IF YOU FEEL “LOST” WITH YOUR MUSICAL GENRE

Discussion in 'Production' started by fanu, Oct 8, 2016.

  1. fanu

    fanu Active Member

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    (This stemmed from reading on a music forum a post about a producer feeling exhausted and “lost” with his [only] genre.)
    [original blog post at http://fanumusic.com/lost/]

    Ever feel “lost” making your music genre?
    My tip: don’t just stick to one genre.

    In my career, I’ve definitely experienced the pain that comes from trying to force one style too much at one point. I have also seen that in many others, who I’ve later on tried to encourage to do whatever. And every now and then I hear “a D&B producer” break out of his shell and “loving making music again” etc.

    I guess on one level one part of you has reasons for pushing one style (maybe it’s gained you some recognition, you realize you have the talent for it, or maybe one particular style has gained you a few bucks), but in the long run it’s very hard to do, and another part of you probably wants to experience again the same joy it once did – and that joy can be hard to experience without leaving the good old playground you’re used to. Remember, when you were working on your first/main genre in the beginning, you were learning many different things relating to your genre. Your mind needs to experience that again every now and then – it needs new challenges. Do different things. Just do what comes naturally, without expectations.

    I’ve been making music for 25 years, and no way it would’ve been possible by doing one genre only.
    The hardest periods for me have been those when I’ve tried to make too much D&B and too often. It’s almost like eating the same meal over and over again. Probably there are better analogies, but you get my point.
    D&B has always been my main genre, and I’m happy about it, because just like with a language, you need one basis you’ll always compare others to, and in a way that’s been helpful, too, when making hip hop, for example.
    Every time I’ve realized I need to step outside of it real bad, I’ve felt those amazingly rewarding feelings once again and had some really productive periods and “found myself again” and realized how destructive sticking to one genre for too long can be. You’ll be “lost” because maybe you’ve exhausted the paths you can travel – you just need to step into a whole new forest altogether.

    These days, i’m switching between genres all the time, which has taken some learning as for a long time, i could only be in one “zone” at a time genre-wise, and being in that zone always lasted for maybe 2 months at a time, but i’ve finally learned to be “zone-free”, which has lead in amazing productivity; in 2017, I’m releasing four albums (one D&B, two hip hop, one 120–140 BPM electronic stuff), as 2016 has been insanely productive as i’m switching between genres and styles almost daily…honestly, that never ever gets boring.

    If you look at the catalogues of producers who have been doing it the longest, you’ll probably see that they’ve kept it varied. Or, if not, they’ve got somewhat boring with their one genre.

    So, if you feel “lost” with your genre, maybe you should try giving yourself a little bit of “genreless freedom”.
    Try it!
     
    Sulihin and -agu- like this.
  2. fanu

    fanu Active Member

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    (sorry for the all caps – hate it in general...copied the blog post topic and didn't realize of course it comes out all caps)
     
  3. logikz

    logikz I Am Not The King Staff Member

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    i agree, but i have gone full circle and managed to get confused on the other end of the spectrum haha.

    I feel so conflicted between my genres, as in which genre to focus my evening on, that I get lost with my musical genre and get discouraged, so ill just watch a film and have a meal with a friend, or whatever, because I cant make any music if I cant commit to a specific genre, and this goes on for so long that when I finally make the decision to commit, I have lost a lot of knack and flair and pzazz and skill, my workflow has been diminished from being inactive for so long.

    its shitty, I lose interest in sound I was super into and had worked really hard on achieving, often by investing in gear, which now is totally uninteresting to me, and then my guitar playing skills, and my riff ideas are also gone after leaving it alone for too long basically,.
     
  4. Dark Lizardro

    Dark Lizardro The Lizard that has a hammer Staff Member

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    I'm impressed by the eloquence of your answer, Karl.

    and back on topic:

    I guess that when you do similar genres of music, or genres that are too akin to each other, it's easier to get lost on what you're producing. I, for example, compose mainly ambient/melancholic/industrial downtempo type of stuff. Which means that if I want to produce something focusing solely on one of those characteristics, the music will end up sounding like that "umbrella" genre I normally compose.

    So, basically I agree with OP here: Change what you'll do. And there you go.