This is becoming my go-to place for when I want to take a break from work and need some human connection. Facebook is out for me. Mike, you’ve done it!
I am so with you on this Everett, and you already know getting away from FB was a huge reason I founded this “REAL” community. That, and heavily increasing the quality bar, as well as the focus.
Thank you for confirming the feeling I had for years. Even while I was running my FB Groups. That people (including myself) are getting fed up with the: Chaos, distractions, clutter, drama, spam, trolls etc. on Facebook.
Yes, I know the feeling… but how about all these composer forums and sharing the works we create? It is a big incentive more me… somebody just listens to my stuff
A big downside of social media and FB groups is that most composers and artists just wants feedback, not giving to others. And so few actually providing a good description of the track that provides insights for fellow composers.
If you check here in the "Your Music" category of this forum you will see that I set up rules to “guide” members here both to provide a good description of their music composition in the post, as well as a rule to always give feedback on 1 other track for each 1 track you post.
It’s cool, but if you aren’t one of the first 10 people to post…
Couple weeks ago I had a new piece I was so proud of and was so ready to share on GCN’s Friday post-your-music. But I was late to it, and was like the hundredth person in the thread. I got one like. No comments.
Truth is that there are just so many of us it’s daunting.
Which reminds me…I’ll go listen to your stuff right now! Tell me where!
Well in this community, every track will get its own new topic in the “Your Music” section. So you will not be buried in a cluttered thread. Just saying!
I will add that this is something I really intend to do generally, and haven’t done since Mike started this non-FB place. I think it’s important to set aside some time each week to just check out people’s work. And if I find something I genuinely like about it, which is usually the case, I’m going to say so. Generally if I just don’t like it, I say nothing. I don’t offer criticism unless asked.
I don’t criticize much because most composers (a) know what their own weaknesses are without me telling them; and (b) are going to grow their skills with or without my criticism, and I generally think encouragement contributes more to others’ growth than criticism does, because it keeps them doing it, which is the only way to grow.
Feedback can be all positive, to point out the good things! I agree, it creates a better motivation and atmosphere. However, in all the praise, I like to offer at least one little tip or sharing how I would have done myself on a certain aspect. That is still all good and motivating in my book at least.
Yes, Mike you’re good at giving suggestions without sounding like you’re criticizing. It is helpful to offer a tip as simply an alternative that another composer can try—or not try right this moment, if he doesn’t feel like it.
There’s kind of different levels of non-positive feedback. There’s “you could try this other thing too,” which is kind of neutral, and then there’s “I think it SHOULD be different,” which takes it fully into the realm of critique. I like to wait until a little ways into a conversation about a piece before I fully go to the “I’d have done it differently” place. I want the composer to know, and be comfortable with, the overarching fact that I genuinely like his overall piece before I tell him something I dislike about it.
I always start with great respect for the probability that the other composer has created his piece the way he wants it to sound. If there is something I think, after one or two listens, that I’d have done differently, I always feel it’s too early for me to be sure that I think he has erred and should have done it my way. Maybe after another few listens I will start to hear the piece the way he did, and I’ll come to realize his way works great, and my expectations of how I thought it was going to sound just got in the way of my seeing his vision right away. I may come to realize his way merely makes a different statement than the one I would have made—and neither of us has the “better” idea. I hate the idea that I might criticize someone’s work before I’ve given myself the chance to really give their vision a try, via several good listens.
Often I don’t have time to give a piece multiple listens to “get used to” the parts I don’t initially love. So I like to focus my first listens on what I DO love about it.
The fact is that it’s hard to digest everything on a first listen. Even John Williams music will sometimes make me say “meh” on first listen. Usually after a few more listens I say “aha, yes, I see now what Johnny was doing, and it’s great as usual.” I want to extend to all my fellow composers that same courtesy. Generally, I assume you meant to write what you wrote, and if I don’t “get it” at first, I owe it to you to give it more time.
Unless, of course, I’m literally asked to offer critique.
Finally, I am NOT saying everyone should give feedback this way. Everyone should be true to who they are. But I want all composers to feel good—to feel the way I like to feel—about their work. If I say I like something about your work, I’m never lying. I really do like it. But if you want to know where I think you can do better, I’m someone who has to be asked.
I enjoyed reading this post … very well put … as we are a professional group … We should practice our professionalism if we critique … the objective is to help improve each others skillset , not be critical … negative comments as “your snair sound like $hit” has no reason to be here …and provides no benefit to the poster or the forum as a whole . Ive seen this on otger FB forums and the behaviour is self poisioning… its hard enough for junior producers dealing with “self doubt” Then have to deal with posted poisioning of their work …
Yes and I’ll say that I’ve never seen anyone in this group saying anything like that. I have certainly heard pieces, before, that I thought just weren’t very good. I have even started to say something about them that might have sounded critical. But then I thought, I do not need to say anything at all. If I comment at all on a piece, That means I see some redeeming quality to it.
A few months ago, a composer on FB whom most of us know posted a piece he’d done rather quickly and as sort of an experiment. It wasn’t polished and wasn’t intended to be.
Someone was harshly critical of it in the comments. Now, the composer had asked “what do you think?” so maybe invited it a little, but I still felt the negativity was unnecessary.
This composer has shared very professional sounding work many times, so anyone who heard this less polished piece, and knew his work, could easily tell he hadn’t spent any “polishing time” on it and just wanted a quick “do you like the direction this is going?” kind of feedback.
I sent a private message to him saying that I understood what he was after and that I found the negative criticism misplaced. I could have offered criticism on that particular piece—I thought it was missing the mark in a couple of ways—but this is a pro, and I respect his musicianship, and I felt like after seeing that negative BS, what he needed was to be reminded that other pro composers see that he’s awesome. And he is.