Yeah, yeah… You just started reading this post and you must probably be thinking “Why read books when Hozho’s tracks can tell whole stories in 7-8 minutes?” Well, probably you’re right. I like to think that I’m a storyteller, but I chose FL Studio instead of the pencil and paper to tell my stories.
In any case, much of the knowledge I acquired about music theory came from books: techniques, creating good habits, marketing, etc. He who does not neglect reading and learning will always be one step ahead.
But be careful! Don’t confuse knowledge with information. You should have the wisdom to distinguish what an author says is important from what is REALLY important. It’s all about putting it into practice, knowing what works for you.
The truth is… whenever I read a new book, I consider it an event in my life because, in one way or another, it changed me and I discovered a new way of looking at things, even if sometimes I disagree with them.
Following, I present 5 books that changed my paradigms, not only regarding my musical knowledge but also my life philosophies.
1. The Mixing Engineer’s Handbook, by Bobby Owsinski
For me, this book is the ultimate bible about the mixing process in music production. Regardless of the music style you produce, this book gives you fundamental tips about several mixing styles, rules about arrangement, some secrets about EQ, as well as tricks to add effects such as delay, reverb, compression, etc. You will realize that with the basic tools at your disposal in your music software you will be able to improve the quality of your songs, with the best quality for distribution on digital platforms and others. Definitely a “must” to have on your bookshelf or in PDF on your phone, whatever suits you better.
2. The Secret, by Rhonda Byrne
If I had to go to a desert island and could only take one book, this would be undoubtedly my first option. The Secret was a life changer for me. Before reading it, I saw life in a completely different way. I lived according to the paradigm that I didn’t have much control over my life and that in order to have good opportunities, they would have to show up to me, not the way around, i.e. I HAVE to create the opportunities. Focusing essentially on the law of attraction, this book shows you that you can have whatever you want in your life, as long as you keep your thoughts and beliefs in the right frequency. You are no different from the best producers and DJ’s out there, you haven’t had less opportunities. They simply believed it was possible and succeeded. As Napoleon Hill said, “whatever the human mind can conceive, it can achieve.”
3. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, by Stephen R. Covey
Regarding to the mindset of creating good habits in your life, this book is one of the best, if not THE best. It’s not just a personal opinion. There are thousands of people around the world who share the same opinion, including the most brilliant minds, the most successful entrepreneurs and the top athletes. The author of this book – Stephen R. Covey – believes that winning or failing is the result of seven habits. They are the ones who distinguish happy and successful people from failures and those who sacrifice inner balance and happiness to achieve success. Good habits form our values and our values determine our destiny.
4. Getting Things Done, by David Allen
Looking back on what I said in my last post about perfectionism, I felt the need to share this book with you. In fact, this was one of the books that introduced the motto “Done is better than perfect” in my life. David Allen’s premise is very simple: our productivity is directly proportional to our ability to relax. Only when our minds are clear and our thoughts are in the right place can we achieve good results and unlock our creative potential. For an overthinker and perfectionist artist like me, this book has helped me to overcome feelings of confusion, anxiety and being overwhelmed.
5. Introdução à Engenharia de Som, by Nuno Fonseca
Like The Mixing Engineer’s Handbook, this book also gives you important tips on everything related to sound engineering, from effects, equipment, acoustics, terms and music theory, etc. The only problem is that it’s only available in Portuguese but since I found this book super important, I wanted to share it too. Who knows, maybe it’s an opportunity for you to learn this beautiful language spoken by about 250 million people worldwide.
BONUS BOOK – The 4-Hour Body, by Timothy Ferriss
Because a healthy mind in a healthy body is one of the fundamental rules for living a better life, I would also like to share with you a book about health and body physics. However, we know that the life of a music producer can be very busy and it’s sometimes difficult to find time and motivation to take care of our body. And this is a HUGE mistake! You see, our body is like a machine and if we don’t take care of it properly, how can we get the best results? In The 4-Hour Body, you will realize that with just a few minutes per week you can achieve good results and consequently feel healthier and happier, even more creative. Your life is your life, obviously, but you don’t have to be the typical music artist or DJ always smoking around, taking drugs, neglecting the body. Say yes to some pleasures, life is too short but try to keep your mind and your body in shape. Trust me, it’s a game changer.
In the end, you can’t buy happiness but you can buy music and books, and that’s kind of the same thing. So… headphones on, listen to my new track Time To Move On that is OUT NOW and enjoy life, always with a book by your side.
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