Many of us are still reasonably new to music collaborations, but even more so when it comes to online music collaborations. Because I work here behind the scenes in Melosity I had a chance to collaborate and observe quite a few musical collaborations by now. So I thought it was time to outline few things I know will help you to have a successful music collaboration.
Record your track with a metronome and post the BPM in the chat window of the project. I know some of us feel it affects or limits our creativity, but we are talking about an online music collaboration here. If we are in the same room, you can read other musicians body language and follow visual queues. When you are recording something online, or even layering in the studio, having the click track is crucial! For starters, playing with a metronome is the difference between drummer hating or loving you. Also, it will speed up everyone’s workflow, when you take the guessing game out of it.
Leave room for others. Don’t throw all of your ideas at it straight away. Collaboration is all about sharing ideas and getting inspired by what others do. If you have seven guitar tracks, the chances are there’s not much room left in the arrangement for anybody to do much. Keep it simple and let it grow organically.
Communicate. Be specific. If you want something specific, explain it in the chat window. If you want people just to throw around ideas, be specific about that as well. We all want to make great music, so be willing to give and receive constructive criticism. It is the best way for all of us grow as musicians.
Be proactive. Don’t just complain about people not doing anything, ask them to help you. And if someone is simply too busy, just ask someone else. It is up to every one of us to make the collaboration a success, so don’t wait for someone else to make the move.
Copyright seems to be a big worry for many of us. The fact is, most of us will never make any money out of the music we create. Those of us who do, with the streaming services being the main way most people listen to music these days, the revenue from it is not much to write home about. Having said that, if you are planning a commercial release, it is good to let all the people involved know your attention and agree to the terms before you start the collaboration. In my experience, most people who want to collaborate, are more than happy to do it just for fun. Again clear communication is the key.
And once the project is finished, share the final track with the other collaborators and let them share it and use it as well. After all, they helped you to make the track. But besides that, it is a numbers game. The more people share the track, the more people will hear it as well. And give credit where credit is due. Mention your fellow collaborator everytime you share or post the track on social media.
These are simple steps to follow, and if you do your collaboration is more likely to be a successful one. I would also love to hear your suggestions below in the comments. What has worked for you and what has not? Happy collaborating.