Those who know me know that, like any true Canuck (and probably like most of my English Production Expert brethren), I am an avid tea drinker. Guests to our home often bring over interesting and unusual tea as hostess gifts when invited for dinner or parties. I, of course, have my favourite blends, which I keep well stocked. But over time, my tea drawer has swelled with many that I don’t like, or drink, as much as others.
A while ago, in preparation for our upcoming kitchen renovation, my wife and I were packing up our kitchen. It was an opportunity to trim the fat and get rid of all manner of kitchen related things we had accumulated over the years that weren’t being used often enough to warrant the space they took up. She looked at the accumulation of teas and said to me “ you know, life is too short for bad tea; just get rid of them”. It’s not of course that the unused tea was bad, it was just that they weren’t to my personal liking and so weren’t being consumed. I happily acquiesced to her suggestion, relieved and unburdened of the guilt of not drinking these otherwise perfectly good varieties of tea. Now that we have reset up our kitchen after the completed renovation, my tea drawer has only the teas I like and enjoy regularly. It’s my favourite part of the new kitchen.
Life is too short for bad tea. Too short for the things that don’t fulfill us, in any aspect of our lives. A close photographer friend of mine is an avid consumer of all manner of business-related motivational materials. Discussing the advice of one of his favourite authors a couple of years ago, he summed up, in a nutshell, something that seems perfectly obvious, but eludes many of us. It’s aimed at creatives (like all of us) who freelance and deal with many different clients. The idea is simple: If you want to get more of the good jobs, the ones you enjoy doing, are the most rewarding, and pay the best; stop taking the bad jobs. Stop accepting jobs with difficult clients, the low paying ones, the ones that take up too much of your time for what the return is.
Thinking about it, I realized that I had intuitively been doing this all my life. As bandleader of Nightshift, a working commercial cover band here in Montreal, I learned quickly that the jobs that paid the least also always seemed to demand the most of my time. They inevitably involved difficult demanding clients, or venues that were difficult to work with, stages that were too small, insufficient electrical requirements, difficult load-ins with road cases, etc. As demand for our band grew I was able to turn down these jobs and guess what? We ended up only doing the “good jobs”.
When I began taking on commercial clients in my fledgling home studio about twenty years ago, the situation was similar. I had one early client who called me regularly to work on his radio jingles. He was high maintenance. Always stressed, rushing, low budget, squeezing me to throw in extras at no cost, late to pay, canceled sessions at the last minute - we all know the type. The work itself was actually interesting, and I was hungry for the work. At one point enough was enough and I had to draw some lines in the sand; some professional boundaries. It wasn’t long before he moved on to someone else he could exploit. I did learn a lot from working with him. But did not miss his presence in my life.
Another early client was a very nice singer-songwriter. relaxed and easy to work with. The problem was, she just wasn’t a particularly good singer, and wasn’t particularly open to stretching herself outside of her (limited) comfort zone. Plus, she would get caught up second-guessing herself constantly when we were mixing (bring the vocal up 1 DB in the chorus, no, okay down is better, no up again, what do you think? More reverb on the vocal, I don’t like the reverb now, etc) I slowly raised my price over time, she began coming less often, and happily the situation took care of itself.
In my earlier days working with groove3, my publishers often had titles they wanted to be covered that they would ask me to do. I wasn’t always familiar with the software involved. I wanted to keep working though, and so took on the work. Creating these video tutorials would inevitably involve a longer learning curve. And inevitably, those titles that took me the longest to complete often ended up not being particularly successful compared to many of the other titles I had with them. The return on my time ended up being pretty low on these series. Over time, we both learned to more accurately predict what would generate the most demand. There were still more than enough titles and ideas that I could take on only the ones that best suited me. Win-win for everyone involved.
This brings me around to our newly invigorated logic pro expert site. Our new team has lots of diverse talents, interests, and experiences. What types of topics are you interested in seeing us cover here? We can track google analytics and see which posts get the most traffic, which videos are viewed the most, and which are ignored. But this only gives us half the picture. It tells us what is working and what isn’t. But it doesn’t tell us what you might be interested in that we haven’t as yet tackled. I can’t of course promise that we will cover every single suggestion. But please don’t hold back. Tell us in the comments below what you would like to see and hear more of (or maybe less of?) around here. Life is too short for bad tea. I want logic pro expert to be lean and mean, with only great content on it. The first step is eliminating the least viewed types of content. The second is including more of what you want to see, hear, and watch. Less bad tea, more good tea. Let us know what that is.