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Do you guys stay working on one beat until it's finished?
Old 10th September 2015
  #1
Lives for gear
 

Do you guys stay working on one beat until it's finished?

Do you guys work on one beat until it's finished or do you guys work on several beats at a time?

I ask this because I have so many unfinished beats on my computer.

What happens a lot with me is I'll be working on a beat and I'll be going through sounds and I'll hear something that sounds cool but it doesn't work with the beat I'm working on... so I'll save what I'm working on and open a new session to put down the new idea with the cool sound I came across. But then I end up working on the new idea and don't go back to the first beat I was working on.

But sometime you just get stuck... you know the beat is missing something but you can't figure out what it is... so I just say f*ck it and start a new beat... but once again... I never seem to go back to the other beat to finish it off.

So... do you guys stay working on one beat until it's done or work on several beats at a time?
Old 10th September 2015
  #2
SFB
Gear Addict
 

One at a time but that's just me
Old 10th September 2015
  #3
Lives for gear
 

I Personally concentrate on one beat at a time which in some cases might be over a couple days depending on the vibe to the track and how it sounds the next day! I use to leave various tracks (5 - 10 Beats) unfinished and add to them when I got around to it for melody changes with arrangement changes but that was back when I was busier in the earlier 2000's. Now a days I am looking more into perfecting the sounds used but still allowing space for the vocals of the artist's on the beat.
Old 10th September 2015
  #4
Gear Head
 

Sometimes, but normally I make 5 quick skeleton beats and have rappers pick which they like most then finish the beat while they write the lyrics.
Old 10th September 2015
  #5
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Lucin Niega's Avatar
 

The creative part is easy. It's the finishing that counts. Tracking, arrangement, mix, eq, effects, verb, bus comp, or not. If you get tired of listening of the song you're working on, start another one. Keep a couple songs in your "creative stable", but don't let it get out of control. Round robin the engineering on them. That's what works for me, at least.

Just remember that the "real work" gets harder as the jam progresses. It changes, from the creative to the analytical. Right to left brain activity transition.
Old 10th September 2015
  #6
Lives for gear
 

I make sure not to keep a beat graveyard anymore. I don't even save a lot of beats now. If the beat isn't uniquely hot I don't see the point in keeping it.
Old 10th September 2015
  #7
Good topic. My workflow has changed throughout the years. Up until a few months ago I would do exactly what you are doing.. start a beat, get stuck or distracted and start another. Truth was my beat making skills werent that good, if they were i would be compelled to finish them. I would usually finish like one a month.

After a while I realized that I wasnt really 100% into my beats.. I would settle for sounds/patterns because i couldnt dind what i was looking for. When i realized that, i stopped using sounds/patterns that were "kind of close" to what i was hearing in my head, and started honing in on my sound choice instincts to make sure i didnt stop on every cool sound that i heard. Just because a sound is cool doesnt mean its right for the song.

I started using a trick i made up for sound choice.. when i was cycling through sounds, i say to myself "is this a sound i would hear on the radio?" And 90% of the time its not. But if youre patient,you will land on something that sounds compelling, and thats when you know you have something. Another thing is that you subconsciously know if a sound is right foe the song or not.. you have to hone in on that, and focus on not trying to make a spund something its not, or you will burn out all your creativity fast and wont make any progress.

Ok im done
Old 10th September 2015
  #8
Lives for gear
depends, but like 90% of the beats i don't finish in one go never get finished at all.
mixing included but touch-ups excluded.
Old 10th September 2015
  #9
Lives for gear
 

I don't make beats, but I write multiple songs at a time. I just bounce from song to song. Hook here, verse there, bridge there. If I get stuck I come back to it.
Old 10th September 2015
  #10
Here for the gear
 
reamgear's Avatar
One at a time for sure
Old 10th September 2015
  #11
I have the same issue...

I tend to jump around and only finish like 1 out of every 20 "skeletons" i sketch out...

The arranging and mixing isn't hard... it's just less exciting to me... I think a lot of us get carried away jamming, and have trouble with the discipline part. Fun is fun, right?

