Do Some Research
To further my point, I'll give some of my life experience as a prime example. After teaching myself basic jazz grooves and theory, I found that there was a lot missing from my playing. On the alto sax, there's never nothing to learn. Given this and the period where I discovered Eric Marienthal- a smooth jazz alto saxophonist -as well as Jeff Lorber -a smooth jazz/fusion keyboardist -I eventually purchased many of each albums and listened to it constantly- at work (in my line of work, it's allowed), on the go and generally in my free time. Listening to the kind of thing you like to play from an instrumentalist that plays the same thing as you over and over is great for your playing. Eventually, you start to assimilate certain things: technique, riffs and a whole lot of cool things, not to mention the fact that by hearing what an ideal saxophone, for example, sounds like, you'll know what to do differently to get that sound and, eventually, get your own sound.
I also play saxophone in concert band. The kind of research I do for this varies. There is one thing I do that I recommend to anyone who plays in any sort of concert band: listen to game, movie and television show soundtracks. There are a few obvious examples, those being The Lord of the Rings and Star Wars soundtracks, as they are both huge symphonic arrangements (not to mention beautiful compositions, in all). As for games, The Legend of Zelda has always had absolutely incredible arrangements. With the twenty-fifth anniversary of the game, a game with a separate disc including symphonic medleys of all the major songs was released. For a game, the pieces are truly something to behold. The point here is that there are some interesting places to do research, and it goes for anybody who calls themselves musicians. Dubstep artists listen to each other’s work as research- to better their own work. It very simply goes for everyone.