Alumni Voice


“The Pandemic’s Very Own Music Producer”

Wirawan Muis Wajdi

Student (Business Management and International Business)

Ever since the government issued the lockdown, my life took a very hard turn. Since this was issued in my senior year, all of my friends were sad because none of us gets the chance to graduate and celebrate properly. Prom, the batch party, and several other events we anticipated were cancelled. Though despite that, I wasn’t necessarily as sad as everyone for a reason that I can’t really explain with words. I guess I was just very used to dealing with unexpected occurrences. Knowing the fact that this lockdown is probably going to last a whole year, I didn’t want to spend my time feeling sad about it so I decided to consider this as an opportunity to grow and better myself. That’s when I started to take the initiative and make use of my talent as a music producer.

Just like any other thing, the music industry is greatly affected by this pandemic because all the festivals, concerts and gigs are cancelled. Smaller artists however, are the ones taking the bigger punches due to their weak position and most of them probably had their whole year planned out or had plans to perform in certain gigs for exposure. Despite that, I started a career as a music producer not to satisfy or help these smaller artists but instead to make money in such times. I uploaded my beats (song instrumentals) on YouTube as a video hoping that someone would listen and buy them. Beyond my expectations, the video got popular and someone did buy them for $50. Though it wasn’t the money that made me feel fulfilled, instead it was the positive comments that I received in the video. People started thanking me for motivating them, wished me luck on my career and told me how I have made their day so much better by listening to my music. I was just surprised and in awe that such words were said through music. And that’s when I had a goal to help these smaller musicians and sell my beats for free.

You might be wondering how I benefit from selling my beats for free and I understand that because this is honestly also very unusual for me but I’ll try my best to explain. Most music producers profit by providing licenses to their beats and each have their own conditions. It’s like a buying a lease of a car, there is a contract that the buyer must follow (in the musician’s case it’s the amount of streams, royalties, distribution of cd’s, etc). The cheaper the license is, the uglier the contract is for the artist (price usually range from $10 to $30). But If the artist wants to have access to each of the instruments in the beat (guitar, bass, drums) and get the more attractive contract, then they would go for the more expensive licenses (price usually range from $75 to $150). It honestly depends on what the artist wants because it’s subjective to what they consider a good or a bad contract.

Though aside from all that, there is only one license that stands above them all and that is the ‘exclusive license’. The exclusive license basically hands all rights of the beat to the musicians and removes the producer’s rights. In simpler words, they get everything for a hefty price (around $350 to $1000). Going back to how I benefit, I benefit by selling only exclusive licenses for a small price of $50. People can profit from my beats for free but if they want the beat only to themselves, then they have to purchase the exclusive. Now I don’t want to say that I’ve solved the crisis in the music industry, but every change starts small and I’m just happy that I’m helping some of these smaller artists for the better. After doing this for months, the feedback I received from the music community have been nothing but positive and it puts a big smile on my face.

As the platform I hold grows bigger, I realized that I have a bit of an influence on my followers and what better way to use this influence other than to promote social issues such as the “Black Lives Matter” movement and the problems happening in Papua. I started providing links in each of my videos where each link provide information and ways that one can contribute on these issues. There isn’t really any accurate way to see whether people click on the link or not but I feel like this is the only way that I can contribute as an individual. The way I see it, the links I provide could stumble upon a genius who opens the link and possibly change the world for the better (hopefully).

In conclusion, the COVID-19 lockdown turned my life around for the better because I was fortunate enough to be able to positively make use of the free time I had. Being able to get an income in such tough times and have a platform in social media is something that one should not take for granted. In all honesty, you could say that I’m a good example of ‘doing what you love’. People hear that phrase a lot but it’s true because I don’t think I can do any of the things I mentioned if I didn’t enjoy making music. Also, try to see the good in everything. When terrible things happen or you feel that everything is against you, try to see it as an opportunity to be better just so you can come out at the better end. I’m not perfect at this, but I just know that I don’t want to waste time feeling sad.



楽曲を無料で提供してどのように利益を得ているのか疑問に思うかもしれません。しかしこれは正直なところ、私にとっても非常に珍しいことなのです。故に疑問はごもっともだと思いますが、頑張って説明してみます。ほとんどの音楽 プロデューサーは自分たちの楽曲にライセンスを紐づけすることで利益を得ています。そして、それぞれに条件もあります。車のリース契約をするようなもので、買い手が従わなければならない約定があります。(音楽家の場合はストリーミングの量、ロイヤリティー、CDの配布など)ライセンス料金が安くなればなるほど、アーティストにとって酷い契約となります。(価格は通常10ドルから30ドル)。しかし、アーティストが楽曲内での各楽器(ギター、ベース、ドラム)へのアクセスを持っていると、より魅力的な契約となり、ライセンス料がより高価になります。(価格は通常75ドルから150ドル)契約の良し悪しは主観的なものなので、アーティストが何を求めているのかによると思います。




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