Portfolio: Reflective essay
Making a portfolio as a musician is quite dilemmatic one, this is due to the reason that being a musician you do not know what are the liking and the choices of the people. Being an artist setting a portfolio in the way that people of all likings and styles, like it from all perspectives. We all know that there are different kind of musical artist are there, out of all important parts of the music the main part is recording a song or music and that is what is my role here working as a musician. All the technicalities while recording a song should be concerned properly from all perspectives. This reflective essay will show how passionate I am about music, up to now what was my music journey, what kind of ups and down I faced in the journey, what are the achievements I got and at what progress I moving towards being a better musician. Before choosing a profession you always has a hero figure in your mind (what it is called the inspiration) to whom you want to follow, to be like him and to get the achievements he got because of his hard work. Every profession needs hard work to get the full payback out of it. Let’s come with me join my journey by reading this essay and have a look what I am up to. I follow this famous wording said by Bradley Whit ford, “Infuse your life with action doesn’t wait for it to happen. Make it happen. Make your own future. Make your own hope. Make your own love. And whatever your beliefs, honor your creator not by passively waiting for the grace to come down from upon high, but by doing what you can do to make grace happen……, yourself, right now, right down here on earth”.
A Student Just Like Student
I was just a regular student as any other student when I entered the lab/class first day. The focus of being a musician was nowhere near me. With every coming day I feel like a fire has started burning in me. When one day I got the chance to meet one of mainstream music producer, who was a session and recording artist and now he is a music producer “Honey Singh” and then after seeing his passion for music and how from a small town (Hoshiarpur) guys turned himself as a great artist, inside fire of mine started rushing inside me. This was time when I started taking the things seriously. Here is where my music journey started. After this time my involvement towards understanding the music from the core deepened and started participating in different events. There are different kinds of experiences which I made by participating in different events like basics of recording a music, its technicalities like source force audacity, I will share that experiences in the next few sections. Before I start I want to say that musician are born just like any other person, but the thing that is different in them is when somewhere inside their head some chemical changes are experienced and that changes are the beat of the inner orchestra which is keep on drumming inside and showing the eagerness to comes out.
First experience (finding an opportunity)
I was walking alone at the corridor thinking about how to make the way to get successful in the music industry and what is the field in which I should enter being working as a musician. I was held up by a mate of mine Joe; he said we have been called to be a part of a team to record a music album. I was got excited by listening this that we are going to Planet Studio. Till the time when I entered that studio up to the time when I was just only familiar with music and sound and nothing more than that and was nothing their like being a music producer. When I entered the Planet Studio I saw that the technicians are arranging the things at the right place to make a perfect ambience around to record the music album. When we are approaching nearer and nearer to the area of shooting, a person came up to ask that “how come you guys here?” then we introduced our selves that the organizing committee has called us to help in recording the music album. Then he escorted us to the area where the main recording will be going to record. While going towards the recording room I was hearing the sound which was playing by the pianist, it added like a scoop of melody which entered into my blood through my ears, till the time when I entered the recording room it was like feeling outrageous and overwhelmed by the sound.
While sitting in the recording room my inner soul was still with the sound which I heard of the piano outside the recording room. The time we were waiting in that recording room, the instincts inside crouching me to hear that sound of piano again. On the other side of the room, technicians were setting the sound system perfectly in studios and managers were assigning the places to the musicians that will be going to perform in the music album. Suddenly a knock of the door voice strike to our ears, and this was the sound engineer Tom Lowry; he greeted us and welcomed us on the sets. He called us to meet other members of the team, which were helping in setting up the other things. The people we met were the sound engineer, technician and the assistant technician; their names were Dan Donnelly and Steve respectively. By getting their introduction we get know that what were the sections that these people were handling and the sound engineer parted me and my friend Joe and instructed the technician and the assistant technician what were the responsibilities and the sections which they had to divide according to the work with us. I was with the assistant technician who was also the incharge of lighting effects in the arena and my mate Joe was with the technician. At that time we didn’t know what were the responsibilities they would be going to give us. Steve took me to the area where the main section of the recording area and guided me how to check the sound system whenever it would be asked to so. He told me the technical aspects of the system i.e the sections of the mixing console which is to be used while checking the sound system. There were other sections too which I was asked to handle like checking the position of the recoding instruments and if any case any type of fault would be found before the recording starts, the report should be with the main technicians, so that they could remove it well before the recording starts. It was the recording of the production house named ‘Sony Music and it was the recording of one of the famous singer of industry ‘Saki’.