I try to remedy this by starting a lot of my songs with just a piano, and resist the urge to make sounds or process or add other instruments until the song sounds good as piano only... from there, I can extract the bass, harmony, backing tracks from the piano arrangement.

Doesn't always work this way tho... sample-heavy and drum-centric stuff kind of requires a lot of dicking around...
Old 10th September 2015
  #12
Unfortunately - most of the time i do one beat at a time. But i know this is not good actually. i am more creative when switching between a few Songs/Ideas/Beats. The more different they are the better for he creative process. But i am the type of guy who needs to finish everything i start...
Old 10th September 2015
  #13
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tdot's Avatar
Depends what 'finished' is.

I guess the answer is no. I usually spend a whole night throwing together a beat which I consider a rough draft and then track it all out, and after that just leave it.
After I have a whole load of instrumentals, I usually finally decide which ones are good enough to record on, or which ones someone has an idea of what to record on it, and at that point I 'finish' the track.
Old 10th September 2015
  #14
Here for the gear
My beats are never finished.
Old 10th September 2015
  #15
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3rd Degree's Avatar
 

I finish almost everything before moving on to the next instrumental. For me, if I don't finish it, I probably never will. I also stop working on something and delete it if I don't have the basics down in 30 minutes or so and I am fairly happy with it. Combine those two processes and if I don't finish, I end up with a bunch of skeleton beats that are lacking all the details that are often very tedious to come back to, especially on multiple instrumentals. I just know myself well enough, to finish a beat, I almost have to do it without moving to another beat. There are exceptions for sure, if I am working around a rapper, planning for live instrumentation or just needing to formulate ideas but usually I try to get it done.
Old 11th September 2015
  #16
Lives for gear
I have a few going on ever since I found that I need to be in a certain mood to work on (or listen to) certain music.

Sometimes I am not in the mindset to work on technical stuff, so if I left a beat in a state that required tedious techy stuff, I can leave it for another day.

I might be in the mood to dig for drum samples, or have the energy to work on some grungy percussion, so I can open up that one.

Or I may have had some girl issues, and i want to do something emotional.

The trick is to have completely different songs going on at once... i found that if they were 3 similar beats, I would unconsciously start treating them the same.
Old 19th September 2015
  #17
Lives for gear
 

Thanks for all the feedback fellas...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Obe1 View Post
Truth was my beat making skills werent that good, if they were i would be compelled to finish them.
I think there's a lot of truth in this statement.
Old 19th September 2015
  #18
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ncoak's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ASICE View Post
I think there's a lot of truth in this statement.
yeah that guy sucks
Old 19th September 2015
  #19
Gear Maniac
 

I would say that 90% of my beats/songs get finished... No point in making a beat if you're not gonna finish it. Every beat is potential $$. Most of the time, if the beat doesn't sound good-great, all you need to do is change a couple sounds, and you've got a nice track.
Old 20th September 2015
  #20
Lives for gear
 

One track at a time, I have though throughout producing come up with ideas and scratched down or made the melody then go back to the track of a new beat. That's about it. I wouldn't want to have a bunch of unfinished tracks then have to go back to each one to finish, I could have made new joints in that time. [

QUOTE=ASICE;11322324]Do you guys work on one beat until it's finished or do you guys work on several beats at a time?

I ask this because I have so many unfinished beats on my computer.

What happens a lot with me is I'll be working on a beat and I'll be going through sounds and I'll hear something that sounds cool but it doesn't work with the beat I'm working on... so I'll save what I'm working on and open a new session to put down the new idea with the cool sound I came across. But then I end up working on the new idea and don't go back to the first beat I was working on.

But sometime you just get stuck... you know the beat is missing something but you can't figure out what it is... so I just say f*ck it and start a new beat... but once again... I never seem to go back to the other beat to finish it off.

