Making music for your own self only vs making music for a target audience

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Heigen5
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Post 23 Jun 2020

Making music for your own self only vs making music for a target audience.
Well, my updated thoughts on this for me simply are, that I should make music that I can accomplish, and also making music for a target audience, that could also like it.

The chances are that you will make better music as there's a good hook in the visioned up audience thing.
I kinda know that what could be liked by some people. And as I could add a bit of my own flavor too, that's a perfect hook to go for it.

+ well, that there's no limits in the creativity. :cool:

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MrFigg
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Post 23 Jun 2020

This:
丰2ॐ

TritoneAddiction
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Post 23 Jun 2020

I guess there's no right answer. Depends on what you want to achive with your music.

Personally I'm in the "making music for myself" camp. That's also the kind of artists I tend to listen to myself, not always but most of the time.

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Zac
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Post 23 Jun 2020

I'm in the making whatever happens naturally category. I sometimes put restrictions on myself or aim for a certain sound/genre/vibe but usually wander off piste anyway.

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guitfnky
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Post 23 Jun 2020

make the music I want to make camp, 100%. if I want to hear it, there are other people who will also enjoy it (maybe not many, but *some* 😆). I don’t expect many people to ever even know who I am, so it’s kind of pointless to try to write music to appeal to them.

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Heigen5
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Post 23 Jun 2020

Well yeah, if I would need to put me and my audience in the order, I would put me first though. I know how thinking the elses more than yourself can feel pain in the ass. The psychology behind this can be a bit tricky.

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QVprod
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Post 23 Jun 2020

The natural thing is to make whatever comes to you. You then find an audience that resonates with it. Those who create for a specific audience are generally doing work for a client or company.

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Heigen5
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Post 23 Jun 2020

QVprod wrote:
23 Jun 2020
The natural thing is to make whatever comes to you. You then find an audience that resonates with it. Those who create for a specific audience are generally doing work for a client or company.
Yeah, well - true!
I think the natural way to create makes sense.
I better drop off my monologues and other plans and just get creative.
Sometimes asking the other musicians helps, cheers!

Lokey
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Post 25 Jun 2020

This dude is just another stuck in a small pond less intelligent version of Benedict(lots of experience no fans), with a worse condition of receding hairline.

As you have stated he has asked questions like this before (as have others) and the obvious simplistic answers, help him squeeze some motivation out of a dead end en devour.

Comparing the countless hours he pours into music and making refills, with the the actual $/popularity/’artistic progress’ RESULTS, should cause him agonizing pain, but they dont: just a reminder that humans and stoopid insects are not that different.

In regards to Qvprod that dude can actually play the keyboard: mad props!
Last edited by Lokey on 25 Jun 2020, edited 1 time in total.
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DaveyG
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Post 25 Jun 2020

I make music for me. I write music for others. There are pros and cons to each and the latter is somewhat variable. I'm some way off the "glory days" when I had to turn work down but I daresay some of you will have heard of one or two of my bigger successes.

But these days mostly I make music for me and write music for the bands of the kids of my friends. I hate getting old... :evil:

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plaamook
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Post 25 Jun 2020

I sort of make muic I wish someone somewhere had made. I make music for me I guess, I actually listen to my own music anyway.
Then share it with the world. For money. Just. There seem to be enough interested people out there to make releasing worth it.

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Heigen5
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Post 26 Jun 2020

Lokey wrote:
25 Jun 2020
This dude is just another stuck in a small pond less intelligent version of Benedict(lots of experience no fans), with a worse condition of receding hairline.

As you have stated he has asked questions like this before (as have others) and the obvious simplistic answers, help him squeeze some motivation out of a dead end en devour.

Comparing the countless hours he pours into music and making refills, with the the actual $/popularity/’artistic progress’ RESULTS, should cause him agonizing pain, but they dont: just a reminder that humans and stoopid insects are not that different.

In regards to Qvprod that dude can actually play the keyboard: mad props!
I don't always need to wear an EGO-hat always on and pretend to be an expensive individual. I sometimes prefer more 'human' and humble-like discussions instead. ;)
But my opinion is that internet always doesn't tell you about the people's real intelligence amount that much of.

