How to Take Your First Steps in Rap Music Production

Today there is more music about then ever, and with the internet booming and services such as Napster, iTunes, and loads more free radio stations and if you are an artist this means that you have more ways for your music to be heard.

One of the most popular genres of music is rap and if you enjoy listening to rap or hip hop then there will come a time when you want to turn your hand at music creation.

Unfortunately a lot of people only get this far, and once they see all the equipment and how much it is going to cost to product great sounding music they are put off.

Well it does not have to be that difficult!

You do not have to go straight in and buy your own recording studio for thousands of dollars if you are just looking for a little primer!

The first thing you will need to get started is a rap beat maker; these are also known as music production software as it may allow you to make different types of music as well.

What is Music Production Software?

Basically it is a program that runs on your computer and allows you to make your own music digitally. You pick your instruments and then lay out the notes and timing with a something that is called a sequencer.

You can actually get desktop sequencers that you can download and with just this alone you can make some very good music.

The only downside if you are looking to use a sequencer is that it does require a bit of knowledge about music production and if you are brand new you might find it a bit over whelmed at first.

If you do a search online you can find plenty of flash games that allow you to make fun rap beats as part of a game, and these are not to be overlooked as some are quite good!

You can also find a lot of free trials of programs and most of them run for 30 days so this is more than enough time to get to grips with how it all works.

You will find that although trials will be adequate while you are getting used to making rap beats the real problems come in when you want to save your beats.

Most of the free trials will not let you save your beats, so if you are just having g a play around bear that in mind you do not want to lose all of your work.

Another option would be a website called Sonic Producer and this is a membership website with a community that use a sequencer.

This is quite a good sequencer because although fairly simple it only has the things that you absolutely need to start making rap tracks. So you will not get bogged down with all the technical bells and whistles.

This is particularly good for beginners as it will allow you to the see basics of rap music creation, but more than that you will be able to start producing your own music and having fun while you are learning.

The other good thing for people starting out is the price as it is only $29 as oppose to the top option a full DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) could cost you thousands of dollars.

What Does Sonic Producer Include?

You get access to a community of like minded people, of course the beat maker, and thousands of pre set beats and loops that you can use to start making your own music.

There are also a few video lessons that show you how to use the software and also there is a more advanced video series when you are ready to take the next step.

I find that most beginners are confident starting out with Sonic Producer because they offer a full guarantee, so you can get a refund if it is not for you.

How To Make Your First Rap Track?

I find that once you have picked the program that you are going to use to make your rap music; the best way to get started is through good old trial and error!

You just have to keep trying different things, mix the sounds up and a good way to get started if you are lost is to think of your favourite rap artist and try and emulate the same sound.

Start with a build up into your main tune so you could have a kick drum at the start and count out the beats, some of the programs let you tap out the beats.

Most important though is to remember to have fun and not take it too seriously, remember we were all new once!

Now go out there and make your first rap beat!

Good Luck!

5 Steps for Planning a Song Recording Project

Deciding to go into a recording studio to record your project opens up a ton of options. Once you’ve committed to the idea, the best way to move forward is to put together a plan. This is the initial step in the process known as pre-production. In planning, you want to factor all aspects of the project into the equation – from the scope of the project and your budget for its completion, to where it will be done and what instruments will be used.

Let’s take a closer look at planning your next project.

  • Step One: Setting Goals

The best place to start is by assessing what you’d like the recording to be. Is it just one song? A three song demo? A full album? What do you want to gain from the process? A record deal? A song writing contract? Some gigs with your band? The answers to questions like these should form the basis of your plan, which will govern your project going forward. One more key question with regard to this stage of planning: what’s your budget?

  • Step Two: Choosing a Studio

Next, you’ll want to pick a studio to record in. This may mean using a studio you know, or using the web to help you search for and find another studio. Having a good idea of the size and scope of the project will help you in deciding on a studio. If you need to track four or five different musicians, simultaneously or at once, you’ll have certain physical requirements that the studio must meet. A little research will go a long way when it comes to picking a recording studio, so do your homework.

