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8 Tips to Help You Find Your Musical Style

 by Autumn Huerter

Young boy with teacher taking piano lessons

Everybody starts their musical career as a beginner taking music lessons in Kansas City. Every budding musician always has that one “favorite” musical genre they cling to during the start of their career. You always have a rough idea of what specific musical direction you’d go to, right?

But as you grow as a musician, you get exposed to different musical styles, which motivates you to try different genres, sounds, and even instruments along the way. These are all beneficial as it not only gets you out of your comfort zone but also allows you to get to know yourself better and the musical identity you’d want to go for in the future.

But since music has no strict rules, it would be challenging to determine your own sound, especially in today’s age where millions of other artists are trying their best to stand out. So, here are eight tips from music experts on how you can find and develop your own personal sound.

1. Know the Meaning of “Musical Style”

There’s really no definite “meaning” for musical style, but its concept refers to how individuals express their music. It can also pertain to your musical genre, which is usually determined by the nature of the sound a piece of music makes.

Any musician can create their musical style by using different techniques in melody, harmony, and rhythm. Still, you can also pick one from hundreds of already existing musical genres out there. 

There’s indie, jazz, hip-hop, pop, metal, country, and many other hybrid musical genres. The real challenge is finding one that suits your skills and personality, not to mention unique and authentic, to stand out in the industry.

2. Listen to Different Music Genres

Your music teacher definitely instructed you to listen to different music genres during your music lessons in Kansas City, right? Well, that’s because they want you to get acquainted with different, and sometimes mixed, musical styles to discover your own personal one eventually. 

Once you get familiar with them and ultimately find what you like, then you can start learning everything there is about your chosen genre. 

For example, if you chose rock, you should also delve into the genre subdivisions comprising a rock musical style. This includes metal, alternative rock, hard rock, and many others.

3. Listen to the Songs That You Like and Don’t Like

Another way to discover your musical styleis to listen to the songs or pieces you absolutely adore and find out why you like them and the artist’s musical style.

Furthermore, you should also listen to the music you dislike and dissect them. Ask yourself what particular component you dislike about it. Is it the composition? Or is it the melody, rhythm, or lyric content of the song?

This will help you find your unique taste in music, resulting in finding your own signature sound. Plus, you can definitely apply the good and bad practices that you’ll learn here to your own music.

Young kids with teacher taking voice lessons

4. Follow the Musician You Admire

Besides listening to songs, you can also follow the artists you like and admire. Not to copy them, of course, but to learn and maybe emulate their musical style. 

For example, learning the composition of Aretha Franklin’s songs or watching Youtube performances of Dave Grohl. You can note their vocal style, music genre, and the subjective emotions you felt while watching or listening to their performance.

Follow your idols and musical influences and let them become an inspiration as you strive to discover your personal style. Even if your favorite artist has a completely different genre from you, you can still take pieces of their style and incorporate them into your own or chosen musical style.

5. Trial and Error

As the famous saying goes, you have to break some eggs to make an omelet. In this case, you have to do hundreds of covers or performances before discovering your personal style. And that’s okay!

It’s normal to try and fail then try and fail again early in your career. That’s how you will identify what style suits you and what doesn’t. Or what your target market likes and what they do not.

You didn’t start out as a great singer or pianist right away, right? You needed the training and music lessons in Kansas City to perfect your craft. 

6. Be Consistent

Most modern musicians get recognized by their signature sound, which eventually becomes their “branding.” This happens because there is consistency in their musical style, allowing their audience to remember their unique sound. 

Let’s take Taylor Swift as an example. Her music has a very distinct style, especially her older ones, that even if you don’t know the song, you’ll definitely guess that it’s hers if you suddenly hear it on the car radio.

However, you should never forget that consistency does not mean repetitiveness, so be careful.

7. Go With Your Purpose

Knowing your purpose takes everything into perspective and allows you to quickly find your musical style. Your journey as a musician plays a crucial role in defining your purpose; in turn, your purpose is a key ingredient in determining your musical style. 

For example, if your purpose is to create music that’s appealing to the modern market, you should focus on the hottest musical style now and consider that. But if you’re currently focused on working with music that fulfills your passion, then you should go for what satisfies your musical interests.

Take your purpose into consideration and let it help you discover your musical style, whether it’s from a branding or artistic standpoint.

8. Be Patient

Your signature sound takes time to develop since it combines many things: your personality, your musical experiences, and micro tweaks that come from your unique music tastes. 

As you grow and evolve, your musical style will too. So be patient and know that it takes a good deal of time and countless music lessons in Kansas City to finally find your style.

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Written by Autumn Huerter
Autumn Huerter
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