If you are planning a phrase-by-phrase approach to tracking vocals in a studio, here are some tips to help make your experience a success. Read the post
It’s great when a vocal performance can be recorded in one cohesive take, but not every session will succeed with this approach. Sometimes, a modular strategy is required when tracking vocals. Read the post.
If you need to collaborate with others to make your project come alive, when do you look locally and when do you search beyond? Here are some guidelines to help you decide when remote musical collaboration is right for your project. Read the post.
When I realized my latest recording project needed live strings to add the energy and timbre the song needed, I ended up collaborating with a cellist from Toronto, with stellar results. Read the post.
When you’re simultaneously artist and engineer, singer and producer, there are plenty of steps you can take to lay the groundwork for a successful recording session. Read the post.
Nailing a transcendent vocal recording can seem like trying to capture lightning in a bottle — but the whole process need not be mysterious or intimidating. Here are a few tips to get you started. Read the post.
If you’re an audio mixing engineer who keeps second-guessing, can’t stop adjusting, or has a hard time walking away from a mix, you’ll benefit from the simple mixing mantras included here. Read More.
Using stereo widening plug-ins in audio mastering to try to expand your mix’s stereo width won’t sound natural and could cause major issues with your finished track. Read more.
Supplying audio files in compressed formats or applying heavy limiting or compression during mix down can compromise your master and negatively impact your audio mastering results. Read more.
If 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.
The mixing puzzle isn’t just a panning issue, but also a frequency issue. What frequencies are overlapping? It’s common with people who are inexperienced, you’re going to take each instrument and solo it, and you’re going to EQ and add effects and say, “Yeah! That’s the bass sound I want!” Then all of a sudden you put it into the track, and the bass sounds terrible. When you’re dealing with EQ and effects, you need to listen to it among multiple tracks to help you to carve out the space. Read more.
Sometimes you have to push to get the best take out of a singer. The artist and the band might be satisfied with a take, but you as the producer or the engineer might feel like there’s something better you can get. So you say, “OK. We’ve got a great take down, let’s roll down the track one more time, and let’s get one more on tape.” Sometimes that’s when something really special happens. You always have to be an encouraging presence. Read more.
No one was closer to Michael Jackson at the height of his creative powers than Bruce Swedien, the five-time Grammy winner who, with Jackson and producer Quincy Jones, formed the trio responsible for the sound of Jackson’s records. Excerpted from Swedien’s book, In The Studio With Michael Jackson, published by Hal Leonard. Read more.