#649: Rick Rubin, Legendary Producer — Timeless Methods for Unlocking Creativity, Secrets Hidden in Plain Sight, The Future with AI, Helpful Distractions, Working with Strong Personalities, Breaking Out of “The Sameness,” and More
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Rick Rubin (@RickRubin) is a nine-time GRAMMY-winning producer, one of Time magazine’s 100 most influential people in the world, and the most successful producer in any genre, according to Rolling Stone. He has collaborated with artists from Tom Petty to Adele, Johnny Cash to the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Beastie Boys to Slayer, Kanye West to the Strokes, and System of a Down to Jay-Z. You can find my 2015 interview with Rick at tim.blog/RickRubin.
His new book is THE CREATIVE ACT: A Way of Being.
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[06:28] Why Rick wrote The Creative Act.
[09:24] The Tao of Rick Rubin.
[12:16] Making the creative toolbox multi-purposeful.
[15:00] Collaborations: ensuring the best ideas prevail over egos.
[19:50] Creative revisions are experiments, not guaranteed improvements.
[26:44] Knowing when to be defined by or to deviate from an established genre.
[33:07] Why Rick resisted advice to make his first book an autobiography.
[37:10] Even a solo project is a collaboration.
[38:07] Noticing what nobody else sees.
[40:24] Being in the wonderful state “which makes art inevitable.”
[42:22] Craftsperson vs. artist.
[44:29] Good distraction vs. bad distraction.
[46:40] Breaking out of sameness.
[49:24] Filtering out non-constructive feedback.
[51:39] Does artificial intelligence deserve a role in the creative process?
[55:36] What happens when new music catches Rick’s ear?
[56:54] How to be the best music producer possible.
[1:00:17] Artists who seem to best channel wonder from the mundane.
[1:04:12] Managing massive inspirational intake.
[1:05:24] New movies on Rick’s radar.
[1:06:23] Tips for artists who want to endure the ages.
[1:12:06] Pacing the book — as the writer and the reader.
[1:15:39] Parting thoughts.
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Past guests on The Tim Ferriss Show include Jerry Seinfeld, Hugh Jackman, Dr. Jane Goodall, LeBron James, Kevin Hart, Doris Kearns Goodwin, Jamie Foxx, Matthew McConaughey, Esther Perel, Elizabeth Gilbert, Terry Crews, Sia, Yuval Noah Harari, Malcolm Gladwell, Madeleine Albright, Cheryl Strayed, Jim Collins, Mary Karr, Maria Popova, Sam Harris, Michael Phelps, Bob Iger, Edward Norton, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Neil Strauss, Ken Burns, Maria Sharapova, Marc Andreessen, Neil Gaiman, Neil de Grasse Tyson, Jocko Willink, Daniel Ek, Kelly Slater, Dr. Peter Attia, Seth Godin, Howard Marks, Dr. Brené Brown, Eric Schmidt, Michael Lewis, Joe Gebbia, Michael Pollan, Dr. Jordan Peterson, Vince Vaughn, Brian Koppelman, Ramit Sethi, Dax Shepard, Tony Robbins, Jim Dethmer, Dan Harris, Ray Dalio, Naval Ravikant, Vitalik Buterin, Elizabeth Lesser, Amanda Palmer, Katie Haun, Sir Richard Branson, Chuck Palahniuk, Arianna Huffington, Reid Hoffman, Bill Burr, Whitney Cummings, Rick Rubin, Dr. Vivek Murthy, Darren Aronofsky, Margaret Atwood, Mark Zuckerberg, Peter Thiel, Dr. Gabor Maté, Anne Lamott, Sarah Silverman, Dr. Andrew Huberman, and many more.