Getting studio time is expensive. The recording process can often leave you frustrated and disappointed. Fear no more: I have 5 tips that will change everything. And make you a boss in the booth.
Practice your chops by getting your own home studio
Learn how to edit your vocals
Develop your own repertoire of signature melodies, licks, phrases, ad libs and runs.
Develop a workflow to record complete songs.
Always warm up.
Getting your own home studio means many things. First, it substantially diminishes the amount you pay to record your songs. Second, it takes away the pressure of recording in front of other people. Third, it allows you to find the best ways to record your own voice and how to make it shine in its own unique way!
Editing vocals is a subtle art and is often overlooked. I have seen countless artists come back home to listen to their rough mix only to realize the engineer or producer had not kept the best performances. Ultimately, what you want is to be able to mentally guide these guys as you record, from the booth. Soon enough, you'll have a mental picture of how many harmony tracks you need, what to record first, etc.
Do not thwart your creativity during sessions by not being able to take your song elsewhere when something does not work. What I mean by that is sometimes, the producer won't like a melody. If you mentally collect riffs and ad-lib melodies, you will have a healthy arsenal of music you can sing on the fly to keep it moving and finish up songs.
When you enter the booth, you should have mapped out how your are going to record the whole song. Are you going to lay the chorus down first? Or maybe you are going to start by recording all verse leads? Whatever it is, make sure it is planned in a way that won't tire you in the first few minutes. You're the boss: engineers and producers need to follow you and assist you on the best way to get YOUR vision across in the DAW.
Last but not least, take good care of your voice. If you want stamina in the studio, warm up. Even if you're a rapper! There is nothing more frustrating than having your voice give in halfway through the session and not really having anything to show for by then.
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You don’t need anything. You can achieve incredible mixes on your white iPhone earbuds for all I care, given that you understand their frequency response (what they sound like at each crucial frequency bands). So my short answer to the question in the title is: headphones. Plain and simple. Oh… and here are 5 reasons why.