From the category archives:

Fast Forward

Music News: Adele breaks sales’ record, Willie Nelson gets Gershwin Award, Shrapnel records catalog acquired by The Orchard

by Andre Calilhanna November 25, 2015

music news adele 25Whatever you think of Adele’s decision to follow the likes of Taylor Swift and Thom Yorke and sidestep streaming services like Apple Music and Spotify, she’s proven again that she has the star power and “four quadrant” appeal to change the trajectory of album sales for the industry this year. Read more.


Music production basics – Part 1: amplitude and automation

by Robert Willey November 24, 2015

music production basicsControlling volume is one of the most important elements in audio production. Understanding amplitude, volume, normalization, and automation are all part of music production basics and will help you in the recording and mixing phases of your project. Read more.


What is the difference between loudness, volume and gain?

by Ken Theriot November 20, 2015

loudness volume and gainSometimes “useful” is better than “precise,” though it is helpful to know what the differences are between technical terms in the recording studio. Even if you do misuse terms like loudness, volume, and gain on a regular basis. I work in the audio world and I still had to look up the exact definition of “gain.” Read more.


Changing the pressure during your live performances

by Andre Calilhanna and Tom Jackson November 19, 2015

change the pressure during live  preformancesBeing intentional with different visual presentations for the variety of moods your songs invoke is part of what Tom Jackson calls changing the pressure on your audience during your live performances. “I’m not talking about acting or choreography, I’m talking about thinking, “What should this song look like?'” Read more.


How to survive as a solo cover musician

by Chris Huff November 12, 2015

solo cover musicianIt’s a cliché to say that show business is tough, but the reality is that it’s worse than that. It eats good people alive. Here are three survival skills I’d like to pass along that have helped me get through 15 years playing solo acoustic cover songs in bars, restaurants, private parties, corporate events, and pig roasts in cemeteries. Read more.


Are you ready to work with a vocal producer?

by Keith Hatschek November 10, 2015

vocal producer in the studioTraditionally, a record producer is tasked with the big picture – the entire recording process. A vocal producer is a specialist who concentrates on getting the best vocal performance possible. We spoke with David Pramik to learn more about the role of a vocal producer and what benefits an artist receives when working with one. Read more.

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Music for video games: advice from a top music publisher

by Michael Gallant November 6, 2015

game music supervisorWhile you may find success placing music in smaller-scale video games, music publisher Jake Versluis (Director of A&R Creative for Position Music) says you need a long-term plan, a big-time work ethic, and really great music to land your work in the big-league titles. Read more.


Audio mastering basics for your home studio

by Izotope November 5, 2015

audio masteringIf you focus too much of your work on a single instrument in a complex arrangement, you likely will miss the fact that even if you have improved the sound of that one instrument, everything else may have been impacted negatively. Get the mix you want, mix down to a stereo file, and then perform mastering as a separate last step. Read more.


Is it time to take the plunge or hang up the axe?

by Andre Calilhanna November 2, 2015

performing liveA personal exploration into this writer’s lack of enthusiasm for performing live. It’s been a part of my life for over 30 years, I’ve been at this for so long. I’ve been practicing with my buddy and collaborator for three years, and we can be impressive when we play to our strengths. – what’s holding me back? Read more.


Virtual instruments – the secret ingredient of film, TV, and video game music

by Martina McConnon October 28, 2015

virtual instrumentsEver wonder who plays the Hollywood scores? Not so long ago, film scores were recorded in studios and on sound stages. These days, that brilliant score might not have been played by a live orchestra. Technology allows virtual instrument developers to create near-identical versions of real-life instruments. Read more.


Music news: Happy Birthday’s disputed rights, vinyl vs. streaming, and the last CD-R for Taiyo Yuden

by Andre Calilhanna October 27, 2015

music news happy birthday“Happy Birthday To Me:” a complicated history – and future – for the world’s simplest song; vinyl sales continue to make headlines, with sales generating more revenue than free Spotify, YouTube, and VEVO combined; JVC and Taiyo Yuden to stop producing optical media – FalconMedia remains a reliable option. Read more.


Seven ways to increase YouTube views

by Jason Feehan and Randy Chertkow October 22, 2015

increase YouTube viewsBecause YouTube has become the number one search engine for music, if you’re an independent musician planning on posting videos to YouTube, work to increase YouTube views and the number of clicks for your next creation by following these seven steps. Read more.

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The initial mistakes (almost) every young musician makes

by Dani Rabin October 19, 2015

young musician career choicesEvery young musician – or anyone starting out on a music career path – has a lot to understand about where to focus his or her time and energy. The bad news is that every field in music is extremely competitive. The good news is that once you decide exactly what you want to do, you will have a big advantage to finding success. Read more.