Tips On Finding The Right Music Producer
The No 1 criteria a music producer must fulfil for you is this: Can He/She Do Music That Sells?
Notice the criteria is not about the ability to make music, rather it is to make music that sells! If you want to engage a producer, this criteria must be in the forefront of your thinking, otherwise the exercise of making music becomes a fruitless effort.
This criterion should help you streamline the number of producers you should be seeking, because many who claim to be producers have never sold 50 singles. Such a person is not for you.
This also means that many of your friends who have studios or should I say “computers” will not be included in your list.
Remember that the main aim of doing music is to make money from your craft and the team that can ensure such success must be included in the process. The selection of individuals, who can not show any type of commercial viability, should not be allowed to participate in your recording.
It may sound very harsh, but your time and money is not for someone else’s experiment. Even if you want to help out a mate who is a budding producer, make sure you are working with someone else who will produce the goods!
The No 2 Criteria a music producer must fulfil is this: He/She must offer other benefits beyond music production.
The kind of producer you want must be someone who possesses some of the following:
A) Has connections within the music industry
B) Knows how to market music
C) Can place your music on a compilation
D) Can get Club, Radio DJ’s to play your music
E) Get your music distributed by local and international distributors
Remember that the making of music is simply one of the processes; do not consider it as the end objective.
I have made many mistakes in the past spending time and money with so called producers who are not only out of date, do not sell music, and have no contacts that could take me to the next level. For you, it should always be about getting to the next level, going further than you can take yourself, and advancing beyond the many other releases.
If you work with someone who can do some of the things mentioned in A-D, this will be time/money well spent.
The No 3 Criteria a music producer must fulfil is this: He/She can always get the best out of you!
Real producers are not about simply making beats that make you jump up and dance but people that ensure the artist/band always performs at their peak. I have heard people say “That producer really helped me go beyond what I thought I could do”. Now that is a good producer.
Does your producer make you feel that way, or do you come out of the studio knowing that you have not been pushed at all.
The No 4 Criteria a music producer must fulfil is this: He/She must have integrity:
The role the producer occupies in your music business career means that if they are unscrupulous, they could short circuit your career or worst still; cost you a great amount of financial losses.
According to Ann Harrison, “Music The Business” 5 edition book, she explained that the role of the producer covers:
a) Keeping the masters and presenting them to the record company
b) Signing contracts
c) Booking and paying all musicians
d) Buying rights and obtaining performance consents
All of the above places the producer in a position where they can easily mishandle the funds if they are not trust worthy.
So a good recommendation from a trusted friend to a good producer is worth its weight in gold. Keep your eyes open, and be well educated so that it becomes difficult for anyone to take advantage of you!
The No 5 Criteria a music producer must fulfil is that: He/She Must Be Known by Gate Keepers as a Producer for That Genre.
Who are Gate Keepers? Anyone in a position of influence that can either allow or hinder the progress of your (as in this case) music. So it will be people like Music Programmers at the Radio Stations, The Music Buyer for a Distribution Company, APR persons, etc.; all these people can be your friend or the enemy of your music.
So, if you are a Rock musician, get a producer known for His/Her production within that genre; if it is House Music, the same criteria should apply. Gate Keepers are always very protective of their niche.
If they are accustomed to the production of a particular person, then try and work with that producer so that these people can be friendly to your music. Whether you and I agree to their behaviour is of small consequence, you must play the game to win!
Your next question is how are you going to be able to afford to pay a known producer in my genre? Thank GOD that most known producers will always do deals with independent artists/bands. The reality is that if they like you, and can see great potential for success with your music, they will do incredible deals with you. Do not be afraid of asking because the Bible tells us, “ask and you will receive”. If you don’t ask, you have lost already, but I can bet you are a winner, otherwise you will not be reading this article.
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