The term “Music Producer” is not new for us. In our audio recording journey, we often face this term in our day to day life. But do you know, what does a music producer do?
When I was new in the music production field, I always wondered about their actual work in the music production workflow.
Because there are no preset work rules for music producers like mix engineers, music composers, instruments players, and others.
With time, I came to understand what’s the actual work of a music producer and why we need them in the music production workflow.
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I know you are eager to know their role in music production.
SO, in this article, we’ll discuss what is a music producer, what does he do, how music producer is different from other contributors and what are the skills you should have to become a successful music producer.
Let’s jump into the first question, ie;
Who is a Music Producer?
Music producer plays the same role in music-making, a film directors plays in a movie.
Music producers are the key person who oversees all the aspects of the song or album such as choosing the songs, finalizing the musician who plays in the songs, decide what instruments to be played in the songs, choose the vocalists, choose how the notes to be played on the instruments and even decide in which recording studio the songs to be recorded.
SO, you can see he is the key person in making a song.
Just like a movie director, a music producer can be able to make decisions regarding the above all aspects of music production workflow, and also he can change his decision in between the process.
He can convey his split-second decision to the other key members of the music production workflow such as the audio engineer, the musicians, the singer, etc.
What Does a Music Producer Do?
As you have read above, the influence of a music producer is in all the areas of music production.
We can say, a he is the heart of music production workflow. Without him, music production will become directionless.
They have to visualize and imagine the final product so they must be able to listen, experiment with the song, and aware of all aspects of music.
So we can say that what a music producer does is, he made the final song in his mind before the original creation executes.
And, this skill is not found here and there. It needs imagination, vast knowledge of music, notes and chords, and the awareness of the techniques used in music production.
Such a big role he has.
But sometimes you may listen to this common misconception that a mix engineer, a music composer, and a music producer are the same.
Is it right really?
Let us see how a he is different from a mix engineer or a music composer.
How Music Producer is Different From Mix engineer and Music Composer?
To differentiate between them first we have to know what do they do actually.
The work of a mix engineer or recordist is to take care of all the technical side of music production.
Such as mix engineer setups the mics and inputs for the recording take recordings of vocalists and instrument players, and then finally mixes the tracks by balancing, panning, automation, applying effects and sends, etc.
His work is to take the perfect recordings without error and mix them out to one track.
Now let us look into the music composer’s work…
The role of a music composer is very similar to a music producer but with a slight difference.
A music composer creates the tune, applying the chords and notes as per the tune’s requirement, and shape it to a final song.
BUT, a music producer can influence in his creation as well as the notations. The last decision regarding the tune, chords, and notations is always over music producer.
SO, what is a music producer’s role?
The work of music producer is much more than a music composer. Such as suggesting the music composer regarding the tunes and chords, instructing the vocalists and instrument players regarding the tune, chords, and notation, suggesting the mix engineer on recording and mixing and take a final song out.
SO, now you can differentiate between the roles of a mix engineer, music composer, and music producer.
I want to add one sentence here that a music composer or mix engineer can become a music producer if he has the imagination required for it.
And, do you know, maximum music producers start their career with mix engineer and music composer. AND, with time they turn them into a music producer.
What Skills a Music Producer Should Have?
As you’ve seen that a music producer oversees all the aspects of music production procedure, so he/she must have all the skills that are needed in music production.
Below are the key areas of the music production workflow in that he should have knowledge and skills.
The first one is…
Recording and Mixing Engineer
A recording and mixing engineer takes care of all the technical side of the music production workflow in the recording studio. Such as arranging the inputs and outputs, take recordings, balancing, panning adding effects, and mixdown the tracks.
SO, a music producer should have at least the basic knowledge of audio recording and mixing. This helps him to suggest the recording and mixing engineer what he wants in the recording.
If you don’t know how the music recording works so how can you instruct someone in the right way who is a recording professional.
SO, to become a good music producer, you must have the basic knowledge of how to take records, and mixdown the song.
