Synth grouping

Discussions about anything analog, digital, MIDI, synth technology, techniques, theories and more.
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griffin avid
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Re: Synth grouping

Post by griffin avid » Wed Mar 20, 2013 8:17 pm

So now, the gear I have I know inside out, and I am 100% back on track.

Are you saying you have that same number and now you've learned them better over time or are you saying you don't have as many as when you felt overwhelmed?

Obviously there must have been a tipping point when your purchases outgrew your productivity.
I know part of it is focus. When you *could be making music*, but instead you're looking through classifieds.
Calling pawn shops. Craigslist. eBay...

Chatting on forums about classic and dream pieces.
drooling over new releases because they are shiny and new - even though they won't really add anything to your music or productivity.

Look, when you have a brilliant idea, you'll write it down on ANYTHING. Song lyrics and notes scribbled on toilet paper. A backside of an envelope from a thrown out bill in the garbage bin...

When you are uninspired or have writer's block, you think you could use a new typewriter.
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Re: Synth grouping

Post by Romannis1972 » Wed Mar 20, 2013 8:49 pm

griffin avid wrote:So now, the gear I have I know inside out, and I am 100% back on track.

Are you saying you have that same number and now you've learned them better over time or are you saying you don't have as many as when you felt overwhelmed?

Obviously there must have been a tipping point when your purchases outgrew your productivity.
I know part of it is focus. When you *could be making music*, but instead you're looking through classifieds.
Calling pawn shops. Craigslist. eBay...

Chatting on forums about classic and dream pieces.
drooling over new releases because they are shiny and new - even though they won't really add anything to your music or productivity.

Look, when you have a brilliant idea, you'll write it down on ANYTHING. Song lyrics and notes scribbled on toilet paper. A backside of an envelope from a thrown out bill in the garbage bin...

When you are uninspired or have writer's block, you think you could use a new typewriter.
Yes, I have less gear now.

I seldom "drool" over new pieces. I have not bought a "new" piece of gear in quite some time. I have not ever bought a piece of gear to overcome writer's block. That's a stupid pointless idea.

We all have our work methods. Remember that, man.

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Re: Synth grouping

Post by ninja6485 » Wed Mar 20, 2013 9:02 pm

vicd wrote:A nice tractate this one above!

However, left me with questions and some more philosophy :D

Having a "song" in mind implies going top-down: we have an idea of song that dictates what arrangement, what sound etc. to be used. That is, analytical approach.
Now, the synthetical approach. Like, "I have these, these, and these kinds of bricks. Let's see what kind of house I can build of these?"

And then you can merge both approaches to enter the new level: there's no "song", there's no "building blocks" - it's all one, the sound that is not artificially separated into "parts", "tracks", "beats".
Like, it's a common thing to build rhythms using rhythm-boxes with several discrete samples of several discrete instruments - this leads you to splitting your idea into tracks, bars, beats, patterns etc. However, you can build nice rhythms by applying rhythmic modulations to a continuously evolving base (like you do in Massive e.g.).
Yea, I think you could think about the top down approach as having a vision of what the song should be and then using the instruments to construct the vision, whereas the synthetic approach would be, or at least include, something like engaging in a free-play of the imagination with the instruments at hand. All art, including all songs imply some kind of medium; (the fact that it's a song implies sound, etc), so essentially the synthetic approach is going to affect the analytic approach in that your vision is going to incorporate ideas and sounds you think you can create with your instruments. So even right there you're already touching the surface of how means and ends coalesce in making a song.

Further, John Dewey talks about something like this in Art as Experience (New York: Putnam,1934). The gist is that there are two types of means, means which cease to act when the end is reached, and means which are incorporated in the outcome (medium). In the first case, one might be glad to get the end without having to employ the means, they are a scaffolding. (this is non aesthetic, mechanical creation). For the other, “[a]esthetic effects belong intrinsically to their medium, and when another is substituted, we have a stunt rather than an object of art. … Even when substitution is practiced with the utmost virtuosity or for any reason outside the kind of end desired, the product is mechanical or a tawdry-sham, like boards painted to resemble stone in the construction of a cathedral, for stone is integral not just physically, but to the esthetic effect.”
This looks like a psychotropic reaction. No wonder it's so popular...

