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Messages - bryan

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Read less, make more.

This advice I need to take to heart.

I feel like I'm actually the opposite of the OP's worry.  I'm the "normal" "fit" "socialized" (married, too) guy.  However, a lot of my headspace is devoted towards music, and I'm constantly worrying and stressing that I'm not doing ENOUGH.  I know I have a passion for it and I know that I enjoy it. This has been proved for over a decade for me - it's not a passing fad.  That being said, I feel a vague unsettled anxiety that pushes me to want to create, create, create.  To the point of thinking, "I need to spend 8 hours a day in the studio."  Given that I have a full time job, I'm gone from 6:30am to 6pm everyday...soooo the whole 8 hour thing is impossible.

I try to remind myself that there is more to life than being good at music. I recently read a book called "Peak" about experts, and it made me spiral into this same hole again.  "I need to be an expert." "I need to be great."  Cuz the thing is..I actually think I CAN be great.  But I don't feel like I have the hours I need to put into the craft what I'd need to to truly be great.  So I'm back at square one.

However, I have a wife ...and someday a family.  I've heard from several new fathers about the impact a kid has on your life and how they put things into perspective.  For instance, one friend said he used to be constantly concerned about his career and moving up the ladder. When he had his first child, all of that faded away and all he wanted to do was come home and play with his kid.

I suppose I'm rambling a bit here, but I understand the OP, and like others, am still searching for that right "balance".

Sound Design / Re: Best ways to start
« on: July 19, 2016, 01:07:18 am »
Seamless is good - if you're a FL Studio user. He uses Harmor a ton. 

I am an Ableton user and don't find his tutorials that useful.  He also (IMO) is a bit narrow-scoped - he can do growl bases well...and that's about it.

Pick one of the DAWs (they're both excellent) and RTFM.  Read the .. manual. :)  Seriously.  I can't speak for FL Studio, but Ableton has a fantastic manual.  They're so useful.

Samples/Plugins/Software/Gear / Re: Piano VST?
« on: July 19, 2016, 01:05:25 am »
I've had Alicia's Keys and have used Ableton's grand piano. Both are sufficient.

rusty, i've been producing for something like 7 YEARS and I still struggle with what you're struggling with. That empty, anxiety-filled feeling of an empty project or when I've not produced in a while. I want to do music so badly that I feel it in my bones and I feel it in my soul in a way that I don't feel about other things. Not everyone cares about electronic music, but I feel I've been given a passion for it and so I trudge on.

What I'm learning (and any producer will tell you that the learning never stops) is to "go with the flow" and don't be too critical.  This advice is for both micro (riffs, sound design) and macro (producing as a whole).  When you're not so hard on yourself, you free yourself to have more FUN, and thus fulfillment. 

So the next time you open your DAW, don't set some unrealistic or pressure-packed goal.  Instead, do something FUN - something you want to do.  Maybe it's just going through the presets of a new synth, or trying to make a 4-bar drum loop.  Keep rolling with it, even if it isn't what you thought would happen. Just because it isn't a "4 on the floor banger" or an "uplifting, ethereal 9-minute trance anthem" doesn't mean it can't be fun and fulfilling. 

This is something that my wife tells me and I try to tell myself and it goes for both music making and life:



work ethic can 100% be trained/learned. it's just a habit, a different way of time management.  it takes determination and sacrifice that some may be unwilling to give, but if they want it, it's there.

i think the biggest key is perseverance and persistence. as mentioned above, what separates the great from the good is the persistent, consistent work throughout the years and moods and pressures, etc. etc. 

i do agree with your first point, lydian - there are lots of people with musical/technological talent, but not a lot who are willing to work hard (or long) enough to see that skill maximized (and in some cases, monetized).

Inspiration/Creativity/Motivation / Re: what's your goal?
« on: July 16, 2016, 01:48:31 am »
life: be a good husband and (eventually) father and friend.

music: to make music that satisfies/expresses my soul, that i'm proud of, and that people I respect think is good.

It's all about perspective, mate.

Ryan Dungey, one of the world's best motocross riders, talks specifically about that in this video:  (Part of a great series, btw)

He talks about having a life and a purpose outside of your passion. 

Although it's uncomfortable for most of us to admit, most of our lives' meaning comes from relationships with other people. Be it family or friends, we find community and satisfaction via interrelational means...sometimes us as "computer musicians" can lose sight of this, but it's important to keep your priorities straight.

You'll be alright bud.  Lots of us have gone through and are going through what you're going through. Part of the human condition. Stick with it!

Started producing/composing when I turned 16 1/2 but never took it too seriously.

Lydian, God bless you mate. I think it's great/hilarious that you're so young you refer to years in "halves".  So awesome.

Inspiration/Creativity/Motivation / Re: Creativity and Learning
« on: June 18, 2016, 02:15:47 am »
you'll always be learning.

just start doing.

Nailed it. I have to force myself to do this as well.

Virginia/United States
Progressive House, Trance, Electro
Porter Robinson, Deadmau5, Mitis, Seven Lions, Ilan Bluestone, Feed Me

Mixing/Mastering / Re: Vocal Mixing Help
« on: June 15, 2016, 11:10:32 pm »
good post Midge. thx

Inspiration/Creativity/Motivation / Re: Site to promote your music
« on: June 08, 2016, 07:12:45 pm »
umm. wut

Samples/Plugins/Software/Gear / Re: Komplete
« on: June 03, 2016, 02:31:19 am »
I will caution you, however.  Sometimes too many synths/effects/third party plugins can be detrimental to your workflow and ability to GSD (get stuff done).  If you're the type of person that won't get "distracted" by all of those different plugins and their applications, then by all means - NI makes quality software that has stood the test of time.  If, on the other hand, you find yourself frequently unable to finish tracks and get "lost" in gui's and plugins, think twice before spending your money. You may be better off purchasing one or two synths and learning them inside out.

wow. great article. thanks so much for posting.

i was particularly convicted when reading this portion:
"talent" is often a story we tell ourselves to justify our own failure or to protect children from the possibility of failure.

It's much easier (albeit more painful in the long-term) for me to just assume that others have "it" and I don't, rather than just practicing and enjoying my time with music.

keep em coming.

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