SO, the additional knowledge of DAW makes it easy for you to explain to the recording engineer what you want in the song.
The role of music composers most important in all of them. He composes the tune, chords, and notations which are the base of a song.
Most of the time a music composer further becomes a music producer, because he possesses the most important knowledge in the music production procedure ie; finding a tune.
Finding a tune needs a big imagination skill.
SO, a music producer must know about finding tunes and applying the chords and notations as per the tune.
If you have music composition knowledge only then you can be able to suggest a music composer upon a tune.
Now come to the third skill he should have.
A music arranger is the second most important person after a music composer in the workflow.
The work of music arrangers is to re-imagine an existing composition by the composer, adapting the musical instruments, vocals, rhythms, and tempo to transform a tune to a piece of music.
SO, a music producer should know this skill also. Because without a music arranger the creation doesn’t transform into a song.
To suggest the arranger in different aspects of the music arranging he should have the catch in music arranging.
Now, come to the musicians.
Musicians are musical instrument players who perform based on the notation given to them.
However, it doesn’t require music producers to learn all the musical instruments but if they can, they should learn one or two of them.
It helps them of a better understanding of how to interact and instruct the musicians.
He should be also able to learn written notations.
It’s very important to interact with the musicians.
A music manager brings people together and coordinates with them to achieve the goal of the given project.
Most of them start as artists, audio engineers, assistants, etc and with time evolved into music manager.
BUT, a music producer should have this skill to bring the people together, discuss and instruct them to achieve the end goal, ie; final soundtrack.
Sometimes, a song needs to be remixed if we get an error in the mixing.
In this situation, a music producer should have the solution in his mind so that he could instruct the mix engineer to get the desired result.
And, last but not least.
He should be a mentor for all the other people involved in the project. He should act as a leader to get the work done precisely.
Without the mentorship skill, you can’t be a great music producer because you need this whenever you see some negativity in those people’s minds.
You have to turn their mind towards positive thought because music production needs a lot of positive feelings.
How Can You Become a Music Producer?
Becoming a music producer is not easy.
As you’ve seen above, there are a lot of skills needed to become successful with this title. BUT, if you have the courage of becoming a good music producer then nothing is impossible.
You can start with a mix engineer or a music composer. Once you enter the music production field, you can observe other areas and gain knowledge about them.
With time, you have the basic required knowledge of all the areas of music production. That’s the best time to turn you into a music producer.
Below I’ve mentioned some good music production courses that you can join to become a music producer.
Remember, professional training always helps to become successful in your area.
Popular Music Production Courses
However, there are several professional music production courses available on the internet but I always recommend my readers the genuine courses that can help them out.
SO, the first one is,
Creative life has tons of video courses available for music enthusiasts. Here you can learn Audio recording, mixing, mastering, music composing, vocals, and other skills required to be a music producer.
And the best thing is all the courses are available at affordable pricing. Some courses are even FREE.
Point Blank Music School
Point Blank Music School is known as one of the most reputed online music schools in the world.
Along with other courses, they have a dedicated music production course that you can join by clicking the link below.
HOWEVER, they charge much more than Creative Live, but getting a certificate from a reputed organization is great for your career.
The courses given above are for two types of people. People who want to learn music production in less money and who want to become a certified music producer that needs more money.
Creative Live is for those who want to learn it superficially without certification, and Point Blank Music School is for those who want in depth knowledge with a certificate.
Conclusion: What Does a Music Producer Do?
WELL, now you know all the information about music procurers. And, also you have 2 great courses to become a good music producer.
BUT, just participating in a course is cannot make you great music producer. You must have a positive vision towards your future.
AND, of course the mealtime knowledge of music production technology.
See, music production is evolving every day and competition is tough in it.
BUT, with a good knowledge of music, the required skills and having the real-time knowledge of music production technology can help you in becoming an established music producer in future.
Don’t forget to share this article to other needy people over social media.
All the best…
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Gautam Roy is a recording engineer and a blogger from India. He loves music, writing and travelling. He is also an active investor and a successful entrepreneur.