Memories at the Push of a Button: From the Garage to the Studio.
There is no feeling quite as marvelous as hearing your music for the first time on record. All the hours spent conceptualizing a song, jamming it out, arranging it, and perfecting it are encapsulated forever—precious memories available at the push of a button. The subject came to mind recently as I have been discovering new artists, sometimes right as they are releasing their first single to the world. As great of a feeling as it is for me to catch a group at the genesis of their discography, the payoff for them after hours of recording I know is far more rewarding.
Today perhaps more than ever recording demands much of bands and producers alike. There is more room for error sure, more takes can be done, and sophisticated programs correct mistakes with ease. The end product must be pristine though, layered with harmonies, ambient sounds, and orchestral instrumentation to escape the "flat" label. Okay, that last part may be a bit of an exaggeration, but you get the point. How does a band put out a fantastic record that stands out then? Fidelity to their sound and one another.
Each group has a chemistry that makes them a band, a sometimes intangible characteristic that seeps into their music without them even realizing it. When a record is done with care for that spirit—and respect for each person who contributes to it—the album thrives. If you respect your music in the studio, it will earn you respect outside of it surely. Respect also those little things that make each person in the band unique.
Let's say in the garage Tommy plays Elixir strings all the time, don't make him change them for the studio. Dave needs to drink an Arnold Palmer before he sings a single note, so someone get him a case. My examples may sound pretty lame, but they are oh so true in band settings. The process of making music goes beyond fine-tuning the music itself; it is about tuning the relationships of those who make the music as well, for the best recording sessions.
The Audio Masterclass Newsletter wrote a piece a couple of months ago about the importance of monitoring your recording sessions. Monitoring ensures that the producer and audio engineer catch every detail within the signal recorded, helping the group create a high-quality reproduction of their sound. As a group, you should be concerned about the end product because nobody knows your music better than you. Check out the blog post here.