How Both Artist And Producers Can Make the Most Out Of A Lesson
The biggest mistake we often make as creatives is buying yourself that latest Iphone. Buying that latest pair of Nikes or Adidas trainers. Saving up for the latest TV or simply buying and buying and then a little bit more buying.
One of the greatest tools we have right now as a creative and time and time again I find people being hesitant towards, is the ability to invest in yourself! Why oh why are people hesitant to spend a few hundred or even thousand dollars investing in their own career and self-education but will happily go out a buy a new phone, car, clothes or whatever it may be.
I’ll be honest, it took me a while to take the leap as well. What if the course isn’t all it’s meant to be? What if I don’t get value back etc… and I’ll be honest, there have been times I’ve bought courses and thought it wasn’t all it hyped itself up to be but if I tell you the truth, I have ALWAYS got value back from any of the online courses I have done. In fact, many of these courses I have done face to face or online have helped me get to the point of calling myself a professional music producer, songwriter and mix engineer! There are so many people out there offering their expertise for you to truly reap the rewards!
So let’s talk, Music Lessons, Vocals Lessons or Music Production Lessons.
How do you get the most out of these investments?
I have been teaching for 17 years now, I have taught all types of music lessons, drum lessons, dance lessons, vocal lessons. You name it, anything creative that I have played or done, I have also taught!
Some of my greatest students who now work with me at my music production studio started off as beginner students in music production and in as little as one year were already working professionally and producing full EP’s and Albums for themselves and their clients.
Here are some of the steps below to help you achieve the same type of results.
1. Write everything down!
The greatest students who achieved the most either write things down on notepads, computers or recorded lessons on their phones.
There is no way you can retain all the information and when things are new, you will probably only grasp 50% meaning that the next lesson you will spend 50% of that lesson recapping the previous.
The most efficient students are the ones who revise the notes or practice the steps from their previous lesson at home and come back to the next lesson ready to move forward. This is one way to get the most out of your hard earned dollars back!
Believe it or not, I have a music production bible myself with years worth of notes on my computer. When I forget something or want to revise, I press CMND F (find) on my mac and search a topic or plugin I need a refresher on. Music production is heavily theoretical and there is just no way to retain all the information at once!
2. Experiment the techniques at home
After each lesson, spend a week trying to use the techniques learnt in class. If you’re like me or most people, we learn best by putting things into practice. Listening to information is great but you must integrate it into your workflow for it to sink into your brain. Rinse and repeat. Often in lessons I will get students to repeat a technique 5-10 times before they become competent. Repetition is key to becoming a great music producer, vocalist or instrumentalist. Repetition, patience and doing things slowly.
Once you’ve experimented at home, you will surely have questions for your next lesson with either new or current problems in relation to the techniques you have been experimenting with.
3. Be on time!
This might seem super obvious, but you would be surprised that about 80% of students come 5-10 minutes late every lesson! I always try to give students their hour but if there’s a student booked after the lesson will finish on time. 5-10 minutes of being late over 12 lessons is 1-2hours missed! Money down the drain!
4. Bring your own projects to class
Once you have started grasping basic techniques, use the time at home to create and bring it to class! There’s nothing better than being passionate about your own projects and hearing them in a big professional studio! Having the chance to better them and work on them with a professional is a huge bonus you should take advantage of. Many students even have the chance to finish songs within their lessons and furthermore release them soon after.
5. Be open minded
No matter what stage you’re at, beginner or professional and no matter what previous techniques you’ve learnt. Make sure that you enter sessions or lessons with an open mind. There are 100’s of techniques that will get you to the same point. At the end of the day, you need to learn and consume as much information as you can and then figure out and apply what works best for you. This goes with technique for songwriting, singing, learning instruments etc… Once you’ve learnt from a master of their craft, you will slowly start to develop your own techniques and sound. This is what makes each producers, vocalist, or instrumentalist unique. We start by copying the people we love and then slowly start to pave our own way forward.
Lessons whether they’re online or face to face are essential to fast tracking yourself to success. This has helped me build a full time business in songwriting and music production and is a sure way to take a step in the right direction. There are no wrong decisions when buying courses for if it’s not for you, at least you learned to look in a different direction helping you get closer to your creative purpose!
Now, get back to class!