We all love making beats, but a common pitfall of producer is, that it’s hard to finish a beat. How can you avoid to collect a folder of ideas and half finished songs, and focus on building up a body of work that you are proud to show off. How can you speed up your workflow?
Having separate folders for all of your sounds etc lets you pick the right sounds quicly and move on. Go one step further and split them into 808 bass, acoustic bass, analog synth bass, etc to know exaclty where you need to go to find the sound thats in your head. When you are organizing, try to delete all sub-par sounds, so you really just have the top notch sounds available that you like to work with. It’ll make producing more fun and less of a chore.
Start with a template
In all DAWs you have the possibility to create a template that loads when you open your software of choice. This lets you get into writing music straight away and keeps your music in a similar signature style. You spend less time setting up each time, if you’re go -to sounds are ready to be used from the first minute! It’s important to get your ideas out of your head and into your DAW as quickly as possible – as long as they feel fresh! Use a template to quickly lay down a skeleton of your track and then fine tune later.
Keyboard shortcuts FTW
Your DAW will have a lot of keyboard shortcuts that let you fly through the beatmaking process, instead of chasing down things in menus with your mouse. In the beginning it will feel weird and take some time to build up speed, but we’re in it for the long haul, right? So write down a few keyboard commands each week and make them your muscle memory. When you have used them for a few weeks, you won’t even think twice about them and you’ll be flying your DAW in lightning speed, banging out them beats faster than your competition.
Split your sessions into sound design and beatmaking. When in sound design mode, don’t worry about writing music. Just focus on preparing your sample library, throwing out weak sounds and creating new ones that you want to use in future beats. When in a writing session, do the opposite. Don’t get stuck into tweaking parameters of your synth or adding effects to your snare. Just get the melodies and drum patterns out. Really important: Turn off your phone, turn off the internet and let your friends know that you can not be distracted during your session. You’ll be amazed at how much you can get done this way!
Build a small team. Join forces with an engineer so you can jump onto the next beat, while he turns your current one into a finished song. If you are strong on the beats but have problems with coming up with great chord progression, get a producing buddy with a strong keyboard game. Or simply work with another producer and use him as sounding board and give each other feedback on beats, four ears are always better than two!