“Ghost Production”, a term you probably have heard but don’t know too much about. Some may even say it’s a taboo practice. Sometimes, the less we know-the better or, ‘ignorance is bliss’ as they say. Well in the underground culture that is ghost production, understanding it’s positive aspects give a deeper appreciation to the EDM music industry.
The world of ghost production is massive. It involves participation from producers who want to remain anonymous all the way to mainstream DJs; and all the users in between. In short, ghost production is a practice where video and electronic music producers have the opportunity to produce and relinquish its rights to a new owner. Each person on the spectrum has their own reason why they want to partake, and it’s far from the stereotype of being ‘lazy’.
Music and video production is an art, and just as any artist, their expression and appreciation comes in many forms. EDM Ghost Producers create tracks and then look to many outlets for what is in store next for it. Ghost producers typically like to lay low and stay behind the scenes. They create tracks out of the pure joy of the production aspect and utilize e-commerce to profit from it. The living of a ghost prouder is simple, make and sell. Well known DJ Producer Zhu, started off his music career as a ghost producer. When asked what kept him in as a ghost producer in the past, he remarks the ability to be able to focus solely on the art of making music. On the other end of the spectrum, you have your DJs. It’s safe to say, amongst the glitz and glamour of being new or seasoned, DJs put in a lot of work beyond what the general population sees.
New and Up and Coming DJs are at the forefront of their public career. They have spent months to years in their studio perfecting the use of their equipment & software and sharpening their music for all to hear. Focus is now shifted to marketing, bookings, reputation, travel, negotiations, riders, and for some, starting relationships with managers and agents. Managing all this without sacrificing quality or sanity, wanting additional help is not only natural, it’s necessary. A portion of this help comes from ghost producers. The service of a ghost producer comes from the creation of a track in its entirety, to polishing an existing track for final edits; and everything in between. And the bigger you get as a DJ, the less time you have for everything.
“Ghost Producers aren’t hired to trick audiences, but to save the star act time by providing a second opinion or assisting with finishing touches” – Brian Scully: Artist Manager, Moodswing Management.
Mainstream DJs have all the more reason to utilize the gift of ghost producers. They’re always on the road and planning out their next move. Yes, they still spend a lot of time in the studio, but quality over quantity is the factor here. They have to make sure the valuable time in the studio isnt wasted; all whilst keeping up with the demands fans bestow onto them. DJs can produce quality sounds whether they are using a ghost producer to clean up their track or taking an already created one and finishing it off with their personal touch. Showtek put it perfectly, “Some singers use help from songwriters, some DJs use help from producers. Music is more than just a song, and it’s the bigger picture that matters.” Ghost producers are just a small and necessary part of the music industry family. Whether they are appreciated or not, they are out there, and contribute to the way we enjoy the EDM scene.