A Sound Engineer's resolution

Hi everybody!

Another year has just passed and, as 2019 has left its marks on me I got to plan my resolution for this 2020 which is already here.

Which milestones have I got in 2019? What things had gone as planned? What could I improve? Is there anything I could possibly do to enhance my productivity?

Is important to set clear and reachable goals for this New Year, based on previous experiences, as a professional and moreover as a human being.

As freelancers, the kind of challenges and situations we deal with are similar. Let me share with you some of the points of my New Year’s resolution, in the hope it could help to clear your mind.

I will get more work done and better the quality

It might look easier said than done. Despite the encouraging numbers about the music industry and collateral, this field is still oversaturated. The best thing to do is network, to meet people, to partner and collaborate.

To be a specialized engineer on a project it does not mean to take away from a producer part of his job, but it means to enhance the producer’s craft and make it shinier and deeper, as other skills and moreover, another point of view is added into that specific session.

No man is an island!

I will be more minimalistic in my workflow

All of us we love plug-ins, gears gadgets… don’t we? But do we really need all of them, especially all at the same time?

Perfection is achieved when the best result is reached with the less number of elements! So, a good thing is to review a workflow, even from previous projects and aim for a better result bounding yourself to use a certain number or type of plugins/tracks/busses/automations etc…

Slimming down a session it means less elements to take care of, less margin of mistakes and more friendly approach to both our CPUs and wallets.

Last but not least, limiting yourself will force you to develop new solutions. A good exercise to your creativity!

I will get more work done and better the quality

After being in the industry for almost two decades, I tended to get stuck in the same old processes and routines. It is so tempting to find something that works and repeat it over and over again! But this industry is in a constant evolution, and this approach might lead my skills to stagnate and becoming antics.

So, this year become the master of a new big thing!

Learning how to pre-mix can improve the solidity of your tracks, working on how you use compressors or reverbs might lead to completely new creative solutions for your mixes! Also electronics: try to tear down a piece of electronic (be sure isn’t something expensive and rare to find!), understand how it works and put it back together. Try to learn a new music instrument or a new DAW. Try to listen to music which is diametrically opposite to what you usually listen to.

Experiment, think out of the box!

Give back to the Community

I’ve always loved to see Sound Engineering as a vocation, more than a profession. As a youngster in the industry I felt the passion of all the people who taught me and empowered me as an individual.

Of course it has not been always like that and I am not less guilty than the next person.

I still feel privileged to be part of a community which, in the majority of the situations, is populated by mature professionals and individuals. All of us should be welcoming new members and be helpful amongst us. But is also a win-win situations: new engineers are a breeze in this system, with new ideas and new point of views, as senior engineers need to give back to the community.

Let’s all of us avoid sterile and unproductive debates. Let’s not fight over petty things. Let’s leave more room for constructive criticism and mutual empowerment.

Soon I will also be back with my live podcast, which I hope could be taken as my personal and small community give-back and give my 2 cents of positive influence on the audio engineering community.

Let me wish you all to make this 2020 our best and productive year!

Let’s rock \m/

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