Written by Cameron Sheehan|
A music producer is a producer who writes, arranges, produces, and records songs, either to shape the sound of another artist’s song or album or to create beats and songs for their own projects. The salary of a music producer varies from $25,000 to $1,000,000 but the general average salary is $49,000. Generally, a music producer who produces beats and tracks for other artists, mainly for genres like mainstream pop and rap, makes the average salary of $49,000 and up depending on how big the record label is and how big of an artists is performing.
There are also producers like me who are their own artist and do everything by themselves. Generally these are electronic music dj’s who get paid from $49,000 to $1,000,000 or even more. It all depends on how big they are and what genre of electronic music is involved. House DJ’s usually get paid the most with most of them capping out over $1,000,000 a year due to it being the most mainstream genre of electronic music.
With the growth of home recording technology and home recording studios, many producers find themselves pulling double and even triple the work, but many producers take that route. Electronic music producers often do their work in home studios and create and master everything by themselves.
Being able to have a home studio makes it easier for anyone to become a producer without the hassle of having to go somewhere to work. This is a picture of my home studio I started with the basic necessities of a laptop, mixing board, midi keyboard, and a desktop to create mixes for shows. Production is an extremely competitive field, and advancement comes as a producer builds and diversifies his or her skill set or works with more prestigious artists.
The programs used to create music are called DAW’s or Digital Audio Workstation. You can see what a typical DAW looks like and what it looks like when there is a complete song done on it in the pictures. These photos are from the song I finished not too long ago called “Other Worlds.” The song has around 6,000 views and was accepted to be promoted on large music channels on Soundcloud. One of the biggest problems for people wanting to get into the electronic music production is Digital Audio Workstation (DAW). There are choices in the tools to use for producing music. The popular ones are Ableton Live, FL Studio, Cubase, and Logic Pro x. I use Logic Pro x to create all my music and to master it.
Before I became a music producer, I had to learn music theory and structure and arrangement. These concepts are vital to create good sound design and production. You can spend just about a lifetime learning about mixing and audio alone. Music theory is absolutely fundamental despite the numerous successful producers who don’t know it at all.
Electronic music production is different from traditional music structure and production in many ways, but it is still music and relies on the same fundamentals as any other musical concept. You can learn about music theory from many different places including YouTube, free websites, books like Theory for Computer Musicians. There is also Harmony For Computer Musicians if you know your basic music theory already. It goes a little deeper into chords and the other elements for a well designed full song.
The structure and arrangement of a production is very important because it makes all the difference between a good song and a bad song. The best way to learn structure and arrangement is to drag songs into your DAW and study them. Pull them apart. Learn what that song is made up of and how that artist created it. It will allow you to grasp concepts of what a well designed song sounds like and how it is made. This is very helpful to people who are just starting out because it will provides an in depth look at the arrangement and structure.
Since you want your music to be heard, it is important to have a site to share your music on. There are many music sharing websites out there for artists. Most of them are open to the public like Soundcloud, Youtube, Mixcloud, The Artists Union, and Bandcamp ,but some music sharing sites are available only if you are a part of a record company. One of the top ones is Beatport. I use Soundcloud to upload and share all my music. It is also important to have decent looking cover art on your sound. For my sound “Other Worlds” I used a picture of what seems to be planet looking out at another planet. If you have interesting cover art, it will help you attract more people who want to play your music.
There is a lot more to learn about music production, and I could write a whole book on it, but this is some helpful advice to help you chose your Daw and to start you off on music production and set you in the right direction. To read more about music production and get more in depth, I included links to my favorite free websites that allow you to learn more about music production and music theory.