I remember one day, while in a recording session, (before I had my own studio) I realized that I needed to add some extra "sounds" or effects to the song I was working on. My goal was to make it similar to the familiar tracks of signed artists on the major labels . . .
The studio I was in at the time had an impressive assortment of microphones, outboard gear, patch cords and candy machines, but there was nothing else there (except a grand piano) that could take my song from "guitar, bass and drums" to the polished stuff that was earning millions in royalties on the radio! . . .
I decided to do something about it.
Build a studio where musicians can create and polish their songs - using the same "sweetening" equipment the pros use.
There are many factors involved in making a hit record these days besides the actual song itself. There are some important things to consider even before the first note is recorded.
Many people still believe that getting a few people together, laying down basic tracks and doing overdubs is going to be enough to compete in today's market-
The first thing that I think is of great importance is to be sure that the vocal is sitting correctly in the track before any of the other instruments are finalized.
Is it in the right key? Is the melody all there? Is the singer confident and comfortable? In most studios the vocal is the last thing that is recorded. It is one of - if not the most important components in the song.
This should actually be addressed before the song has been learned, as switching keys is usually a pain.
But - if it makes the lead vocal jump out at you, instead of trying to hide it in the mix (because the singer is straining to hit the notes) - shouldn't you take the time for the sake of the song?
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