In the audio community, we tend to debate the roles of our positions. This is due to the egocentric nature of music creation. To have clashes in intentions of a final product and create the need for hierarchy in a creative world.
So, which are you?: a Beat Maker, a Producer, or a Songwriter
Let’s start by defining these words. I believe the problem starts with defining a beat. There is no standard definition for a beat, the way we use it. Not talking about music measure definitions, but the music behind a vocal track.
So, What’s a Beat Maker Anyway?
Instrumental– A piece of (usually non-classical) music performed by instruments, with no vocals.
Beat maker would be synonymous with Instrumental maker. Maker, A person or thing that makes or produces something. So the full definition of a Beat Maker is:
Beat Maker-A person or thing that makes or produces music performed by instruments with no vocals.
So, technically, a person who makes instrumentals produces music without vocals.
Let’s define a Music Producer…
What is a Music Producer?
Here’s the problem…There are many definitions for Producer!
Producer-A person responsible for the financial and managerial aspects of the making of a film or broadcast or for staging a play, opera, etc.
Producer-A person who supervises the making of a musical recording.
But regardless of definition, in NONE of these definitions is a producer REQUIRED to know how to play any instruments.
If we combine these definitions, a producer is a person responsible for the financial and managerial aspects of the making of a musical recording.
So, where does musical talent come into play??? Where does it say we have to be musical geniuses to be a producer???
Sadly, our audio community likes to put others down because they don’t have the skills or talent of another. But, a music producer has NOTHING to do with musical skill or talent.
Now, to be fair, the supervising of a recording MAY require some music knowledge of: Music Theory, Mixing, Arrangement, or Recording BUT, technically speaking, that is not the case.
Isn’t it funny, the title people fight to be most has NOTHING to do with musical talent???
If I’m not a Beat Maker or Music Producer, am I a Songwriter?
A songwriter has a very specific definition, one which may shock you.
Songwriter-A person who writes popular songs or the music for them.
So, to be a songwriter, you must create POPULAR songs?
Let’s define a song.
Song-A short poem or other set of words set to music or meant to be sung.
So a songwriter’s job is to create the WORDS for a song or the music for them. So, rappers are songwriters? Yes, by definition.
Songwriters can also create the music for songs. Let’s define music.
Music-Vocal or instrumental sounds (or both) combined in such a way as to produce beauty of form, harmony, and expression of emotion.
So, a songwriter is either a person who writes the WORDS to a song or the person who creates vocal or instrumental sounds which combine in such a way as to produce beauty of form…
So, technically, a beat maker IS a songwriter. Yet, a Music Producer is not necessarily a songwriter or a beat maker.
Isn’t that funny? The high and mighty title of the music producer has NOTHING to do with musical talent nor musical skill.
The Ultimate Take Away
In the end, we find a beat maker is the same as a songwriter, except a songwriter may be one who only writes words to a song.
And we also find that a music producer does not need any musical skill or talent to undergo their role.
So are you a beat maker, a producer, or a songwriter? Let me know in the comments below and ask your audio friends if they are truly one or another…