First time in a real recording studio...

Discussion in 'Bass Humor & Gig Stories [BG]' started by JoeDaddio, Apr 16, 2012.

  1. And I had a pretty good time.

    Things I learned:

    There's a lot more down time than I assumed. For the engineer they had a lot going on, but I just sat there and ate candy and drank coffee till they told me I was up.

    It was a little nerve wracking to be standing there inside a fish bowl having everyone look at your every move.

    I had the jitters kinda bad on the first song. I did two takes of the entire song, and then three or four of the ending.

    The next two (we only recorded three) I did in two takes. A couple dead notes here and there each time, but the engineer liked it and said he would take care of the couple screw ups, no big deal (yay studio magic!)

    So it was a good experience. I can't wait to see how they turned out. The songs weren't the best regarding how much I got to do on bass (two harder, driving rock songs and one that goes between mellow strumming guitar with me being the only bottom end and heavily distorted guitar) but I'm in a rock band, so what do I expect ;)

    We have a couple songs where I can shine a bit, but we didn't record those. Maybe next time! After we get them up I'll hopefully be able to share them with y'all. I'm pretty stoked to have been professionally recorded with an originals band. I can't wait to see how it sounds.


  2. RockTillWeDrop


    Feb 28, 2012
    Nice, Studio looks fab, I've only recorded in a small recording studio, that was about 2 weeks ago! really fun recording! hope your soings sound awesome!
  3. I always found there was a LOT more pressure when I was alone. In my drumming days, I got to do some studio work with two different bands and the experiences could not have been more different.

    Band #1 - the three of us went in, cut 10 songs in two days live... bang, bang, bang. Singer overdubbed her lead vocals in about 2-3 hours. Two or three I did in one take. It was a dream. I also did a shaker and a tambourine. Badda bing, badda boom, done. Everything sounded fantastic. The guy made my second hand Tamas sound like a full blown set of custom maple DWs. It was one of the greatest weeks of my life.

    Band #2 - Recorded drums only for two songs, played to a nauseating click track with a couple of scratch guitars that were not entirely in time with said click. Took me 15 takes and a nervous breakdown to get one tune. Got the second one a bit faster, but only after I argued with the engineer over tuning, playing style, etc. While I was out getting lunch, he detuned all of my drums until they sounded like cardboard boxes. It was a miserable experience.

    I guess I always found it much easier when I was playing with the rest of my bandmates.

  4. I just joined this band and these aren't my songs, so I really don't have much say in anything and don't force myself in to what they've got going on too much.

    I suppose that my idea would be to be able to hit it live as much as possible and then add in extra guitars and whatnot later. the singer and guitar player had a way they wanted to do things, and I was just along for the ride. And on top of that, I don't know a thing about recording.

    My tone wasn't anything to brag about. I think that next time I'm going to insist on using my rig rather than the DI.

    The songs came out pretty good, I think. It's good bar rock and fun to play and listen to. My bass playing seemed a little stale (could just be me, the rest of the band liked it) and I can hear my nervousness in it with regards to how safe I was playing the parts.

    it was a good experience and a learning process for next time. I think I needed to be less concerned with getting it done in just a couple takes and try to push it a bit more. But I got through it and can now say I've helped make a CD! (well, at least three songs!)

  5. sloppy_phil


    Aug 21, 2011
    Toronto, ON, Canada
    Not actually named Phil
    cool man, that looks like a nice studio! i'm sure it was fun.

    In regards to how you feel about your takes; it's about balancing your own personal satisfaction with the clock (assuming you are doing an hourly-type arrangement). I don't want to put out a take that I don't feel satisfied with, but I won't obsess over it either. It's gotta serve the music, make me feel pleased with it, and not take up too much time(=money). We usually track our stuff live off the floor, so in my case it's about balancing against the band's take also.


    Apr 16, 2010
    Going into a legitimate studio is awesome.
    I have a funny story about my experience a few years ago.
    We had been together for a couple years and a couple guys in the band had major money. So as crappy as we were didn't keep us out of the "Let's make a CD" challenge.
    The Drummer and I had the stuff down on the first two takes.
    However, the two guitar players (the rich guys) had a lot of problems.
    Now in the control booth is the "captain" an engineer and the bass player, Bruce for Foreigner.

