If you are an aspiring musician, one of the first steps to take in order to start your career is to make your own music.
Creating a mix-tape is a great way to experiment with your music and talents and possibly get noticed and make a name for yourself.
Here are five steps that you can follow if you are interested in making a mix-tape.
Develop an Outline for your Mix-tape
In any project, having a clear set of goals and plan of action is important in order to be successful. When you decide to make a mix-tape, there are a few components to your plan you should consider.
First, who are you as an artist and what is your style. Determining this will give you that unique sound that separates you from the million other musicians out there.
Second, you should decide on a theme for your mix-tape.
- What style of music are you going to produce?
- What will the cover art consist of?
- How many tracks will be on it?
These are all questions that you should answer before you begin putting together your mix-tape. Deciding on a theme and sticking to it will help your mix-tape resonate better with your audience.
Get or Create Beats for your Mixtape
Once you have decided on a theme for your music, you need to either create your own beats or find some to use. Since you are not profiting off of your mix-tape, using the beats from popular songs should not be a problem.
If you decide to go the route of using instrumentals from popular songs, make sure to choose ones that match the theme of your mix-tape and your image as a musician. Also, try and pick instrumentals that haven’t been overused.
Your listeners don’t want to hear the same tired tracks over and over. It’s your job to give them something new to get excited about.
Another route you can take if you don’t want to use other artist’s instrumentals is creating your own beats. There are many software’s available for purchase for musicians that give you the ability to create original sounds.
If you don’t want to spend the time or money creating your own beats, another strategy a lot of musicians use is reaching out to local DJ’s or up-and-coming internet music producers. Like you, they are looking for exposure and collaborating on mix-tapes is a great way for both of you to achieve that.
Now that you have the beats and instrumentals you need to make your music, it is time to start writing your lyrics.
Write Original Lyrics
Writing original lyrics for your mix-tape may end up being the most time consuming and important aspect of your mix-tape. Having original lyrics that are catchy and engaging are vital to connecting with your listeners and gaining popularity.
When writing your lyrics it is important to keep the sound structure of your song in mind. Make sure that your vocals make sense and flow smoothly with the beat you are using. If the beat you are using is from another already produced song, then you should decide whether you want your flow to match the original or be unique.
Although you may not need one for every song, you should have at least a few hooks or choruses in your songs. Whether you write original ones or use preexisting, the chorus line is often what people will remember most about your song.
Finally, one addition that you can add to your songs that will help make you memorable is to add a personal drop. Adding this element to your songs helps to remind your listeners who they are listening to provides a unique sound to your music.
Record and Edit your Mixtape
Now that you have chosen your beats and written the lyrics you are going to use, it is time to start recording and editing your mix-tape. This stage of the process is often the most frustrating because you will often spend hours re-recording and editing your music.
Having the right equipment is also crucial to putting the finishing touches on your music and getting the sound quality you want. Having access to quality equipment in a professional studio will allow for the best quality.
When you record your music, you will record your vocals, and then edit them with the beat when you are finished. Don’t feel like you need to be perfect on your first take. Even if you think you like the first take, you should do a few more to give yourself options.
Once you have recorded a few takes and have chosen one you are happy with, it is time to layer it over the instrumental. Do not rush this step. Give it proper time and care so that you are sure that all your tracks meet your standards.
Promote your Mixtape
Once you are satisfied with your mix-tape, it is time to promote it. What’s the point of creating this awesome music if no one is going to hear it. Luckily for you, we live in the digital age and self-promotion has many platforms for musicians.
Some of the options available to musicians include’
- Mix-tape websites – There are many websites on the internet that are specifically for musicians who want to post their music. These sites also provide opportunities to network with other artists for possible future collaboration.
- Social Media – Social media is a great tool for musicians to use to also because it provides a large audience and the ability to connect with their fans and friends.
- Creating your Own Website – Nowadays there are many free options available to musicians where they can build their own website to promote their music. Some of these options include Square space, Wix and Wordpress.
Besides promoting your music online, there are many other options you have to promote your music and be discovered.
You can try sending your tape to record labels, local radio stations or DJ’s and try to get them to listen to it. Reaching out to industry professionals is never a bad idea and can lead to valuable connections.
Hopefully after reading this you are one step closer to creating your own mix-tape and starting a successful music career.
If you feel like you still need help, or want to learn more about how to start a music career, then maybe you should consider attending a professional music school.
If you would like to see what a music and media school can offer you, click the link below.