Music 101: Check Your Track Record Ms. Bels Friday, March 11, 2011 Music 101, The Studio If you are a music lover, such as myself, I’m sure it’s frustrating when you purchase a CD and there’s only 3 or 4 hot songs on it. No wonder why people download their favorite tracks straight from the internet. Right? I mean really. Why waste your hard earn dollars on a wack CD? I often wonder do artists and their producers really devote real time to create the songs. Also, the record labels are adding fuel to the fire by green-lighting these wack a** projects! If you are an artist, I’m begging you to please at least give your fans 7 good songs on a 14 track album. Off the top of my head, I can think of several artists whose albums have been undesirable. But I won’t use this outlet to call them out. LOL. The music speaks for itself. I’m sure if you sit back and think long enough you too can come up with several that you wish you’d never purchased…even if the CD only put you back $9.99 at Target. So what is the key to making great music? I did a little research on the net and was able to comprise this list of helpful tips. Artists this is your time to pay attention! The next time you go in the studio try out these tips to making a great song. Let your next song be your BEST song. Key Ways To Making A Good Song 1. Create a Diverse Musical Repetoire – Listening to various types of music not only helps you expand your creativity, but it can also maintain your uniqueness. The key to standing out is to be different. Although there has been some artists who has gained a little stardom from jumping on the bandwagon [copying the next guy], this technique jump started their inevitable downfall. So be yourself! Do you! 2. School Yourself About Music – The worst thing is to pay for studio time and you have no idea what you are doing. You are not only wasting the producers time, but you are wasting you or your labels money. If you are not sure how harmonies are developed or how to sing in key, take voice lessons. Go to the library and pick up a few music books to read. Or ask an expert to help you understand chords and the correct format to recording. Be prepared! 3. Seize Inspiration – You never know when words come to mind or when you’ll be inspired. This happens all the time. So why not capitalize off of these moments. Keep a pad and pen handy. Use your cellphone to document lyrics. It is these spontaneous moments that a re proven to be beneficial for artists. Some of the greatest lyrics ever heard were written at the spur of the moment. 4. Create A Catchy Hook – The most memorable part of a song is the hook. Hooks are a vital part of a song. If you have a wack hook, the entire song will be wack. Hooks or choruses are not complicated either. Keep it simple…something your mom, little sister, auntie, homeboy, etc can all repeat and say. 5. Beat Up The Beat Man If The Track Ain’t Hot – No, just kidding. But please pick production tracks that compliment your flow. You do not need the assistance of top super producers to get a hot track. There are plenty of up and coming beatmakers or musicians that will be more than willing to work with you…and they cost less! Just make sure the track is tight and well mastered. You never know when one of your CDs will end up in the hands of a radio disk jockey. The last thing you want is your song to be played for millions of listeners and it’s of pure quality. 6. Ask For Feedback – What better way to validate if you have a hot song or not? Reach out to your family, friends, even strangers on the street for their feedback. Put together a showcase of some sort if you want. The goal, after conducting this little survey, is to gain some insight on how people are jiving to your song. Not everyone will like it. But at least you would have garnered honest opinions. If the majority give it two thumbs down, retreat back to the studio to tweek some things or start from scratch with a new tune. For those aspiring artists who have no clue, try to practice these tips when creating a hit song. The goal is to produce consistently good music. Before you throw together a wack CD, check your track record. And if you need STACKS Magazine to help gain additional feedback, feel free to send us your music so that we can let our readers preview it!