Greetings all, and I hope you had a nice holiday. I’m not going to bury the lead, so here it is: It’s called “Magic Hour”. For me it conjures up the thought of magic hour–that time just before dusk, when your mind wanders to what is, what could be, and what might have been…
I’ve never been one for making promises you don’t keep, and since New Years resolutions seem to tbe the epitomy of that, I’ve never really embraced the concept. Still, timing is everything, and I recently discovered a great bit of wisdom from an electronic music producer named ill.gates. Not only does he make some pretty interesting and unique music, he also does tutorial workshops around the world. Now the thing about music tutorials is that as the “consumer” you have to play an active part in what YOU get out of them. There are only so many tutorials on how to use a compressor you can watch before you can’t help but get the concepts. Still, I can’t help but seek out more. Why is that? Well, it’s because I’m always always hoping those compression tutorials might give me a nugget of information on workflow, or creativity or those other elusive concepts that will help me understand what I REALLY want to know, which is “How can I create better music?”
Now I’m intelligent enough to know that after a certain point, a tutorial on using a tool of music production isn’t really going to help me make better music. Only practice, and a diverse, multilayered approach to music education can do that. And I’m on that path–no matter if it takes 30 years (and it will). Don’t get me wrong, there is still a LOT to learn about the tools of music production, but making better music is something that most music tutorial creators are not necessarily qualified to teach–even if they happen to make great music themselves.
This brings me to ill.gates’ ill.methodology course–which can be found here: The Ill.Methodology. He’s made the first video in the series free to watch, and believe me, it’s worth watching. It’s inspriational, and it touches on those nuggets of philosophy and human nature that others are too intimidated by or unaware of to talk about. Regardless of what kind of music you want to make, what he says in this course makes enormous sense, and it’s inspired me to make my own New Year’s resolution.
Yesterday I sat down in my studio, I worked for about 5 hours, and I came up with the song that become Magic Hour from nothing to completion. Granted, it’s not a complicated song. It’s not a very long song either, but I did it, and it’s done. My resolution is to not be so precious with my music–to get in the habit of finishing songs and staying excited, rather than trying to muscle any one song to say everything I want to say at once. Over the course of time, my music will get better. My techniques will get better, and most importantly, I’ll have more fun and excitement in my creation process. That’s what _I_ got out of this particular tutorial.