Home Production Tips 132 Music Production Tips

132 Music Production Tips

132 Music Production Tips

1. Build your sample library

2. Pick good samples

3. Layer drum samples

4. Use transient shapers to add punch to drums

5. Stretch samples insane amounts and bounce them for weird effects

6. Try pitching or stretching samples, processing them, bouncing, stretching and processing again, etc. (resampling)

7. Make sure your “fades” aren’t automatically cutting the front of samples (Ableton users)

8. Use samplers to improve your workflow and audition/edit samples quickly

9. Don’t “overmix” samples that already sound great

10. Use bigger MIDI to get bigger sounding chords

11. Bounce things to audio as soon as you can

12. Cut reverb tails to tighten up your sound

13. Use group compression to add a bit of glue to your mix

14. Don’t let your drums miss out on the benefits of NY compression (parallel)

15. Remember that your abilities are more important than your plugins

16. Don’t work if you’re not feeling inspired

17. Take regular breaks to prevent ear fatigue

18. Monitor at low volumes to protect your ears

19. Monitor at low volumes to make sure that your music sounds great at reasonable levels

20. Know what key you’re in so that you can avoid clashing notes

21. Treat your room for acoustics if you’re using monitors

22. Bookshelves (filled with books) and soft furniture can help room acoustics

23. The “car test” is a fantastic way to check the club-integrity of your tracks

24. If you’re sending a track to mastering, don’t have any compression or limiting on the master bus

25. Keep peaks at -6 to -8 db when preparing a song for mastering

26. Only send labels and management your absolute best work

27. Finish everything

28. Release only your best tunes

29. Don’t be afraid to email your music out to blogs and promoters (if it’s good)

30. Pay more attention to the creative/musical aspects of your productions and pay less attention to the technicals

31. There are no rules, do what you want

32. Record your own random samples (especially weird percussion)

33. Let tracks sit for a week or two before you take another listen and finalize them

34. Make the music you want to hear

35. Never give up, you’re going to sound terrible for a very long time, but you’ll get where you need to be

36. Collaborate with people who are better than you are if you want to learn

37. Always be open to feedback, but use your judgment and take things with a grain of salt

38. Watch Twitch and other live streams to learn from other producers

40. Work outside or switch up your environment to spark new ideas

41. Cut lows that you don’t need in order to make room for the bass

42. Use saturation to thicken sounds instead of unnecessarily layering

43. Distort/saturate your subs if you want to give them a more prominent place in the mix

44. Use frequency key charts to match up fundamental frequencies (especially useful for sub boosting)

45. Use frequency charts to pinpoint where certain instruments and sounds are on the spectrum

46. Work on two projects at the same time so that you can easily bounce back and forth if you get stuck

47. Knowing how your monitors sound is more important than purchasing high quality listening equipment

48. Wear earplugs at concerts and festivals to protect your hearing for the studio

49. Don’t put any time into your branding until your music is fantastic

50. Focus on writing MIDI before you get too caught up in sound design

51. Structure your tracks before you dive in for a more planned approach

52. Use fast hi-hat patterns to give your songs more energy / a sped-up effect

53. Compress reverbs to make them more prominent and draw out the tails

54. Be sure to use sidechain compression if you want your kick to punch through the mix

55. You can also use volume automation programs like Nicky Romero’s Kickstart

56. Add life to your leads with pitch bending at the beginning of notes

57. Add movement to your leads with vibrato modulation on longer held notes

58. Use short stereo delays to widen your mix

59. Put a utility plugin on sub channels to keep them in the mono field

60. If you’re using mid/side eq, keep the highs on the side and the lows in the middle

61. Never give up, even if you hate your music

62. You will hate your music – keep pushing

63. Don’t worry about playing gigs until your music production is stellar

64. Kicks should have body at around 100Hz

65. Snares should have bod at around 200Hz

66. Network with as many producers as you can with the intention of learning new techniques and being mentored

67. Pull a reference track into each of your projects and use it constantly as a mix reference

68. Add vocals to your track when you can in order to give it a clear and powerful message

69.The best pitch-correcting is the tuning that you can’t hear without a/b comparison