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Re: Synth grouping

Post by ninja6485 » Wed Mar 20, 2013 9:16 pm

Romannis1972 wrote:Yes. The "focus not limitations" idea to me is untrue.
Not sure what this means exactly; but just to be clear, the distinction between focus and limitations is about intention. A limitation is not intentionally imposed, whereas a focused setup is intentionally imposed. It's a good distinction to make because focus includes the fact that it's a creative choice, whereas a limitation is something out of your control that is often an obstacle. In this case we're making the distinction to be clear about what we're talking about so that we don't mistake decisions that were made in spite of limitations for decisions where the limitation is intentionally imposed. Just think of a focus as in intentional limitation for the purposes of this discussion.
This looks like a psychotropic reaction. No wonder it's so popular...

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Re: Synth grouping

Post by GuyaGuy » Wed Mar 20, 2013 9:50 pm

ninja6485 wrote:Just think of a focus as in intentional limitation for the purposes of this discussion.
I think we all already did until the focus vs limitation argument was brought up. ;)

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Re: Synth grouping

Post by calaverasgrande » Wed Mar 20, 2013 10:44 pm

It all depends on the artist. I'm ADHD. I need to make much more effort to focus myself in order to be productive. I have come up with workflows that assist me int his regard. Kind of like the habits of successful people truism "dont start your day by checking email" I never start a rehearsal by fiddling with patches. I get in and do the set list once or twice, and maybe repeat a song until I can play it through without a glitch.
Then I start dicking around with patches and mixer balance.

Like some other fellas on here I can kind of get in gear addiction syndrome. You know it's bad when you start considering whether to get a bigger mixer or 2nd additional mixer to handle all the inputs!
I keep trying to scale back my rig (it's tough to play out with a lot of CV gear!) but then I've only been able to afford the synths I want in the last couple of years.
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Re: Synth grouping

Post by Romannis1972 » Wed Mar 20, 2013 11:43 pm

ninja6485 wrote:
Romannis1972 wrote:Yes. The "focus not limitations" idea to me is untrue.
Not sure what this means exactly; but just to be clear, the distinction between focus and limitations is about intention. A limitation is not intentionally imposed, whereas a focused setup is intentionally imposed. It's a good distinction to make because focus includes the fact that it's a creative choice, whereas a limitation is something out of your control that is often an obstacle. In this case we're making the distinction to be clear about what we're talking about so that we don't mistake decisions that were made in spite of limitations for decisions where the limitation is intentionally imposed. Just think of a focus as in intentional limitation for the purposes of this discussion.
I'm saying focusing on the potential outcome of a tune can be limited by too much gear, wasting time trying to figure out which synth to use yeilds loss of a good idea, furthered by trying to replicate what one hears in their head on a very complicated and in depth synth.

Having less forces a user to become more educated on the gear they own, and to me like I said having too much causes an undesired lack of knowlege of what one owns.

Hence, limitations and a block of productivity.
Last edited by Romannis1972 on Thu Mar 21, 2013 8:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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ninja6485
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Re: Synth grouping

Post by ninja6485 » Thu Mar 21, 2013 6:12 am

Romannis1972 wrote:
ninja6485 wrote:
Romannis1972 wrote:Yes. The "focus not limitations" idea to me is untrue.
Not sure what this means exactly; but just to be clear, the distinction between focus and limitations is about intention. A limitation is not intentionally imposed, whereas a focused setup is intentionally imposed. It's a good distinction to make because focus includes the fact that it's a creative choice, whereas a limitation is something out of your control that is often an obstacle. In this case we're making the distinction to be clear about what we're talking about so that we don't mistake decisions that were made in spite of limitations for decisions where the limitation is intentionally imposed. Just think of a focus as in intentional limitation for the purposes of this discussion.
I'm saying focusing on the potential outcome of a can be limr, wasting time trying to figure out which sybth to use yeilds loss of a good idea, furthered by trying to replicate what one hears in their head on a very complicated and in depth synth.

Having less forces a user to become more educated on the gear they own, and to me like I said having too much causes an undesired lack of knowlege of what one owns.

Hence, limitations and a block of productivity.
Oh, so you and Griffin Avid were using the same word to talk about two different things. Glad my clarification could bring this to light...
GuyaGuy wrote:
ninja6485 wrote:Just think of a focus as in intentional limitation for the purposes of this discussion.
I think we all already did until the focus vs limitation argument was brought up. ;)
Clearly not all of us did after all. You went for a witty remark at my expense, but your a*s got served. 8-).
This looks like a psychotropic reaction. No wonder it's so popular...

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Re: Synth grouping

Post by GuyaGuy » Thu Mar 21, 2013 6:45 am

I don't see that part of the thread. But I'll be sure to leave a nice tip for whomever was serving me.

FWIW: My point was that the argument had become largely about semantics.

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