There is nothing more fun than recording a song or performance at a studio. All the gear, people paying attention to what you need and how you sound, makes for a great experience.
Once upon a time, that was pretty much the only place to record. With the onslaught of cheaper smaller consumer oriented gear, more artists are choosing the home studio route because it’s cheaper, more convenient, and for certain genres, pretty much the same. And if you’re the only one recording-you only need 1 pair of headphones, maybe 1 mic, only stereo inputs and converters into your digital system-not so complicated.
A great way to enhance what you do at home is to add something you might not be able to do at home. Live strings, horns, drums, percussion, group vocals-all can really make a track pop! Other things like harmonica, a style of guitar or stringed instrument you do not own or play-all can take your production to the next level.
Many of my professional musician friends with home facilities choose to come to my place to mix, because its very hard to have the depth of knowledge, experience, and gear it takes to do a really killer mix, especially if there is a lot of things going on. That’s also true of mastering. And it does not have to cost a lot to take your tracks to your favorite studio and add some stuff or mix. If you are very familiar with the situation, just sending over a stereo mix and having someone add some guitar can very economical and easy.
We just did a string session on a high profile pop tune for producer Ishmael Moody. We used the “Dallas String Quartet”, and they did an excellent job, and everyone was comfortable and had fun.
Ishmael shot some video, and I edited down a snippet of the actual session-the 2 links are below. I’m told the artist (singer) has gone with just piano and strings after hearing it. Ishmael has a great setup at home, but not 4 music stands, 4 pairs of headphones, a big enough room with silent air conditioning, and a large mic collection to accommodate recording the quartet. He also was free to keep track of the charts and the musicians, without having to worry about what might come up in the recording process (and stuff does come up) Nothing worse than trying to track down a problem somewhere with 4 musicians sitting there on the clock!
So check out the video and the audio clip, and give some thought to expanding your horizons at JOMUSIK!