The Best FREE Online Resources for Music Producers - Part II

In Part I of this series we looked at Free resources for Samples and Tutorials for Music Producers. In Part II we will focus on some of the best free online resources to help music producers bring their production to the next level, alongside overcoming some common issues.

By Eimear O SullivanContributing Author

Article photo - The Best FREE Online Resources for Music Producers - Part II

There is no doubt that being a music producer can at times be a rather isolating endeavor; it takes vast amounts of time and effort, with what can seem like very little in return, as attracting the attention of large labels and bigger audiences is very difficult. This can lead to a lapse in productivity, and many half finished tracks, which can be problematic due to the self motivated nature of this venture.

However, we have all been there. Below are some completely FREE resources that can not only provide you with the inspiration to get those tracks finished, but also get you involved in thriving producer communities while bringing you to the attention of some major labels.

P.S There is a surprise at the end

 

ONLINE PRODUCER COMMUNITIES

Article photo - The Best FREE Online Resources for Music Producers - Part II SKIO

SKIO is an online marketplace and community for DJs and producers. 

Massive labels such as Warner, Empire and Atlantic records regularly host remix competitions on this platform completely for free. Simply download the stems, remix the track and upload it to the site before the deadline - very straightforward and simple. 

Winning such a competition not only exposes you directly to A and R representatives from these labels; you also receive incredible prizes, and support from major artists and labels on social media, which can go a very long way. From experience, it is best to upload your remix with plenty of time before the deadline, as people are much more likely to listen while the contest is active.

 

Article photo - The Best FREE Online Resources for Music Producers - Part II CYMATICS

Cymatics (see part I) not only create incredible free sample packs and presets; they have also created one of the best and most active online communities for music producers. 

First off, their Facebook group for music producers brings people of all different levels, styles and nationalities together to trade tips, ask for advice and give each other support in a friendly and creative environment.  For example ,I learned a lot on how to approach making the high-mid range synths really stand out in a mix, simply using a bit of saturation and subtractive eq.

They also regularly host massive producer contests to correspond with the launches of their sample packs. If you win one of these contests you receive very high calibre prizes that have a direct, long lasting positive effect on your career as a producer. These prizes include audio hardware, consultations with industry professionals and very strong social media features from Cymatics themselves, exposing you to their vast following of producers and artists. 

 

Article photo - The Best FREE Online Resources for Music Producers - Part II SPLICE

Splice is a cloud platform for music creators to collaborate and share. 

Alongside serving as a distributor of sample packs and a means of allowing artists to collaborate remotely, they also regularly host similar contests, many of which are completely free to enter, see here

These contents vary from remixing an existing commercial artist’s track, to creating an entirely original track of your own. They also host beat contests for Trap and Hip-hop, many of which are held by huge labels, such Universal Music Group.

 

SOURCES OF KNOWLEDGE + INSPIRATION

Article photo - The Best FREE Online Resources for Music Producers - Part IIAndrew Huang

Andrew Huang is a Canadian musician and producer who has a thoroughly unique music production channel on YouTube.

This channel is bursting at the seams with highly original and imaginative music creation ideas, such as; making an entire track only using sounds from Mars, four producers flipping the same sample and what it sounds like to record vocals on a frozen lake. Andrew also does product reviews, tutorials and gives solid, very helpful musical advice to other producers.

I highly recommend giving the series ‘4 Producers Flip the Same Sample’ a watch. It allows a very rare glimpse into the vastly different creation processes of different producers;  which is something you can learn a huge amount from. For example, after watching this series I became much more aware of the huge variety of sonic results you can achieve with just one sound, which resulted in me finishing up a lot of productions quicker, because I wasn’t constantly searching for new samples.

 

Article photo - The Best FREE Online Resources for Music Producers - Part IISound on Sound

Sound on Sound is an independently owned monthly music technology magazine published by SOS Publications Group, based in the United Kingdom.

Sound on Sound itself is not free, however there is a massive archive of past interviews with industry professionals, in-depth product reviews and mix techniques that you can view online for free. 

The interviews mentioned provide direct insight into the processes used by producers and engineers who have worked with the world’s biggest artists. My approach to mixing was never the same after reading their interview with Derek Ali - the man who mixed Kendrick Lamar’s groundbreaking album ‘To Pimp A Butterfly’at the age of 25.

Another invaluable section is Mike Senior’s Behind the Track column, in which he uses his impeccable ear to reveal the production and mixing techniques used in the world’s biggest tracks.

All of these principles you learn from this resource can be applied to your own tracks and mixes, which will directly help you develop both as a professional and as an artist.

And finally…….

 

Article photo - The Best FREE Online Resources for Music Producers - Part II Native Instruments

 Leading manufacturer of software and hardware for computer-based audio production Native Instruments have an entire collection of instruments, effects and samples that are completely FREE. One of my favourites is Kinetic Treats -  an instrument consisting solely of samples of old children’s toys.

Get started here

These are just some of the best FREE online resources for producers, if there is anything you would like to add, let us know in the comments!

About Eimear O Sullivan

Eimear Ann O Sullivan is a multi-genre music producer, audio engineer and vocalist. After receiving a Masters in Music Technology from the CIT Cork School of Music, she went on to operate as a producer under the name Blakkheart. Her releases have received critical acclaim from Ireland's biggest music publications, such as District Magazine and Nialler9, alongside receiving heavy commercial radio airplay. She currently works in Cork recording studio Flashpoint CC. Previous clients of hers include the likes of Comedy Central’s Dragony Aunt star Candy Warhol, rapper Darce and Outsider YP. (Photo credit @Fabian Boros)

Contact Eimear O Sullivan at eimear.o.sullivan@musicngear.com

About Music Production

In this section of the blog you will find recording advice, tips and tricks from fellow artists and music producers.

Interested in writing a story for this section as a guest or joining the Musicngear team as a Contributing Author? Contact us at info+newauthor@musicngear.com