On the other side my mate Joe was leaded by technician Dan, he assigned him the work to handle the ground force which were handling the sound systems and the checking of the sound system at every section of the arena. While he was busy finding the faults in sound systems I was busy in the recording room checking the recording system with the assistant technician. In a little span of time I learn many technical aspects of the recording system like source force audacity, different tempos and lines of dynamics etc. as Steve guided it. When I was checking the headphone sound quality which kind of sound is created when playing different ornaments and instruments, at that when Steve start speaking few words like’123, 123 checking the system’, his sound comes in the recording room like the sound of crackling elephant sound’ because his voice was quite heavy and his throat was sour. Then after about 2 hour our all system was totally set up from all aspects. After couple of minutes the team members of singer Saki came up with the production team of Sony Music.
The stage was all set for the singer to get started. The main theme of the album was “love and hate”. Then after few minutes of break the singer Saki came up on stage with his lyrics in his right hand. Then the pianist played the start up tone of the song and following him other musicians started playing their instruments in a proper rhythm and here came up the sound of the singer in the recording room. The experience which I get while standing in the recording room during the session, it was the moment when I made up my mind that I would be a music producer because the melody and the technicalities while recording could be experienced, there is no other place in the world which can provide you that experience. The sound which strikes in my years while recording music making me thirstier of being on the place where the recorder was recording the voice. The tempos and sounds checking at the same time when some kind of bleak sounds experienced while recording. The recording room is the place where whole of the music depends. The faults that occur while singer like if we take an example if the singer make some mistake while singing he/she got out of rhythm then it can be clearly found in the recording room and from there the music producer/sound engineer can give proper instruction to the singer that he is going out of the way of the lyrics and the tune.
This was my first lesson of being a sound engineer that being a sound engineer/music producer you must know all technical aspects of the mixing console and out of all that you should very much sound about the technicalities of the music. These technicalities include the tempo of the music at which it is going, genre, instruments sound checking, comparing every hit on the right note as required by the song. Without having a strong knowledge of the music nobody can be a music producer. This was an eye opening experience for me. After that recording I was called up by the sound engineer along with my friend Joe. It was quite a hectic day for us but was quite a life changing experience for me. When I came back to my place then I was very much sure that I will be a music producer like “Honey Singh”. He was institution of inspiration for me and after this practical experience I got all the answers of my questions which hit my mind every single day like what is your passion, what you want to be in your life, would spend the life as nobody knows and will be dead like any other common man die, where is the fire inside you and etc.. Now I got the way which I have to follow and there was no second thought in my mind about the choice. This first experience of mine which showed me the path what are the teachings needed to be a perfect musician.
Teachings, the way out
Now getting into the technicalities of being a perfect musician needs the basic teachings which are needed to be successful. The teachings which helped me to reach my goal are mentioned as below:-
- Different recording methods
- Music theory
- Music dictionary
- Reading the printable melodies of music
These were the important learning and teaching which made me a musician today working as sound engineer/music producer in a studio. Now let me explain these teachings one by one so that we all can in touch deeply with the technicalities which I learnt to reach here:-
- Different recording methods: - There are basically three types of recording methods that are used by the musicians. These are as follows:-
- Acoustic recordings
- Electronic recordings
- In the box recordings
The few of the basic elements of these three kinds of the recordings techniques are explained below:-
- Acoustic recordings: - The acoustic recording is simply the catching up of the sound in the microphones and that signal is converted into electronic signal so that they can be captured or recorded. In the today’s world these recordings are in the computers and the hard disks. Whether the language they understand is digital or analogues they have the same basic throughout. They all have acoustic recording styles.
- Electronic recordings: - This is the second method of recording the music. The basic idea of introducing the electronic recording is to totally bypassing the acoustic altogether. There are many instruments in which the electronic recordings are used in the today’s world like bas and guitar and with their output the amplifier get attached to boost the voice. Especially the DI boxes are used to store the electronic records. As DI boxes have the capability to store high impedance signals recordings.
