As recording technology, music software and the web have evolved in the past decade, so has the definition and job description of a new breed of music producers who are now redefining and taking on the challenging role.
In the past a record & music producers could be defined as any one who creatively directs the process of making a record while assuming all responsibilities for making creative decisions. During that era much of the production was centered on replicating the live music performances of the band, performing artists or session musicians. From there many stages of the production and duties including: recording, mixing, music compositions, arrangements etc; were carried out by different professionals within the industry under the direction of the producer.
In today’s music making environment many producers are taking on a more direct and multifaceted role in the music production process. Some are versatile songwriting composers or skilled multi instrumentalists, while many others are audio engineers knowledgeable in all phases of the recording, tracking, mixing and audio mastering process. To reduce costs many producers are transforming their services into small production companies or labels to bring the entire process under one roof; taking on new marketing, promotions and distribution channels as as they expand their clientele.
In many cases capturing and replicating a live performance is still a primary responsibility of music producers. However as technology has improved and the cost associated with owning recording equipment and software have come down, so has its appeal to independent music artists, musicians and producers. As a result the art of creating digital music compositions, melodic arraignments, beats and manipulating sounds through virtual instruments and synthesizers have moved into the mainstream. DJ and beatmaking producers now create entire music productions in the digital realm.
Technology will continue redefine the role of individual producers as they learn new skill sets and adapt to the industry. But at the core they are still “the artists” that creatively directs the process of making a records (music) while assuming all responsibilities for making creative decisions.