  • Step Three: Contact the Studio

The next logical step in planning a recording session is to contact the studio you’re interested in recording at. This initial call may be to the studio manager or the engineer, but in either case you should outline your project’s goals to them. Based on their responses and feedback, you can decide whether or not to move forward with the studio. You want to cover technical concerns, certainly, but you also need to discuss the budget. Before you sign any agreement with a studio, be certain that they have the technology and know-how to get the project done, and that you have the money to afford their services.

  • Step Four: Prepare for Recording

Once you’ve scheduled the recording sessions, the next step is to prepare. This means making sure you’ve got all the resources you need for recording. This is where the real pre-production intensifies. If you have a song that needs pedal steel guitar, for example, you need to make sure that you have the instrument on-hand and someone to play it, if you don’t play it yourself. This may mean you have to discuss adding session musicians with the engineer. Session musicians will need to be scheduled ahead of the day of recording, so this should be addressed as early as possible. Likewise, if there’s any gear or tools you need, you should work on sourcing it well before the sessions start.

  • Step Five: Packing for the Studio

It may seem obvious, but packing for the studio is a lot like packing for a gig. You’ll want to make sure you have all of your instruments, strings, picks, drumsticks, and/or any other accessories needed to make your session run smoothly. The best advice is to pack extras of everything. Leave nothing to chance when heading to the studio. It’s also appropriate to check with the studio to see what their policies on food and drink are. You may want to bring a snack or some bottled water to the sessions. Basically, the idea is to arrive at the studio needing nothing, so that you can focus on capturing great performances while recording.

Tips To Upgrade Your Music Enjoyment

Music can be uplifting and motivating even at times your life does not seem to be working right for you. Listening to good music can help you get over the blues and start having a positive outlook to life. However, the quality of your music can determine just how much you get to enjoy your favorite songs. Poorly encoded files can be frustrating and so can the type of devices and accessories you are using to listen to the songs. It is one thing to download some of the best MP3 files, but quite another to enjoy quality audio. Here are tips you can use to enhance your experience.

1. Unleash the full potential of your headphone by using an amplifier and USB digital analogue converter, DAC. They both will improve the quality of the audio output even though it means attaching additional gadgets to the headphones.

2. Choose your playlist smartly. You might of course have some of your favorites, but sometimes your experience can be maximized when you pay attention to the tunes that have not been played as much before or those that have not received any airplay. Know your playlist, but at least try to be adventurous in your choice of songs. You can add as many songs to the playlist as you wish to give you endless enjoyment.

3. Set the best bit rate when playing. This is something that can really make a difference to your experience, especially if you are dealing with files that have gone through high compression. Choose the rate that best suits the sound and enjoy the difference in the quality of your MP3.

4. Upgrade your headphones or simply purchase a good set that reduces noise. The wrong headphone can distort audio quality. Today there are so many brands and models you can choose from and some are inexpensive yet high in quality. Choose a set that won’t let you down and find out the best ways of taking care of it to keep damages at bay.

5. Make a point of using social connections to discover new amazing songs you are bound to enjoy. Streaming services now connect to the social networks making it very easy for you to discover songs that suit your preferences and personality or you can simply connect with friends who share interests to keep you updated on what is latest.

6. Clean and organize your music library every now and then. It can be a hard thing to do, especially when you have to delete songs you are attached to but it is one of the best ways of improving performance. This step can help get rid of tracks that have become boring or duplicated tracks you have no use for anymore. You can find a backup plan to keep the songs you find hard to delete.

7. Utilize music streaming services. They give you access to large collections of music you don’t have to own to listen to and they also offer a great platform to find new tunes.

