How to become a music producer
If you want to become a music producer be prepared for a lot of hard work and knock-backs. You need to be dedicated to your craft hard.
OD Hunte is a music producer who’s worked with many artists including Wretch 32 and has had his music featured in shows like The Hills, Hollyoaks and My Super Sweet 16. So how can you become a music producer? Well OD tells you all about how he started and gives you his top five tips on making it in the industry.
How I started
I first started writing songs when I was about 14 years old back in Trinidad. I stared learning to play the guitar and write songs and after a while taught myself to play the keyboards off a VHS video. After a couple years I moved to the UK and bought my first sequencing keyboard, a Casio CZ101. I was still a student and writing songs and sending demos to record companies, in the days when they used to write back.
I went to the University of Surrey to study Physics with Modern Acoustics. In my final year my friend handed me a gift. It was a DAT (Digital Audio Tape) of some tracks off a Teddy Riley master of Two Can Play That Game by Bobby Brown.
That DAT changed the way I approached beat making.
I soon began creating loops and hit upon the idea to start selling DATs. Soon after I got my DAT reviewed in Future music magazine and after the head of the largest Sample CD manufacturer called me up. He wanted me to produce the CDs and he said he would distribute them worldwide.
Well as a student just out of University, I didn’t have a great deal of cash so I immediately called the second biggest guy in the business Matt at AMG. We soon struck a deal for him to manufacture the CDs and distribute them and I would provide the content. That was my first commercial venture!
A few months later I was approached to do some production music. The resulting CD album Nu BlackBeats was one of the first urban discs for Extreme music library who are now owned by Sony/ATV.. And my second successful commercial venture.
From there I continued networking, meeting artists and managers
and got into commercial songwriting and production while still continuing to write music for TV and film to the point where my music has been used in hundreds of shows and a couple games and has been heard by hundreds on millions of people.
How to become a Music Producer – my top five tips
1. Learn to play an instrument. I would suggest learning the keyboard because with the keyboard you can emulate almost all other instruments, where as with the guitar for example it’s more difficult. But I would say if you can learn more then do.
2. Learn music theory. It may sound boring but understanding at least chords, keys and scales is vital to have a career as a composer / producer. If you only write topline then it’s less relevant but to produce it’s important.
3. Create visibility. In today’s world where so many people are trying to he heard and seen you have to do something to be seen and heard. Create a project and invest in it to gain visibility like for example sign a singer or rapper, do a music video and pay a promotions/ PR company to get your track/ profile up on the net including blogs etc. Or do a mixtape and get that distributed.
4. Learn about the business and take care of it. Learn about PRS, copyright law etc and protect your intellectual property- your songs / tracks.
5. Get a team around you. It’s a very lonely road trying to be successful in the industry but if you are part of a team, either a production team or songwriting team or have someone to help with promotion social media marketing, it makes work a whole lot easier.
If you have all of the above plus talent, determination and drive then there is a space for you and your career and you’ll be well on your way to becoming a successful music producer.
Check out more about OD Hunte on his website and if you found this article useful about how you can become a music producer, please take a second to tweet OD to let him know!