70. Go to shows and concerts to get inspired and stay motivated

71. Be prepared to put a huge chunk of time into learning how to produce

72. Read the manual for your DAW and learn it inside and out

73. Make a list of production techniques that you keep constant in your mix in order to develop a sound

74. Make a list of creative techniques that you keep constant in your mix in order to develop a sound

75. Save presets you make for later use

76. Exercise regularly to keep your motivation and creative levels high

77. Keep a positive mental attitude

78. Don’t compare yourself to others in an unhealthy way…

79. … but don’t fool yourself into thinking that your music is great – reference other tracks

80. Don’t be afraid to delete instruments, tracks, or whole projects if something isn’t working

81. Use decaying white noise as a tail for your snares

82. Remove bass frequencies before any sort of climax (drop, chorus, etc.)

83. Use transient shapers on percussive synths

84. Less is more

85. Mute individual tracks in your project and determine whether or not they are needed

86. Give every instrument that you add a purpose in your song

87. Cut high frequencies on certain instruments if you need room for cymbals and crashes

88. Experimentation is the key to good sound design

89. Save or bounce processed and layered samples for later use

90. Close your eyes when listening back to something in order to focus more clearly

91. Listen as objectively as you can – listen as a first-time listener

92. Learn to play an instrument. This will give you something musical to do when you need a break from production

93. Listen to the iTunes top 100 charts to stay relevant and diversify your tastes

94. Remember that artists have succeeded on all digital workstations – stop switching your software and blaming your mixes on


95. Stop caring so much about your sonic quality and remember to make good music

96. Organize the tracks in your projects with grouping and intelligent naming

97. Organize your project files by name and type (finished, remix, collaboration, etc.)

98. Try moving volume faders around before using processing to fix an issue

99. Try deleting unnecessary tracks or completely re-making a sound before using processing to fix an issue

100. Sometimes you can add crowd noise in the background of your songs to help fill them out

101. Work as fast as you can when you’re inspired

102. Spending too much time on the details early on in a project is a sure fire way to get stuck

103. Try using smaller, shorter reverbs on bassy sounds and longer, bigger reverbson higher sounds

104. Listen to your favorite music and try to differentiate the different parts and break down how it’s built

105. If a certain technique doesn’t make intuitive sense to you, don’t use it indiscriminately

106. Sometimes, people on forums have absolutely no idea what they’re talking about

107. Work on your music every single day in order to rack up experience and improve quicker

108. Don’t use your age as an appeal, no one cares if you’re ten years old or thirty years old if the music is good

109. Creating remakes of other tracks (re-creating your favorite songs) can help you build an understanding of how they are put

together (and is great synthesis practice)

110. Work as an independent artist until you get an offer from management or a label that really blows you out of the water

111. Numbers don’t mean very much – focus on producing instead of increasing your Facebook page engagement

112. Automate everything you can if you want to breathe life into your tracks

113. Use contrast to differentiate drops and choruses (wet to dry, quiet to loud, no bass to huge sub, etc.)

114. Back up all of your projects – you will thank yourself later

115. Sometimes you have to account for the fact that you hate your music when comparing with reference tracks

116. Load weird samples into samplers and use them as instruments to get insane results

117. Add small shuffle elements to give your track a stronger groove

118. Only layer instruments if all of the layers are necessary and fit in their own spaces

119. Use vocoders with no external input to give sounds a more “wet” feel

120. Listen to LUMBERJVCK and try to get half of his production value

121. Try to tell a story with every song that you create

122. If you’re having a hard time getting creative on a certain day, build samples and presets to stay productive

123. Look out for when your favorite producers are conducting Q&A sessions

124. Try writing the drop/chorus of your song before the intro and breakdowns / builds

125. Trial and error is one of the most effective ways to improve

126. Use processing chains to transform basic sounds instead of trying to create complex synth patches

127. Pay attention to the flow of your song and the quality of your transitions

128. Downlaod Free EDM Kick Samples Pack here 

129. Try everything on your tracks, even if you don’t think it will work in your head

130. Make a lot of different kinds of music until you find your strengths and your style

131. Focus on what you do well and amplify that (is it rhythm? Melodies? Structure?)

132. Reference your finished product on all kinds of listening systems


We hope that you found some tips and techniques that you had not seen before!

Leave a comment if you can think of a tip that we missed!

132 Music Production Tips
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