30 Years In 30 Days: Advanced Production Techniques

Posted by Aaron Davison on Saturday, February 16, 2013 Under: February 2013

Award-Winning Composer/Producer/Engineer Gary Gray and I have been working together for about a year now.   To avoid sounding self-serving, I'm going to let Gary describe (below) the success he has been personally experiencing since he signed up for his first course on my website: HowToLicenseYourMusic.com.   So, it's with a good bit of pride that I am announcing a new collaboration with Gary; the Exclusive Publishing Release of a new book written by Gary, "30 Years In 30 Days - Discover 30 Years of Music Production and Audio Engineering Secrets in Just 30 Days!"  Gary, a protégé of Quincy Jones (he's working on a Major Motion Picture project with Quincy at this time), asked me to write the Foreword.The best way for me to recommend this book to you is to show you the results that can be obtained from the information you will learn in this book.  In that regard, I'm also very happy to present to you a World-Premiere Recording of my newest single, "All Lit Up," (soon to be available on iTunes) part of an upcoming Album I am currently recording.  I chose Gary to take the basic tracks I had recorded and to Edit, Orchestrate, Arrange, Produce, Mix and Master my tracks in order to create the best possible quality for my music before I submit my newest tracks for licensing opportunities.  Mind you, I was in the Dominican Republic on a tour at the time and Gary was in Los Angeles - so the collaboration you are about to experience was all done long-distance!  


I was so happy with the results that I suggested to Gary that we present the "before" and "after" versions of my song in order to illustrate the power of the knowledge contained in his book.  He agreed.  So, before I present Gary to you with his latest blog, I present to you the "before" and "after" versions of my newest single, "All Lit Up." 

"All Lit Up" BEFORE

"All Lit Up" AFTER


Without further delay, I present the latest Blog from our Award-Winning Resident Producer/Engineer, Gary Gray:

Thank you Aaron!  Wow, it's been a real whirlwind since I first signed up for courses at HowToLicenseYourMusic.com about a year ago!   I was doing "ok" before then, but since then - things have really taken off!  Not only did I land several high end Licensing Deals, but with your help, I've been able to increase my income and free up my time dramatically - and now I'm working on and completing one by one, several long-term dreams that I almost lost hope of ever achieving.  The latest is a book that I've been working on for years - designed to deliver to anyone interested in licensing their music --the knowledge and techniques necessary to immediately create Masterpiece Quality Recordings that will get licensed.  In fact, though this book stands alone and can be used all by itself to immediately help anyone create Masterpiece Quality Recordings, it also serves as a great accompanying tool with the Course "How To Produce Music That Will Get Licensed And Make You Money," a Master Class facilitated by Aaron Davison, in which I reveal secrets about Professional Mixing and Mastering in a 6-Part Video Series as well as a 90 minute interview with Aaron Davison.

Before I talk more about the book and the course, I wanted to communicate a recent success that I experienced as a STUDENT.  I just completed the latest course on HowToLicenseYourMusic.com (I purchase ALL the courses and services offered by Aaron Davison!) called "How To Pitch Directly To Music Supervisors"

This course features CBS Sports Music Coordinator Joseph Miller.   I was blown away by the course (as usual!) and learned some incredible information.  Aaron understands that the Music Industry is always changing and one of the greatest ways he helps my career is by keeping my finger consistently on the pulse of what's going on NOW. 

After listening to something that Joseph Miller said in the course, I was even MORE excited about publishing my new book, "30 Years in 30 Days, Discover 30 Years of Music Production and Audio Engineering Secrets in Just 30 Days!"  Check out what Joseph explains in the course:

"You need to find a way to separate yourself from this already over-saturated industry.  How are you going to make yourself stand out?  Is your music Really ready?  The first thing a Music Supervisor is going to listen to is the Quality of the recording.   Make sure your music is top notch and ready to go.  Otherwise you'll look silly and you'll leave a lasting impression.  Music Supervisors have deadlines and things need to be run at their pace.  A lot of time Music Supervisors  don't have time to educate artists.  You need to read every book you can on the topic.  Be confident in your music and what you can do.  It's important to not be discouraged.  Even the most successful people in this industry get discouraged sometimes.  It's important to really step back and re-evaluate your entire approach - you're website, your music, etc.  Compare what you are doing to people out there who are successful.  You need to be aware and absorbed in this industry and the everyday workings of it. "  - Joseph Miller, Music Coordinator CBS Sports

I couldn't agree more with Joseph!  In fact, I have dedicated myself to helping others increase the Quality of their recordings and have been doing so for years!  My book helps me spread the knowledge, the techniques, the secrets and the tips given personally to me over the years by my Mentors, among them some of the best in the industry, such as Quincy Jones and Chick Corea.

I recently completed test-marketing the book. The response was incredible and I am now more excited than ever to get this book out there toSinger/Songwriters, Composers, Producers and Engineers.  (I know a lot of you are like me - all of those things wrapped into one!)  We need information we can use NOW!

