So you want to get into music production, nice! But where do you even start? This blog is a very rough road map of the steps you need to take to start your musical journey into house music, or electronic music in general.
Pick a subgenre
House music is a genre of many sounds. From tech house to progressive house, anything goes. And they all sound very different. If you´re reading articles like this you will no doubt have a favorite. Remember that you can always switch your sound around if you grow bored. Your sound should be more of a concept/songwriting thing than just certain presets. That way it’s a lot easier to switch between genres. A good example of this is Rüfus du Sol, or Fox Stevenson. They have a very consistent sound across multiple genres. So what will it be? Will you choose groovy synths, big pianos, proper future house? It’s all up to you.
Pick a DAW
A DAW, or digital audio workstation is a program you can use to make house music. Most digital audio workstations have roughly the same functionality. The main difference is in the workflow that all of the different programs have. Ableton live for example has an extremely customizable detail-focussed interface. This works well if you’re in the DNB, IDM, or ambient scene for example. FL Studio works well if you want a no-nonsense, easy-to-understand interface. It’s used in EDM, and hip-hop mostly. You can get into (almost) as much detail as you can with Ableton live, but it will take you a bit longer to find the right knobs that adjust these parameters. Logic Pro is another digital audio workstation. Logic is more focused on live music appliances. This can work very well on house music production as well though. Look at groups like ANOTR or Jungle By Night who incorporate live music production in their music. Studio One is the next contender on our list, often noticed to be a DAW with a very busy interface. The main difference between these programs is workflow, so this chaotic interface is something to definitely keep in mind.
Pick a song, and try to recreate it
Once you get the basics down you should try to start recreating sounds in your favorite house tracks. When you get this down, try to recreate the songs themselves. This will give you a good understanding of vague house music production skills like mixing, gain staging, mastering, etc. Many house tracks have a similar song structure. Try to understand the placement of instruments, why an artist picks precisely those instruments, and how it all fits in the bigger picture by listening to an individual element, and how it fits in the full mix. After doing this for a bit, how long really depends at how fast of a learner you are, you can move on to the next step.
Produce house music
This is where you start to produce house music. Use all of the techniques that we’ve taught you, and start to make your own house music productions.