Can you listen to your own songs?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Jamerman, Jan 31, 2014.


  1. Jamerman

    Jamerman

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2013
    It seems I can't listen to anything I've composed, even if other people have said it sounds good. Because I cringe hearing anything I've written, I feel like my song-writing suffers because I can't give myself feedback on what could be done better.

    Does anyone else have this? If so, some tips on overcoming it would be appreciated
  2. Din Of Win

    Din Of Win

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2009
    Location:
    Frederick, Maryland
    Totally the opposite(ish) for me.

    I really doubt i'd ever play and record something i wouldn't want to hear later on!

    Sorry that doesn't help you. If it were me, i'd have to really consider whether or not i was enjoying what i was playing... if i wasn't, i'd play something else a.s.a.p.

    That's really bummy, man. :(
  3. Dumptruck

    Dumptruck

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2014
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    No, I have not made any.
  4. AaronVonRock

    AaronVonRock

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2013
    Location:
    Bangkok
    I listen to my own songs with a critical ear, mainly to hear what is working (or not) and what could possibly work better. I wouldn't listen to my own songs for pleasure. Not because I don't like the songs, I'm just too close to them. I've read that a lot of actors never watch their own movies because they don't see the actual story in the movie. They just see all of the technical stuff that went on behind the scenes or the craft involved in creating the film and it diminishes the pleasure of escapism.
  5. Register to disable this ad
  6. Epitaph04

    Epitaph04 Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2010
    Location:
    Santa Barbara, CA
    No because I hate songwriting because I can never come up with anything good.
  7. Nephilymbass

    Nephilymbass Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    Fayetteville Ft Bragg NC
    Really for me i rarely listen to anything I've recorded anymore. But it's not so much about writing. I'm proud of the music i write. My issue is tone. Not that the tones on those recordings were bad . But mainly that my taste in bass tones has changed so much over the years. I used to like more of a clean modern (90s EDen/SWR) type of sound. Lately i like bass tones that are more "effected". I've come to like dirty bass tones and clean bass tones with effects. When i try to listen to my bands recordings i like the songs but i think the bass tone is a bit bland.
  8. Milk

    Milk Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2013
    Location:
    Montreal, Canada
    I over listen to my songs. First of all by the time im done writing and recording a song i've already heard it at least a 100 times. Still, when i'm just done recording, yeah i'm generally excited about the song, probably overly so, i've laid it down, i've got all the parts right, and if i bothered getting that far with a song it means i think there's something there.

    And then...then i tend to obsess over my songs. I listen to them very often, making sure all is alright, almost to reassure me they're good. About a week later i'm usually sick of whatever song i just recorded, i find them weak, i think the mix sucks (which to be fair it always kinda does), i hate the guitar tone, i think whatever part is too repetitive, so on and so on. Then i feel despaired. Then i think maybe i can do better next time and start to work on something else. The truth probably lies between my initial over excitement and my final disgust. They're probably neither terrible nor awesome. But yeah i lose all objectivity about them eventually.

    But it is my belief most artists are probably kinda sick of their songs by the time a record comes out. Or at the very least by the end of a tour. Thats probably why they keep making more records (well money too). But seriously if you write what you think by your standards is a perfect record, why make more after that? I doubt if anyone is ever completely satisfied by their music. Even the greats. I was discussing this recently, when you make art, you do it to express yourself, to make art as good as the art you love, in music's case, to write the music you would like to hear basically...and yet, save for maybe the most conceited of people, i doubt if any artist thinks their favorite record or song of all time is one of theirs... We do it for ourselves it seems, making art, but in a way, we do it for anyone else really... or to prove to them our (possible) worth as an artist. Cause we will probably never think we're the greatest, even if everyone else would happen to think so (which obviously is unlikely to be the case for anyone here but im just saying) At best other people will be satisfied with our music, we likely won't be. Its not like we'll sit down to listen to our own record and be moved and inspired by it...
  9. Milk

    Milk Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2013
    Location:
    Montreal, Canada
    And i wanted to say too, many great actors say they never watch anything they're in. At first i thought it was strange, is it because they might think they suck or look or sound ridiculous?. But really by the time they're done filming, they know the movie in and out, they know what happens, they might have seen dailies, whats the point of watching a film you know through and through? Are you hoping to be moved by your own performance? You couldn't be, its you! They'll watch and enjoy other people's movies, not their own. I think artists make art cause they have to in spite of themselves, but really in the end its not for themselves that they make it. Even if they might think so. It's for anyone else and it's possible it's all just an ego trip, just to hear people tell us we're (hopefully) great.

