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Music Production

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Autor:   •  December 20, 2010  •  Essay  •  1,162 Words (5 Pages)  •  669 Views

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What Is A Producer?

The music producer is to a record (CD) what a director would be to a film. The producer directs the entire operation of recording and readying the song(s) for release. The producer is responsible to get the performances recorded and the technical work done on the release, within the deadline and within the budget. The job is both creative and technical. For an overview of the job, see Cornbread's tip on the subject, The Role Of The Producer.

The primary areas that a producer has to supervise operations can include:

1. The Song: The song needs to be something that would have broad public appeal when marketed in the style of the artist.

2. Talent Performance: The musicianship, the arrangement and the lead vocal performance must be of the highest quality.

3. Recording: The recording has to be done competently and be of the best quality.

4. Mixing & Mastering: The blending of the instrument sounds needs to be expertly done so that the performances are enhanced and the final product has a competitive sound.

5. Test Marketing & Promotion: The release must be marketed and promoted through traditional, Internet and specialty sales outlets, and the producer can be called upon to supervise or help direct initial marketing and promotions of the release.

Supervision At A Minimum

The trick of being a producer is to have the final result, the final production, in "one's head" as work starts and progresses on the production. The producer is the "keeper of the vision" and works to make sure that everything is moving towards getting that final product that is envisioned. At a minimum the producer must direct others to complete the tasks, so an overview knowledge of all the essential production steps must be present in the person who is the producer.

To accomplish the best production, the producer chooses the tune to be produced and demands rewrites if improvement in the tune is needed. The producer will get the talent (like the vocalist) to be in key and have the delivery of the tune with the proper emotion or style; the producer keeps the talent recording or rerecording until the best performance is obtained. Similarly, the producer will determine how many tracks are to be used to record the various instruments and the tone that is captured in the recording. Finally the producer makes sure that the final blend of instruments and overall product quality is the best that can be obtained. The producer actually hires the "crew," and determines where the recording will be done.

Co-Working With The Talent And Crew

Many times producers will have better success if they can "show" the talent or crew what is needed rather than just explaining what is to be done. Everybody understands better if there is a "demonstration" rather than just an "explanation." If the lyrics (or words in a rap song) need changes, suggested wording can get the writer to make the best modifications. If the producer feels that a couple of changes in notes or a change in vocal inflection would help, it is communicated best by the producer actually singing the part for the vocalist. If the tone of the instrument could be improved, the producer can communicate this to the engineer by dialing in equalization changes - then the engineer can "fine tune" the parameters to something that works the best. The same type of thing could be accomplished by the producer getting a rough blend of the instruments before the engineer sits down to mix.

To actually

"co-work" with the talent or crew, the producer needs hands-on skills, requiring a hands-on education rather than just an "overview." The theory knowledge and the "hands on training" also needs to be combined with additional practice to get good (as it would be with any developed ability).

Doing All The Work

The most effective producer is the one who can personally perform the production functions. Many producers these days plan from the start to function as the recording and mixing engineer throughout the production.


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