    After many trys the Guitarist could not get the intro down for a song. The Bassist for Foreigner walks in to the booth and offers to play the intro. Oh man, this guy was a great musician all around.
    The guitar player cops an attiude and I laughed my a$$ off.
    What? a bass player is going to show the guitar player how to play the intro?
    Anyway.. the experience way so great. So professional.

    We ordered a Pizza and it didn't come. So I got on the phone and said (with the Foreigner bassist sitting there) that this is
    "Urgent and I don't want it Cold as Ice" We laughed our butts off. We got a good CD for a couple grand and everyone was happy.
  7. JTFormula


    Jan 20, 2011
    Brick, NJ
    Cool story. It's always best to be tight before you go into a studio. Nothing like the bass player to show the guitarist how it's done. Lol - so do Bruce laugh or sneer at your "cold as ice"?

    Back in 89 I did my first studio album (which sucked by the way) We also ordered pizza. Must be a thing with musicians.


    Apr 16, 2010
    He laughed and had a great time. He actually liked my bass playing. He was a studio engineer among all his other talents.
    Man... when we would play and he would show up just to hang out... the ladies would be all over him. Cool guy all the way around. Never asked to grab my bass.
    Don't know what he is doing anymore but it was fun when he was around.
  9. chaosMK


    May 26, 2005
    Albuquerque, NM
    Too much hip thrust
    Sounds cool. I think you are starting to hear the fine points. Once you have an ear for how every detail is being captured, it'll drive you crazy! ;)

    I record pretty slow, even though I come in very well prepared (it took me around 18 hrs on my last ~40 min prog metal album). I am not against doing 10 takes to capture a particular part awesomely, but I aim to work fast. I don't settle for less than at least 9/10 performance on everything, then let them work their studio magic to enhance that initial performance. It comes down to time and budget, but it's worth it. I've listened to and enjoyed my various recordings hundreds of times over the years... imagine if something were irritating and all you had to do was spend another 2-3 minutes on it.

    I finally got some basic home recording stuff so I can get a better feel for exactly what/how things are being captured and fine tune the performance at my leisure. It's been a great tool for me.
  10. Still wicked cool.
  11. We ordered pizza as well. But it was Pizza hut so i only had one slice and filled up on coffee and Riesens.

  12. Dave W

    Dave W

    Mar 1, 2007
    Westchester, NY
    Nice! Sounds like fun to me!!!
  13. This is me staring at the ground trying to concentrate on not screwing up too badly :oops:


  14. Vinz Clortho

    Vinz Clortho

    Feb 15, 2009
    The last session I did was tiring but definitely a blast. It was primarily weeknights and the studio was about a two hour drive away from us. I couldn't take time off of work because I need cash money so I ended up getting off work at 4, getting to the studio at 6, driving back around 2 in the morning and getting 4 hours of sleep for the next day. Thankfully though a few sessions were Fridays so that I could get some real sleep.

    The engineer we worked with was really chill and had a real "go with what works" attitude. I play guitar in this band and I brought a digital processor to use, and much to my surprise he wasn't the least bit skeptical in its tone. He also didn't use a click, so every time we went to record a drum track I'd play along to my drummer for him to keep track of the parts and transitions. Although it was a bit of a pain in the ass it also meant that by the time my guitar parts rolled around I had gotten hours of practice with them prior, so at least 2/3 of the guitar was first-take material :D. I don't think we spent longer than 5 or 6 hours on the guitars, including double tracking and arguing over how certain parts went. My (now former) bassist also wasn't totally practiced on many of the songs due to work commitments, etc so I got to do a lot of bass as well.

    Was a blast and would definitely do it again.
  15. kraigo


    Jun 21, 2007
    Minneapolis, MN
    In those cases I have the click loud and the scratch tracks practically non-existent. I only want to hear my allies. I kill as much of anything that will lead me astray as I can.

  16. This got a chuckle out of me :D
  17. I have only recorded in a professional studio a handful of times, but I learned two things. It can't be fixed in the mix and the engineer is not the guy who pays for the pizza.
  18. I just found out last night that Hadrien Feraud helped with backup vocals on the day I missed in the studio. Just my luck :crying:

  19. Hi Guys, this Friday is my first time in studio, any advice will be welcome..Thanks