a little sensationalist headline i admit.
first and foremost, this is not to slash cubase. i’ve been using cubase and nuendo for around 10 years professionally i think, and although i operate other DAWs, the fact i’ve stuck with cubendo means i have to like it.
what i try to address is acquisition of new users, or evangelism if you will.
i’m in contact with new producers, recently took some berkeley courses, check audio production-related media every day, try to always know what’s new and exciting, find new music on soundcloud, blog aggregators etc.
and my point, finally: none of the new producers, music tech-teaching institutions – online or 'real-world '–, none of the new exciting project-exchanging apps (http://www.splice.com , http://www.blend.io) support cubase. it’s always ableton and logic, and fl studio and pro tools second. ableton, in particular, is the de facto new go-to DAW for any starting producer. cubase has been disappearing from the discourse of the new producer generation, and, especially in the US, is becoming somewhat of an obscurity.
now, to be sure, there are thousands of producers using it, and doing great music with it. however, when it comes to new producer acquision, i see nobody adopting it. it has zero cool factor, terrible marketing, steep learning curve. again, i really like it, but in the long run, it’s the new users who will pay for the software development in the future and ultimately decide if it’s going to survive. just take a look at the steinberg vs future music producer video series - some v. good producers in there (some less so), but noone exactly young. now, please do not use the patronising ‘oh we don’t need them edm kids using our software argument’ – it is just that, patronising, and rather ignorant.
if you look at ableton’s facebook page - in the past two weeks alone, i’ve seen:
an announcement ableton are co-sponsoring the midi hackathon in berlin “med at shaping and defining the future of analog and digital music creation” (notice how they’re all about ‘the future’?);
announcement about a book they’ve just released (‘Making Music - 74 Creative Strategies for Electronic Music Producers’);
a behind-the-scenes video about the development of the software ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tILlZRLhBJE ).
to re-iterate, i’m not here to slash cubase or promote ableton (personally there’s a lot i dislike about its workflow but that’s for another discussion) or another daw. i just think the cubase marketing and development really ought to take notice of what’s going on in the production world (hint: it’s not tape machines), and respond to that. not by throwing money and buying media space, but by creating a more exciting product, and an open community around it. the risk, otherwise, of their product getting rebranded ‘Dad’s Music Tools’, is nigh…