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Old 14th March 2013
Michael Beinhorn
fexurbis's Avatar

I'm glad those posts touched a nerve- that's one reason I write them. I don't feel that these issues get addressed enough yet they are at the core of everything artists, record producers, engineers, etc do. It doesn't make any sense to me that this can be so readily ignored and I'm always surprised to see so many highly talented people in a state of denial about what's happening instead of trying to do something about it.

When I work with an artist, as well as producing a record for them, I try to provide them with whatever developmental tools they can use at that moment. I'm presently working with an artist named Ruby Friedman. She is a powerful performer, has a remarkable voice, can sing any style of music and writes her own songs, but because she doesn't fit into the traditional model of what a successful artist must look or sound like, she's been largely ignored by A&R.*

It's a waste of time to try and convince people in the music business that something is worth their time when their criteria for judging music is so skewed by variables which fall outside the basic understanding of whether or not a song simply feels good to listen to. Therefore, I'm only concerned with doing things that feel good to the artist and myself. That has always been my approach to making records and experience has taught me that I can't pander to other people I don't even know since I'll never really know what they want to hear, anyway.

What gives me hope is not the artists I work with or whose music I hear but my own feelings regarding the creation of music and its necessity in the world. Given the current climate, it's far too easy to become jaded- I've seen this happen to many of my friends. I simply won't let it happen to me. Any time I've ever felt this slipping away, all I've had to do was listen to a piece of music which was ever inspiring to me or an emotional touchstone. Having something like that is an anchor and a constant reminder that what is expressive about music is what pulled me into being involved in its creation.

I make a lousy business person and have no choice but to be an artist- or, at least to feel like one. If you make art, you have to put that first, above anything else. Having that feeling toward the work I do is what gives me hope and I believe that is infectious.