I don’t mean your reasoned, logical, “take every option and weigh each up rationally” judgement.
I’m talking about your animal, gut, in the heat of the moment judgement.
Because there’s 2 ways of making music.
One is to make your musical choices according to logic.
Reasoning. Cooly and rationally deciding between your available options.
Making sure you are making the “right” decisions.
The other is to trust your gut.
Go with your animal intuition. Let your unconscious mind run wild and go with it’s choices.
Do you have the courage to do that?
Because I want you to think about your audience. Your listeners.
Think about the way they will listen to your music.
Where they will be, what they will be doing when they hear your music. The state they will be in when they are listening to it.
What effect you want your music to have on them?
So let’s assume you are making music [mainly] for the dancefloor.
The state your listener is going to be in is highly unlikely to be analytical, rational and reasoning.
It’ll be much closer to the animal, emotional, visceral…
Unless you’re making music simply to impress other music producers.
Or chin strokers.
(Which is a perfectly valid source of motivation – for sure.
Although a sure way to impress both other music producers and chin strokers is to write something that they can’t help but lose their shizz to.)
So – if the vast majority of your listeners are (hopefully) going to be in quite a “froth” when enjoying your music…
…which method of making music is more likely to achieve this?
Which is more likely to affect and excite the animal, visceral, “in the moment” part of your audience’s brain?
By exclusively using your logical, rational mind?
“Thinking through” every single tiny decision?
Or by trusting your gut?
(I know which I’m putting my money on.)
How to Put Intuition Front & Centre
There’s a whole module in my full program dedicated to these 2 different methods of making creative decisions.
Because for sure – both have their place.
But I’ve noticed that most music producers almost exclusively rely on just one.
(and which you rely on will largely depend on what you do day to day in your job – of you have one. But that’s a whole other can of worms I’ll get into another time.) 🙂
Which do you tend to use?
By learning and practising how to use both, will mean you make much more music – much more often.
(Because when you get stuck with one you’ll know how to use another effectively.)
And it also leads to making more powerful music.
(Because you’re more likely to get those darned chin strokers off their asses!) 😉
But for now – here’s a ridiculously simple technique I used a heap to unlock my gut intuition.
Particularly when I found myself getting stuck in “analysis paralysis”.
The “Just Go With Your Gut” Method
This is the closest I could get to “free writing” when making music.
(Where you just write words completely freely on paper without allowing your conscious questioning mind to get in the way.)
So for an entire studio session I’d simply go with the first idea, sound, part or decision that popped into my head.
Never second guess myself.
Never try another option.
Just go with it and see where it lead.
The result? The process was much quicker. It was more fun.
And yes – the music was (usually) MUCH better!
Try it. It’s very simple. But it’s also a blast.
(This works a treat when DJing too. Every single time – always put on next the first track that comes into your head. Scary. But awesome. Cue crowd going potty.)
There is a problem though…
Using this method sometimes means getting a little carried away “in the moment”.
Letting your imagination and “animal brain” run free can lead to putting way too much into the track and getting confused.
Not the point.
Because when this happens, you can’t help but get that rational logical brain in to take over and make sense of the mess.
So to avoid the mess – use a framework.
Write your parts “in” an arrangement template you’ve made already.
Because then you’re much less likely to go off on a creative flight of fancy.
With it – you’ll create the structure of the music first, before you create any parts.
You’ll then write your parts within that structure.
These boundaries will (ironically) give you the freedom to let your imagination and creativity run free.
Without disappearing down that dreaded music production rabbit hole.
And I’ve got another tool for you right here to help you do that.
So what’s your preferred method of making music?
Do you cooly and rationally weigh the options? Or splurge the contents of your brain into the DAW?
Do you use analysis or insight?
How would it help you to develop the skill of using the other more often?