    So what am i saying? Don't expect to like your art. As long as other people like it, it's the best you can hope for. (Though if you rally absolutely hate it, youre probably right, it probably sucks. :p)
  10. philvanv

    philvanv Gerbil Turds, Kitsap County Turd Core

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2012
    Disclosures:
    and at the bottom it says thank you, and now you can **** off
    I actually listen to ours because its funny and 80% of the stuff is so stupid it still cracks me up. Plus we have weird way we write. Shoe up, pick a topic, write some stupid lyrics, pick some roots and chords, then lay the out an out line play it, record it mix it and get s good laugh.
  11. punkjazzben

    punkjazzben

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2008
    Location:
    Australia
  12. Einherjar

    Einherjar

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2012
    Location:
    Lakewood, CO
    I agree with all of this completely. Well stated. It's the same way for me.
  13. DannyBob

    DannyBob

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2013
    Location:
    UK
    Helpful.
  14. ThatCoolBassist

    ThatCoolBassist

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2012
    Amen brother!
  15. Jamerman

    Jamerman

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2013
    Great post :) I think chefs have a similar problem, they don't cook good meals for themselves because they're sick of cooking all day
  16. SunnBass

    SunnBass All these blankets saved my life. Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2010
    Media:
    1
    Location:
    Columbia, Mo
    Honestly, it's this simple:
    If you are making music you don't want to hear, or can't listen to, or are embarrassed by.
    Sorry, but you're doing something wrong.
  17. ZenG

    ZenG

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2013
    When I am recording a song I wrote, I treat the production process just as I would If I was recording somebody else.

    I am trying to get it to sound as good as possible for the final outcome.

    I check my ego at the door for that part of the process.

    Like Milk said, a person can do so many "takes" and checks on a song that you temporarily get sick of hearing yourself and the song also.

    I do dozens and dozens of takes and patches and editing.......and the list goes on.

    I don't have any problem with listening to takes of myself......because I want to find out what I need to do to improve it.

    I don't kid myself about any aspect of the sound or vocals.

    If I'm recording my voice itself always needs tweaking..
  18. Kmonk

    Kmonk

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2012
    Location:
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Disclosures:
    Endorsing Artist: Fender and Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan Strings
    My band just recorded 5 songs. I am very critical when I listen to anything. I wasn't happy with the mix but I really liked my playing and the playing of the other band members. We are going remix.
  19. SunnBass

    SunnBass All these blankets saved my life. Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2010
    Media:
    1
    Location:
    Columbia, Mo
    Let's clarify:
    I do not think the OP is talking about being unhappy with the mix or being tired of a song from overplaying or overlistening to it.
    He specifically mentioned his songwriting.
  20. Stewie26

    Stewie26 Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2012
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, California
    I have been writing and recording for the past 30 years. I kind of get sick of a song during the recording and mixing process in my home studio. You are just to close to the song and hear every nook and cranny in the production. But, after maybe six months or so, I can go back and listen to the song with a fresh ear and many times it is like I am listening to someone else recording and I can enjoy. Just sayin.
  21. Roscoe East

    Roscoe East

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2011
    Depends how old they are. There seems to be a threshold right around 1982 or '83 for me; everything I wrote/played/recorded prior to then is embarrassing to hear, and ...well, most of the stuff I wrote/played/recorded subsequently seems to hold up surprisingly well.

    Wish I could pinpoint what happened to me that year. :)

Share This Page