Creativity is such a major issue in any forms of art. Being the highest form of learning, creativity doesn’t only create art; it teaches the artist how to create.
In this post I’m going to go over some ways in which musicians can be more creative.
Let’s face it, we all hit walls in composing records and its only right to have some techniques that can help us get more creative in times when we need creativity the most.
I hope you find the points I discuss helpful.
Without wasting too much time let’s get right into it.
How can a musician be more creative?
Learn from those that came before you
History has many lessons to teach to anyone that is willing to take the time to learn.
There are many great musicians that lived decades ago. Study them and listen to their work and do your best to learn from it.
Music has no rules which means it’s an art in which education is simply infinite. You can never stop learning.
Tapping into the creativity of the musicians that lived before you is a great way to realize your own creativity.
My advice here is to study the greats and their work.
Listen to music outside your genre
Sometimes what restricts our creativity is simply repetition. This is why it’s wise for any artist to learn how to get inspired outside their preferred way of doing things.
Listen to music outside your genre and learn from it. Use what you learn from that music in your own music.
For example, artists like Kanye are known for sampling soul records just to merge the old sound with newer technologies and newer taste.
This is unbounded creativity.
Take time to listen to some music from the 60s, 70s etc..
It will give you nostalgia and a gate way to creativity.
Work with talented people
I’ve been a music producer for more than a decade I’ve encountered some of the most skillfully talented people in the world.
Just working with such people has helped me a lot in my career. There’s really a way that highly creative people make music that is different from the way average muscians make music.
It is for this reason that my advice is that you work with more talented people to nurture your creativity and learn how the pro’s work.
Leave your comfort zone
Your comfort zone is the worst place you can be if you’re an artist of any sort.
Creativity is infinite therefore its in your best interest to leave your comfort zone and explore as much as you can.
Don’t stick to only one way of making music. If you stick to the method you know, it will be difficult for you to explore other creative areas.
Learn music theory
Music theory is important for both musicians and producers of music.
Theory provides the basic knowledge that you need to understand music at a deeper level.
Music theory can help you come up with music ideas a lot faster in a less painful way.
So take the time to learn music theory or atleast the basics.
Experiment and evolve
Experimentation is the mother of all hit songs.
I’ve been in various recording and production sessions…and honestly music is pretty much calculated Experimentation.
Nobody knows everything in music. it’s therefore helpful to experiment and settle for what sounds interesting or appealing to you.
Don’t be afraid to do what you’ve never done before.
Sampling is an old hiphop tradition that has become widely accepted and employed by many genres.
This musical technique is a good way to incorporate elements from different eras and different genres into your song.
Once you find the right sample to use, creativity will easily flow.
Writing music is not an easy task and not everyone is born a naturally gifted writer.
It’s therefore important to work with good writers that can inspire your inner creativity.
If you can manage to hire a writer or musician, do so. This will work in the favour of your creativity so don’t overlook it.
Spend some time in other peoples sessions
Recording and rehearsal sessions are essential in any musicians career. Being a part of both these processes can be a life changing experience and you can easily learn a lot.
If you’re down on inspiration or creativity. A good way to get some is to simply spend some time in other peoples recording sessions and just watch them work.
Being in the studio has a way of inspiring people to be creative.
Listen to different beats
Beats or instrumentals are different, this is why I don’t recommend that artists stick to only working with one producer.
Its good to work with other people especially in times when you feel your creativity hit a low.
So go to a beat selling platform like beat stars or YouTube and listen to various beats.
Catch a vibe, buy the beat, create a great song.
It doesn’t have to be complicated.
Stretch your imagination
As an artist, your imagination should never be rigid. You need stretch your imagination and go beyond what other people imagine and envision.
The great musicians Like the Micheal Jackson’s of this world were very imaginative and had a way of coming up with beautiful ideas by exercising imagination.
Therefore, think deeply, visit places, talk to new people, imagine yourself on the grand stage.
Let your own imagination inspire you.
Have the mindset to create a classic
If you want to make great music, you should always have the mindset to create a classic and not just another average song.
Therefore make records that challenge your creativity.
Become your biggest critic
Most people are complacent and too comfortable. This can make it harder to be creative.
You need to judge your music like your biggest critic. Only then can you really push yourself to do better and get better creatively.
Creativity is a tricky subject and it requires effort on your part so don’t neglect that.
The techniques I’ve discussed above are great and can help you discover your creativity.
However, learn your own process of creativity as you make more and more songs. This way, you can easily tap into it.