Zara616, aka Patrick Mazara, is a staple in the midwest when it comes to music production. His handprints are all over the careers of many top acts from Michigan. He’s worked with well-established acts like Skilla Baby, YN Jay, Jdot Breezy, and QC’s newest signee, Baby Money. His mission was never to become the biggest producer in the game, and he always wanted to become one of the most influential. Although he is growing more and more daily, he always wants to do what he can to give back.
After going through countless social media issues, financially and socially, he knows the ups and downs that many upcoming beat makers go through. That is why he crafted a few steps for young creatives to follow to avoid some of the mishaps he faced initially. As Zara616 continues to rise to prominence outside his region, he is always looking to help the next generation of producers.
Check out these 6-steps handcrafted by Zara616 below!
Step 1: BRAND
Understand that YOU ARE YOUR BRAND. Your producer tag is crucial, especially when starting because it can direct people towards more of your work. When it does, you should ensure your social media accounts reflect you as a producer to maintain their interest. I went about growing mine by providing my audience with authentic content of video edits to my beats that would keep their interest, and later on, I allowed people to put a face to the name by also posting myself. To continue to build your brand, I advise investing in meeting artists in person, advertising yourself and your beats, and finally, staying consistent.
Step 2: Publishing and Beat Store
Get your publishing together by creating a BMI or an ASCAP so that when the more significant placements do come, you’re eligible to sign the paperwork. If you make music, you can still register it, so it works if you also rap/sing. Do keep in mind that PUBLISHING AND ROYALTIES are NOT THE SAME THING. If you produce for artists that are signed to a major label, make sure you should be getting an advance, net artist royalties, and publishing. Do not sign a bad deal but do not be ungrateful, especially if the terms you’ve signed and the advance being given are something you do not have. That especially goes for loop-makers. Lastly, look into creating a beat store such as Airbit and Beatstars so that your audience can both listen to and purchase your beats.
Step 3: Networking
Networking is one of the most crucial steps! Your skill will only get you so far, and if you have no way of hearing it, you won’t get any placements. So network with producers, work with the minor artist in a camp, and soon the more prominent artist will want to work with you because they hear what you’ve provided for them.
Step 4: Genuineness
Stay genuine. When you’re hungry for success, we tend to jump the gun but staying genuine and realizing people are still human is one of the best things you can do. I get tired of people trying to work before even forming a connection, so I know engineers feel the same because people attempt to use them for placements but don’t even form any bond first as well as with A&Rs and managers. Have a respectful approach, don’t blow them up but show you genuinely admire their craft or love their artists’ sound, and your time to work with them will come.
Step 5: Patience
Understand that your time will come. Do not be envious of other producers getting back-to-back placements because they worked just as hard, if not more challenging, to get to where they are. Take your time and develop your sound. I recommend making a single drum kit with all your favorite sounds and only using that one. In a few months, you should be able to play your beats and tell that every moment has some similarity that people can recognize and say you produced it.
Step 6: Business
Do not take things personally. You have to understand these people do not know you. They aren’t obligated to respond or rap to your beats. If you blow up and rappers you wanted to work with finally hit you back, do it! You’ll miss out on the opportunity if you decide to be petty because they’re more likely to take you seriously if they come to you.
Step 7: Consistency
Work hard and be consistent. If it were easy, everybody would do it. As long as you’re constantly sending beats out and working with producers, your chance of placement will only keep increasing, so stop just sitting on beats. Send the same ones out until they get placed, have some versatility, so you aren’t confided in a box. Invest in going to studios or even running ads on your posts because you never know who could see them.
Step 8: Manifestation
Manifestation has gotten me a long way and can be a very in-depth topic, but my advice is to believe in yourself and be grateful as if you’ve already accomplished what you want to accomplish down the line. We constantly tell ourselves negative things, and that’s why it happens, but if we flip that around and speak positive affirmations, only say good things, would the good not come to be?
I always tell my peers to be grateful, and even if it isn’t something you have just yet, believe you have it. By having that energy of gratefulness, you increase your frequencies and allow your manifestation to find its way into your life; when it does, you can indeed be grateful.