most times another band member that doesn't take things seriously) I say to myself, "Well, at least I'm not dragging a hundred ton ship over a hill in the Amazon.."
I don't know what else I will have to do to complete this record I'm working on but if that includes making someone work at gun point (as allegedly Herzog did with Kinski in the set of "Aguirre, Der Zorn Gottes"), well... Phil Spector did exactly that a number of times. You got to do what you got to do.
I think "Aguirre: the Wrath of God" was not less demanding than "Fitzcarraldo", but yeah. Herzog is a case study in achieving extraordinary artistic results by ignoring what it possible and instead simply deciding what will be achieved.
yep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2009, 08:34 PM   #110
yep
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 2,007
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenneth R. View Post
:O

This is me.
The trick is to realize that doing something worthwhile takes work. And also to remember that your original vision was and remains worthwhile. When you have spent the last three days trying to figure out a transition between chorus and verse, anything starts to feel like a chore, and starts to get old, and starts to seem boring and uninspired.

Musicians who can competently play hackneyed progressions well are a dime a dozen. The world is full of people who are "just as good" as the Beatles, or Stevie Ray Vaughan, or whoever, because all they need to do is learn the stuff that's already been done. A lot of them can play better than many radio hits, and complain about it, but nobody cares about the "just as good as the Beatles", because they can buy a genuine Beatles CD for the same price (or more commonly, they can pirate real Beatles songs just as easily).

Doing something different takes effort, courage, and faith. The details are hard, because nobody's ever done them before. It's easy to sound like yesterday's hits-- just copy their sound. But it's very hard to sound like tomorrow's hits, because nobody knows what they sound like yet.

Ideas are seeds-- some of them grow, a lot of them don't. But most of them require water, fertilizer, and so on. If you have a good idea, then mark it down as such and never doubt it. If it sounded like a good idea the first hundred times you played it, then it's a good idea. If it loses its lustre after 300 attempts, that's you, not the idea.

Work in small chunks. Switch to something else when you start to get bored or exhausted, but don't give up on the idea, just put it on the shelf for a while. Know and accept that a lot of it will be a chore. Massive amounts of work go into producing movies, plays, novels, and records that seem effortless. Even cooking a good meal.
yep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2009, 12:19 PM   #111
Smurf
Human being with feelings
 
Smurf's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 2,171
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by yep View Post
There is the old adage: "obstacles are the things you see when you take your eyes off the goal".
I think I will steal this......Thanks!
__________________
Yep's First 3 Years in PDF's
HP Z600 w/3GHz 12 Core, 48GB Memory, nVidia Quadro 5800, 240GB SSD OS drive, 3 480GB SSD Sample/Storage drives, 18TB External Storage, Dual 27" Monitors
Smurf is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-07-2009, 02:15 AM   #112
west_west
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 5
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by yep View Post
Ideas are seeds-- some of them grow, a lot of them don't. But most of them require water, fertilizer, and so on. If you have a good idea, then mark it down as such and never doubt it. If it sounded like a good idea the first hundred times you played it, then it's a good idea. If it loses its lustre after 300 attempts, that's you, not the idea.

Work in small chunks. Switch to something else when you start to get bored or exhausted, but don't give up on the idea, just put it on the shelf for a while. Know and accept that a lot of it will be a chore. Massive amounts of work go into producing movies, plays, novels, and records that seem effortless. Even cooking a good meal.
Great lines. One thing that I've noticed is that the great ideas seems to have the ability to sound good and touching after a couple of month if one let it rest on the shelf. Just as good or even better than it sounded when you first played it. I recently picked up one or two songs that I wrote about 6 month ago. Songs that left something in my mind that grew over time and made me think about them even though it was a long time since I played them. And they just sounded so "right". So just by letting a song rest one can often determine if it is great or just good. And as a home-recordist one often can afford that luxury.
west_west is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-07-2009, 02:44 AM   #113
Captain Damage
Human being with feelings
 
Captain Damage's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Lowell, MA, USA
Posts: 265
Default

"The composer must not be a slave to his ideas, but rather their master."
- Schoenberg
Captain Damage is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-08-2009, 06:08 PM   #114
thalweg
Human being with feelings
 
thalweg's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 34
Default

Yep, your view points on the producers role generally reflects the qualities of the successful and ambitious, regardless of profession. Sure there are instances of blind circumstantial luck, but preparation, planning and priority are key activities in seeing any successful project through.