Lokey
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Post 26 Jun 2020

Heigen5 wrote:
26 Jun 2020


I don't always need to wear an EGO-hat always on and pretend to be an expensive individual. I sometimes prefer more 'human' and humble-like discussions instead. ;)
But my opinion is that internet always doesn't tell you about the people's real intelligence amount that much of.
All I Can tell is being an islandic doesnt help you to elaborate proper english ,
Just be natural/please yourself is what is Heard in the crackhouses of the west coast ,
Diving into a specific genre is acknowledging a whole system of rules , evolving into a structure that existed before you
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motuscott
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Post 26 Jun 2020

Lokey wrote:
25 Jun 2020
This dude is just another stuck in a small pond less intelligent version of Benedict(lots of experience no fans), with a worse condition of receding hairline.

As you have stated he has asked questions like this before (as have others) and the obvious simplistic answers, help him squeeze some motivation out of a dead end en devour.

Comparing the countless hours he pours into music and making refills, with the the actual $/popularity/’artistic progress’ RESULTS, should cause him agonizing pain, but they dont: just a reminder that humans and stoopid insects are not that different.

In regards to Qvprod that dude can actually play the keyboard: mad props!
Seems unnecessarily harsh
Vlad the thread stopper

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selig
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Post 26 Jun 2020

There's another possibility, which I embrace, which is making music for "an" audience (not a particular target). This compromise between making music for myself and making it for a specific audience appeals to my musical sensibilities.

To clarify, I make music for other listeners, keeping in mind it's not just for me, and keeping in mind basic human desires for form and structure and thus I try to create some sort of "story" for the music (even instrumental). Then I try to find the audience for THAT music.

I find that more motivating personally speaking, and less assuming I even know what a specific audience would want to listen to. I'm not at all suggesting this approach would be right for everyone, just that it has worked for me over the years. :)
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selig
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Post 26 Jun 2020

Lokey wrote:
25 Jun 2020
This dude is just another stuck in a small pond less intelligent version of Benedict(lots of experience no fans), with a worse condition of receding hairline.

As you have stated he has asked questions like this before (as have others) and the obvious simplistic answers, help him squeeze some motivation out of a dead end en devour.

Comparing the countless hours he pours into music and making refills, with the the actual $/popularity/’artistic progress’ RESULTS, should cause him agonizing pain, but they dont: just a reminder that humans and stoopid insects are not that different.

In regards to Qvprod that dude can actually play the keyboard: mad props!
I fail to see what this response adds to the conversation. Seems you're just taking digs at other form members for your own amusement (?) while not contributing anything of value as far as I can see.
You don't HAVE to post everything that comes into your head. Filter, please. :)
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QVprod
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Post 26 Jun 2020

Lokey wrote:
25 Jun 2020
In regards to Qvprod that dude can actually play the keyboard: mad props!
selig already addressed the comment. Otherwise, thanks! Appreciate it.

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muckmclane
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Post 27 Jun 2020

Lokey wrote:
25 Jun 2020
This dude is just another stuck in a small pond less intelligent version of Benedict(lots of experience no fans), with a worse condition of receding hairline.

As you have stated he has asked questions like this before (as have others) and the obvious simplistic answers, help him squeeze some motivation out of a dead end en devour.

Comparing the countless hours he pours into music and making refills, with the the actual $/popularity/’artistic progress’ RESULTS, should cause him agonizing pain, but they dont: just a reminder that humans and stoopid insects are not that different.

In regards to Qvprod that dude can actually play the keyboard: mad props!
I concur, Quincy Valentine is an excellent musician.
fake sagan should be a household name

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Auryn
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Post 27 Jun 2020

IMHO music is a kind of language or attempt at communication. In some way you have to factor in who you are communicating to because it will make the act of communicating more rewarding if there is a response or understanding. If you just stand on a street corner shouting gibberish in a made up language you may get rid of some excess stress but you will not feel heard or understood. If you speak meaningfully about what is on your mind you will get more response but you have to put more effort into making your experience/thoughts understandable/relatable to others. If you however tailor the message too strongly to the audience you will also not feel heard/understood because you are no longer speaking about your own experience but rather about something that you feel will attract attention/likes. So it's a balancing act, like most things in life.
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danc
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Post 27 Jun 2020

Skipping the hot under the collar comments above - except to say... please keep Reasontalk friendly - ta.

Anyway - I intentionally create a wide range of musical genre's (e.g. tech-house, house, dnb, techno, deep house, neurofunk, halftime, progressive,, jungle, techstep, future, ambient etc. Ok - they aren't that varied, they are all electronic... however, they all have their own special code of practice) ...

