How Not To Make Music: Get Fresh With Some New Music

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I have been composing for a little while now, and I wanted to try composing in a new genre. I was inspired to make a Moombahton track after listening to artists like Diplo and Dillon Francis. Moombahton is essentially a hybrid of house and reggaeton at a tempo of 108-115 BPM, however my track was missing a little energy so I raised the tempo to 118 BPM. I was struggling a lot with the melody at first, it just wasn’t sounding right. At the time, I was using stringed instruments, but quickly switched to synths and got the sound I was looking for.

Below is the final product, “Get Fresh,” which I’ve posted under one of my artist names, APPALLO. Listening with high-quality headphones or speakers is recommended, and feel free to give me some feedback in the comments and share it with friends.

Music and words by Max Rico

How Not to make Music: Learn to Read (and Write) Music

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So you’ve been noodling for awhile, listening to good music and you really want to know how it’s played. Listening to other artists is inspiring, but you can’t read music and can’t figure out how to play the material! This is bad. Don’t do that (especially if you’re trying to write music). Writing music requires you to be able to read music. Learn both. Once you learn how to read music, you can begin to play pieces from the greats (like me).    

I started taking piano lessons because I kept having surges of inspiration without having the proper knowledge to transform my ideas into sounds outside of my own head. Luckily, I’m graced with perfect pitch (but it doesn’t help if I don’t know what to do with it). Now that I am re-learning how to read music, that skill is becoming more and more useful as I learn to translate thought into sound. If you find yourself, running into similar issues, go back to basics and build your knowledge of reading and writing music. Soon you’ll see notes pouring onto the page in front of you.


Words and Photos by Max Rico.

How Not to Make Music: The State of Noodle

 Welcome to How Not To Make Music. Currently, I am a senior in high school and my main passion is music. I want to study composition in college, grow up, and become rich and famous by making awesome music. Unfortunately, I’m not there yet, but I want to invite you to join me on my journey and hopefully learn from my trials and terrors. In this blog, I’ll give you constructive advice about music composition, production, recording, and possibly performing as well. I’ll be using my music as the prime example of what not to do. Let’s begin… Continue reading