• Advertisement

Starting your career as a composer-sound designer (FAQ and answers)

Recommended Posts

Advertisement
Awesome post nate! Ya know, i had an alcoholic friend named nathan that i used to record "i have to take a crap" songs with. I used to do a segment on a radio show where i take ideas for a stupid song and i write and record it to play on the next week. My favorite song was called "strip go-fish". so i know exactly you come from.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hahaha, well actually I'm not an alcoholic, but I did write silly, stupid songs at my start. :) Glad you liked the post!

Nate

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
That was brilliant, I can't say enough about how grateful I am for that post.

That will help me alot, I am looking up about The Complete Guide to Game Audio now.

I will also begin to focus on sound effects a bit more also, and perhaps incorporate them into my composing also.

Thanks again, if I run into any questions I will post them here as your answers are much more clear and straight forward then alot I have came across on the internet.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Having a degree in music will never hurt you! Trust me, it becomes highly apparent who has training and who doesn't when working with other composers. What I've seen is those that are better trained tend to work faster. It tends to take longer for those with less training to create a pro level sounding song. Is it possible? Sure! Is this true for everyone? Of course not. I've also met some highly talented (and rare) composers that have practically no training- just a severe level of talent. I kill them on sight. :) Only kidding! If you can write good music, then you don't need to go back to school. In fact even if you feel you're music should get better- I wouldn't go back for more musical training. You can improve yourself outside of school if your foundation is good enough. I would focus on learning about audio, mastering audio, working with virtual instruments, sound design and all of the ins and outs related to all of this. Depending on your aptitude, you can either do this on your own or back at school. I did it on my own- but started back in 2000 during college.


Also don't forget that experience is in and of itself training. Most of what you'll gain in school that will help you write faster is, actually, experience.

For those of you who are just entering school for the first time, please, please, please don't be afraid to explore OTHER artistic mediums to suppliment your understanding of aesthetics and to bring something extra to the table. There's more to music than music.

Finally, there isn't anything you can learn in school that can't be read in a book between 50 and 300 years old (unless it's a music tech program) and many music tech programs are behind the curve when it comes to technology unless they just upgraded that year (usually their equipment is 5+ years old).

And just as a last little bit:

Listening should be an active part of your life. When you play some music, LISTEN ACTIVELY, analyze, break it apart, look at sound as closely and deeply as you can, never stop trying to understand how a song or soundscape you like works. Imagine how you would construct that, always ask yourself, "how can I do that?"

When you actively listen on principle, you will eventually be able to write what you hear and hopefully learn to write anything you hear (in your head).

What's the deal with actively listening? Going to school can be good, you can learn a lot of techniques and brush up on your speed transposing--but school isn't worth CRAP unless you take school with you when you leave.

That means always being a critical thinker, in craft as much as in life.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Danthr is exactly right: Listen listen listen!!! Thanks for chiming in bud! To follow up on what he said- experience is training in itself. I tell music students in college to take part in as many musical ensembles as possible. When I was in college I was in:

*All Male Chorus (TTBB)
*Mixed Choir (SATB)
*Band (Symphonic and Wind Symphony)
*Jazz Combo
*Jazz Band
*Saxophone Quartet
*Cover Band (student led)

I've also helped out with orchestras in the past- but not as much as I'd like. Because of this I was exposed to a wide range of ensembles and literature. I was in almost as many groups during graduate school too. I was also really into all kinds of music just for listening purposes and really liked films (US and international) so I paid close attention to alot of film music. I use these experiences in my pieces daily.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Matt2East2007
I just figured out that my MBox does multitrack editing, in addition to being a great beverage coaster.


It's also a great paper weight! ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now


  • Advertisement