Reading List

Brewster, B and Broughton, F. 1999. Last Night A Dj Saved My Life: The History Of The Disc Jockey. Kent: Headline Book Publishing. This books provides an interesting history of EDM by looking at its earliest roots; disco, hip-hop, reggae, garage, house and techno. Very interesting information that I couldn’t find in any other book or online source.

Butler, M. 2006. Unlocking The Groove: Rhythm, Meter, And Musical Design In Electronic Dance Music. Indiana University Press. Butler attempts to better define the house beat by mainly analyzing its rhythm and practical use – on the dance floor. It also studies the effects of the social culture on the evolution of genres of music.

Coryat, K. 2008. Guerrilla Home Recording: How To Get Great Sound From Any Studio. 2nd ed. Milwaukee: Hal Leonard Books. For the purpose of my project it was not entirely relevant because the main focus is recording bands – not electronic music. However it does contain a lot of useful information on mixing and is a good resource book for looking back to as a basic guide. This book would help amateur producers establish a foundation of music production knowledge which they could then build on. It explains how to set up your studio, recording using MIDI, recording and processing techniques and covers many other aspects of the production process.

Frank, J. 2009. Technology’s influence on music. Future Hit DNA. Nashville: Future Hit Inc. Frank describes his experiences in the music industry as head of music programming at Yahoo Music and SVP of music strategy at CMT. He discusses specific aspects of successful popular songs including The Spice Girls’ ‘Wannabee’, Nirvana’s ‘Smells like teen spirit’. He also tries to define why certain artists or groups such as Shakira or Ricky Martin have huge success followed by mediocre sales on succeeding albums. I did not think that his book offers a huge insight into the ‘D.N.A’ of a successful track but highlights what he considers factors that had substantial influence on their success. These factors are too broad and the focal point is on marketing so they do not directly apply to this project, however provide a broad background to the subject of studying popular music.

Hewitt, M. 2008. Music Theory For Computer Musicians. Florence: Course Technology. This works effectively in tandem with Snoman’s ‘Dance Music Manual’. As opposed to Snoman’s study of the production side of EDM, Hewitt looks at the musical side by providing the scaelic rules that most producers use (whether consciously or sub-conciously). Hewitt also discusses the production side which is insightful for any electronic musicians wanting to learn the basics.

Katz, B. 2007. Mastering Audio: The Art And The Science. 2nd ed. Oxford: Focal Press. This book is one of the most highly acclaimed books on mastering audio. Katz takes an in-depth look at the mastering process and provides an insight into how to shape audio at the final stage effectively.

Owsinski, B. 2006. The Mixing Engineer’s Handbook . 2nd ed. USA: Artistpro Publishing. This book is great for producers like me who have all the basic knowledge of sound production and mixing but are looking to enhance their mixing skills. I found that a lot of the techniques he wrote about were what I typically would have thought but it clarified all my uncertainty and also provided explanations for why the techniques are used. It is a very interesting book and covers a lot of the history of mixing as well as modern techniques.

Snoman, R. 2009. Dance Music Manual. Oxford: Elsevier Ltd. This is a look at specific examples of electronic dance music production methods. Snoman identifies common techniques and synthesizer syntax’s used by professionals, however he does not document his experiences applying these approaches to new tracks in practice. Thus he hasn’t tried and tested the productions under different contexts to understand to justify claims that it is a step-by-step guide to producing popular music. It provides the reader with a good basic understanding to programming EDM, however it does not answer my question; can you write a guide to producing popular EDM.


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