I came across an interesting article by Alex at Sitting Ovation called I Don’t Understand The Scene : Part 1 – The Producers & Hype. Some of it I agree with 100% but other parts left me thinking. I decided to scribble down a few words of my own. This is an independent article, but I still I highly recommend you go read Alex’s excellent opener first, as well as the comments.
So hype runs this game.
It’s definitely a very saturated market due to the fact that most anyone now has a chance to become “a producer”.
As a newcomer producer you must build up hype to get noticed.
Wait a minute… Let’s stop here for a bit.
If you ask me… Yes that sounds sensible but it just ain’t that simple.
We have to look deeper.
See, there are many kinds of hype.
Hype can be based on knowing a lot of people and how to talk to them.
You can easily shell out the €€€ to create hype.
You could just be in the right place in the right time.
Or you can build hype based on music that is actually really fucking good.
Any other hype than the one based on music itself is quick to die out.
We could frame things as “artificial” vs. “sustainable” hype.
The bottom line is…
To really become long term successful in music there are no shortcuts.
Spend lots of time on the music and become good at it.
(For the record – I don’t believe in inborn talent. Granted we are all born different but it always requires a lot of work to become good at something.)
I’ve said it for years: When the music is good enough, it will get noticed.
I’ve seen it happen countless of times.
I mean, do you really think Noisia made it just because they put up some funny videos on Youtube?
Upon meeting one of the guys it became immediately clear to me why they became so popular.
They have a passion for what they do, they enjoy it, they put in the work and as a result, they know their shit.
So how do you build the right, sustainable kind of hype then?
I think there are two more ingredients besides good, consistent music.
The first one is something that seems to be forgotten in our fast-paced society.
Too many people seem to expect things should happen overnight. Or in a matter of a year or two.
The reality is they very rarely do. You got to commit for the long run.
I’ve been making electronic music for 16 years now. It took a long time to get anywhere. I’m happy with my achievements, but I still don’t consider myself especially successful (of course it depends on the definition of success itself).
If anything I feel I have just started to get a hang of things.
The second ingredient is surrounding yourself with the right people.
The kind that you connect with.
You will know when things “just happen” – effortlessly.
With “the right people” I mean everyone from labels to collaborators and other involved people. Anyone you work with.
Create a friendly ecosystem for your ideas to flourish.
Depending on your goals and situation, it could surely be worth going for artificial hype too.
Hype and connections do help, but let me repeat: if the music is not good enough (read: great), hype will fail you eventually.
I see too many producers stress and complain about things on social media.
I swear sometimes opening up Facebook or Twitter takes me straight into what seems like a conspiracy plot: A producer vs. The scene.
(Scene always wins)
For fucks sake, stop worrying so much!
Your own dwelling stops you from coming up with fresh, positive ideas.
It also makes people turn away from you.
It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy.
You’re much better off just putting your mind to the music.
Focus on what you’re good at.
Granted, it’s not easy to stand out from the masses of mediocrity these days.
But the only good way to really stand out is to come up with some bloody good music.
That’s what I have to say today..
What do you reckon? Drop a comment and let us know.