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In my last post I mentioned something BIG that I was in the middle of creating. And this is in addition to creating more YouTube videos, getting another vinyl pressed, and releasing another album in honor of my son who will be born, really, any day now (I’ll have THREE kiddos soon guys… holy smokes)!

I also left you with a big cliffhanger at the end of my last post. Sorry about that : ) I promise to finish talking about that in my next post. For now, I’m putting on the brakes to ask you for a serious favor.

I’ve spent a lot of time talking with musicians over the last several months. Recently, I shared my story and then asked you to share yours and there are now around 100 comments on that post. Dang! In almost every conversation I had and survey response I received, musicians shared their deep desire to get more out of their music.

And this thing I’m in the middle of creating will address just that.

But here’s the thing…

I have so many things going on right now musically (and not to mention the new baby) that I don’t want to be careless and spend a lot of time on a personal project dear to me if it’s not exactly what you really want or need.

When I first started sharing my music production and promotion experiences over 4 years ago, I had no idea that it would have the impact that I’ve seen. And I feel I am truly ready to take my teachings to the next level based on all the amazingly positive feedback I receive and the continuing questions I get every day. I was planning on putting A LOT of time and effort into this next thing and I’ll be honest… it was something I was thinking about selling.

But. . .

Since I sincerely value your input and I really want this to be exactly what you’ve been asking for… I’m going to keep it free for now (in exchange for some feedback  and insight into exactly what you’d like me to create).

So… I’m seriously considering doing this as long as I know there is interest.

Here’s what I want you to do

If you support the spirit of what we’ve been doing here together and have gained anything from my writing, emails, or videos…

…then I’d really appreciate your opinion on something.

It will take 3 minutes max (promise).

Leave a comment and tell me:

  1. What resource would you LOVE for me to create *just* for you on the topic of getting what you want from your music?
  2. What is your biggest fear or frustration when it comes to achieving your desires with your music?

If you answer these questions with a comment below I will be incredibly grateful. AND I’ll tell you soon how you can be sure to receive the resource I’m dying to finish… for FREE!

I’ll do my best to respond to each and every comment (assuming I’m not in the hospital with my wife and new child). Your feedback and thoughts are absolutely the fuel that keeps me going with all this hard work. But I don’t want to even think about moving forward with this unless I know that I can provide the value that you are actually looking for.

Thanks for your help!



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  • justin

    I’ve enjoyed the video tutorials about getting different tones and sounds. That is what I need help in because I can hear sounds in my head that I want to make, I just don’t have hours and hours to go through each of my pedals to figure out how to make it happen.

    My biggest frustration is thinking I’ve come up with a great idea/hook/riff and then it just turns into some jam band loop without any [good] definable boundaries.

  • Alex

    Andy anything you make and create for us I’m sure ill love and use because you’re fantastic! As for your questions I can’t answer them because I don’t even know the answers myself yet! But good luck with your new child, I’m sure you’re a fantastic father and husband!

  • AaronAgre

    1. I would say that documenting your personal creative process and posting it really opens creative doors in my mind. It is very interested and valuable to see how other people have approached musical situations. It can help me form my own ideas.

    2. Some sort of fear of not adding up to someone’s expectations on what is valuable or meaningful. I am always trying to balance forward-looking musical ideas with what is currently accessible to a certain audience.

  • Michael

    What’s up Andy? I’ve been thinking about what I would like to have created to help me with my music but I just don’t know. I feel like you’ve already given me alot to focus on and try. But my biggest frustration is just getting off the ground. That’s the hardest part. Trying to get music recorded and mastered and ready to put out to be sold. I can create though on a tight schedule with a wife and daughter. Maybe a schedule that I can show my wife. So she knows when my music fits into our life and she can count on it. I really don’t know though. As far as fear, I’m just scared that my music will never be something I can make a living at. That’s all I’ve wanted since I could remember and to be able to devote my life to family and music is what I want. So I don’t know exactly what I want to have created. But who knows, maybe this will help some. Have a good day Andy. -Michael

  • Worshipguitar

    I would like to know what chord inversions and or triads shapes you use the most when creating ambient music and swells. What have you found works best in your style of music?

    • http://www.facebook.com/mikael.heck Mikael Heck

      This would be extremely helpful.

    • http://www.facebook.com/danny.mosco Danny Mosco

      I also agree!

