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Limitations Create Freedom! A Creative Music Production Game

Have you ever heard the oxymoron: boundaries create freedom?

Have you ever intentionally used arbitrary constraints as a sort of a creative game within a music production session?

The modern music production environment offers a limitless universe of possibilities. Any sound can be made, manipulated, re-recorded, etc. While an infinite range of options might sound appealing, it also means that making a decision and COMMITTING to it hard.

The more options we have, the more choices we have to make, and we only have so much decision-making power per day before our brain becomes mush.

Limiting our options isn’t just about making music easier, for our creativity to awaken, become required, to be useful…  we need to have a problem to solve.

What better way to achieve that than with a game?

Games = Limitations

Shout out to Mike Monday + the Leap for the Splurge Technique!

Try this one out for size:

Pick 4 instruments/plugins to cover

  1. Rhythm
  2. Bass
  3. Melody
  4. Harmony/Effects

With these 4 elements, you’ll have everything you need to create a musical bedrock. (How many epic 3 piece bands are out there?)

Have fun with this. Pick a new instrument or one you want to learn deeper.

Next, give yourself 30 minutes MAX. 

Start jamming/flowing out ideas with all four of these tracks. Keep going until you don’t know what to do next, then stop.

At this point, think about how you could create new sounds and different ideas by using effects/routing/MIDI effect (get creative) using THE SAME instruments. Make new tracks if you have to.

Once you’ve got an idea, set it up and jam/flow out some new ideas until again, you don’t know what to do. Keep repeating this process until your 30 minutes up.

At this point, take all of your ideas (no matter what you think about them) and arrange them into a mock structure VISUALLY.

The key is to not listen back, hit export, and don’t listen to it for a week. Usually, our judgment of our ideas at the moment of creation is not truly objective.

If you can do this a few times during the week, you’ll be FLOORED how many cool ideas just “fell out” of you.

Do you have any ideas for a creative music production game?

Drop a comment below, and I’d love to hear!


If you’re interested in learning more, check out my  ►► 7 Simple Steps To Take Your Songs From Start To Finish. Download Your FREE Pro Producer Roadmap PDF: https://www.metamindmusic.com/workflow

My name is Alex, and I help musicians produce themselves by developing their mindset, expanding their creativity, and connecting to their inner artist in a deeper way.

We Transform Musicians Into Pro Producers So That They Can Earn an Income With Their Music

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About me

About Audio Issues and Björgvin Benediktsson

At Audio Issues you’ll learn simple and practical audio production tips you can use right away to improve your music from your home recording studio.  Björgvin is the best-selling author of Step By Step Mixing and the founder of Audio Issues. He helps musicians and producers turn amateur demos into professionally produced records they can be proud to release.

We help home studio musicians and project studio producers make a greater musical impact in their lives by teaching them the skills needed to grow their hobbies and careers. We do this by offering simple and practical music production and success skills they can use right away to level themselves up – while rejecting negativity and gear-shaming from the industry. A rising tide floats all boats and the ocean is big enough for all of us to surf the sound waves.

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