The 90 Day Music Licensing Challenge officially started on Jan 2nd, 2013. I received an email containing my login/password as well as a rundown of how the course operates. I wasn’t able to dive into the course at the time, so I just checked to see if everything worked (if I could access the course, etc).
After giving the course a quick glance, I contacted Aaron to schedule my initial consultation. We were able to set one up for Jan 4th, (2013) at 12 pm EST.
My Consultation With Aaron Davison
The consultation went well, I was able to share my experiences (good and bad) as well as what type of production I was most comfortable with. What I loved most was Aaron’s honesty, his answers were unbiased and made good business sense. I also liked the fact that Aaron was humble, he didn’t come off as a know it all he was just… a normal person.
After the consultation, I went over to the main training section of the course. The layout is pretty simple, there is a list of tutorials that tell you everything you need to know to get started with licensing music as well as bonus interviews, checklist sheets, directories, etc.
The guy pretty much put his blueprint in video tutorial format and there are daily emails that contain leads where we can send our music (which I’m 4 days behind on).
What’s reassuring is the fact that I have a personal connection with a few of the leads he’s already supplied and they all require a production demo. That’s good, that tells me there’s quality control and that Aaron isn’t just tossing out bullshit leads
I’ll be creating a brand new demo for these leads. Why? Eh, as I said before the start of this case study, I’ll be starting from scratch.
Portable Music Production Setup
Now, I’ll be using a basic production setup for this challenge, and when I say basic… I mean basic, just a laptop, midi controller, 1 application, audio interface, and a pair of headphones etc.
Everything listed below can fit in a backpack, and that’s vital because I need to mobile. My best ideas come to me when I’m outside of the recording studio.
The Midi Controller(s)
Akai LPK 25: I got this controller as a gift in 2010, it’s not the “best” midi controller as far as the user feel or features, but it’s perfect for what I need it for – Which is creating music.
It’s a lot smaller than most 25 key midi controllers and the build is cheap (feels like a toy), but again it’s more than enough to get the job done and it fits in my backpack
Akai LPD 8: Much like the Lpk 25, but instead of keys it has 8 pads. Wasn’t sure if I wanted to layout my drum patterns with keys or pads, so I chose both.
My Audio Interface
Saffire 6 USB: I like this interface because of its “sound quality” and it’s affordable. Most interfaces of this quality grade cost an extra $100.00 sometimes, even more, depending on what you’re looking at.
The preamps on Saffire 6 are the exact same preamps used on their higher-end interfaces. This is great because most interfaces skimp on the quality of their pres (especially in this price range).
Monitoring Setup (Headphones – Speakers?)
Beyerdynamic DT770: I love these headphones because I can trust a mix in them. They’re comfortable, flat response and I can use them for long periods of time with no ear fatigue.
VrmBox: I’m tossing this in the mix because it allows me to reference my music on different speakers (emulated of course) and it fits in my pocket.
These tools are important to me because I plan on mixing all of my material. Yes, it would be easier to pay someone else to mix, but that can get expensive real quick… Not interested. All we need is broadcast quality, which is pretty easy to achieve without using huge mixing consoles or a professionally treated environment.
Music Production Applications
Propellerhead’s Reason: Why Reason? I choose Reason because it has everything I need to create and its limitations actually keep me focused. I love using plugins (a lot of cools out there), but I find myself doing a lot of toying around and experimenting rather than creating.
Some will argue that experimentation is good and it is, experiments can yield some great results, but when I need to get work done I must be focused.
Microphone (External Recording Devices)
H1 Zoom Recorder: This is not a need, but more so a luxury or convenience. In my 2013 Business Goals post, I stated that I wanted to do more field recording, and this is a perfect way opportunity to knock out 2 birds with one stone.
Recap: List Of Gear That I’ll Be Using
- Akai Lpk 25 Key Midi Controller
- Akai Lpd 8 Midi Controller
- Focusrite Saffire 6
- Focusrite VRM
- Beyerdynamic DT 770
- H1 Zoom USB Recorder
- Propellerheads Reason
Now Give Me Some Feedback!
What are your thoughts? What kind of setup are you working with and what are you looking to get out of this case study?