Is your latest audio production sounding a bit stale? You might want to check out our top ten production tips to get your creative juices flowing.
1. Brush up on your scales and chords
A bit of music theory can help you create better music. Understanding how music works can give you an advantage when writing a catchy tune. Learning basic scales and chords on your keyboard will really help.
2. Learn from the greats
When listening to your favourite records don’t just let the music pass over you, listen closely to the instruments and single out the best bits. Listening to the pros will often spark new ideas that you can try out in your productions.
3. Try something new
Why not try out different instruments and plugins. If you’re used to working purely in-the-box you might benefit from recording a live instrument or two. Playing a physical instrument will take you in all new directions.
4. Build a tune using loops and samples.
Many of us have hard drives full of loops and samples that we for granted. Have a dig around and audition some of the samples or construction kits that you’ve not used in a while. You might just find the foundation of a perfect beat.
5. Step away from the computer
Sitting for long hours starring at the screen can be draining and uninspiring. Why not pick up a guitar or sit at the piano and jam out some fresh ideas. You might just come up with the perfect hook for your next tune.
6. Let fate decide
This is a fairly basic technique. Set the quantize your DAW to 1/16 and record random notes with your MIDI controller. Now find a cool sounding loop and add or remove notes to your liking. This works mainly for electronic styles like minimal house or techno.
7. Keep it simple
Sometimes the best hooks and melodies are the most simplistic. The majority of your listeners won’t care about the complexity of your writing; they just want a catchy tune that they can hum along to. Keep this in mind when working on your next production.
8. Learn your controller
There’s no point having an awesome MIDI controller if you don’t know how to use it. Many controllers have extra features like dedicated transport controls. Spend some time learning how these features work; they might just save you a little time in the future.
9. Create a melody from a chord progression
If you have a solid chord progression in your track, copy it to a new channel and pitch it up an octave. Use the razor tool to split the chords into 4ths or 8ths. Now mute/delete notes until you find a melody that fits.
10. Repeat, repeat, repeat!
Repetition is the key to a catchy tune. If you find yourself humming the melody to yourself the next day then you’re onto a winner.
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