Firstly, a key tip when preparing to record in the studio is to make sure you are ready! Planning when preparing to record in the studio is everything - make sure you have a plan so you can focus on what you want to create whilst in the studio. Other useful tips when preparing to record in the studio include:
Select songs you have plenty of experience performing: When preparing to record in the studio, select a song you are confident in performing to ensure you won’t be spending precious studio time rehearsing!
Have a clear understanding of what you want your song to sound like: When preparing to record in the studio, make sure you understand what you want your song to sound like. Have you thought about including backing vocals? What genre does your song belong in? Most importantly, make sure you know your song! Aspects such as BPM, key, chord structure should all be decided on before you get to the studio to make life easier for your producer!
Try and keep your song to no more than 3.5 minutes: Whilst you’re preparing to record in the studio, spend time trying to tighten the song and reduce the length for the recorded version. Is the intro too long for a demo track? Does this song show off your sound and abilities the best?
Rehearse and develop your technique: Good tips for vocalists preparing to record in the studio include warming up and practice good breathing and microphone techniques. Studio microphones are very sensitive and will pick up on any extra sounds or weaknesses which can lead to time being wasted. Good tips for guitarists preparing to record in the studio include working on avoiding the finger sliding squeak before you arrive at the studio. Tips for drummers preparing to record in the studio include bringing some spare drum sticks and be prepared to play on your own with only limited elements. Know the song back to front. Everyone else – if you have just a small part or section in one of the songs then be prepared to do a lot of hanging around and be patient. Another important technique to practice is rhythm! So many acts will be so used to playing live that they will waive from the tempo, so practicing to a metronome may save hours of auto-tuning!
A vital tip when preparing to record in the studio is to find the right producer. Here are our top tips for finding the right producer for your act when preparing to record in the studio:
The right sound: Try to go with one that has recorded music with the sound your act is going for, that way you know you can trust them to produce your music. Do your research when preparing to record in the studio, and before booking a recording studio and ask them to forward samples of their recent work. Some producers will have a flare for a certain type of genre. Another idea when preparing to record in the studio is to contact acts that have used the studio and ask them how they have found working with the producer.
Word of mouth: If you have any friends with great recordings or have come across any unsigned artists online that have quality music then just ask them who they used. Simples!
Location: Unless a producer has an extremely impressive portfolio, it is not a good idea to travel miles for them. There are plenty of good producers in your city, so try and save your pennies by finding someone close to home. This also means you can pop in for any editing if needed later on.
A producer you can trust: If you have done the hard work above, then you should be able to trust your producer. When preparing to record in the studio it’s really important to find a producer that you feel confident about. Allow them to work their magic and your producer will make your song come to life!
Here are a few questions to consider when you’re preparing to record in the studio:
Have you got everything? When preparing to record in the studio, check every item you intend to use at the recording studio before you leave. Give yourself enough time to replace or repair anything that is going to let you down.
Do you know where you are going? It might sound obvious, but when preparing to record in the studio make sure you counter in factors such as traffic delays, parking etc to avoid eating into your valuable recording studio time. Arriving flustered, anxious or depressed as a result of being late could have a negative impact on your overall mindset and playing.
Are you sober? If you’re intoxicated or hungover from the night before, it’s probably best not to bother! Alcohol affects your judgement, hearing and sabotages your ability to play. If you want to take your music seriously, a good tip when preparing to record in the studio is to avoid drinking for the couple of days leading up to your recording session.
Are you able to pay? A very important step in preparing to record in the studio is to remember to bring a method of payment. Many studio engineers expect to be paid at the end of each session and can easily make the legal case that they own the recording until you make payment.
So you have following all the above tips on preparing to record in the studio and finally made it to the studio! This is when the real hard work begins, so make sure that you make the effort to follow the correct etiquette in the studio:
Act professionally and listen to the producer: The quicker you respond and deliver what the producer needs, the more you will get from your session. If you are difficult to work with word could get around. If you impress the producer they may be happy to pass your demo on to his own contacts in the industry.
Ask questions: At the end of the session make sure you understand the next steps and when you will get the finished product
Once you’ve had a successful session in the recording studio, remember to. Back up all your work and test that you can recover it. There’s nothing worse than having to go back to square one and have all that valuable studio time go to waste!
If you made it through all of our tips on preparing to record in the studio then you should be armed and ready for the recording studio!
If you’re a preteen or teenager, check out the singing competition TeenStar at www.teenstarcompetition.co.uk!
Alternatively, if you want to get exposure for you and your music, get your audition booked for Open Mic UK now at www.openmicuk.co.uk.
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