Music artist & music producer, this one is for you!
I took a different approach with this one. I created a post on my Instagram titled “What Are Producers Doing Wrong In 2016?”, and got some great feedback from artists all across the world. So it’s time to work with some real music producers. According to the majority of music artists, music producers and Hip Hop & R&B fans that responded to my post on Instagram, here are the top 5 things is that an artist should be looking for in a music producer.
Number One – Guidance.
The producer should know how to guide the song in the right direction. Think about a producer of a television show, it’s the same concept. The producer needs to know which musicians to hire, which instruments should be used in a song, which engineer should be used to record, mix and master the song, how the vocals should be arranged, which other producers should be used to do other specific tasks (for example vocal arrangements, beat maker etc.) The music producer should be overseeing the creative process from beginning to end.
Number Two – Knowledge.
A producer needs to understand that it’s his or her job isn’t to necessarily make a beat, but to carry out the vision of the song. Not every producer is a beat maker. But they still add their touch on things to let you know it’s them. The producer needs to understand his or her role in the creative process. Most so called “producers” love going around with a fancy title. Still, they have yet to do half the work that it really takes to be a real producer.
It’s such a shame because the real producers don’t really get the credit that they deserve; you know the producers that are actually at the sessions with the artist and actually taking part in the creative process. Nowadays “producers” would just sell you a beat and never follow up with you again once they receive the money for the beat. Shameless. I have to be honest if I know that an artist going to really push a song I might just give them a beat for free and collect the royalties on the back end because I have all my paperwork in order, rather than accept cash up front for the beat. A lot of cats don’t really know the business and are inclined to take cash up front.
Number Three – A Signature Sound.
One huge thing that I saw a lot of artists say about producers today is they don’t really have their own sound. They copy off of everything that’s out today in hopes of maybe getting a hit song. They look to make a quick buck off of these artists out here that aren’t really of substance. But the “music producers” today aren’t willing to put in the hard work to actually be creative. They just want to get the beat done and try to make a dollar (literally that’s all you’ll probably get).
I understand that the creative process could be tough but that’s the fun part. You get to tweak things and play around with new toys to get that sound exactly the way you envision it. I mean if you’re not willing to do that then I don’t think you’re meant to become a producer. Whether it’s rap beats, R&B beats or hip hop beats need to put the work in to actually get something of substance.
Number Four – Connections.
Let’s be honest the music business, just like any business really is based on relationships. You know that saying “it’s not what you know it’s who you know”, something like that. The producer has to have some sort of contact list the way you can contact people to do specific things. For example I have a mixing engineer, a mastering engineer, a radio promotion person and administration person and the list goes on and on.
One reason I have all these people in play is because these people are way better than me at doing the task that they responsible for. One more important reason that I have these connections is because of the relationships they’ve built over time. This allows me to build relationships at scale rather than having to meet all these people myself. That would be pretty difficult. So look for a producer with some sort of connections.
Doesn’t have to be top-notch connections but some sort of level of connections to where you know that your song is going to get pushed somewhere even if it’s not on Billboard radio.
Number Five – Hunger.
A lot of these dudes out here just are not hungry enough now. There’s no follow-up process to hear how the artist is doing or what the artist doing with their track. The producer does not spend time in the music studio with the artist to get the song down. These dudes out here are selling their exclusive rights to the beats for $50, wtf?.
They don’t know what selling an exclusive right really entails. That’s because they’re not really educated on the topic and they need to do their research. How could you expect to guide an artist when you don’t even know the music business yourself? An artist should seek a producer that is hungry enough to actually do his own due diligence and learn the game before they have the audacity to approach them like they have something to offer.
Hope this will teach some upcoming music artists and music producers what to look forward to. Take a look at my Instagram @qivoryworld to see the different responses that came from artists and producers all around the world. The post is titled “What Are Producers Doing Wrong In 2016”. Stay blessed and stay educated!