Tips to Choose the Right Scientific Instruments Manufacturer

Industrial Laboratory equipment from glassware, microscopes to scientific devices have become the inseparable parts of a laboratory. As they help in carrying out different types of researches, you need good quality and high performing research products. Your way to select an analytical instrument impacts your work in important ways. Hence, it has become necessary to deal with the reliable scientific instruments supplier to ensure that you are getting the right product according to the money paid with better future backup. Adhering the given below tips, you can choose the right scientific instruments manufacturer to meet scientific, as well as practical requisites of your work:

Experience

To select the right manufacturer, judge the stability of its business and experience in the domain. The standard of financial success depicts the stay of a manufacturer in the business. You can develop a business relationship with equipment manufacturers having at least one year experience as they must know the every aspect of the designing of Industrial Laboratory equipments.

Past Track Record

Always check the business reputation of the scientific instruments exporter before cracking a deal. You should evaluate the references before dealing with the manufacturer to know how it treats customers. Before you buy instruments from a manufacturer, check its past track business record and evaluate references to avail the best deal with trusted manufacturer.

Clients Served

Before choosing the maker, know the needs and goals of its past served clients and their satisfaction level. Talk to them about the deal that vendor offers, product quality, style of customer service, etc. If the requirements of its clients are similar to yours, you can go on as it will help you to execute your project with the best results.

Your Budget

Do a thorough market research and make a list of vendors that come under your budget. Then, choose the best among them keeping other considerations in mind. If you have limited budget, you can also go for equipment manufacturer that deals in used equipment. Used equipment can also work for a longer period of time if it is maintained properly. Maintaining budget from the initial stage of dealing is the smartest choice.

Brand

Every brand distinguishes technologically from others due to different features, manufacturing process and so on. Before choosing any brand, check its reviews and feedback to make your deal the best and profitable one.

A single mistake of choosing a wrong manufacturer can actually lead your research to disaster. So, keep the above given tips in mind and accomplish your goal of successful research.

How to Preserve Your Woodwind Instrument

Most accidents happen with these instruments, when they are not put into their cases in between use. A favourite accident is with children who practise in their bedrooms and leave the instrument temporarily on their beds; then subsequently sit on them during a lapse of memory. Keys are bent out of place and in the case of flutes, they take on a decidedly banana-looking shape. When not in use, keep the instrument in its case, as that is the safest place for it. Equally, the popular gig bags best avoided with younger children as damage can still be caused if accidentally dropped. A hard case will always offer the best protection.

When putting an instrument together, the aim is to position the hands so that there is minimal pressure applied to any of the keys. With the saxophones the principal danger is with the crook (Top joint). With clarinets and oboes there are keys that need to be matched up from one joint to the next and those are at high risk of damage. When in doubt, bring the instrument into a recognised repairer to be seen to. All cork joints are to be greased regularly to avoid any difficulty when fitting the joints together and therefore putting unnecessary hand pressure on the instrument, leading to damage of keys. Some teachers offer pupils Vaseline as a substitute to the Woodwind cork grease, but the ingredients are not exactly the same and it should therefore not be recommended.

It is a myth that metal joints on flutes and saxophones need greasing. If the instrument is well made (such as a Jupiter flute), there should be no need for lubrication.

Food and playing a Woodwind instrument do not mix. It makes more work with cleaning the instrument afterwards and can put your pads at increased risk of needing replacement if they get food substances or drink being absorbed into them.

When you have finished playing your instrument, it needs to be dried before replacing into its case. No matter how capable a musician the player is, there is always condensation produced on the inside of the instrument from playing. A Pull-through (cloth with weight attached to a piece of string) is the simplest and most effective method of drying the inside of the instrument. This prevents moulding pads and cracking, in the case of wooden instruments. With a flute, it is simply a case of using a special wood needle and cotton cloth. Metal needles are also out on the market, but with many years experience in instrument repairs and services, I feel metal is more likely to mark the inside of the instrument. For the exterior of the flute, a silver polish cloth works well, but be careful not to be too over zealous with it as springs can be knocked out of place in the process.

