unfinished tracks.... what a waste!

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balma
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unfinished tracks.... what a waste!

Post by balma » Wed Sep 23, 2009 7:37 pm

what do you do with your unfinished tracks??? if you have any.....

Do you store them on the closet waiting to resurrect them on the near future?

Do you "recycle" them into new tracks (that maybe will be unfinished also)

I made a record mess last week, searching for my unfinished stuff.

I saved them on my PS3, since some Cds have fungus or they are getting rotten.... tropical weather.

I counted more than 300 tracks, made on the last 7 years, that are waiting for some extra work....

what a waste of work.... :(
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Re: unfinished tracks.... what a waste!

Post by alyerpal » Wed Sep 23, 2009 8:10 pm

Save them for when you're uninspired. You may be working on a track and have no good ideas for whatever the next section should be. Have a listen to some of your old work and see if you can't lift a section and make it work in your current track.

That, or sometimes out of nowhere you'll come up with an idea months (or even years) down the road to complete an old track.

Just my 2 cents.
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Re: unfinished tracks.... what a waste!

Post by balma » Wed Sep 23, 2009 8:53 pm

Problem comes when you work with hardware sequencers only.
So, I must find the presets and patterns that I made from september 2005, that were store on a Command station XL7, a korg EMX, the presets of a SY99, the patterns of the Yamaha EX5, the patterns of the JP8080... and load them on each synth again...It's so hard, because they are all together!

such a mess man, I'm very disorganized, have hundreds of CDS with MIDI and SMF and .wav files, some of them have lost something.... This big pile of midi sequences and sounds, have become a big shapeless monster in my room.

I have more than 300 songs on .wav format, that have their correspondence MIDI file. But most of them are impossible to recover.

So, I'm loading each song into a SP 808 ex (very comfortable for long samples manipulation) and chopping them.
For example, I take a song and chop it on 32 pieces samples, and trigger them with a sequencer. Now I continue the song, adding a new layer of sounds over the samples.

But if you want to, take out the kick on a brigde, or remix sound by sound, is impossible. :(
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Re: unfinished tracks.... what a waste!

Post by tallowwaters » Wed Sep 23, 2009 10:39 pm

Send them to other people for collaboration.
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Re: unfinished tracks.... what a waste!

Post by Operatron » Thu Sep 24, 2009 2:59 am

tallowwaters wrote:Send them to other people for collaboration.

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Re: unfinished tracks.... what a waste!

Post by Stab Frenzy » Thu Sep 24, 2009 5:11 am

balma wrote:Problem comes when you work with hardware sequencers only.
So, I must find the presets and patterns that I made from september 2005, that were store on a Command station XL7, a korg EMX, the presets of a SY99, the patterns of the Yamaha EX5, the patterns of the JP8080... and load them on each synth again...It's so hard, because they are all together!
I've been in situations like that were I couldn't perfectly recreate a track cause of lost or corrupted samples and it ended up being really good for the track, I used different instruments with the same sequences, changed a few things and hey presto! New track comes out that's better than the old one was gonna be.

Also, try the oblique strategies on unfinished sketches. That should help if it's just a problem of not knowing where the track should be going, but won't help much if you're just one of those people who don't ever finish anything.

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Re: unfinished tracks.... what a waste!

Post by cartesia » Thu Sep 24, 2009 7:09 am

I just delete everything every couple months, finished or not... none of it is good enough to bother keeping.

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Re: unfinished tracks.... what a waste!

Post by balma » Thu Sep 24, 2009 3:42 pm

Thanks guys for the replies!

having unfinished work is like having a bad debt...., is always knocking at my door.

I do not consider my person as somebody who never finishes anything, but that's a common attitude nowadays... Sometimes, I just lost the perspective or the first idea, try to continue the track, add new patterns, modify some sounds to make them sound better or to program tweaks, and I end with a totally new song, I didn't finish the previous one and now I'm starting again with the same preocess.

The steps you must take after having the 80% or 90% of the song completed, are the hardest ones.

So I have realize how serious my problem is, now that I'm making an "inventory" of all the ideas that I never gave a conclusion or a decent ending. More than 300... also I suffer with the idea of erasing everything. Is a temptation, but I feel sorry for all the time I dedicate to those patches and sequences and now they will be gone!
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Re: unfinished tracks.... what a waste!

