Have you ever seen producers using beat tapes to promote themself?
They are a lot of work, but that’s with good reason.. they are a great way to keep people following along and listening to your music over the years, plus you get some amazing practice in!
Remember, I’ve released 8 beat tapes, and releasing my 9th beat tape VERY SOON! Here’s a comment someone left me on YouTube , so that’s proof these things work, and people enjoy them, but it’s the long-game, and that’s what’s hard.
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But what I want to talk about today is how to prepare for a beat tape launch. (Have you heard of my Release a Professional Beat Tape course?)
Now preparing for a beat tape launch is very draining, time consuming, but also very rewarding, and you learn A LOT!
I want to share an image with you of the notes that I take while going through my final listening stages of putting together a beat tape:
What To Listen for While You Are Listening to Your Beats, and Wanting to Mix Them?
When you make the beat, mix it, and master it, there’s a lot of “rules” and “best practices” that don’t really apply.
When you include other people to work on your music, it needs to be presented a certain way for that professional to work on the audio.
But when you do it all yourself, you are in full control.
I often get questions over the years about how should I set up my mix for mastering? Should it be -6dB for headroom?
These things don’t apply when you are mixing and mastering in the same project. (Which is what I do). This is because I’m only focused on the end result which is the master. The mix gives you balance, and overall sound. The master is the final touches, which is what everyone listens to!
So however I can get to my desired loudness through mixing and mastering, that is the goal. Nothing with “headroom”, as I’m doing it all myself behind these beat tapes. That means I am becoming the beatmaker, the mixer, and the mastering engineer, and you are too, if you are putting together your own beat tapes!
So because of this, it’s important to learn the process of how a beat gets put together.. like when are you done making the beat? When are you done the mixing stage? And when are you done the mastering stage?
The answer is not simple, because it’s the combination of all of them to make the final product.
But here’s some tips.
What to Listen for, and Tips to Finish the Songs:
Knowing when the beat is done is pretty simple.. you start to build out the song’s arrangement, and once you feel the beat has enough instruments to sound full come chorus time, I’d say you’re done making the beat!
But.. the mixing and mastering aren’t so simple.
However, this is actually an extreme benefit toward you, as you are in FULL CONTROL (but can be daunting for many, as they don’t know where to stop between the mixing and mastering, and where to draw the line!)
The trick is to get all your beats close to being done. Then you listen to them over one by one, analyzing for anything you don’t like.
Is anything standing out harsh, or does it sound pretty hollow?
On every single one of my beat tapes, there is always those few tracks that just turn out great..
Somehow I managed to choose good sound selection, and the whole beat just came together..
Very light mixing, and then just increasing loudness in the mastering, with a bit of light processing on the master.
But there will always be those handful of beats that give you troubles.
That’s why you make a list of things you don’t like about the song. Not a HUGE LIST.. but things like..
- Clap is too loud..
- Piano is way too bright compared to the rest of the song..
- Kick drum has too much bass (yes, that’s a thing you know!)
If you follow that, it will make the process a lot easier to get to your end result.
How To Make a Beat Tape Checklist?
I simply just create a .txt file that I save in a place where I can access it from any device.
This is so that whenever I listen to the beats, I can easily add/remove to the list.
You will find your own approach as you go along, but I promise you by making quick notes of what to improve within the beats will tremendously allow you to put out a better product.
I’d recommend doing this at least 3 times. The beats will never be perfect, but that’s the whole benefit of releasing a beat tape.
It forces you to practice the skills of putting together a real album like they used to back in the day.
You will learn how to level match, how to mix, how to master, and overall, how to find your own sound.. what you like and don’t like.
It only comes with time, practice, patience, and endurance!
You can do it!
Learn how to release a professional beat tape in my beat tape course.. it will really help you jumpstart your music career.
Bonus Sneak Peak Cover of BEAT TAPES By GratuiTous Vol. 9!
Here’s an image of the new beat tape coming soon!