No instrument responds well to extreme changes in temperature. Watch that the instrument is not being stored next to a radiator or left in a hot car or conservatory that is prone to more extreme ranges of temperature. The integrity of pads can be affected due to melting glue that holds them in place.

It is recommended that woodwind and brass instruments are taken to a qualified repairer at least once a year for servicing to keep the instrument in good playing condition. This ensures that the instrument can continue to play at its optimum capacity.

Tips for Buying Used Instruments

used-instruments-300x300If you need to buy analytical equipment on a limited budget, buying it used could be the answer. Each year, state and federally funded research facilities release good instrumentation into the secondhand market and buy new instruments to preserve their funding. To ensure that what sounds like a good deal is one, observing some time-tested tips for buying used instrumentation is crucial. Below are five tips for purchasing quality used analytical instruments.

Only Buy from a Professional Seller

In pursuit of the best price, some companies shop for instruments on auction websites and at company liquidation sales. The problem? In some cases, the seller can’t guarantee that an instrument is in perfect working order. On the contrary, you are the one who is expected to be the expert. If you are not trained to assess the quality of the instrument that you need, buy it from a seller who is.

Examine an Instruments Service Record

When shopping for instruments that require maintenance, request a copy of their logged service record. Like other types of equipment, analytical equipment that has a spotty or missing service record could lead to unexpected repair issues that halt your work process. Due to its soft environment, analytical equipment seldom displays signs of poor maintenance on its exterior, hence the need to carefully examine its service record.

Ask for the Right References

If you intend to buy an organic elemental analyzer (OEA), request references to customers who purchased the same equipment, and request at least six of them. By speaking with customers who a seller doesn’t normally refer to, you may hear a different opinion of a seller’s customer service quality than when you speak with its normal references. If all references respond positively, you can feel that much more secure in your purchase.

Check the Seller’s Business Record

Most companies know to do it, but some companies do not, and that is to check a seller’s record at the Better Business Bureau (BBB). In particular, check to see if the company resolves customer complaints promptly. If it has no complaints or resolves complaints right away, you can feel confident about its dedication to customer service.

Inspect an Instrument Firsthand

If you shop for high-priced instrumentation online, inspect it in person before you buy it. Alternatively, if you can’t travel to the seller’s location, have a third party perform the inspection for you. As some buyers find out the hard way, Internet photos can conceal signs of wornness, breakage, warping, etc. Because a used purchase is usually a final purchase, inspecting used instruments firsthand is ideal.

Conclusion

When you take the right steps, you can purchase quality analytical instruments used. Although most sellers of pre-owned equipment are professional and customer oriented, some are not. The steps above will help you avoid the latter as your search for the former. From public companies to private laboratories, various entities use pre-owned analytical equipment with success. To get your equipment pre-owned and save money, contact an appropriate equipment seller today.

Steps to Getting Over the Fear of Performing Music in Public

OK, you’ve been jamming at home in your bedroom for a while now, having some fun, feeling pretty good, and it’s about a “no-brainer” to improvise, at least, with your blues scales. That’s Wonderful! You have arrived! Mission accomplished.

But now… The band at cousin Abigale’s wedding wants you to sit in! Your whole family knows you’ve been practicing, and maybe even a select few have been lucky enough to hear you jam a bit in private.

Oh! The Shock! The Horror! The Terror! The Humiliation! The Embarrassment! (need I go on?) How can you bare your very soul to the masses?! Quick! Throw your instrument in the trash! Hide it (and you!) under the bed! Deny that you’ve ever even held one in your now sweaty hands!

Relax. Breath deep. You know that you can improvise just fine. A bit (or even a lot) of stagefright is very normal for first timers. Getting over it comes in stages (of course! Ha!).

