Now that you have decided on your set up or method of recording gear and have your studio set up all we need is a little knowledge to start the ongoing learning process of recording techniques. The most reassuring aspect of recording your own music is that it’s all about listening to things and using your ears, nothing more complex than that to start with. If it sounds right then it usually is right.
There are no hard and fast rules about trying to achieve that sound that you’re looking for, but it helps if you know a little about how to get there in the first place, and then you can try and modify as you go along to your personal taste. Producing, recording and mixing songs are step by step process that achieves the end result.
You will be able to read a number of articles and magazines on how to get the best results from your recordings, but only you will know the level you want to achieve, by experimenting with the different sounds you have available to you.
Follow these 6 stages:
- Pre-production (arrangement)
- Recording and sounds
- Producing the song
- Mixing (vital part)
- Finished song
When you have written your song or piece of music and are happy with the arrangement, analyse it, do you want a beginning intro, a chorus and an end, will there be a lead break, if you are happy with it don’t spoil it by trying to make the song to long or short because that’s what you think you must do, let your ears be the judge.
Before you start to record on a computer or recording unit, rehearse it a few times, this will give you the confidence to be able to chop and change and add and take out bits as you go along. When you are happy with your rehearsal and structure of the song, start your recording, very often the first recording can sometimes be the best one, so when complete, listen to it several times before making any changes and make notes as you go along, so you remember what changes you want to make and where.
If you have a friend that has and good listen ear and can be critical but constructive use them to help you to produce the finished piece.
This is where a friend will become vital in final production, a good producer will be able to help spot a good arrangement and help add to the song and tell you where the and what to do to make the song sound right. Its often hard when you have been working on the song, but don’t lose sight of what you are trying to achieve, you want other people to hear your song so you need other people ears to get the final production just right.
Very much over looked, mixing can sometimes take long than recording the song, mixing can be an art, again, and if you have a friend/producer that can help you use them.
Don’t rush the mixing of your song, you have taken a long time to get where you are, try as many different mixes as you can then play them back through different devices, not just your studio equipment, what’s the song sound like on your home stereo or in the car.
Finally mastering the song, the finished article, again don’t rush it, you want the recording to be perfect.
Now you have your recorded song on a CD, in its little plastic box, what are you going to do with it? It needs to stand out amongst all the other thousands of CDs that are sent out record company’s and music library companys.So market your song, make a special cover for the CD case, what do you want the CD to look like, invest in a proper soft wear package that will make a nice print for the CD. Get some decent CDs to record on so you get the best quality you can, you have spent a great deal of time on you song so complete the project.
Now you want to send out your CD, make a note of the company’s you want to send out to and do some research, make sure that your CD gets to the right person or department or that their the right company, no point sending out your CD if your into rock music and the company does only hip hop stuff.
How you goanna send out, a simple envelope, so may be damaged when it gets there, again invest a little time a money, a jiffy envelope, with a brief letter or card or pop up tool as they open the envelope. Don’t forget you need to attract their attention from the moment they open your parcel and if they like and see athat someone ahs put effort into marketing their song; they will be inclined to give it a listen rather than stick it on a pile with other CDs.
Follow it up with a letter, then a telephone them, if you can get through, be cheeky ask for the CD back!