There are no silver bullets and differing ways to skin the cat, but the three "p's" above are essential ingredients.

That said, my biggest problem was always trying to change the world and invent a new genre. Thats a huge and unrealistic burden that will always leave you disatisfied with the end result.

Last edited by thalweg; 12-08-2009 at 06:17 PM.
thalweg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2009, 07:45 PM   #115
yep
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 2,007
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by thalweg View Post
Yep, your view points on the producers role generally reflects the qualities of the successful and ambitious, regardless of profession...
Yes, exactly. The critical idea for a hit record, a cure for cancer, a longer-lasting lightbulb, or a convenient way to organize the hall closet might come in an instantaneous flash of brilliance (or in a drawn-out process of revision, whatever), but actually making those things happen usually requires work, expense, and often a lot of doubt and frustration before the thing comes into being.

The point is not that recording *should be* nor *must be* a difficult, chore-like, doubt-filled process (it's best when it is not). The point is that it sometimes *is* those things, often when it is closest to achieving its best potential.

Quote:
That said, my biggest problem was always trying to change the world and invent a new genre. Thats a huge and unrealistic burden that will always leave you disatisfied with the end result.
Without getting too far off track, I would caution anyone, in any endeavor, against *trying* to be innovative. I would always suggest trying to be GOOD, and let the innovation take care of itself, if it does. It is very possible to do extraordinarily good and worthwhile work without necessarily doing anything terribly innovative. Also, a lot of "invented" genres of music are transient fads, and not very good ones.

Most if not all of the best innovation happens accidentally, or in small increments, or by blurring lines between stuff that's already been done, until one day it turns out to have evolved into something entirely new.

When you go back and try to categorically pin down the first "techno" track, or the first "rock n' roll" song, or the first "jazz" recording, or the first "heavy metal" band, or the first "rap", it's pretty hard to do, in the sense that there is no specific point where you can find a song that sounds categorically different than anything that have ever come before. Yet any of those things are very distinctive-- it seems pretty easy to distinguish heavy metal from jazz or rap.

Metallica is definitely heavy metal. Black Sabbath is almost certainly heavy metal. Led Zeppelin *might* be heavy metal. Steppenwolf *could* be heavy metal, but probably isn't. A whole host of 1960s garage rock bands that played minor-key, riff-based guitar rock almost certainly were not.

In Darwinian natural selection, it is effectively impossible for there to be any single "first" member of a new species, since a key part of the definition of a species is that it can only produce viable offspring with other members of its own species. A single specimen that has nobody to reproduce with is just a mutant. (please nobody spin this off into a pro/anti evolution thing-- the example is relevant whether you agree with the theory or not)

If your own musical ideas do not fit neatly into any clearly-defined genre, terrific. Pursue them, and do not ever think that you have to alter your inspiration to fit a radio-station format. But if you're sitting there, trying to think of a way to create a "new genre," my advice would be to drop that from the agenda, and let your new genre create itself, if it will, by making the best music you can make.
yep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2009, 08:12 PM   #116
yep
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 2,007
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain Damage View Post
"The composer must not be a slave to his ideas, but rather their master."
- Schoenberg
This is the flipside to having faith in your ideas, and working through them.

It might be a bit over-stated to force it into an either/or, slave/master, one-or-the-other proposition (in the most basic sense, any composer is always at least somewhat at the mercy of the quality of his "ideas"), but it's a good point, nonetheless.

Sometimes that killer bassline or guitar riff that you spent weeks coming up with and figuring out is just too busy or too distracting from the important essence of the song. Sometimes the cleverest bit of lyric is too clever by half and just doesn't fit. Sometimes the sad, melancholy acoustic ballad that you wrote in a bout of depressed introspection works better as an up-tempo rock or dance track, or vice-versa. Sometimes a brilliant 100-line poem really needs to be cut down to eight lines repeated twice to work as a song.

