This is part 4 of my series on a music production course at Salt Lake DJ & Production school.
It was stressed throughout the course that we wouldn’t be learning creativity, though sometimes that was a by product of the things we learned as well as discussions or questions that came up. We did cover the basics of music production and the general ideas of song structure and some of the things that make a song unique. Rules are always meant to be broken when it comes to art and music. But typically each genre or sub-genre has elements that define what that is.
Knowing this we went over certain attributes that can be identified when producing a song. Each genre has a somewhat standard structure as far as how bars for each section (intro, verse, drop, breakdown, outro, etc.). After say 8 or 16 bars, certain elements can be introduced to show a change or shift in the song. Or to express something is going to change, say for example the start of a new section of the song.
Effects such as white noise, reverse crashes, impacts (pretty much anything that isn’t percussion, synth, or sub) are things that can add some depth and character to a song, as simple as they might be. But equally too much can be too distracting so in some cases empty space, or no effects, can be just as impactful. That’s all up to the creativity or the producer and how it fits in with the song. But these elements are useful in building tension (risers for example) as well as creating a smooth transition into the next part of a song.
It was cool to work through songs in class that we started from scratch and see how all of this fit in. Sometimes the smallest changes in a song made a huge difference in the overall feel. It’s up to the artist to listen and get a feel for how these aspects fit into the song.