MUSIC INDUSTRY

What is a music producer, and why do I need one?

shutterstock_373495843Every recording artist has a music producer. It’s important to choose your music producer carefully as they are the people who are responsible for how your final record will sound. Make sure to be clear about the sound that you are looking for and the kind of music you would like to produce, in order to make sure that you are both on the same page, and also to avoid disappointment.

So how does one go about choosing the right music producer for themselves?

For starters, before even looking at different music producers, spend time with yourself and decide what type of sound and music you would like to produce. If you have a clear idea of what your end goal is for your songs and music then it will be a lot easier to work with a music producer. At the end of the day, your music producer can offer you guidance and help you to explore different sounds, but it’s up to you to stick with your direction and produce that sound that you’ve been looking for.

Communication is a key element when it comes to the recording process. You need to find a producer who makes you feel comfortable. Choose someone you can communicate with easily so that communication does not become a problem and this way you can avoid misunderstandings. It is good to choose a producer who has great referrals, as well as someone that you feel comfortable around. You’ll be working very closely together so make sure you choose someone who you can spend a lot of time with.

Before you hire a producer for your sound, make sure you do some research. You can opt to listening to albums that you admire, and try to find out who produced them. It’s also a great idea to get in touch with other artists and find out which producers they recommend. You get firsthand information about a producer through the experience they had with the artist. However, you should not compare your music with the other artist’s music because your sounds may not match his. Do not waste your time with a producer who works with folk musicians if you want to make a heavy metal album.

Most recording artist sign onto a record label. These are the guys who will really be responsible for helping you to make your music a success. More often than not, when you sign onto a record label, they set the terms for a music producer, because they are invested in creating the best music. But be careful because you don’t want to be stuck with a music producer who you don’t get a long with or even worse who you don’t trust. During the contract signing with the record label, you should negotiate that the music producer will be selected by both you and the company, that way, everyone is happy!

It’s really important to research the different music producers who are available. Once you’ve done that, you should right a list of your top choices, as some may not be available or interested, or maybe they’ll fall way out of your budget. First time recording artists have a harder time using well known producers, because generally speaking they don’t want to work with the unknown. So don’t be despondent, move down your list until you find the perfect fit!

Get in touch with the different producers that you are interested it. Speak to them about how they operate, what they expect from you and what your expectations are, as this makes it easier to determine if you are on the same page. If all sounds well, you may want to suggest a meeting, or invite the producer to come hear you at one of your live shows. You should also send them a demo of your music. They won’t be interested in the quality of the demo, but it will be a great way for them to get an idea of the kind of music that you make.

When you meet up with a potential music producer, you should be well prepared for the meeting. Instead of going there and enjoying  a drink together and committing to working together based on a good social interaction, use this time really well. Have a few questions in mind that you would like to ask the music producer so you can have a good understanding about how he works, what kind of music he creates and what his vision is for your music.

There’s no doubt that at this meeting the producer will also have some important questions for you, about where you see yourself heading in your music career as well as what kind of drive, motivation and work ethics you hold, because they don’t want to waste their time on someone who is not serious. Make sure to answer these questions honestly, instead of answering to please, and then realizing that you can’t follow through on what you committed to.

Once you sign on with a music producer, you’ll be spending a lot of time with them in their studio, so you’ll want to go have a look at their studio and see what it offers. Take a look at the different equipment that they use, the technical team and the sound acoustics.

Once you find a producer who checks all of your boxes, you’ll sign a contract and begin your working relationship. Together, you’ll work hard on creating a sensational music album, while you perfect your sound and create something that you can really be proud of. It may sound like a lot of work involved in finding the perfect match when it comes to a music producer, but they are essentially one of the most important people who will help you with your music career, so you’ll want to put in the time and effort to make sure you have the right fit!

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