This book is dedicated to the Mentor of my greatest Mentor, Quincy Jones;  Nadia Boulanger.  Though I never met Nadia, I've studied her teachings for years and was able to experience her wisdom through many hours of listening to Quincy's stories about how she taught him.I am hoping to bring to the readers of this new book a tradition of Craftsmanship in creating music. Nadia put it this way:

Gary And Quincy, October 2012

 "Anyone who acts without paying attention to what he is doing is wasting his life. I'd go so far as to say that life is denied by lack of attention, whether it be to cleaning windows or trying to write a masterpiece."

One student who read the book in my test-marketing phase, and who took the course "How To Produce Music That Will Get Licensed And Make You Money," Davidson Yeager, a Singer/Songwriter, Guitarist and Guitar Teacher from Canada - was asked to write the Preface for the book.  Davidson ended up landing a Film Licensing Deal after applying the principals in the book!  So, you can see why I'm so excited to get this book out to the world!

Here is what Davidson said after completing the book and the course:

"I had worked for hours and hours on arranging and mixing this song. I thought it was pretty good. I knew it didn't stack up with commercial recordings, but I thought to myself "this is as good as I can get it. I don't have 'brand x' outboard gear, or preamps, acoustically treated rooms, teams of engineers, ordeals with the devil  ;-) etc."

"I emailed Gary a link to the song. He got back to me with unbelievably detailed feedback. I was bowled over by the care and consideration he had put into his feedback. I followed his suggestions, and went back in and started mixing. I sent him the results. Again, Gary took the time to be a mentor for me.

"This time, he laid out what he himself would do if he were to mix the song. It was a very detailed list! He also pointed out the reality that most people would probably ignore the detailed suggestions and most likely not follow through fully. I took the bait...

"And I'm glad I did. This went on for several weeks. I would follow Gary's suggestions and then email him my work. He would suggest specific tweaks, and I would tweak accordingly. Finally I got a version that was pretty close to what Gary was guiding me toward.

"I decided at that point to hire Gary to apply a final coating of magic with his Orchestration and Mastering expertise. I understood that while learning my craft, I could increase the odds for a licensing deal on a more immediate basis, and learn even more, by hiring a Master Craftsman. Gary even Mentored meduring the process of his work on my song, explaining in detail exactly what he was doing. The result was amazing.

"And apparently I wasn't the only one who thought so. I can now say that I am a member of the community of Independent Singer/Songwriter Producer/Engineers who have landed a major licensing deal! I am proud to announce that "Soul" has been chosen for inclusion in an upcoming Major Motion Picture Sound Track, with production to commence in 2013 with the release date slated for 2014!"

Oh, and speaking of successes, guess what?  One of my students from England, a great songwriter, Marty Fingus, while taking my course, suggested that I enter the song that I was recording during the filming of the course itself (you get to see actual recording, mixing and mastering sessions as part of the course) into the U.K. Songwriting Contest.  So, for the heck of it, I did.  Well, I just found out that, though this was the first track I ever sang lead vocals on (I've done a lot of background vocals), I was chosen as a Semi-Finalist Winner!  Evidently this recording beat out thousands of entries from around the world!  So, if you have a chance to take the course, you will be observing the making of an Award Winning Song!  Thank you Marty for believing in me!

Another student, Sean Street, an excellent Singer/Songwriter wrote to me from England after reading the book:

"Anyway, I was going through the tracks and they all sounded so amateurish to me. I got stuck into editing them, and after a while I started to get really frustrated and depressed. There just seemed to be so many fluctuations in tone, attack, and volume that I was too embarrassed to send them to you. I felt like a fraud trying to start my music career at 47. Thankfully I sat down and started to re-read your book (Which I've gone through twice now) and this where a couple of passages really helped me mentally.

"The first, a quote from your book, helped me with my illusion of age stopping me from creating music;

'She [Nadia Boulanger] would quote the examples of Rameau (who wrote his first opera at fifty), Wojtowicz (who became a concert pianist at thirty-one), and Roussel (who had no professional access to music till he was twenty-five), as counter-arguments to the idea that great artists always develop out of gifted children.'

"And the second one really helped with my frustrations in editing my tracks;

"[From the book "30 Years in 30 Days" by Gary Gray]:'When a groove makes you move and tap your foot and move your head, that's a good sign you've created an emotional impact with that groove. But what if there are "mistakes" in it - where certain notes are not quantized perfectly or there are some flams with the snare or some notes are a bit louder or softer than others - AS LONG AS THESE DISCREPENCIES DO NOT TAKE AWAY FROM THE EMOTIONAL IMPACT, LEAVE THEM ALONE! IT'S DONE. COMPLETED. OVER. FINISHED. MOVE ON TO THE NEXT TRACK!'

"I realized that maybe I was getting frustrated about certain things that didn't matter. Thank you! 

I wish I had time to write a longer Blog, but thanks to Aaron, I'm busy teaching others and landing licensing deals!!  So, it's all Aaron's fault!  He created a Monster!

As a gesture of my appreciation to Aaron, I'm making the book available to anyone affiliated with HowToLicenseYourMusic.com for only $9.99 and I'm sharing half the profits with Aaron for all of his support and hard work!

You can purchase the e-book for immediate downloading by CLICKING HERE!

Good Luck!

Gary Gray

Los Angeles, California


In : February 2013 

Tags: gary gray  quincy jones  music production 
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