Photo credit: Peter Plantar
El Mundo has approached our Studio feature from a more personal and psychological angle. He ’s leaving the mechanical tutorials to others and focussing on the mind, your outlook and how best to begin every session in the studio. Approaching your work with the correct mindset will inevitably lead to everything else, eventually, falling into place.
Read on for more tips and traits from the Do Not Sit On The Furniture Recordings artist, and check out El Mundo’s new ‘Wandering’ EP here.
1. Whatever works for you
Everything I’ve written here works for me. And that’s actually my first tip. Find out what works for YOU. We are all unique and creative human beings. And with this in our mind, there is no “one” way to create. You do things because your inner voice tells you something. Ah well, it whispers. Not very loud, but if you really listen. You can hear it.
In music creation a lot of what you do is based on this inner voice. And making decisions coming from that. What I discovered and helped me a lot in working and creating is to just listen to this inner voice. Without the judging part; just listen. After a while some judging could work its way in, which is okay. What can I do and what am I not so good at? What insecurities do I have? And could this block my way of creating? All of these questions and thought processes could help you make decisions based on your feeling, instead of what others tell you.
2. Focus on the ‘feeling’ part of your brain
This follows on from the first tip. Roughly speaking we have 2 parts of our brain for activity. The left side of the brain is connected to more rational decisions, structuring, logic and fact. The Right side of the brain is connected to intuition, imagination, daydreaming, and creating.
Of course, these two work together and balance together in everyday life. I would say in the studio the aim is work more on the right side of the brain. So leave your structuring, logic, and more rational decisions to the side for a while, to allow the ideas to come from your right side. Both parts will have their influence on the process, depending on what phase you are in. But the starting point should always be from an open and non-judgemental approach.
3. Fail or try
If you make music, a lot of the time ideas don’t connect how you wanted or imagined. Or just don’t seem to make sense at all at that moment in time. This is totally okay. Music creation is a constant cycle of trying and trying and trying. You will keep ‘trying’ forever. And at a certain time there are the moments where it will click :).
4. Creation is not magic
It comes together in a combination of being open to it in the moment and a little luck/coincidence. A lot of times tracks evolve by fooling around with old sketches/ideas. So save those (at that time) “shit…” ideas you’ve worked on and store them on an external HD (or any place where they are safe). And be sure to organize your old ideas and projects. For example by key and bpm (you can drop all of them in any key detection program for this). Because you will work on every project from those parameters. Open the HD sometime later, and I can assure you, you will find gold.
So once again, failing isn’t actually failing, it’s just trying!
5. A positive mindset.
In certain times, such as this current crises, there could be other things on your mind. That’s totally understandable. Yet every setback or bad situation includes a moment of hope and can change. It’s a matter of how you look at it. Where you focus. Because life is full of surprises and every day is a blessing (pretty corny, I know) But it’s true! Maintaining a positive approach and getting up every day with an urge to make something out of it is the best foundation to work from. It’s then okay to shut the world off when you are in your studio zone. No Phone, no distractions, just you and your music.
El Mundo’s ‘Wandering’ EP is now available via Do Not Sit On The Furniture. Stream and buy here.