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Whether you are a seasoned songwriter or you have just recently begun to write your own music, an important part of songwriting involves being self aware. Knowing what makes you tick will spur your creativity in new and unexpected ways. What kind of music do you enjoy listening to? How does your taste in music reflect the style of songs that you want to craft? How do certain grooves and tonalities make you feel? Which events and stories from your own life or the lives of others around you inspire you? These are all questions for self reflection while trying to write music.

A narrative also plays a huge factor in the press you get as a musician. Blogs, magazines, and freelance writers/interviewers are all in the business of sharing stories. Sure, they’ll review your music, but what they really need for a successful article is some kind of hook. And if you can approach them with a well-crafted and interesting story all ready to go, you’re going to stand out from all the other artists who approach them with pleas to cover their new music.

It is said that Dragonetti influenced Beethoven’s composition deeply, reorienting the composer’s eye toward making more creative use of the double bass in how it interacts with the rest of the orchestra. As for his own composition, he really took it upon himself to expand the repertoire for double bass, having written dozens of short works for double bass and piano, string quartets, as well as a sort of “instruction manual” with exercises and studies for the instrument!

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Find an artist that matches you on some level (their sound, their branding, their professional level, their fanbase size, or perhaps someone who shares the same label as you, etc.), search for them on NBS, and compare data. Use their strengths to develop your own marketing hypotheses and give it a shot.

And once the mix starts to come together, make sure to play your track back on as many different speakers and listening devices as possible (the car, your laptop, your phone’s ear buds, etc.) and take notes. Listen, and trust your own ears.

You also may not like this one (“but I need it, it’s my job!”). Well, you don’t need it every day, all day. Consider deleting social media apps from your phone for one week out of every month. You’ll feel so much lighter. You’ll notice the world around you, and realize there’s so much more than filtered, curated content. You’ll be able to breathe. You’ll be able to be yourself and make real connections with real human beings!

Okay, so the first effects pedal I would recommend for that signature shoegazer sound is a reverse reverb pedal — the one essential pedal that creates a noticeably different sonic palette than all other musical genres. A standard reverb pedal will fade out your playing after the attack; you’ll hear yourself hitting the strings and after that, the reverberation. The reverse reverb does the opposite. It’s kind of a twisted reverb sound, as you will hear the clean attack and, just as it starts to die out, you’ll hear the reverb fading in, eventually bringing the reverberated attack back at the end.

Bartolomeo Campagnoli was born in Cento in 1751. His was a life devoted to study and to the violin, which he quite seriously pursued wherever he found himself; first in Bologna, then Modena, then Venice, then Padua, then Florence, then Rome. In all these cities, he’d sit and play with local orchestras. In 1776, he was hired by a bishop to come and live in Bavaria, where he was to create and organize the music for his local church. From there, he really became a full-time touring violinist all over Europe.

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You can try looking in the mirror and telling yourself: “You are amazing, you are the best singer in the world, Sia has nothing on you!”, or, you can wake up, smell the coffee, perhaps drink it too, and take a more substantial approach to building your confidence.

This is just a guideline and there are literally thousands of options out there for each piece of equipment. Do your due diligence and research each piece before you purchase. As with most things, you get what you pay for so if you have the budget, I would splash out on better equipment where possible.

All of our mentored online courses come with six weeks of 1-on-1 professional support and feedback on your work. It’s like having a personal trainer, but for music! That means you’re not just getting the course content, but a coach to bounce ideas off of and someone invested in your success. Check out The Art of Hip-Hop Production, Modern Pop Vocal Production, and Songwriting for Producers.

We went to NAMM, and you should too. It was huge, the traffic was horrible, the parking was tough, but it’s a total game-changer for musicians everywhere.

Learn about underwater acoustics and how sounds travel in different directions and across far distances via a marine audio highway called the SOFAR Channel.