A lot of times, songs as initially written are "too minor". A lot of beginning songwriters have a tendency to try to make their most intensely-felt material *too* intense, and instead of coming across as emotionally powerful, it comes off sounding a bit ham-handed or plodding, tedious, or overwrought. Some of the most emotionally powerful material combines deeply affecting lyrics with funky, melodic, pentatonic, up-tempo, or even major-key backing material. Think "Papa was a Rolling Stone" by the Temptations, or "Hurricane" by Dylan, or "Imagine" by John Lennon, or "Whole Wide World" by Wreckless Eric, or countless others. Contrast breeds poignancy and emotional sharpness.

The "idea" that matters is the core psycho-emotional response of the song, not necessarily the specific notes or words.
yep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2009, 09:44 AM   #117
thalweg
Human being with feelings
 
thalweg's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 34
Default

Thanks Yep, I learned the Genre changing game the hard way. Heading down to the studio would be an intimidating and frustrating experience. Trying to balance creative "game changers" simultaneously with engineering production would put such huge pressure on the process. I can without a doubt endorse your recommendations on approach 100%. Simply, separate the art from science in multiple sessions, and have planned and achievable milestones.

That said, I continued to search for ways to include differentiators in my music. Continually looking for ways that would make my songs appealing enough to be included in the average listeners play-list.

This might be abundantly clear to others, but I'm slowly coming to the realization that as an instrumentalist and budding engineer that *LYRICS* and the syncopated delivery with a well crafted melody are hugely important ingredients in differentiating your music. In fact, I'm almost convinced that getting your fat bass sound, meshing perfectly with the drums is of significantly less importance than interesting lyrics with a great melody.



Just my viewpoint
thalweg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2009, 11:39 AM   #118
GregHolmes
Human being with feelings
 
GregHolmes's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 399
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by thalweg View Post
This might be abundantly clear to others, but I'm slowly coming to the realization that as an instrumentalist and budding engineer that *LYRICS* and the syncopated delivery with a well crafted melody are hugely important ingredients in differentiating your music. In fact, I'm almost convinced that getting your fat bass sound, meshing perfectly with the drums is of significantly less importance than interesting lyrics with a great melody.
Words and rhythm - all that really matters.
__________________
Greg Holmes | play:GregHolmes.com | work:GHServices.com
GregHolmes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2009, 09:55 PM   #119
yep
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 2,007
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by thalweg View Post
...I'm almost convinced that getting your fat bass sound, meshing perfectly with the drums is of significantly less importance than interesting lyrics with a great melody...
Vocals are always the most important part. For a long time, lyrics and melody were considered the sole copyrightable definition of a "song". A lot of home musicians get this backwards, and slave over the instrumentation and then record weak, timid, half-assed vocal tracks and expect that people are going to hear "how it's supposed to sound" vocally or something.

the fact that the musician is a brilliant guitarist or a wizard with synths and loop construction means very little if the vocal is weak. A mediocre singer with a good band sounds like a mediocre song (albeit maybe with good backing tracks). A great singer with a mediocre but competent band sounds like a great song, period.
yep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2009, 11:15 PM   #120
capthook
Human being with feelings
 
capthook's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: USA
Posts: 143
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by yep View Post
A mediocre singer with a good band sounds like a mediocre song (albeit maybe with good backing tracks). A great singer with a mediocre but competent band sounds like a great song, period.
The point of the importance of a quality singer is well taken.

But to thalweg's point, the *melody* (song) is the grand-daddy IMO.
Bob Dylan is but one example of success amongst the countless others without great singing ability.

An avg. singer w/ an avg. band with a great song performed with passion will most times outshine an awesome singer/band with a poor song.

Lacking an excellent singer doesn't mean no hope of success.
A great singer is a relatively rare thing compared to all the other aspects as you are either born with the gift or not, rather than an external instrument.
Writing a great song, with a great arrangement/production/performance is a strong formula for success.
(and thus the importance of 'producing yourself' well)

Sure, getting 20 out of 20 things a perfect '10.0' would be great.
But absolute perfection amongst every aspect is highly unlikely.
And weakness in one area can often be overcome by excellence in the others,
except the song.
And vocal ability as a norm is near the top of the list.
But IMO the song = #1.
capthook is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 12:59 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions Inc.