    • Phil


  • alextoneyguitar

    Probably the biggest resource that would help me would be some sort of “What’s next?” guide for guys who have just released their first CD. It would ideally touch on things such as copyright, exposure, and how to keep moving ahead. My biggest fear is that I would put time and money into creating something I want people to hear but having it remain stagnant because I can’t get my butt into gear because I don’t know where to start. I’ve already given away probably 500-600 CD’s (not doing this one for any money) but it is just an EP and I don’t have much other repertoire so it is tough to even consider just going out and playing because I don’t have a full gig’s worth of songs.

  • Natalie

    1. I struggle to get a really good recording of my electric guitar sound. Recording acoustic I’m fine, but for some reason, getting a great recording of my electric tone never seems to happen. If I mic the amp, some of the guitar’s unamplified sounds leak into the recording, but if I plug directly into the computer I lose the sound of the amp. Tips on how you translate your guitar’s sound into a recording would be much appreciated, especially some sort of step-by-step process. Anything on mic distance, volume levels, whatever you think would be helpful.
    2. My biggest frustration is that the actual sound of my playing doesn’t get accurately represented in the recording. No matter what I do, it never sounds quite right.

    • http://twitter.com/skyflyingby sky flying by

      oh jeepers, #2 here, yeah, i know this frustration. i keep thinking to myself that i just lack the “secret sauce” to making a decent mix. but what i’ve learned is, there is no secret, it’s just practice practice and more practice. yeah the stuff i mix now sounds better than the stuff i did 6 months ago, but where i’m at now still sounds unpolished and unprofessional. and that drives me up a wall. so, i’ll just keep on practicing. i have learned things like parallel compression which has really helped me in creating fuller sounding mixes, but over all tonality is still either really dull, or so rumbly bass heavy mud, i very very rarely find a pleasant in between. i have from time to time but that’s mostly been happy accidents. i want to get to a point where i can do it on purpose.

    • http://www.andyothling.com/ Andy Othling

      Yeah, recording electric guitar is definitely hard. Sound like you need to crank the amp up more (if you can) to make the unamplified sound less audible!

  • Richard Smart

    I have to wonder if you are writing a book. I would appreciate that if it was comprehensive in compiling what you have talked about in your blogs. Also, my biggest fear in music (and life) is not leaving a legacy behind – that when I’m gone all I’ve built will disappear. I have a baby girl now and hope that I can teach her guitar or leave her something as far as recordings etc.

  • BacchusPlateau

    It would be really cool if you could fully document a song from the writing/arranging to the recording/mixing in a video series.

    • http://www.andyothling.com/ Andy Othling

      Awesome, thanks man!

      • BacchusPlateau

        No problem, man! Don’t sweat it if that too big of a request, I’m sure that what ever you do will end up being really useful anyways. All of your blog posts have been helpful, so keep up the good work!

  • Anonymous

    I’m gonna answer your questions backwards… sorry in advance for the inconvenience of my long responses, I use your questions as opportunities to do a bit of soul-searching!

    2. I think my biggest frustration happens when I’m getting fairly deep into the production of a recording, only to begin feeling that I didn’t do a good enough job on the performance of the music itself when I tracked everything… I’ve tended to use the recording process as a tool for writing via recording little parts and then using my DAW to arrange them, or just recording a single basic song idea and then writing and overdubbing many new parts to try to expand that idea into a full song. Many times I think I end up being so focused on the writing/recording of the material that I don’t put enough time into committing to parts and practicing them. I feel my music is very creative and unique, but oftentimes it just doesn’t “hit” me right upon listening because the performances are sloppy or rushed. However, I’m worried that if I spend too long on writing/practicing a song, it will become irrelevant to me before I finish it, and I’ll never end up releasing it. So, I’m frustrated by trying to find a balance between having an effective/progressive workflow and producing work of a high quality/integrity. This is a difficulty I am currently working through by creating relatively short/basic “sketches” similar to your Ambient Songs; I can write and perform them without any help from my computer, so I only go to the computer to hit “record” once I have a finished piece ready to perform. I think this process will help me focus my writing abilities and refine my “chops” more, but this is still an area in which I’d be happy to receive guidance from you.

    My biggest FEAR is a slightly different story, though. I think I’m afraid that I’ll be unable to really communicate with people well enough to get my music out there and to make use of the opportunities I’m presented with. I am a very introverted/introspective person, and I spend most of my time by myself, playing music or doing related things. Oftentimes when I meet someone who seems like a good networking connection, or if I want to try to set up a show around town, it’s difficult for me to communicate effectively enough to secure my connection with that person or that gig; even when I’m feeling happy with the music I create, my real-world career-related ideas seem to peter out easily… So even if I do feel frustrated at not hitting the mark when I’m creating my music, what I’m truly fearful of is that I’ll fail in making the necessary connections to share my music and create a livelihood from it.

    1. Based on what I’ve written above, I can think of two general resources that I would love to have from you.

    The first is something you’re basically already doing: I’d like to get tips and information from you on how to figure out the methods for writing, recording and performing my music that work best for me personally. What I’m interested in isn’t exactly “how-to” stuff, like “This is how a compressor works” or “This is how songs are structured”; I’m interested in learning new ways to think about these things, in gaining perspectives that will help me improve the quality of my work in ways I hadn’t considered before. For instance, I really like your Ambient Guitar Tips, which helped me focus more on the importance of my guitar tone and see how I can improve my sound at the source before I even record it; I also like the little tip you gave about pretending that you can only make 3 or 4 copies of yourself when you’re writing/recording, to stop your arrangements from becoming bloated and overproduced. I’m not sure exactly what this resource would be, but anything that helps my neurons fire in new ways when making music will be great!

    The second general resource I’d love to have is something related to communicating, whether that means sharing my music with listeners or networking with other musicians. So many musicians and music fans have been able to connect to you and what you have to say; it would be awesome if you provided some resource that would allow all of us to connect with each other as well as with you. My first thought is of a forum-type place where folks could share their music, ask for advice, collaborate with each other, or even help each other book dates in different cities for tours, but it wouldn’t have to be exactly that. Overall, I’d just like some resource that helps me share my music and/or create connections that will help me build more of a livelihood on my music.

    Thanks as always for asking such insightful questions and caring about our responses!

  • http://www.facebook.com/keanu.leyva Keanu Leyva

    Really everything you’be been producing and showing us has been helpful. You’ve touched base on a lot of subjects and they’ve been encouraging. If there was anything more maybe how you should go about releasing different stuff from your material such as artwork, photos, music, videos etc. how would I get started if I haven’t put my band on any site or haven’t played a show yet. What would be the best way to start with a genre like post rock/ instrumental?
    Thank you

    • Anonymous

      Hey Keanu… in my humble opinion, I think the best way to release music is simply upload it to Bandcamp, create some social media pages for your band (such as on Facebook or Twitter) and then share links to any friends or family you know. Also, as Andy pointed out in one of his recent videos on promotion questions, it can be really helpful to go out and get involved/interact with other musicians/listeners that are interested in the same kind of stuff you are. That’s why I was thinking, maybe a resource Andy could provide us would be a place where we can share our music with each other and others?

  • Hunter Godfrey

    When we are talking about creating BIG things, a ton of stuff pops into my head. Whether it be you starting a small label, writing a book, or even just creating a site that would host only the unsigned music that you approved for a small price per submission. These are things that come to my mind when I think of helping out in BIG ways.
    When we are talking about my biggest struggle, it would have to be consistency. I’m at a point in my life where I don’t have the time that I would like to to create all the music I would like to- but that’s more of a personal problem.

    • Anonymous

      Hey Hunter—just wanted to point out that Bandcamp offers an excellent, free place for hosting and selling independent music. You should check out bandcamp.com if you haven’t before.

  • http://twitter.com/AndrewElmore Andrew Elmore

    1. I’d love to see a small label, or some sort of community, where other independent musicians you’ve been helping or involved with can gather and release stuff and have it promoted decently well, and support each other as a collective. Maybe get some support from Noor, Karl, or that kind bloke from The Echelon Effect.I don’t really know. :-/

    2. Honestly my biggest barrier is resources. If I had a Macbook Pro, an Apogee Duet, and an SM58 (and some free time), I could get everything done that I have wanted to do, musically.My fear and frustration is that between rent, trying to move, trying to buy a car, I’ll never have the gear to do any more recording. :(

  • Josh Appel

    1. I would like to see how your inspiration turns into songs; what catches your eye/mind/heart that inspires you to write a song and then how you express those emotions and feelings through musical notes.

    2. My biggest fear is writing music that doesn’t communicate with listeners.

    Thanks for sharing your gifts and talents with us all!

  • meinerHeld

    Andy, thanks for all you do. It’s awesome getting the inside scoop. Just let it all be something bigger than yourself. As for your questions, my biggest fear is just not being able to find the tools (usually plugins) and know-how to do specific effects on my music. The learning curve seems sooo steep at times.

  • Kevin

    I struggle with recording quality. All my mixes peak like a mother and I can’t seem to get them to quiet down. I have to keep my interface volume low because my guitar peaks to easily when going direct in. I need to invest in a good preamp and microphone but I want to get in the habit of getting good quality with what I have now.

  • Joe

    The biggest fear is whether i will be able to reach to a wider audience being an introvert.
    Resources I would like to get- A motivation/advice/information on how to move forward from just being a good song writer & composer, to getting it mixed, produced and finally marketing it.

    • http://twitter.com/skyflyingby sky flying by

      yeah this strikes pretty close to home. being a loner/introvert myself, i have to figure this out as well. i just don’t like being around people most of the time, and it’s physically exhausting to be constantly networking/communicating with people.

    • http://www.andyothling.com/ Andy Othling

      I totally know where you’re coming from. I’m an introvert as well, and I think this internet age actually has a lot of advantages for people like us… we can do all this marketing without a lot of the draining direct social interactions.

  • Noah

    1. Your composition process.
    2. Finding/keeping the motivation to write, and getting over my perfectionism in order to call a song complete.

  • Nicolas

    Hey Andy, I agree with Bacchua Plateau. It would be great if you could do a video series which spans from the writing process of a song to the last moments of the mastering process. It would be interesting and also insightful to watch your creation process and work flow.

    Take care,

  • Watersland

    There is tons of stuff available about recording, if you want arranging help analyze all the hit songs you like.

    The piece of the puzzle that I struggle with is the business side of things. The promotion, publicity, building a fan base, keeping fans interested, different ways to create revenue, and generally living in a rapidly changing, evolving social media driven world. The last phrase probably tells you that I am not 25 years old, and that is correct. However I do work with many young musicians, all with an idea or vision, but no clear idea on the next step.

    • http://twitter.com/skyflyingby sky flying by

      “keeping fans interested”

      oh yes, that’s a huge issue i’d love to see further explored

  • josh rogers

    This might not be exactly what you are looking for but here it goes. I am blessed by the investment you have made to share what you have been given in knowledge and experience. while im also excited for how you continue to grow and adapt your teaching, you should be encouraged in what you are doing awesome everyday! maintaining a place that people actually like going and commenting and sharing is HUGE i check your blog everyday not only to see what you have written but what others have too. i have found your resource here to be one of my favorites and most applicable on the internet right now. so i guess this is the resource that i LOVE. haha. thanks for what you do man!

  • http://twitter.com/skyflyingby sky flying by

    i’d like to take the second part first.

    my biggest frustration is my inconsistent attitude towards my music and my almost manic compulsion to go from lying to myself to being overly brutally truthful. the lack of middle ground is what is most frustrating. i will go from thinking, “hey this stuff i just made is pretty good, i might be getting the hang of this composing/producing thing” to “i’m an out and out fraud. i’m wasting my and everyone else’s time with this drivel.”

    i really want people to enjoy this music, and i have a real need for folks to pay attention, but this is one of those very brief windows of honesty where most times i can make myself believe that it doesn’t mean anything to be noticed. and then the brutal honesty sets in when again, no one will pay attention because i’m a fraud, a waste of time, and producing of no real value, so that’s why things haven’t “worked out” (where “worked out” is some arbitrary value of being noticed.)

    i know i have a lot of work to do. years of practice and things don’t just happen. like in producing music there is no magic bullet, there isn’t any one thing that any one can do to make the music better. it’s all just a collection of small moves in the right direction. but that’s my frustration. i don’t lack patience. i’m the most patient person i know, i just wish that i could be less manic in my own head around this music thing.

    so that brings me to the first part. you know what i’d love. critique. i know that is beyond demanding, but you asked so i answered. i shan’t hold my breathe, but i think if someone could just be honest with me, directly, it might help regulate the manic-ness of my internal dialog around my music.

    • Anonymous

      Hey man, I’m relating to a lot of the feelings you’ve expressed here. I was thinking that maybe a great resource we could all use would be a place where we can connect to share our music and offer feedback to each other, so we can all get some much-needed attention/validation while also improving ourselves as musicians. As for feeling manic about the value of your work… I once read something somewhere that said, “As an artist, the only person you need to be better than is yourself one year ago.” I take that to heart and feel confident that as long as I’m improving, even incrementally, it’s worth it. It’s all a process of growth and expansion… I think it’s a mistake to expect ourselves to be a certain level of “good”, we’re all so unique that it’s nearly impossible to put an absolute value on our art!

    • Anonymous

      And honestly pal, I’m listening to your music right now and finding it to be absolutely wonderful. It sounds to me like your main problem is being so sure that you have a problem ;-)

  • Zach

    1st I want to thank you for your influence in my life, I don’t know what you think of God or church and all that stuff, but your soundscapes/ambient playing has helped me especially in the area of church music, I used to be a distortion all the time kind of guy, but playing at a church is a different scene, but seeing the way you play shows me a way cool interesting way to play softer music without just struming chords clean all the time.

    1. Personally more effects videos showing recording techniques (like the other guy said) helping what you hear from your amp translate into the mic and also understanding how your amp will sound to everyone else. More effects videos showing how you get some of those creative tones! :)

    2. I want to succeed in music, I’D LOVE to play music for a living, but I want to be able to realisticly do it, I guess good ways to a. find serious people about music b. encourage others I know to be more serious about music without sounding like a jerk.

    • http://www.andyothling.com/ Andy Othling

      Thanks for your comment Zach! I know what you’re saying about recording. It’s really a whole different world than live playing…

  • http://www.facebook.com/jcurry094 Jacob Curry

    1. A resource that I would absolutely love for you to create…That’s tough…But, what I think would be great is a medium for musicians to share their music and get critiques from other musicians.
    2. My greatest fear is the likelihood that no one (or, very few people) will ever take an interest in or listen to my music.

  • Jo El

    1) I like seeing how things are done, so documenting a creative process would be great. We all have our ways but seeing secrets of others can be very inspiring.

    2) Keeping it together from start to end when composing. It so easy to lose the trail while exploring.

    • http://www.andyothling.com/ Andy Othling

      Great, thanks for your input! And yeah, focus is key. It’s something I still struggle with.

  • Steve Causey

    What I would love: information on recording. Specifically how to get professional sounding tracks, Mixing, compression, etc… I can get single instruments to sound good, but when I start layering, it gets messy.

    My biggest frustration: the inability to get a great sounding recording.

  • http://twitter.com/on_mountains On Mountains

    1. Resource – If possible it would be great to have a resource that facilitates the successful release of independent music via the internet. Now in saying this I believe you have provided heaps of information on how to go about this and this information is excellent.

    2. Biggest fear – The music I release will not be heard by people because it is hard to get people to listen to my music and develop a fan base. That said I am still recording my first EP and am following ALL of you posts and doing pretty much what you have suggested so the results could speak for themselves.

    • Anonymous

      Hey, Andy mentioned it in one of his earlier posts, but I just wanted to reinforce that Bandcamp is (in my opinion at least) the best possible home on the internet for your independent music… I think just putting your stuff on there and making your Bandcamp page the heart of your online musical presence is a big step forward. More people are exploring/discovering music on Bandcamp every day, and it’s definitely got the tools to allow you to present your music professionally and sell it profitably.

      • http://twitter.com/on_mountains On Mountains

        Thanks for the responses. I do have a Bandcamp page but I do not have much material up yet. I love the advice I get from your websites and am putting them into practice. I just need more time in the studio.
        Thanks again.

    • http://www.andyothling.com/ Andy Othling

      I get what you’re saying. As mandalaeyes mentioned, Bandcamp is a great tool but it sounds like you’re looking more at the bigger picture, like how to use something like Bandcamp within a larger campaign.

  • Joshua M.

    My biggest hindrance is just that I find most softwares to be expensive and difficult to learn. I never feel I can get the most out of them, and I don’t believe the default answer should be “shell out more money.”
    I’ve seen phenomenal albums recorded in bedrooms before, unfortunately it’s just been by people who haven’t had the time or interest required to share their secrets and their knowledge.
    Additionally, I am not a confident singer at all, so most of my pieces end at instrumental work that few people listen to anyway (instrumental post-punk is not that popular, it would seem). Some of that is not having the funds or resources to develop that part of my musical repertoire, and some of it is the same sort of introvert trouble mentioned below. I briefly tried being a front-man and hated it. It’s much easier to sit at home in anonymity and safety, unfortunately.

  • http://twitter.com/CaseyI CaseyI

    Jacob Curry said exactly what I was thinking:

    “1. A resource that I would absolutely love for you to create…That’s tough…But, what I think would be great is a medium for musicians to share their music and get critiques from other musicians.
    2. My greatest fear is the likelihood that no one (or, very few people) will ever take an interest in or listen to my music.”

  • Josh Cruz

    1. I would like to see a theory based resource. Something dedicated to expanding people’s knowledge of music theory. More than that, a working knowledge of music theory, stuff that you use and we could use.
    2. I struggle to create inspiring and catchy lines to go with songs as well as writing melodies.

  • Kevin Lee

    1. I’m actually interested about your songwriting process, I want to see how you put together your ideas and create music. Also, I’m interested in your recording process as way. I want to see how you equalize your guitar, how you use your recording software, etc. I’m interested in your tone and ambient tips as well. I’m glad that you started a series on ambient guitar tips.

    2. My biggest frustration in making music is when I’m not able to finish writing songs. I get ideas that at first seem very good, but as time goes by, the ideas that I came up with before all of a sudden become terrible. Because of this, I sometimes can’t finish songs.

    • http://www.andyothling.com/ Andy Othling

      Thanks Kevin! I know what you mean about not finishing songs. I struggled with that for a long time, and still do from time to time.

  • Jared Smith

    I need to know how to write what connects. What inspires others and makes them feel what I did when I wrote it and maybe more? My biggest fear is not being able to make a living off of music and the multitude of problems that comes with that.

  • Dylan

    It would be nice if you have resource talking about the work flow starting from the creative process (writing) to recording, mixing & mastering to releases and marketing.

    • http://www.andyothling.com/ Andy Othling

      Cool, thanks for your input Dylan!

  • Conor R

    1. I’ve really enjoyed your videos on recording and mixing, so more of that would be great
    2. The biggest barrier for me is not wanting to put anything out that isn’t up to a high standard, and the struggle to reach that standard

    • http://www.andyothling.com/ Andy Othling

      Thanks man. I know what you’re saying, and I think it’s something that artists on any level struggle with, I know I still do.

  • Seb

    I would like to now more about the gear you are using.

    And my fear is to be alone with my music. Not having anyone to play with.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kshipton Kyle Shipton

    Preparing for a gig/tour mentally (learning songs) and preparing your gear would be cool to see.

    My biggest frustration is trying to get my mixes how i want them to sound, and even when I’m happy with it people always lose interest when there’s no singing/lyrics to my compositions.

    • http://www.andyothling.com/ Andy Othling

      Yeah I definitely get that… keeping people’s interest, especially in instrumental music, is really hard.

  • Griffin

    I’d be interested in knowing how you achieve such great orchestral sounds (ie. strings, etc in your recordings)

    • http://www.andyothling.com/ Andy Othling

      Well, honestly that probably mostly due to the fact that I record a real cello player for all the parts :)

  • Magnetic

    Hey There…Thanks for the awesome work!!! After reading the comments that are already here regarding resources…they are all awesome ideas. Specifically, I would love to see your writing/ recording process, some basics on gear (I am new to ambient guitar and am having struggling to get my pedals set up to create pads/swells that sound good), and some recording technique tutorials (mixing, specifically).

    My biggest fear and frustration with my music is not having it heard. I have been recording synth/ sample based ambient/ post rock music for a number of years and have recorded a few albums. Overall, I am fairly happy with them but I am having trouble getting them ‘out there’. As I am changing directions musically (live instruments rather than synths) I would welcome any advice you can provide since I am basically starting from scratch again.

    • http://www.andyothling.com/ Andy Othling

      Thanks for your input man! And I totally understand your frustration… it’s hard work getting people’s ears to your music!

  • http://www.facebook.com/logan.webb.750 Logan Webb

    1. Workflow/ work ethic aka a typical day in the life of a full time musician. How to be your own boss with music etc.

    2. My biggest fear would have to be giving up at the age of 30 and needing to quit music to get a regular job, hence feeling like the last several years of my life and the tens of thousands of dollars I will have invested in it at that point would have been for naught.

  • http://twitter.com/orbitoverluna orbit over luna

    The thing that I personally would like your input in is getting exposure. Getting my music out to more people. I absolutely love when I hear about the connections that I’ve made with the music that I’ve written, so I’d like to increase that.
    As for my biggest fear? Hmmm. I’m not really sure about that. I don’t think I have one yet…I mean one is always worried about what people will think of their music so there’s always going to be a longing for validation to some degree, but I don’t think that’s a fear for me. I’m happy with what I write

  • Marco

    It would be great a lesson about Chords and Scales for ambient music.

    A great problem for me is dealing with someone else’s live/studio gear such as a mixer I’m not used to, etc…

  • Ajdavidsonmusic

    I’m new to your blogs, but I love everything I read and watch. I am a fairly new artist and I just released my first EP in September of last year, A.J. Davidson “Stormy Days EP”, and I am starting to learn that the business side of music is a huge percent of making music happen. Also, home recordings are always troublesome for me. How to mix, how to get great tone, and how to even have the room set up in the best way to get great sound. My two questions would be for you to throw some ideas on how to build a better fan base, because I love in a town that does not pay attention to music or any other art, and how to get people interested. Also, just how to get decent recording factors down. Thanks for all your help.

    Feel free to check out my tunes when you get a second on iTunes.
    A.J. Davidson “Stormy Days EP”

  • Bob Guido

    1. A website where artists upload their ambient music to be shared with more listeners
    2. Distractions taking me away from music

  • http://www.facebook.com/jeffrey.apel.1 Jeffrey Apel

    Thanks Andy for all of your hard work in helping us reach our goals & dreams in music!

    1) Would love to hear more on all the ways you bring in an income with your independent music.
    2) My frustration is when is a music project or album complete and ready for the world to buy, listen, & enjoy? What ideas to put on the project and which ones to leave off.

    Thanks again Andy for everything!

  • Cody

    First off thanks a lot for what your doing. I really like how your music brings feeling by focusing on choosing the note that fits instead of overly obsessing about tone. (Not that your tone is bad…those amps sound great!)

    1. A great resource would be some medium teaching about how to cowrite/ collaborate on songs, especially when the two people come from very different instruments and thoughts behind music.

    2. I guess my biggest fear is getting so caught up with getting my music out there that I forget why I started writing in the first place…because of a need to creatively express myself. I fear that music will become less of an expression the more I sand it down. (I’m not a full-time musician or aspiring to be one right now so I don’t have to worry about consistently putting music out there.)

  • http://www.facebook.com/TheOneAndOnlyBrandonJoswick Brandon Joswick

    1. A sort of guide to songwriting. I know the process is supposed to be creative but just some general guidelines you know? How do you turn a riff into a full song or which instruments do you choose to include? When writing, I often get stuck playing the same thing over and over. As a solo artist, how do you “hear” the full song in your head without actually hearing it?

    2. I fear that my work will be inferior to artists who have four or five people writing together. Making music alone is difficult, but I feel I must do it that way because I want it to be “my” sound.

    • http://twitter.com/jjdeschaine Jared Deschaine

      Exactly what I was just thinking. Both points. And to expand on 2. – What has helped you develop YOUR sound?

      Side note… Even though I want it to be MY sound, having other musicians help has been a great source of inspiration for me in the past.

  • Eli

    Andy you’re awesome. I’d be interested in anything you do, but if I could choose:

    How do you edit your videos and what software etc you use to make your videos

    How do you “finish” a song. (When you send it to Matt Slaven for Mastering, what does it look like? Email him Logic Folder/File(s)? Individual mp3s? etc…)

    1. So I guess I’d love to see more on your process of recording and mixing your music (or videos) to the point where you are happy with them.


    2. My biggest frustration is trying to record music and have it sound more home-made than professional. What am I missing?

    Thanks man, you’re an inspiration


  • http://www.facebook.com/dustin.t.klassen Dustin Klassen

    I think a resource on good tips and techniques for recording music, no so much the actual recording but EQ tips and mastering, stuff like that. And I have a fear of people not liking my music, plain and simple.

  • Fred

    I’d love more youtube vids and Vinyl records would be awesome, your music would sound ace on vinyl rather than through youtube. I love chilling out to it, or letting a video play as I drift off to sleep….

    biggest frustration with achieving my musical desires is that I can write music that I cant play. I also need another overdrive pedal so I can achieve the contrasting tones I want, but I lost my job so that’s going to have to wait.

    biggest musical fear is my lyrics being misunderstood. sometimes the only way to get things off your chest though, is an abstract approach.

    is that the sort of response your after? sorry if it isnt.. isn’t

  • Alex Gunter

    I think it would be cool to see you use different types of instruments in your sketches such as acoustic guitars, piano , bass, and maybe laying down a beat. But besides that keep doing what your doing . I would also like to see more videos on how to achieve the tone you want using pedals, amp settings , and mic placement. I’m a huge gear head so that stuff is right up my alley. Thanks man you rock!

  • Tanner T.

    It would be great to get tips from you on how to mix, EQ, and master guitar ambient songs/tracks. That would be very helpful.

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  • Bartek

    1. resource – somehow you do it very well so far Andy and thank you for that! I discovered LN after watching your ambient tunes on youtube and the description of your pedal board. The description I’ve mentioned is exactly the first thing that got me in the point where I started to get curious and wanted to aknowledge myself, what I would need to get some sounds that are in my head, and what to do to make them very clear. Now honestly I listen to LN quite often, however the type of music that I make is much different, concerning there are 3-4 other guys that have to agree on the sound etc. What is very helpfull would probably be all the details, but if you seek some feedback on what’s left to cover – there’s a huge portion od DO’s on your blog, I think that you could share some knowledge on the DON’T's part ; ) just some sort of a black list concerning given aspects.
    2. as for the biggest fear, it’s probably time and support. I find myself really backed down because of compromising with too much stuff, and even though I imagined that I can get some tunes out there by myself, my excitment is smaller after getting some ideas scrapped by the band – I can finish them on my own, but I’m afraid that it’s maybe not only the thing that it’s a different stylization. And then there’s time – when I stop being excited enough I struggle with the time passing so fast and I can’t complete anything (something that you already covered).. So what I’m heading to, that it’s really appreciated if you have a place or someone to talk to, where you can tell something about your plans, sharing the ideas fuels the movement.

  • Chase

    My biggest fear is writing material but when it comes time to record I fear it will not have the quality I desire. I’d assume this is either under the category of recording or mastering.

  • Andres

    1. I would you LOVE to watch an entire procces of creating a song: from the beggining of a little idea, developing it, recording tracks and mixing it. Including what ideas come to your head in each part of the proccess and how u solve it.

    2. My main frustration is that I can hardly define the parts of my songs in their structure and musical arrangements when I’m composing them. The end result are songs that seem simple , poor or unprofessional.

  • Jeremy Magness

    I am a bassist but fell in love w guitar w atmospheric effects so I’ve embarked on a journey of sonic bliss through walls of sound. My song writing is ambient at times noisy in others. I use several delays along with layers of fuzz and overdrive. My ambition is to create a soundscape. I love playing with others there’s nothing sweeter then finding grooves and clicking w other musicians. But with that said most musicians ( at least the ones I come across ) tend to be flaky. So I realize that in order to achieve what I envision. I need to be able to recreate as much live as I can. I want to play live even if its to a crowd of my self. So I need to learn about using backing tracks, midi, clocks, ect. I’ve tried reading some of the manuals on these topics but I’m losing something in the translation. I get frustrated then I use a looped bass line, a generic preset drum machine track. I know all this is programmable it started making my head hurt and all I want to do is crank up my vox ac30 and smash pedals. So I’m bolt bound at the moment. I set these things and play live guitar to a hand held recorder. When I have a awesome tascam 8 tk pocket recorder Mac book. The recording are ok but I know I can make it way better with more layers and a better recording. I can make this stuff extremely Hugh if I knew more about programming drum Tks, midi, clocks, garage band tricks, mic’ing my ac30, ect. Ect.

  • StevenRodriguez

    I’ve always had problems with getting my dirt/overdriven guitar sounds to record correctly. They never seem to have the clarity nor the warm bass response that I hear in the room or get out of my clean tones in recordings. I record stereo out of two pretty loud amps (74 silver face twin reverb and Mesa Boogie Studio Caliber), so maybe it’s a volume issue. This also brings me to the next problem. Clipping. Whether it be on individual tracks, or in the master EQ, I always seem to blow something. For example, I’ll record a guitar part and it sounds fine in my headphone monitors, but comes out clipping in the final mix. This even happens with vocals and on board synths and what not from Logic and Ultra beat occasionally. It varies per song. I feel that if I record at too low of volumes, I won’t get the full tone from my amps and wont be able to get the final mix as loud as need be.
    These might be a little personal to me, but I’ve always wanted to know how to fix them.

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