Music production has always been an underrated profession. For one it’s not taught in traditional schools as a subject, and two most people (society) do not think of it as a real profession anyway.
But is a music production course necessary?
Well, there’s no one size fits all advice because everyone’s situation is going to be different.
But I’m a true believer in the saying “Knowledge is Power”.
So even if you decide to do formal a music production course, the information will come in handy.
Learning is never a waste of time.
But having said that, you should only consider a music production course if you have the desire and dedication to making a career out it.
The Advantages of a Music Production Course
- Avoid learning on your own through trial and error. If you are starting from scratch, a music production course can save you years of hard work
- Access to the tools of the trade (Software, Keyboards, recording studio, etc.) on campus
- Expect Advice. In most cases, the lectures are highly experienced, music producers and professionals
- Networking. You will meet like-minded people and exchanged ideas and contacts
- Advanced courses can teach you production techniques that you might be unfamiliar with
The Disadvantages of a Music Production Course
- Most of these courses are expensive
- The course duration is usually short (3-12 months)
- No job placements after graduation
Top Music Production Schools
Below is a list of some music production schools in South Africa. Most of them offer sound engineering as well as music production courses.
Revolution Music Academy – Revolution Music Academy offers a short course and a National Diploma in Music Production course. The School is registered with the Department of Education.
Emendy – The Emendy certificate in Music Technology is a 12 month program and it’s accredited by SAQA (South Africa Qualifications Authority). But you need a Grade 12 certificate or equivalent, possess the basic mathematical ability and a pass a musical aptitude test in order to gain entry!
Soul Candi – Founded in 2004 as the Soul Candi Institute of Music. The school has produced quite a number of successful graduates who have since gone on to do wonderful things in the industry. The Soul Candi Digital Music Production Course is now offered at Boston City Campus.
Academy of Sound Engineering – The Auckland Park-based school has great facilities and highly qualified and experienced lecturers. If you want to take your sound engineering skills to the next level, I would definitely recommend ASE.
Abbey Road Institute – Remember the late Sir George Martin? Just in case the name doesn’t ring a bell, he was the Beatles primary producer and he did most of the hits at the Abbey Road Studios in the U.K. The Abbey Road Institute is a music production school with branches across the globe and they recently opened a branch in Johannesburg, South Africa.
COPASA – Campus of Performing Arts is a fully-fledged music college. Their courses are taught by trained music professionals and artists and they currently have campuses in Midrand, Cape Town and Durban.
In the music industry (especially for artists and producers) a formal education will help but it’s not enough.
Music Production is a practical profession, so you have to work on your craft all the time in order to improve.
Networking is also important.
If you have the means to further your studies then do so and don’t forget to practice and collaborate with as many artists as possible.
I would like to hear your thoughts, please leave your comments below.