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Take Control of Your Recording Sessions

March 17, 2013

How many of you have been in this situation? You’ve got a recording session underway, and you’re going about your usual workflow, and someone questions your judgment. It’s something which seems to happen quite a lot. When a band comes into the studio to record, they have a vision on how they want their tracks to sound, but don’t know how to go about achieving that vision in the recording process. They worry/panic because they’re paying money (usually) for you to realise their vision.

Don’t succumb to a client’s potential panic/worry. If you do, they take control of your session rather than you, and as a result, the final finished product isn’t up-to-par because they don’t know the recording craft as well as you do. This track is branded with your name all over it, and can seriously affect your perceived professional image if you let a client take control of YOUR session. You’ll be doing what they want, rather than you making the creative choices in the studio and continuing with your tried and tested method of working.

By all means, listen to what a band has to say if they have some ideas on how they want their instruments to sound “I want the choruses to sound beefier than the jangly cleans in the verse”, “we want the drums to really smack in the mix” or “we were thinking about having some cool lo-fi ambient part on the bridge”.

At the end of it, you’re a fresh pair of ears for a band, you also have creative input to get the best out of each and every musician. If you feel like that vocal take could be performed better, then get that performance out of them. Say things like, “that take was very close, but let’s get another couple for safety so we can choose between them”. There’s ways about getting what you want, but you have to be pretty euphemistic with it.

By taking control of your sessions and working the way YOU want, you not only provide the musicians with confidence in their performances, but they have confidence and trust in you that you know what you’re doing. They open up, and allow you to almost be a part of their band. So, TAKE CONTROL OF YOUR RECORDING SESSIONS! The final result will benefit from it.

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