The best music college programs have traditionally been available at some the world’s most renowned universities like Harvard, Princeton, and the University of Notre Dame as well as universities and institutions that are solely dedicated to music education such as Julliard School or Berklee College of Music.
Alternatively, there are also alternative music production and performance schools such as Pyramind or Dubspot, which place more emphasis on electronic music production and DJing techniques.
In this article, we’ll explore why a couple of these music colleges are indeed the best in the world and what students can expect to experience at each one.
Berklee College of Music
Originally founded as the Schillinger House to teach students about the finer points of jazz music, pianist and architectural engineer Lawrence Berk started a music education program that rapidly garnered the attention of many aspiring musicians who flocked to the school, thereby increasing enrollment by tenfold within a 9-year period. In acknowledgement of the school’s rather broad and varied curriculum, Berk chose to name the school after his son, Lee Eliot Berk, and as the music industry continued to evolve with the advent of pop and rock music.
Berklee College of Music would continually evolve with those changes by developing and incorporating courses and methodologies that placed more emphasis on pop, rock, and the more commercial aspects of music production and composition, such as scoring for film and commercials.
Today, it features an impressive pantheon of genres and musical disciplines that students can choose from as well as an online portal that long-distance students can opt for in lieu of attending classes in person. With an alumni network that has collectively won more than 250 Grammy and Latin Grammy awards, Berklee has firmly established itself as an authoritative and effective source of knowledge for highly driven individuals who are looking to further their understanding of music and the role it plays in the world today. (website)
Pyramind is a one-of-a-kind facility that operates bilaterally as both an educational institute specializing in music production and audio engineering as well as many other interrelated fields that are taught by means of a unique teaching methodology designed to effectively prepare students to work and thrive in the music and audio industries.
Its founder, Gregory J. Gordon, developed Pyramind by recording his own bands as well as other bands in the San Francisco Bay Area and eventually came to work with luminaries such as Merl Saunders and Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead.
Following a string of highly successful projects that acquired significant recognition within the industry, Gordon was invited to establish and develop a digital audio course at San Francisco State University’s Multimedia Studies Program and was also requested to teach classes at The California Recording Institute and the Academy of Arts College.
In 2000, Pyramind was officially registered as a non-degree granting institution with the California Bureau for Private Post Secondary Education and has continually set the bar over the years in music production and composition, post-production, and more!
The studio facilities at Pyramind are loaded to the gills with the latest state-of-the-art equipment and software available today, which include cream-of-the-crop recording and music production programs such as Ableton Live, Logic Pro, Reason, and Pro Tools.
It also features a comprehensive online teaching program that students can enroll in and receive stellar one-on-one expert instruction and constant guidance as students are taught the inner workings of synthesis, sound design, mixing, mastering, music theory, and more! (website)
On the other side of the country in the heart of NYC lies Dubspot, which is one of New York City’s original Ableton Live certification centers and has consequently become a premier music school for aspiring musicians, DJs, audio engineers, and producers who are looking to elevate their understanding and knowledge of music.
The teaching philosophy at Dubstep revolves around the use of computers and relatively inexpensive software programs and devices for creating music rather than sheer reliance on cumbersome and inordinately expensive pieces of audio equipment to achieve high-quality results.
Dubspot also places more emphasis than other institutions on the origins of electronic dance music and features a course that’s designed to get students familiarized with the schools of thought that have developed within EDM apart from more traditional genres.
Additionally, there are courses that will teach you things about sound design, synthesis, and additional certification courses for programs such as Ableton Live and Logic Pro.
Dubspot instructors represent an eclectic and diverse group of highly experienced musicians, DJs, producers, and audio engineers who live and breathe music on a daily basis and care about seeing their students grow and develop as artists in their own right. As far as online courses are concerned, Dubspot offers a complete list of classes and registration dates that students can sign up as well as two payment plans for students who want to pay for the course in full or pay it off in four monthly installments. (website)
Find The Best School For You
In regard to any recording studio that was converted into a school or business that claims to be an authoritative source on music production, music theory, or audio engineering, I would highly recommend that you really make sure that you understand what you’re getting for your money’s worth and talk to former students of the program first.
Getting their take on what the experience at the facility was like for them and whether they felt that they truly got their money’s worth with what they were taught will help you steer clear of businesses who simply exist to teach you the basics, take your money, and shoo you out the door as soon as the semester’s over.
Finally, don’t forget that a lot of the information that they teach in these courses is stuff that you can learn online for free if you’re resourceful enough (it’s really as simple as copying and pasting snippets of the course descriptions and doing some Google searches)!
You won’t get any certifications in doing so, but you’ll save yourself quite a bit of money if you’re simply looking to learn how to do this on your own and are on a tight budget. Good luck!