Ive had a breakthrough this week. The creative process is a finicky bastard. Theres a reason the archetype of the tortured artist exists. When you bother to pour your soul onto a canvass, into words, or through music, one prevailing need always shines through. You want to be accepted. Hell, you may even want to be worshiped. Let me guide you through my thought process to overcome perfection paralysis.
The last several months I’ve been producing original electronic songs with the program Logic Pro X. I probably have a dozen or so incomplete works sitting in my computer. I can’t get past the transitions too well. Interludes, breaks, finding the perfect chorus… How do I make them seamless? Fuck. Ill never be like Deadmau5. Deadmau5, Skrillex, and Kaskade all say they produce hit songs on the plane rides in between shows. They don’t even need all this equipment that I’ve bought.
Negative thinking. Knock that shit off.
Ok. So im not a professional. Heck Ill probably never be famous. There. Lets set the bar a little bit lower. What do I want? I just want people to listen to my stuff and maybe even dance to it. If they are dancing then they don’t even need to tell me they liked it. So. How do I actually finish something that I’m proud of?
In high school my friends and I started a basement band. We only made probably 10 original songs. All recorded on a laptop microphone. These songs had a humorous bent with satire and cynicism being the main lyrics. We were a joke. BUT. We posted the tracks on myspace for anyone to listen to. We did some promotion with the band profile and gave everyone that bothered to accept our friend request a personalized message. A weird thing happened. We started getting listens. A dozen. Fifty. A hundred. A couple hundred. We put out a couple more stupid simple songs. People at school started telling me that they had heard “The Danger Club” and that we were hilarious. Some people even commented that they actually liked the musicality. By the time we gave up on the thing we had a couple thousand listens.
Why can’t I do that now? Why does everything I put out need to be perfect? I doesn’t. Lets just try to pump out a complete song as fast as I can. It will be a parody of house music. Ill overblow the kick drum and use the cheesiest synths I can find. Ill completely abuse all the effects to the point where you can’t even understand the lyrics and the Ill put no thought into the lyrics whatsoever. That night I made a parody of a dance song. I uploaded it to soundcloud and it got 4 listens and one like. My first song.
Then a weird thing happened. The next day I pumped out another song of far superior quality. I viewed tutorials on more advanced processing techniques. Its better in every sense. I uploaded it and got seven listens. The listens aren’t the point. Im new to this. Ive got to learn. The point is not to get bogged down in making something “amazing“. Im going to settle for “good enough“. I realized halfway through writing this that what I’m trying to convey to you is the concept of outcome independence. It isn’t just for getting laid. When I started this blog I was just doing it for my own entertainment. I never dreamed I would get hundreds of views only a couple weeks after starting it. But guess what, I keep putting out content and getting my ideas out there. That fills me with pride. It really does.
There is something creative your soul is screaming at you to do.
Listen to it.