Regional Musician January 2014, West : Page 14

B The Rise of DIY Recording-Why You Should Consider Not Doing It Yourself. by: Scott Leader You’ve Got Your Home Studio lack Friday has come and gone, and with it, I saw some great deals on microphones, pre-amps, and other home studio starter kits that I wish I had available to me when I was a teenager (gasp) 20 years ago. If you have about $500-$1000, a computer, and a quiet place, you can record, edit, and mix your own album on Pro Tools and be ready to sell your music online! Honestly, you can, and this is a great thing. The internet has given artists the ability to reach people all over the planet with the click of a mouse. Tools like the Mbox from Avid, and other home recording de-vices, have enabled anyone to create a professional sound-ing recording at a fraction of the cost of going to a record-ing studio. Awesome! Speaking as someone who makes a living running a studio and producing music, you may feel like my argument is out of fear of losing my relevancy in the current state of music making. Fair enough…but I would like to point out the benefits of using a professional studio and producer for your recordings, especially when you are start-ing out in this business. In addition, I will suggest that the technology has now allowed for you to take advantage of the best of both worlds, recording at home and the studio to save on studio time and budget while getting highest quality product in the end. This should be the goal when you set out to create music that you intend to sell. You’re all starting to sound the same! I recently had the pleasure of being on a panel of music reviewers for a company that was looking for new music for film and TV placement. I listened to 200 submissions and something stuck out right away: I could hear the stock loops in Garage Band, the stock setting for “make vocal reverb,” and other things like this across 30 or 40 of the various artist selections I listened to. I brought this up to the other people on the panel, and it led to a very cool discussion about the general fatigue listeners are starting to have for low-end recordings. About 10-15 years ago, there was a novelty to sitting in your bedroom and putting out a successful album. People were willing to overlook the gen-eral flaws in the execution of the recording because: The music was good (which is 90% of the situation with any recording—I don’t care how good the production is, if the song is bad, its bad…) Not everyone was able to get their music on iTunes, and other download sites. People weren’t yet paying for online music; they were shar-ing it at an unprecedented rate. The problem you have now is that anyone with $50 can utilize Tunecore and upload their music, no matter how poorly produced, onto iTunes, Rhapsody, Spotify, and a thousand other sites. This has created a diverse marketplace of available music—and while everyone likes something different, one interesting thing has popped up: Listeners can now clearly hear the dif-ference between a poor production and something made professionally. They have been inundated with self-made recordings unlike any other time since recorded music has 14 REGIONALMUSICIAN JANUARY 2014

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