Nine common ways to kill your creativity

From scales and semitones to pentatonics and cadence patterns. It's all about the science behind the expression, here.

Re: Nine common ways to kill your creativity

Postby itroitnyah » 11 Feb 2014 15:27

TL;DR: You shouldn't care.

Seriously though. This is really well written, and really hits upon points that are very important as a growing and learning producer/composer/musician. Thank you for sharing this with us, I love it!
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Re: Nine common ways to kill your creativity

Postby azerty » 11 Feb 2014 16:51

I think I broke out of my creative block just by reading this. Thanks for sharing the inspirational and knowledgeable insights here.
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Re: Nine common ways to kill your creativity

Postby S.P.P » 14 Feb 2014 10:25

Damn eery, nice find. Thanks for sharing mate!
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Re: Nine common ways to kill your creativity

Postby Injustrial » 14 Feb 2014 11:11

This is very nicely written and probably what a lot of us need to hear at times. Thanks for posting!
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Re: Nine common ways to kill your creativity

Postby TWILICORN » 14 Feb 2014 16:28

eery wrote:Any of these things sound familiar?

Very.
Thanks for sharing!
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Re: Nine common ways to kill your creativity

Postby Electric Velocity » 15 Feb 2014 02:59

This is exactly what I've been going through the past few days. I've been working on 8-16 bar loops, not getting any structure done, and then giving up and starting another 8 bar loop even though the last track sounded great. I thought the problem was that it was too simple or that I somehow ended up making my original idea boring. This helped me realize that my real problem is that I don't even know what genre I'm making, so I don't know what people will expect when they listen to it.

When I do writing, like with this post as an example, I sometimes go through it and rewrite or move certain sentences so that important ones will have more impact. That's how it is with my music too. I try to make my favorite parts stand out, but sometimes I repeat what I'm saying too many times and feel like I've overstated. What I need is to find a genre for each of my songs and stick to it. It's hard though because most of my songs are created on the spot when and however I feel like it.

I thought that if I could come up with some lyrics, that I could finally have a structure to my song, but lyrics shouldn't be an afterthought. I'm more of a planner, so if lyrics weren't part of the original vision, they'll most likely drag my songs down. I know that I like the way my song is now, but if it's just that one 16 bar loop and nothing else, it feels lacking no matter how complex the loop is.

Of course people will suggest writing a new set of chords, but that only stretches it out for me. I'm going to loop those chords too because I want to get the most out of every part of the song. Sometimes my tracks will get up to 9 minutes long and I realize I have to cut my song in half. This makes me wonder if anyone really cares though. I mean, there are a lot of great songs that last more than the conventional 2-3 minutes most popular music is boiled down to. Music itself is just a bunch of repeating sounds put into an organized fashion. I think as long as you at least try to keep a flow going in your music, long tracks are perfectly fine.

The part of eery's post that speaks to me the most is the part about how one's musical taste can be narrow. I know for a fact that my taste is very picky. For awhile, I only listened to maybe two artists and thought all other music was trash. Only in recent years have I started accepting other types of music, but those first few tunes I grew to like stuck with me. They come through in all the music I do. No matter what, if I try to make another type of music, my original taste will effect it. I find that listening to music I don't like only strengthens my style and that's not a bad thing.

Thank you, eery, for posting this. Hopefully I can get out of my rut and worry less about what I'm doing wrong so I can focus more on what I'm doing right.
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Re: Nine common ways to kill your creativity

Postby S.P.P » 15 Feb 2014 09:00

Another problem I think alot of people come across (myself included) run into is the fear of making shit music. You WILL create shit music every now and then; it's inevitable. Even professionals don't release everything they start, churning out bangers left and right. They make something bad and do nothing with it.

You just have to accept it. If the thing you're working on is pretty poor, just accept that its not that great and you probably won't release it. Try and finish it to some degree for closure, and then forget about it. Best case scenario you'll be able to salvage it before finishing and it turns out pretty good. Or you'll get a really nice idea for some other project. At worst, you'll finish something and its out of mind.

Bad tracks happen. Deal with it. :3
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Re: Nine common ways to kill your creativity

Postby Liteheuz » 25 May 2014 14:55

Yeah, if there is one thing I can be notorious for(other than being horendously oblivious and clueless) Is constantly doubting myself. What I've found helps me when I can't figure out what to do next with a track is to go with my instincts and let myself just go with what feels right. Granted, doing this can tend to leave yourself at a loss(at least for me) for what genre your song specifically falls under, but chances are, you'll end up making something that sounds unique and different, and people will be drawn to it; mainly due to the fact that it contains sounds and synths that they haven't heard before.
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Re: Nine common ways to kill your creativity

Postby JSynth » 25 May 2014 22:01

I need to bookmark this.

Writing lyrics and recording vocals are both demanding and de-motivating for me. Recently, I have been going through a little bit of writers block. It can be frustrating. I have the desire to make music, but almost nothing to work on. Anyway, nice post.
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