Episode 30

Music Producer 104 - Identity, Vision and Intention


September 11th, 2018

1 hr 7 mins 7 secs

Your Hosts

About this Episode


Identity, who are you?
Having a strong identity makes you a more compelling artist.

Vision, what is your mission?
What are you trying to express? A strong vision provides direction to the entire project.

Intention, how?
How are you going to get this done?

It makes it easier to find and connect with an audience. This will help you define the type of band you are going to be, the type of songs that you are going to write and etc.With these 3 elements clear, it is easier for the artist to be written, blogged, get reviews in magazines and newspapers. Journalist do not have to figure out who you are as an artist.

(Artist Comparison) + (Contrasting Artist Comparison) With A Healthy Dose Of (Unique Differentiator)

Find an artist similar but not going to be exactly same as you.

Next is you want to contrast that. So somebody that is also an influence on what you do, and has something to do with the work that you're doing.

It could almost anything, but think about what is it that makes me the most unique, your unique differentiator.

Think artist comparison meets contrasting artist comparison with a healthy dose of unique differentiator. So once you put this together, you now have a pretty good idea in just one sentence of at least where you might be heading.

Bruno Mars - Think Elvis meets Michael Jackson, with a healthy dose of Hawaiian charm.
SOG(Sekumpulan Orang Gila) - Think Underoath meets M. Nasir with a healthy dose of Malaysian melodies/instrumentation.
*Relent * - Think Kings of Leon meets Foo Fighters with healthy dose of devotional & positive lyrics.

**Musical Identity

  • The pallet of emotions being conveyed.
  • The genre.
  • Influences (compare yourself to other artists)
  • The vocal style or timbre
  • The instrumental style or timbre. (i.e. virtuosic music, or something that's simple and song-oriented?)

Lyrical Identity

  • Emotional content of the lyrics. The subject matter and the message in the lyrics.
  • The level of intimacy in the lyrics and the type of language that's used. Is there colloquial language, is it regional, is it urban, is it country?
  • The characters and the setting. How much do we know about who these people are? Is it more personal, more normal, more relating to everyday life?

Personal Identity

  • Your attitude and your visual image.
  • The back story. It can be very helpful if an artist has a good backstory, it gives people something to talk about when they're starting to talk about an artist.
  • Interesting artistic journey that you've been on. Maybe you started out one place and you've moved somewhere else.
  • Willingness to tap your personal, emotional journey for your art. Are you willing to go there, and talk about personal things in order to show us more about the human condition.

Who are you, as a producer? It's good to ask yourself that question and make some distinctions.

  • Genres
  • Clients
  • Vibe
  • Professionalism
  • Hang factor
  • Creating a safe place.
  • Listening skills
  • Technical skills
  • Personal skills

So take a little bit of time to think about who are you as a producer? Write down what you bring to the production process, what are you offering artists if they come to you to have you produce their record? And be able to articulate this to artists, potential clients that you might want to work with.

What is Your Artistic Vision?
While your artist identity refers to who you are as an artist, your artist vision is your aspirational ideas or what you are trying to accomplish as an artist.

Case Study
A Fine Frenzy - One Cell In The Sea
A Fine Frenzy - Bomb InA Birdcage

It all about creating a powerful an artistic statement.

Giving and Receiving Feedback
Being able to give and receive feedback effectively, can be incredibly helpful. It can make you a better producer, it can make you a better artist, and, just make you a better person (not a jerk).

Giving feedback

  • When you give feedback to others, always be specific, helpful, and kind.
  • Be as specific as possibleDon't be afraid to say if you don’t like something on certain parts of the song and you like certain elements on other parts. The more specific you are, the more helpful you're actually being.
  • Always strive to be helpful when you're giving feedback. It's not to show off.
  • *Be kind. * The more kind you are as you're doing it, the easier it's going to be for somebody to really let it in.

Receiving feedback

  • Be open, curious, and non-defensive. Just take a deep breath before you start receiving that feedback and just let it in, so you can really understand what it is that people are saying.
  • Cultivate your curiosity. Be curious how your music affects other people. What emotional impact it has on them?
  • Keep in mind your identity, your vision, and your intention as you receive that feedback. It might be a good idea, but it might not be a good idea necessarily for you.

Always have a conversation upfront as a producer. And tell the artist that they should always have the final say. We're not going to put anything on this record that you don't personally love.

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Intro music by: Home - Billiards
Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash