Mastering the Art of Making Piano Tracks

There are numerous reasons why one may want to create a piano track. One important reason may involve incorporating custom background music into a video production. Another reason may involve producing a studio quality music track for a romantic purpose. There is also a sense of pride for musicians in being able to produce a commercial product in the form of music tracks, which allows them to utilize their musical talents to pocket some much needed cash. And the list goes on. One attractive quality of producing piano tracks is that it is relatively easy, compared to multi-instrumental tracks which often require complicated mixing and mastering strategies to attain a professional standard, not to mention the expensive software and hardware components that can really make a dent in your savings. Moreover, as opposed to trendy music which tend to have a shelf life of a few years, piano tracks are always in demand and are never out of style. Therefore, mastering the art of producing studio-quality piano music is a good investment of your time in the long run.

Yet another advantage, and a significant one at that, is the ability to create piano music without a studio, or even a piano for that matter. All we need to rely on is a computer and the appropriate software, some of which can be utilized at no monetary cost. To make a piano track, typically, a MIDI music notation software is used in tandem with a program that can play MIDI files with various sound samples, which are known as soundfonts or VST (Virtual Studio Technology) instruments. Various soundfonts and VST files are available for free or paid download on the web. Programs like GarageBand or expensive DAW software, such as Cubase, can eliminate the need to download multiple programs in addition to finding and downloading the appropriate piano sound samples. However, the initial cost of investing in such software (with exception to GarageBand, which is bundled in Mac OS) can be quite high.

Composing the music for a piano track may seem daunting for some. However, those having even the most basic knowledge of music theory have the ability to produce a piano track. Useful tutorials on music composition abound on the Internet and some of these tutorials walk you through the mind of a composer who has mastered the art of composing a song from basic musical building blocks. In regards to music composition, one thing that the composer should understand is that the general public tends to gravitate towards music with basic chord sequences and rhythmic structures. If the track is meant to be sold at some point, it is imperative that the music is basic enough for the listener to understand it but original enough for the listener to be pleasantly surprised by it. If the track is being sold as stock music, then the originality is not nearly as important, in my own experience, though it cannot duplicate music that has already been created.

Some useful references for in-depth information:

Piano Clues – A comprehensive resource for creating piano tracks with articles on music theory, composition and recording.

Piano Loops – Library of free and paid piano tracks with a tutorial on creating a piano loop using Garageband.

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