I do this mainly so that I can improve (and improve again) my production and music theory skills. The genre boundary jumping forces me to progress as I'm not relying on previous comfort zones (habits). Then when I come back to genres that I personally love I feel like I've progressed with new sets of skills - as these skills are nearly always transferable into any genre (good tonal balance befits every genre).

There are times when I'll pick up the latest 'hot' track from Friday night's Radio 1 track list... irrespective of what genre it is. I push a WAV file of it into my DAW... and use it as a guide track, trying to replicate it - sonically, musically and the arrangement. You soon learn some special tricks that are being used by some very talented artists. And that age old argument... keep things super simple.

However.. whatever genre I create I love to target an appreciating audience ... so... if I do a dnb track I'll pop onto a dnb Discord channel and see the reactions there - and you soon get a feel if it compares to the best of the best in that genre.

And lastly... whatever music I make I definitely do it for my own satisfaction... so I do aim to make something I like to listen to.
Creating, producing and mastering music in Reason 11 and Studio One 4.5 (WIndows).


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TheDragonborg
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Post 28 Jun 2020

I make the music I like listening to... be it drum & bass, Goa trance, or acid techno...

The drum & bass stuff I do has the most commercial ability but being that I live in the US there's not much of a scene here... especially in the Midwest.

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kuhliloach
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Post 28 Jun 2020

If you make something you really love listening to others will too. However it is also very possible to make something you cannot stand listening to that others will love--but that doesn't sound like much fun.

danc
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Post 29 Jun 2020

kuhliloach wrote:
28 Jun 2020
If you make something you really love listening to others will too. However it is also very possible to make something you cannot stand listening to that others will love--but that doesn't sound like much fun.
The skill of a professional is to know how to hit all the right emotional notes and technical buttons irrespective of personal taste.

Session musicians turn up and get paid to be super talented on a track... yet... they park their strong opinions at the door (assuming they are a diplomatic pro). They'll play well even though they don't like the genre.

One friend of mine who is a super-talented session bass guitar player has worked on some of the No.1 top tracks out there, covering a huge spectrum of genre. He has to feed his family, so doesn't stamp his feet when asked to play bass on the next Mr Blobby track.
Creating, producing and mastering music in Reason 11 and Studio One 4.5 (WIndows).


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selig
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Post 29 Jun 2020

danc wrote:
29 Jun 2020
Session musicians turn up and get paid to be super talented on a track... yet... they park their strong opinions at the door (assuming they are a diplomatic pro). They'll play well even though they don't like the genre.
One other quality of a good session musician is a broad taste range and outright excitement over finding the right part for a track even if it's the dumbest part (strictly from a technical point). They are at the same time making music for themselves AND for others in many cases! But they're not WRITING the music, which is probably more the original question. Still, the ability to tell if something is "working" separate from whether or not YOU would listen to it are essential for any production where you are not the artist IMO, commercial or experimental.
Selig Audio, LLC

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guitfnky
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Post 29 Jun 2020

selig wrote:
29 Jun 2020
... outright excitement over finding the right part for a track even if it's the dumbest part (strictly from a technical point). They are at the same time making music for themselves AND for others in many cases!
this is a trap I think a lot of bands fall into too—I’ve certainly been guilty of it, and we all still struggle with it from time to time.

one of the things that gave me so much inspiration in writing my own music on the guitar was the fun of the *physicality* of the instrument. a lot of the stuff I used to write (and still probably a fairly high amount now) was interesting to me because it was fun to put these cool shapes together in different ways. it was fun to play, physically. of course I always steered things toward doing that while also making sure it should also sound good, since that was obviously the most important thing.

but over the years, after listening to so much cool music inside and outside of my own wheelhouse, I started to recognize that simplicity can be just as fun. things don’t have to be challenging to play technically, to be a challenge to play WELL. the thing that always comes to mind is just a simple 4-on-the-floor drum beat. we’ve had trouble getting our drummers to want to play something that bare-bones, because they like to show off their creativity, but sometimes a given part would require a simple, straightforward beat, in order for the rest of the music to work properly. now I’m no drummer, but I can play a basic pattern like that without too much trouble. the thing is though, that I can’t add the FEEL it needs. finding the right groove for it is important, and challenging in its own right.

or a simple ¼ note bassline...couldn’t be easier, on paper, but getting that timing right into the sweet spot when you’re playing it is challenging, and when you’re there, and you’re feeling it, that’s just as rewarding as coming up with an unexpected new riff or progression.

I’m guessing the better session players have mastered this art. they’ve risen to such a level they’re able to find joy in the complexity of the simple.

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