Making Dance Music is Both the Coolest and Hardest Thing to Do

I think I have avoided making music for so long because it’s the kind of challenge that lives in my DNA and takes over my life, just like snowboarding, skating, biking etc. It was nice to have a break from obsession for a while, but now my room is littered with sound and music magazines. Just like some crazed Google employee, I spend 18 hours a day researching, learning and testing what I am hearing in dance music.

I think what makes dance music production so hard- hard to do well that is- is that it is super elegant. It should be like good design where every part could stand on its own, but together the parts release a ton of light, like photography for your ears. You have to communicate incredibly complex thoughts in very simple emotional ways. I think that is why it is an amazing art form, becuase It’s resonating on two poles at the same time. It is super intellectual in its construction, but super primal in its execution. Hence why some people go to dance and others stand and listen.

Dance music is like an example of what the human brain does best; synthesize. Creativity is a synthesis of memory, experience, intention and knowing what tools are available. That’s probably why the synth as a tool has stuck to dance music. We love sysnthisizing patterns and organization, its inherently one of the highest forms of cognition we have daily access to, and also the reason drugs work so well in that sound environment. Creativity is really a drug. Martin Atkins in his book Tour Smart has a chapter on drugs and says basicly “…do drugs while you are creating not performing.” He is saying that creating is difficult and you need to enhance your synthisis.

I am learning what tools are available and developing the ability to use them. My monitors are like a microscope, i’ve been disecting peoples’ tracks and then attempting to put the concepts to work in my own. Its has taken me 8 months to get the bass wave that I want. Now I have a template built that I can apply to all of my tracks and I understand what makes a bass wave everything that it is. Twelve elements make it sound amazing on its own even! There is a lot of learning in there. Which means that it will get sidechained in the composition because it needs it’s room and space. When it does, it will be there sitting like a diamond and just as valuable.

Now to place it…….yup :)

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