Create a Track in Just Ten Minutes?!
DontWatchThat.tv has a really interesting series going on right now. They challenge producers to create a track in just ten minutes! Talk about putting your skills to the test! The most recent edition was with Four Tet, who used Michael Jackson's Thriller as a sample source, and built an entirely new and unrecognizable track with it.
What I especially like about this challenge is that ten minutes does not allow you any time to waste. You can't sit around deciding if a part or sound is any good; there's no chance to try out different samples or experiment with effects and EQ. There's no time to waste! You are simply forced to only do the absolute most important tasks. No dilly dallying! I've written about the importance of limiting yourself and imposing deadlines to increase productivity, and this challenge is the perfect (and nearly ridiculous) exercise.
Are You Up for the Challenge?
Think you can do it? I'm not sure if I can, but that is the fun of it. The goal isn't to produce the most amazing piece of art in the time it takes to eat a sandwich; it's to see if you can focus and do the most with what little time you have. After your ten minutes are up, there's nothing that says you can't keep going and refine. This is a workflow challenge. It might highlight the areas that take up too much of your time, and help you understand where you need to "trim the fat."
I challenge you! Set up a video camera and a timer and go to work! See what happens and see what you learn about yourself! Post it on YouTube (or wherever) and leave a link in the comments. I'll be doing this the next time I'm feeling a little frisky and I'll post my results, as well as my thoughts and lessons from the experience.