Embarking on Point Blank Music School

November 12, 2019

Embarking on Point Blank

I’m enrolling on a part-time 2 year Masters Diploma in music production at Point Blank music school London.

This might sound like I’ll be settling back in London for a while; but, as ever, I’m doing things online I can balance with work and travels. Point Blanks online variant heavy use of video calls for masterclasses and 1-to-1s with the tutors. This does mean I won’t have access to their studios and extensive facilities - but in some ways I see the constraints as a good thing.

Within this blog I plan to document my learning and experiences on the course, which I hope to be of a benefit to both my own learning progress, and for anybody else wanting to get a deeper insight into learning with Point Blank.

Why am I doing a masters Diploma in music production?

I already have a Masters degree in Computer Science, and a successful and ongoing tech-entrepreneurial career. Why would I now go back to higher-education in something so out-of-line with everything else I’m doing? Perhaps computer-based music production could be seen as an extension to my existing technical background rather than another side of a different coin, but that would be the easy answer.

The deeper answer, for me, is it’s a means of accountability. I feel strongly that I need some accountability to re-engage into the things I was passionate about almost 20 years ago. The things I gave-up in order to focus on my career and businesses. I made the active decision back at that time, to drop almost all of the creative fields I’d spend hours on in my teens and early twenties. Whether or not that was the right decision is moot; whilst my career has had it’s ups and downs - I’m proud of the things I have achieved, and consider myself exceptionally fortunate to have the flexibility and freedom of time and location that I now enjoy. But it’s not all there is to life.

A case of commitment

January this year - I made the acknowledgement to myself, that I can’t keep putting off the things I love. I committed to re-engage, within the year, with the creative fields I’ve always loved, including music production, filmmaking, art and photography.

But I am frustrated.

Whilst I know that regret achieves nothing, I’m finding times when I feel it hard not to feel I should have stayed on the musical path. The biggest frustration is that I’m not up-to-scratch with the musical workstations, instruments and effects of today. I’m not able to move fast enough. I don’t know enough to be effective.

So, having spent so many years now, on the path of business - and constantly evaluating for a return on my time spent, I’m finding it far too easy to procrastinate away from the very thing I want to spend time on - music production. “Ugh, this is too slow, this is going nowhere - I could be building something that solves a problem and makes money”

It was time to double-down - to keep me accountable on my self-commitment. To rapidly accelerate my knowledge and learning in this field, faster than I could ever do by myself. A hard-stop on the path to getting old and still never having done anything at all in the field of music. This diploma is not an insignificant amount of money, so that business side of my thinking now expects a return on that investment.

Goals and Expectations

So what do I actually want to do with this investment in myself? I get the sense that this diploma is heavily geared for people who wish to make a full career out of producing. That is, as a hired producer, working in the studio on not only their own tracks, but other people’s.

I think that would be an incredible and fascinating career, and I’m excited to see where my fellow classmates go. However, that is not where I personally am right now. I don’t see myself leaving the world of tech and business right now.

My personal goals with this Diploma, are simply to get the know-how and experience to actually finish tracks. And to finish them to a high enough standard that I can release them. And who knows, perhaps publicly perform them. It’s both a high and a low-bar. I’m not deludedly looking at top-40 stuff, rather just something I can be proud of, and say - “hey, I did that”.

This is a personal journey.

Edward Woodcock

Written by Edward Woodcock who lives remotely around the world, running Dinghy and producing music.