by India McCarty

With today’s technology, musicians have access to more instrumentals and sound effects than ever before. One program that many musicians use is MIDI. MIDI, short for Musical Instrument Digital Interface, allows musicians to record straight to their computers, which makes the editing process a lot easier. People also use samples from programs like ProTools, Ableton or GarageBand.

Using this technology is practical and offers a lot of options for your track, but there are some definite drawbacks.

Making tracks solely on the computer seems like a great way to do things; use samples instead of finding musicians, and then clean the track up quickly in ProTools or Logic. It’s also a great way to make music without spending money. However, the convenience of using programs like this can make your music sound cold and manufactured. If every drumbeat is perfect and all the vocals are right on target, your song no longer sounds like a real person is behind the music. If you over quantize your track, it can get boring and predictable for the listener.

Another downside to heavily using samples provided in different programs is that everyone else is also using those samples. It’s hard to make a song that stands out when it shares the same snare sound or piano riff as a dozen other tracks.

By using MIDI tracks or ProTools samples, you have a world of instrumentals and sound effects to choose from. It’s nice to have choices, but the endless amount of tracks you have to choose from can bog you down, creatively speaking. If you get too wrapped up in which synth patch or vocal effect to use on your song, you might start to lose the creative spark that makes your song so special.

Thanks to various technological advancements, music is more sonically diverse than ever. There are millions of different things you can experiment with, all from the comfort of your own home. However, it’s important to make sure your music doesn’t lose its humanity or individuality. Don’t be afraid to have a track sound a little messy; perfection is boring!

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