- In the box recordings:- The third type of recording is the In the Box recording that means it is the recording directly into the computer. This type of recording is stores in the actual recording application directly in the memory of the computer and with the advancements it can be editable at any phase whenever it is required. This is the modern way of recording the music. As this application is also available with the smart phone where you edit the recorded music in the way that required.
Music theory: - Basically music theory is the subfield of the musicology. This is generally known as the basic academic studies of different sections of music. There are various factors that are needed to control through the music theory like the pitch, rhythm, harmony and forms. These are the most fundamental elements of the music theory which are always needed to be controlled.
- Music dictionary: - There is basic requirement of understand the various musical meanings of the terms used in the music line. The music technical words like accelerando, accompanimal, ballad, barcarolle, chamber orchestra, chanson etc. the meaning of these words always needed to be known because without that nobody can understood the meaning of the musical technical words. So they always needed to be remembered.
- Reading the printable melodies of the music:- The following are the few symbols of the printable noted and what is meaning of each not is shown below:-
Each melody sign have its important in the music terms and all the notes that should be hit properly according to the requirement of the music. The proper reading of these sign needed to be a musician in every aspect whether you are a sound engineer or a general technician.
So these are the teachings which I have learnt to be an effective and well knowledgeable musician. Nothing is impossible; all you need is the right direction to lead the life.
My job working as music producer/sound engineer is to check what are technical aspects of recording music because it is the most basic branch of any kind of music, which is listened by the people. Checking the frequency at which the music is being recorded, like we have to think like an engineer and even as the listener that where it is fall out of the tune which Klink to the ear.
As talking about my current experience being a sound engineer, I have learnt so much of the technical aspects of recording music. What I get to know about music is that you have to be mentally fit, power of concentration is very important and above this technical knowledge of all the variation which are needed to be done during recording music. Taking the concern of all the previous experiences of mine, I am using it with full passion and craziness to record the best music as it is recorded never before. Earlier the day I was talking to the bunch of mates about music and what are the ‘missions’ of creating music. The definition which comes out of the discussion consists of few words which are very important which I remarked:-
- Mission of music is a duty – a task, a campaign, a beautiful journey of life, feeling the inner soul.
- People’s group – in different cities, in a religious order, in a business.
- Place – an area where music is being listened or a building.
- An event – such as wedding of people.
I feel that music is a pedagogical way of teaching the music. According to my experiences I came to know that mission of music is to:-
- Restore harmony with the god. Feeling the beauty of the inner soul through music which found the way to see god inside.
- It is the way which a person can celebrate the good news. It reunites the people of different culture and areas at one place.
- It is to teach someone the core of humanity, baptize and nurture the humanity in a beautiful way so that it presumes the world of angels.
- It is the way in which you can successfully respond to the needs of human. The melodious way to get in touch with the unexpected needs of the people which they can’t express by speaking or telling to someone.
- The music helps in addressing the unjustified structure of society and brings people to the experience the loneliness inside the human heart.
- Music give definition to the words which a person wants to say to loved ones without saying any word to them. It gives feel of cold breeze to the inner soul.
This is what I learned from that my ideal “Honey Singh”. He is the man who dedicates all his composition, recordings and production to the name of the god. I am always trying to move in positive way, by taking the name of the god so that every music album which I am recording or will going to record will make me nearer to the god. This is what trying to do with my latest contracts. My current experiences of being a musician is quite an exciting one as I am working with the Sony Music about the music recording and production of one song which will be the part of a movie. The singer of the song is the Saki; I am quite excited working in the team it’s like never before experience. The deep knowledge of every deep aspect of music recording is with me and using the old saying that “practice make man perfect” which I am doing right now. This is the way I am leading my life being a music producer, “would you like to be the part my life?”
- Bonard, Jean-Marc (January 2001), "The Physicist's Guide to the Orchestra", European Journal of Physics 22 (1): 89–101, arXiv:physics/0008053, doi:1088/0143-0807/22/1/309
- A Rowland-Jones,Playing Recorder Sonatas Clarendon Press ISBN 0-19-879001-5
- Information about makers is summarised from sleeve notes of David Munrow's The art of the Recorder, 1975, written by Edgar Hunt, then Head of Renaissance and Baroque music at Trinity College of Music, London
- Donald Murray et al.Musical Instruments: History, Technology, and Performance of Instruments of Western Music, Oxford University Press, 2004. ISBN 0-19-816504-8. p. 122