Jaxis

Hopefully I'm in the right place..?

6 posts in this topic

Hello, I'm an individual looking to get into creating music such as chillstep, dubstep (mostly melodic dubstep), liquid DnB, future garage, etc. as a creative outlet. I want to be able to create music for myself & eventually be able to share them with friends. Being able to create music that we can dance to or just relax to would be absolutely amazing. I've been watching videos & reading everything I can about music theory, I'm currently learning how to play piano & guitar, I've downloaded the free trial of Reaper, & I was able to get a copy of FL Studio 9 from a friend. I've started reading the manual & watching instructional videos for both programs as well. Also, I mainly listen to music with my V-Moda Crossfade M-100 headphones. So... what else should I be doing? And what's my next step? Any advice would be much appreciated.  ^_^

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Hey, welcome aboard. You're in the right place, pretty much.

 

First thing - none of the styles of music you've listed require any particular musical ability. A good ear and some talent help, but there's no necessity in electronic music when you're producing to be a musician as such. Live - different story.

 

Next, focus on just one application. FL will give you the quickest and most satisfying results of the programs you have, IMO. You'll more quickly get into make sounds and beats than you will with reaper. You'll eventually want to learn something like reaper... but FL is pretty powerful these days and a great way to start expressing yourself and getting some idea's out of your head. Also a good way to start learning about mixing and the way you control synthesisers, structure loops etc.

 

So i recon you're on the right path - just pick one program, focus on that and start fiddling. Be patient - even if you're a great musician the technical aspects of making a whole track can be daunting and take a while to master.

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Oh ok cool, good to know that I won't be out of place here but I do have some questions regarding your comment. If that's ok.  :unsure:

 

I just wanted to clarify why you don't believe that musical ability is really necessary. Is it because I'm just doing it as a creative outlet? Or are the types of music I listed just focused on what sounds good or something? If so, what types of music will require musical ability then? Anything non-electronic? :huh: Because even though those are the types of music I would like to start out with, they are not the only types that I want to get into.

 

And, since this is all for curiosity's sake, you said that things would be different for live. What kind of advice would you have given me if I was going in that direction?

 

Thank you for all the advice so far though! I hope that I'm not being too much of a burden already.  -_-

 

On a side note: These emoticons are so fun to use. This is gettin' addicting.  :blush:

 

Edit: ONE MORE THING! I mentioned in my first post that I mainly use my M-100's to listen to music, is that going to be a problem? They have a V-shaped sound signature so would I need to invest in something with a flatter response?

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There's plenty of people making good electronic music who have no formal musical training. That doesn't mean they're not musicians, but they lack the technical ability to play something like classical or jazz piano. What i'm suggesting is don't be deterred from trying to make music just because you haven't mastered an instrument. In some cases, the musical training helps write electronic music... in other instances, people seemed confined to doing what they know and can't really make anything good. Electronic music is frowned upon by a lot of traditional musicians for that reason - it's opening up the ability to be musically creative to people who lack the formal training playing an instrument. I think historically, you'll find Jazz and blues musicians years ago were also "looked down on" by formally trained musicians as many lacked the means to get formal training, can't read music etc. 

 

All i'm saying is don't get hung up on need to be a musician just to have some fun, make a few tracks and see where it leads. You don't need to be able to play piano etc. to make good tracks. BUT i doubt it will hurt to have the skills and if it interest you and you enjoy it - even more reason to do it.

 

If you're playing live, it helps to be able to play the instrument you're using. Otherwise, you're basically a DJ with extra knobs and shit in front of them. But, before you can play electronic music live, you need to have produced it or be part of a 'band' of like minded individuals. So it's a little different to traditional music in that you can make music entirely on your own and more often than not, you're actually building an entire track maybe with one or two collaborators rather than being in a room with 3-4 other people 'jamming' something until it works. You'll be 'jamming' on your own, kind of. So my advice for playing live would be getting some "musicianship", learning your software/sequencer, writing some music and being prepared to lug gear into venues for next to nothing to establish yourself...

 

Don't get hung up on gear. Yes, eventually it's worth investing in some good monitors and headphones. BUT they won't determine how good your music is any more than playing classical piano for 5 years. They key is to listen to your tracks on a number of different sound systems and compare how it sounds, then adjust it so it sounds good on as many systems as possible. This is kind of 'learning' your speakers - it can be easier and more enjoyable with good monitors and headphones, but it's not essential. I'd suggest one of the best investments is a decent sound card ONCE you've learned the music production software you're using and you've started to make some tracks.

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Ah, I see. Thank you very much for all the advice. Since the time of your post, I've been messing around with FL studio some more trying to make beats. I must say that its been a lot harder than I imagined but definitely still fun. I've been mainly facing two problems so far: trying to get the beats in my head into the program & making the beats longer so its actually a song. Much of the stuff that I've made so far are pretty short.

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Yeah, i think most people start out that way. Certainly i did!

 

Don't be deterred - it gets easier and better with time... just like playing an instrument. Can still be loads of fun jamming out a loop and then playing around with different sounds and bass lines over the basic drum loop.

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