September 8, 2013

Tracking Primer

Congratulations, Let’s Record! Please read this document carefully as it will help you to understand my process for recording your project.  

You have made the decision to record with me at South Sound Sound Recording Studios…very wise choice! My goal is to get you a superior product in a fun, no pressure and creative atmosphere.

This picture of the live room with the PDP drum kit and Peavy Bass Guitar. The fabric in the back corner hides a bass trap and acoustic panels can be seen hanging on the side walls.This is the stage of the project where we make all the recording decisions about instrumentation for your project. Depending on the genre this could include tracking drums, acoustic guitar, electric guitar, bass, brass, woodwind, piano, electronic instruments and of course vocals. If you need an instrument for your song that you don’t have access to my studio is outfitted with a good selection of virtual instruments and percussion instruments. I also have contacts for hire that play the real deal if your song calls for it. This includes drums, harmonica, banjo, saxophone, flute, organ, trombone, cello, french horn and others.

Before we record in the studio we will set up a pre-production meeting. This is a short get together (typically 45min) at my studio or over the phone for us to meet each other and talk about the details of your project so things go smoothly.

On the day you come to the studio to record it is important that your musical equipment is in good working order and you have new strings or drum heads for the best possible sound. Worn strings or heads result in a duller recording (which can be OK if this is the sound you want)

There are different ways to record a song, and we can discuss which method is best for you at the pre-production meeting. Sometimes we record all members of the group at the same time. Other times we may start with the drums, bass and a guide vocal with everything else tracked tracked after that, one at a time. As the engineer it is my job to work with you to get the best performance to disc! For recording vocals this could mean tracking multiple takes of a vocal or performance and comping the best parts together for a master take. Other examples could include doubling guitar parts or backing vocals or adding percussion where you have never had the opportunity before. It’s a fun and creative process. Recording in the live room is typically done wearing headphones which I will supply, and no you don’t get to take them home…

To keep things organized I will create a Google Document that I will share with you that helps me keep track of our progress on your project each step of the way allowing anyone to edit or add ideas when inspiration strikes. 

Play and record lights illuminate when the "tape" is rolling.At the end of each session you will receive a rough mix via digital transfer or CD (at your request) to document our progress.   I will require payment via cash, check or Paypal at the end of each session. There is WIFI at the studio.

When tracking is 100% complete I meticulously clean up each track of audio, fix any timing issues in performance and then it is time to move on to mixing! See Mixing Primer for more details.