Stage 1:
Fear. “They’re all gonna laugh at me!” “What if I stink?” “What if I make a mistake?” “Is my fly open?” “My slip showing?” “A piece of toilet paper stuck to my shoe?” These considerations are all very natural (even if we know they’re a bit irrational). Just accept it. It’s simply part of your first steps. But hey, you’re just starting out. How dare they think anything but positive thoughts towards your efforts?! Just who do they think they are anyways?! And who appointed them your judge and jury?! Go ahead, get a little mad about the situation. It will lead you right to…

Stage 2:
Get Irreverent. Pretend you don’t care. The whole audience is just a bunch of ignorant slobs who probably wouldn’t know a wrong note if it flew off then end of your instrument and bonked them in the head anyways! (again, not that there even is such a thing as a wrong note in improvising). It has helped some (including this author), to imagine that the whole audience is sitting on the toilet! (I’ll leave the visuals up to you).

Now, you could probably stop right there in your stagefright therapy. Many have. There’s not much room for fear when it encounters things like humor and anger. Especially anger. The rock n roll world is full of intense, aloof, and mysterious angry-at-the-world folks. And many times audiences worship these types, I think, mainly because “it” (meaning anger or even any kind of intensity at all!) is something most folks don’t get to express in a normal day (or life!) themselves. Which brings us to…

Stage 3:
They need us. Yes, some fears are real. And just maybe your audience is too ignorant to “get it” (and, maybe not). But ultimately, music is a service to the listener and us musicians are the providers of this service… servants, if you will. It is also my personal belief that there is more to music than merely sound, and listeners receive more than we may yet know how to measure. With it rides all kinds of feelings and sensations, hopes and dreams (of the listener and performer), even healing, and God knows what else. It is our responsibility and honor to be a conduit for any of these things. Assimilation of this “sacred” stage makes your stagefright journey complete.

How to Choose the Best Meditation Music for You

Meditation is one of the oldest ways to finding serenity and removing stress and has been practiced by different people all over the world. Most of the time, meditation is accompanied by music to maximize its relaxing capacity. The widespread use of this relaxation technique has given rise to the use of different kinds of music. Choosing the best meditation music for you depend on your preferred style of meditation. Here is some of the music that is usually helpful.

Classical music is one of the most used for present day meditation. There have been studies that showed its effect in meditation as well as for developing high IQ in babies. This is because classical music is has soft sounds and feels smooth to the ears so that the mind is relaxed and refreshed. Religious sects have used Gregorian sounds as well as primordial sounds such as making low sounds of “Ohm’s” in meditation. These are songs of low key and soothing harmonics especially designed to ease the minds of the listeners as well as the singers so that whatever psychological burdens they bear are somewhat eased. Most people who use these kinds of music are using meditation techniques based on their religion.

Primordial sounds are associated with Indian meditation. The sounds of nature are known to be the most calming among meditation sounds. If you live near the mountains or the forest, you are probably one of the lucky ones with low stress levels. You can notice that monasteries and temples are usually located in the mountains to give serenity to the monks’ minds and souls. CD’s of sounds of nature are now available to give everybody the chance to enjoy nature even in the middle of a busy city. Instrumental music can also be used in meditation, be it classical or contemporary. It is usually of strings like guitars, violins, harp, chimes, piano, or flute. The soft sounds and its sweet melodies help a lot to relax those tired muscles and revive the cluttered mind. CD’s are easily available in stores as well as can be downloaded online.

People who are active Christians turn to the bible as their form of meditation. A great accompaniment to this activity is Christian tunes, songs and instrumentals. These tunes are usually sung during church services and masses. CD’s are also available and can be listened to while reading the bible and feel the presence of God. There are no hard and fast rules as far as meditation is concerned, as there are many ways of doing it. Each part of the world has its own technique on meditation; the designs for places of meditation also vary so it is not surprising that there are different kinds of music to meditate to.

So before you want to know how to choose the best meditation music for you, decide which type of meditation you want to adapt to. Or you can make your own style of meditation, after all you will be the one to benefit from this activity and it is your mind that will be refreshed.

