The Beat Hamster
*** ill o.g. ***
Battle Points: 1
I've often preached that you should make beats that just come naturally. Everyone has their own way of making beats and their own style, but there are also plenty of producers that make particular styles of beats because that's what's "hot".
I'm not a fan of doing that, but I understand.
So I set out to do an experiment and see if I could make certain styles of beats.
In the end, I failed. But I also succeeded.
I Tried to Make a Hard and Crazy Beat
I wondered what would happen if I sat down to make a really hype beat, something along the lines of early Onyx. Their beats were insane and super gutter, so I thought I should give that a try.
I started off with a really dark 1-bar bassline loop, so I thought to myself, "I like where this is going".
I then added some drums. Great - now I had the backbone for a really hard and gutter beat.
The problem was that I didn't know where to go from here. From my experience, I tend to always get "musical" and play nice melodies or sample some lush sounds. That's just what I do!
In the end, I came up with this:
Now, the beat turned out great but it's the piano that turned this beat into something silky smooth, instead of something that would make you want to punch a small child and attack a SWAT team.
Where did I go wrong?
It's Just What I Do!
I've always figured this, but the bottom line for me (and I'm sure many others) is that I just make beats. That's it. You could give me a bunch of really gutter sounds to make a beat and I would somehow make it smooth, or at least it would have a decent melody to it.
The fact is that I'm just wired that way.
The problem with this is it's both a blessing and a curse because it's great that I make beats naturally like that, but it's also bad because what do I do if someone wants a different sounding beat from me?
For example, I don't make Trap beats. Plenty of people do, some because they're going for that money, others because they like making Trap. But if someone wanted a Trap beat from me, I can't do it.
So where does that leave people like me? Am I stuck making the smooth beats that I always do? Or is there a way for me to somehow change it up?
My Guess Is…
I once heard DJ Premier say he could easily make Trap beats if he chose to, but that's just not his style, and it's not what his fans expect from him.
I understand what he's saying, but I don't really think he could make Trap beats even if he tried. This is because he's been doing the Boom Bap style of beats for decades, and he has a very particular style, so I doubt he could pull it off. He might come close, but he would have to really change up his approach to beat making.
I think anyone can make any type of beat, but it also comes down to how you're wired. For me, I know what style of beat I'm going to end up with each time, and that's great, but can I make something like Trap if I had a Trap sound kit to work with?
Yeah I could, but it wouldn't be the traditional-sounding Trap everyone is used to. It would probably be smooth Trap or a new style.
We all have different styles and different ways of making beats. There are some of us that lean more towards one style over the other, but that could also come down to what type of music we listen to, or how we first got into beat making in the first place.
My advice? Do whatever comes naturally. If you want to make whatever style of beat is popular today, go for it, but I guarantee that you will always throw your own flavor over it.
In the end, we have to remember that music is a form of expression!
Further Reading About Beat Making