Are you chasing gear instead of finding your sound?
First off let me say this article is based on personal experience with myself and others. It is also an opinion piece so if you do not agree that is totally cool with me as this is music and there are no rules or cookie cutter methods for getting anything done, ya dig.
Are You Always Looking For That Piece Of Gear That Will Make Bangers?
The truth is you make the bangers, not the gear. Yes, the gear/music equipment facilitates the process, but which piece of gear you use or can afford should not decide the sound of your tracks. I spent a lot of my early 20s trying to find myself and also trying to find that magic piece of gear or program that would allow me to make hot beats. The truth is if instead of doing so much searching, purchasing, and learning new equipment all of time I should have been focused more on one or 2 pieces of gear and mastered them.
Now there is another side to this. You may need to go through a few pieces of gear and programs to find the right one for you and your way of thinking. This is actually very useful, but the quicker you can find your musical soul mate the quicker you can start making them heaters.
Chase Sounds, Skills, & Knowledge Not Equipment!
I can pin point exactly when my production started getting way better. It was when I started focusing more on the articles about mixing, mastering, synth modulation and stuff like that instead of reading all the new gear reviews and deciding how to burn through all of the money in my bank account. Start investing in your brain by watching youtube tutorials, reading music production magazines, and talking with other producers and engineers. If you are smart enough musically you can make a hot track on almost any piece of gear, as long as you have the right sounds that is.
Sounds are everything. No matter if are we are talking about the samples you use, the drums, or type of synths. You need to find the sounds you like to use, keep them organized in a way you can quickly recall them and yes, USE THEM!!! If you use a program like Reason, FL Studio, Cubase or any other DAW then you can grab sounds left and right for free or by paying for them. One thing is sounds are way cheaper then new gear 9 times out of 10. They will also normally have a way greater impact on your production.
I like to consider myself a sound connoisseur. From my 6 year fog of smoking herb and ripping samples off records and cds from the library all day. Or surfing online for reason refills and REX files to ad to my collection. The more sounds you have the less chance you have of ever getting stagnate or bored. But just like the gear chasing make sure you USE THE SOUNDS!! Organize them in a way that works for you when you get them and start trying to implement them right away. I have about 350gb of sounds and I can navigate the folders and files with my eyes closed. Well probably not with my eyes closed, but I know where everything is and what it is. This is key.
OK, so the main point of making this post was to let you know that u don’t have to have a 5,000.00 piece of gear to make hits. To be perfectly honest I use 2 programs (Reason & Cubase), one 88key midi keyboard, and ummm, THAT’s IT!! Besides that all I need are sounds, sounds , sounds. Now if have 18 hours a day to work on music and an unlimited budget this article may not make sense to you, but since you are the .001% here that is the way it goes sometimes. I hope this article was helpful you in some way, shape or form and thanks for taking the time to read it. Be back with more soon. Also if you have some time check some of my latest hip hop beats.