So... do you guys stay working on one beat until it's done or work on several beats at a time?[/QUOTE]
Old 21st September 2015
  #21
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ASICE View Post
Do you guys work on one beat until it's finished or do you guys work on several beats at a time?
For me I try focusing on one at a time, but I question the effectiveness of this method. From many stories, and theories I've read on progressing with your art, often the studies show that artist go through "large volumes" of works before they make anything good. So I wonder if my time would be better spent producing tons skeleton or draft beats vs focusing on one complete beat at a time?

Also, letting perfectionism get in the way has been detrimental to finishing beats a well. By the time i've over-analyzed every part of the track, it no longer becomes fun to work on anymore. I usually jump to the mixing phase then, haha.
Old 14th October 2015
  #22
Here for the gear
 

Hope the mods don't get mad, but really would like to hear more discussion on people's creative processes...

Since my last response, I found it somewhat effective to treat making beats like writing a draft for an essay. The best advice I hear about writing essays is don't worry about grammar or spelling when constructing a draft. You can always go back and edit later. Treating my beats the same way has helped me knock out a few beat rather quickly. Turned out that out of the 3-5 beat drafts i made (with sloppy edits, misplaced notes, etc.), only felt that 2 were actually strong enough songs to spend time finishing.

Anyone else want to give their 2 cents?
Old 14th October 2015
  #23
when i started out i tried to allways finissh a beat before moving on, but eventually i ended up in the same boat as OP. I would say that i only finish about 5% of my beats.
Now that i think of it it all started since i got maschine. I just hate that sequencer as soon as i get to arranging the song i get frustrated and say fck it. Gonna have to start sequencing in another DAW
Old 14th October 2015
  #24
Lives for gear
I make stables of drum machine patterns, but only a few different projects are actively being developed.
When I work on a project, I utilize the drum machine pattern stable as a nice set of options. Sometimes I can't find what I'm looking for in there, so I make a new drum machine pattern from scratch to better fit the tune. But sometimes a drum machine pattern is better than a click track so I'll keep it until the song is done well enough to delete it and replace it with something better.

Sometimes I will even make stables of synth riffs, but to use them, I have to label the Key and BPMs and make sure that I only work with certain BPM's and keys. But even with that limitation, it can really speed up tune making sometimes. And it's all original so I can show off my styles within each tune better than if I used readymade loops bought from somebody else.
Old 15th October 2015
  #25
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deuc647's Avatar
No, but my new years resolution will be to start doing it like that. Tired of having a bunch of half ass finished tracks.
Old 15th October 2015
  #26
Here for the gear
 

sometimes one, sometimes ten and after a week i pick the best 3 and finish them
Old 15th October 2015
  #27
I've been working in three phases recently. First, I'll sample a bunch of stuff, chop it up and load up my samplers (actually doing that now, Paul's drums included). Then I'll jam with the sample banks and other instruments and record each jam (recordings average two hours per jam). The jam phase lasts a few months, basically until the samples run out. The last phase is editing, arranging and mixing each jam. I finish these one by one, in chronological order of jam date.

Feeling this new workflow, separating the more enjoyable jamming phase from the more tedious chopping and mixing phases.
Old 17th October 2015
  #28
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nystagmus View Post
Sometimes I will even make stables of synth riffs, but to use them, I have to label the Key and BPMs and make sure that I only work with certain BPM's and keys. But even with that limitation, it can really speed up tune making sometimes. And it's all original so I can show off my styles within each tune better than if I used readymade loops bought from somebody else.
Sometime's loops are the perfect thing to finish a track though. If a track is feeling dry or needs a melody, and I'm not feeling spending another couple hours creating sounds, ill just use someone elses. I think of it like hiring another musician......yet, i still resist sampling real songs
Old 17th October 2015
  #29
Gear Nut
I used to work on something, stop, move on to something else and had a bunch of tracks unfinished. Years ago I either read an article or saw a YouTube video and someone was talking about the difference between making a beat and producing. It kind of clicked to me and from that moment on I finish what I started.

Like someone else said, instead of just searching for cool sounds I started searching for the sounds that actually fit the mood for the track and it's made a world of difference.
Old 17th October 2015
  #30
I try to finish them the same day I start workin on them, but in most cases it takes a few days.
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