What Does a Music Producer Do?

The title of music producer is confusing, there is more than one type of role that a music producer fills. Let’s have a look at three different types of music producers and what they do in the music industry or in the recording studio.  First you need to understand that a music producer doesn’t actually make their own music.  Producers work with other recording professionals and industry executives.  Let’s look at the different types of producers you will find in the music industry.

Music Producer

The music producer spends most of their time creating and arranging music.  While not necessarily musicians themselves they tend to have degrees or backgrounds in music theory or music composition.  Most will come from high profile schools like Juilliard or Berklee College of Music.  One of their jobs is to make sure that the music recorded is the best quality possible.  It’s not just the equipment they are concerned with but they make sure that musicians give the best performance possible.  Often music producers are the go between for the musicians and the executives at the record label.  They can have one of the most difficult jobs in the music industry.  Here is a closer look at their job.

Engineering Producer

The engineering producer generally deals with the technical aspects that are needed in the studio.  They deal with the sound board and set up the microphones and make sure the software is running properly.  They are the guys and gals that keep the project organized and functioning properly.  They tend to be more technical as opposed to creative when determining what makes a great sound recording.

Executive Producer

The executive producer is generally the money guy, he is the one who funds the recording project or the making of an album.  They are generally the contact that the other types of producers along with the musicians have with the record label.  They sign the bands and oversee the completion of the recording.  They are the ones responsible for the project turning a profit.

The role of the “producer” in the music business can be confusing and often they wear many hats.  They are the technical guy, the guy who makes sure musicians make the best music and the money guy.  Sometimes the producer is forced to be all of that at the same time.  However they have a valuable role and they are the guys behind the scenes who bring us some great music.

Music Studio Equipment

You can easily record great music right from the comfort of your own home without having a big high tech studio.  In fact most music studios today are made up of very little music studio equipment all you need is a high performance computer, usually a Mac, speakers, an audio interface, microphone and a software application that brings everything together.  Technology has made it easier than ever to record your own music.

Digital Audio Workstation

Home studios won’t have a full sized soundboard and mixing console, whereas a commercial recording studio will.  You can get away with a decent laptop with studio recording software.  Your software  can take your raw  sounds and make them into something incredible.  It can be perfectly listenable and radio ready fairly easily.  Recording software takes the sound that you make and turn it into day which you can then put into your software and turn it into something else.

Microphone

If you want a fairly decent recording then you are going to need a good microphone.  That is how the sound gets from you into the computer and you want it to be as pure as possible.  The microphone will work as either a condenser or a dynamic microphone but you need a quality microphone regardless.  Once you have transferred the sound to your laptop that is where the magic happens.  It is at the laptop where you can alter the beat, fix the reverb or make your music louder.  You can use the microphone to record vocals or sound, you can record yourself playing guitar or any other instrument.

Audio Interface

It is preferable to use an audio interface in order to process and handle the sound that you record via the microphone.  You can plug the microphone directly into the computer in order to record the sound but you are far better off with using an audio interface.  It is a high quality sound card that allows you to record music in real time and it will also limit the possibility of any time delays.

Monitor

If you want to get a visual of the crisp and clear sound that you have recorded then you are going to need a decent monitor.  Most music today is recorded using Mac, whether you are a fan of Mac or PC you can’t deny that they have some incredible monitors to get work done.

Technology has changed the way we listen to and record music, the ability to record music is available to anyone with the right computer equipment.  Getting to be a rockstar, is still a difficult task.