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How does a producer find work?

A Record-Producer.com visitor asks how producers get work. Trouble is, you can't call yourself a producer until you are already successful...

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Question from a Audio Masterclass visitor...

"Hello. I would like to know how record producers obtain work. Do they get hired by studios? I make beats, but I have a hard time finding reliable talent to work with, be it singers or rappers. What is a good way a producer can get their name out and find work?

Thanks for your time and hope to hear from you soon."

I am presuming here that by 'producer' in your last sentence, you mean 'aspiring producer'. The only way you can be called a producer is if you are credited as such on a commercially released recording.

Recording studios do not hire producers. The way it works is that the record company or label signs an artist or act. Then they seek a producer to help them make a saleable recording. They will then hire the studio for the artist and producer to work in.

So the producer and recording studio are both in the position of being hired by the record label.

So your question might be, "How can I persuade a record label to hire me as a producer?"

The answer to that is that you have to have proved your worth. If you don't have any credits yet, you will have to have made some great recordings that really convince the people at the label you can produce.

If you can do that, they will put you into a demo studio, or team you up with the artist to record in your own studio. If it works well, they will hire a better studio for you to make the finished recording, or perhaps finance an upgrade for your own studio.

The alternative is to find your own act to work with. This is a particularly fruitful avenue for rap music - you produce the beat in your own studio, and your rapper works on top of that.

If you can come up with something that is commercially saleable, you might be able to license your recording to a label who will then release it.

And once you have a "Produced by..." credit on a commercial release, you are a Producer!

By David Mellor Monday June 19, 2006
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