How To Write A Song

How-to-Write-Song-Lyrics-300x300How to write a song is a problem that can be solved in numerous ways. A song is art and there are no hard and fast rules. Yet, if you play ten songs for 1,000 people and let them vote, one or two would probably emerge as the clear favorites. What makes them “good songs?”

A good song can begin with the idea or song concept. What’s it about? What’s the story? The more unique it is, the better. One possibility is to take an old phrase and twist it into something no one has ever heard before. “He has friends in high places” is a commonly used phrase. “I’ve Got Friends In Low Places” was a title twist of that phrase that went Billboard #1 for Garth Brooks and launched his highly successful career.

Sometimes it’s the overall idea of the song rather than the title itself that makes the song unique. Or sometimes it’s a musical hook. a catchy melody married to a title in such a way it’s extremely memorable. “Lord I Need You” isn’t that unique of a statement. But Matt Maher married that phrase to a melody that soars, making it very popular both on Contemporary Christian radio as well as during Sunday services in many of the 450,000 Christian churches in the U.S. and even worldwide.

How to write lyrics is your next issue. It’s actually the part that often practically happens by itself. Once you have your idea and title the verse lyrics should start to come to you. That’s your initial draft that will almost surely need refining. Weed out cliches and replace them with fresh ideas.

Most songs have a chorus section. The chorus sums up the point of the verses, usually repeats 3 or 4 times verbatim, and it’s where the title appears at least once if not several times. Don’t let it go on too long, keep it concise. It should be distinct in nature from the verse. One easy way to achieve that is to give the chorus longer or shorter note values. If your verse is rapid fire, draw the words out longer in the chorus sections.

Some songs also have a short section known as the bridge and how to write a bridge is yet another simple task: it’s one or two lines, mo more than four lines, that are clearly distinct from either the verse or chorus and provide a little relief for the listener… “Oh something different here!” Lyrically it may offer an opposing viewpoint or strengthen it.

How to write a melody? Music? If you’re not a musician it may be best to let a musician write the music. Find your Elton John and you’re in business. But if you do believe you can write melody you can always sing it a capella (no accompaniment, just you singing) and let a song demo service find and supply the chords and arrangement that supports your melody. Most services will even write music for a lyric under a “work for hire” agreement.

How To Play Songs On a Guitar

For many people once they have started to learn how to play the guitar find that as soon as they have the capabilities they are looking forward to learning how to play songs on a guitar that have been composed by other musicians. Often in the beginning they find it extremely difficult especially as there is such a large choice of songs for them to choose from and a lot of them are far too difficult for those who have only recently begun to play the guitar.

However in this article we will be taking a closer look at some ways in which you can learn how to play songs on your guitar.

Firstly it is important that you get as many recordings and song books as well as copies of the sheet music relating to all those of your favorite songs which you are looking to learn. Then you should start to learn each one of them one at a time. This is an extremely important step when it comes to learning how to play the guitar and will ensure that you learn to become a much better guitar player much more quickly. It is also extremely important that you start learning to play the songs that are the easiest and are either what a teacher would consider to be on the same level or lower level than you are already playing at.

When it comes to learning to play songs on your guitar then you have the choice of either learning to play them by listening to various recordings of the song that you are interested in. Or if this seems some what difficult as your ears have not become fully accustomed to the sounds that each chord makes then you may want to consider through using either music books or through sheet music or tablature books. In fact the best way to learn any songs on a guitar is through using a combination of all of these. Plus using a combination of all of them will make it much easier for you when it comes to learning to train your ears to hear what you are playing more effectively. This is even more essential especially when you have decided that you are ready to move on to learning much more complex an difficult songs in the future.

There are a number of different places where you can purchase good quality music books, sheet music and tablature and chord chart books from. Your local music store is probably the best place to start but then you can move on to the much larger and more well recognized stores such as Borders. Also you can easily purchase these particular items for learning how to play songs on a guitar over the internet as well. Generally when making a purchase over the internet you may well find that they have a special delivery services and that they are able to provide you with next day delivery on your order.