Post by 3rdConstruction » Fri Sep 25, 2009 4:34 am

i don't think unfinished tracks are a waste at all. when you're making these, aren't you developing your skills, honing your ideas? even if these tracks go nowhere, isn't the process like practicing chords & scales?

... or you could challenge yourself by pulling one of the unfinished pieces out & making a commitment to finish it no matter what. give yourself a deadline & stick to it. maybe you're looking for a way to go beyond what your doing now & you leave tracks unfinished because you're unsure where to go next? maybe it's time to force yourself to go outside your usual style or methods, even if it's initially artificial/forced?

i also really tallow's idea of posting or sending out for collaboration.
...speaking at length about something is no guarantee that understanding is advanced.

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Re: unfinished tracks.... what a waste!

Post by bleurgh » Fri Sep 25, 2009 6:37 am

3rdConstruction wrote:i don't think unfinished tracks are a waste at all. when you're making these, aren't you developing your skills, honing your ideas? even if these tracks go nowhere, isn't the process like practicing chords & scales?

... or you could challenge yourself by pulling one of the unfinished pieces out & making a commitment to finish it no matter what. give yourself a deadline & stick to it. maybe you're looking for a way to go beyond what your doing now & you leave tracks unfinished because you're unsure where to go next? maybe it's time to force yourself to go outside your usual style or methods, even if it's initially artificial/forced?

i also really tallow's idea of posting or sending out for collaboration.
Yep. It's all good practice. I don't think anyone out there would make/start tracks that they're happy with 100% of the time. Sometimes you have a good idea and it goes nowhere, but sometimes you learn where you went wrong and you use that knowledge to know what to avoid in the future.

Personally, I try to finish a song within a week of starting it, but if I can't then I leave it. I go through my old files about once a year. If I have any ideas after a year, I'll finish them, but if there are some where I'm still stuck, then I delete it.

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Re: unfinished tracks.... what a waste!

Post by Cumulus » Fri Sep 25, 2009 3:55 pm

I almost always record part of a piece and then put it down for weeks or months.

If I find myself humming a melody line from something old I will bring it back up and see if I can decide what else to add.

Sometimes it sounds like it's done and I master it but more often than not, I add a track or two to it and suddenly it's ready.

Often I will add some field recordings or snippets of dialog I have collected from old educational films, sound effects, circuit-bent oddities etc.

Sometimes I sample random little parts of the unfinished track into the Electribe or the SK-1 and add them to another unfinished song. There's a lot of digital inbreeding going on sometimes.

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Re: unfinished tracks.... what a waste!

Post by druzz » Fri Sep 25, 2009 8:50 pm

i have a lot of unfinished FL studio and cubase projects and now i only have REAPER installed. i try to live in the present but sometimes i remember those old tune with nostalgia. maybe someday ill recover the midi data and replace the vst's i was using with the synths i have now

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Re: unfinished tracks.... what a waste!

Post by balma » Fri Sep 25, 2009 9:09 pm

I don't know why I didn't make this before.

Maybe is that stupid idea that I have, that I am now a better producer than before.

I disrespect and underestimate the guy that produced music 2, 3, 5, 7 years ago.

I know is practice. Without that practice, I wouldn't have the knowledge that I have now.

But I'm listening some old material, that, definitly, is a GOOD idea. Even great ideas. I MUST come to them again and finish them, or I will feel haunted all the rest of my life....

I work on music at least 3 hours per day. Every single day since 5-7 years ago,. with no rest and no periods of absence from my studio. I work on it all the days of the year..


I'm restoring everything. And honestly i'm having fun.

Anyway, why to consider them old songs? the only listener is me. Nobody knows that song was born on 2004!

I have found more than (no exagerating) 30.000 .mid sequences, for synths like the command station, roland JP8080, yamaha EX5, Karma, Fantom, presets for the SY99, tons and tons of samples, I have around 50 cds, with samples around 1-5 seconds, they are thousands of samples.

And those are only the MIDI files and .wav samples.

Songs between 3-20 minutes length, are seeing the light again, I have around 40 hours of music made by myself....


Retaking a work that you left in the past and you never finished, is a a serious remaking of your mind.


About the collaboration, it's agreat idea. We should make a collaboration post, give me your song, I'll give you mine, let's see what you can do with my work and vice versa.

Momerath did something similar on Futureproducers a couple of years ago....
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