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"The things that come to those who wait, may be the things left by those who were there first."

~ Steven Tyler


"Today a record producer is even more involved and is often the production's sole musician, one person playing all the instruments one-by-one."

~ Tony Visconti


"Little things can make such a big difference during recording."

~ Matt Cameron


"More than art, more than literature, music is universally accessible...
If you are not doing what you love, you are wasting your time."

~ Billy Joel


"I just need to know that I did the very best I could and that I was true to myself....
anything that your mind can conceive, you can have. It's a reality."

~ Lenny Kravitz


"Throw caution to the wind and just do it."

~ Carrie Underwood


"Life is too short to have anything but delusional notions about yourself."

~ Gene Simmons







Why Experience and Skill Are More Important than Ever


It's clear by now that technology is having an enormous effect on the music business. Between the astounding progress in affordable recording gear, and the explosion of the Internet as a distribution channel, a greater variety of music is available to nearly every listener in the world than ever before.

What's more, the increase in channels offered by cable, satellite TV and radio, and even cell phones, has only broadened the scope of music available.



The Importance of Live Mixing

Years ago, the brilliant cartoonist Gary Larsen published a strip showing a sound man pushing the "suck" button on his board to get back at the band that pissed him off. Every musician that's every worked with a sound engineer gets the point: they can make you or break you.

But even live mixers with the best of intentions don't always do a good job. A lot of them don't know what they're doing. In order to be effective, they have to understand room acoustics (including how materials and people will absorb certain frequencies), electronics, the principles of mixing, and more. It's part science, and part art.

How does one develop this skill? Study with a master -- in the real world. Because the challenging part of live mixing is that every location is different. On-the-job training is vital, only a working pro can teach you how to roll with the punches in every situation. Just ask the bands that depend on them!

Why Musicians Should Know the Recording Studio

When a group goes into the studio, they're putting their art into the hands of the producers and engineers at the controls. If that band, artist, or musician is you, then it's important that you understand the process.

First of all is the performance itself. Is your guitar reacting like it does in other locations? Do you have trouble holding pitch when singing harmonies while wearing headphones? What about the drummer -- what does he need to keep the tempo solid through every track? (Maybe it's cowbell hits on the quarter note, maybe a busier hi-hat eigth note is needed.)

Next is the way sound that comes out during playback. Translating what's in your head -- or what you hear at gigs and rehearsals -- onto a hard-drive is difficult. And nothing is more frustrating than knowing that something is wrong, but not knowing why.

The point is that the more you know about how recording works, the better able you are to ensure that your material will shine as brightly as possible.

While some of the established players in the industry are frightened of the changing landscape (many records labels are running scared), they're missing the big picture:

There are an incredible number of new opportunities for those willing to take advantage of them. Especially those involved in the field of recording. Because let's face it: all that music has to be recorded somehow!

What hasn't changed at all is the value of human knowledge and skill in this field. In fact, they're more important than ever.

Why? Several reasons.


Equipment itself cannot make a good recording.

Sure, you can go to a music store, and, for a few hundred dollars, purchase enough gear to make a quality recording. But you still have to know how to use it properly.

After all, the physics of sound haven't changed, just because technology has advanced. Knowledge of the "basics," like microphone placement, eq paramaters, natural acoustics, etc., are still vital to creating a great sound.


Technology can't network for you.

Unless you're a 21st century Mozart who can "do it all by yourself," you're going to have to work with other people. Musicians, songwriters, singers, producers, marketing people, advertising agencies -- you get the picture. "Who you know" is just as important as it always was!

As a friend in the business once said, "Your relationship chops may be the most important ones in your arsenal."

The most valuble gear you have is sitting on top of your neck.

That's right, we're talking about your ears -- and your brain. The ability to hear and discern great sound is essential in creating great music. But don't get fooled into thinking that you either "have it or you don't." There's no greater fallacy in the music industry. 99% of what appears to be "talent" is simply the result of hard work and dedication.


Now more than ever, people with the experience and skills will be the ones creating memorable sounds. Not to mention the ones who will be well compensated for their efforts!

It's also important to realize that technology has not diminished the joy of making music. In fact, it has enhanced it! There is so much more that is possible now, that creativity is bounded only by your imagination and ability.

So if you love music, and have always wanted to be involved in it's creation, you're lucky! This is an exciting time to be entering the business. Work hard, keep learning, and open yourself up to a world of possibilities





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