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How do you balance family and work?


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I'd REALLY appreciate everyone's thoughts on this:

 

I am a new Dad (three months), and naturally the adjustment is tougher than I expected, but it's getting to the point where it's a problem.

 

My wife and I just bought a house, and I'm meeting with a consultant to figure out how to build a pro studio on the property ground up. Meanwhile, I'm tracking people and doing post on a setup in a bedroom with an iso booth built outside the room's window.

 

Here's the problem: between tracking, figuring out the new studio, networking (and reading/learning from these forums http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/biggrin.gif ), I easily spend a good 12 hours a day (on a short day) trying to accomplish everything necessary.

 

The wife is starting to get fed up.

 

She claims I don't spend enough time with her and our son, which sometimes is true, and she refuses to accept the time I have to put in to finish all the things I have on the plate right now.

 

In particular are networking and spening time online to learn and research.

 

How do you explain these kind of things to your significant other? I've tried explaining to her that the studio will be our living soon enough, and networking, researching and continually learning are extremely important to being successful at the studio game. It doesn't seem to sink in.

 

How does your wife (or husband) react when you come home from 16 hours in the studio or 4 hours at the clubs networking? How do you get them to understand?

 

I'd really appreciate anyones thoughts on this; it may be critical to holding my family together.

 

Thanks.. http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/smile.gif

 

All the best to you all,

 

Harold

meh
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rold,

I'm pickin' up what your layin' down! I have 4 kids, a wife, a job that has me travelling all over the country, a working band, a studio, I'll do side jobs in the evenings when I am in town, ahhh! I'm busy everyday, and when I do have a day off, I sleep all day (or gear hunt) and I'm a grouchy bastard when I get up! I'll admit I haven't been the best father on the planet, but lucky for me, my wife is totally cool about what I do, and is into raising the kids right. When she does get bitchy about things, I'll try to be around a little more, then I usually start the whole process up again.

 

PS: If you want to make it doing whatever, you have to go and get it, it won't come knocking on your door.

good luck, drugs help, http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/smile.gif

-Hippie

In two days, it won't matter.
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Rold,

 

I'm not married, (sigh), and I don't even have a significant other (SIGH.) However, I have made a commitment in my mind that family is first. Obviously, I don't know everything about your circumstances, but I will go out on a limb and say that it may be acceptable for you to scale back a bit on work so that your family doesn't suffer. Your lifestyle may also have to be scaled back (there's that money thing again), but a happy family having to watch its finances is better (in my opinion) than an unhappy family with total financial security. Sometimes a sacrifice does have to be made so that worse things don't happen.

 

"In particular are networking and spending time online to learn and research."

 

A partial solution that comes to mind is to exchange e-mails with some of the folks on this board. That way, you can ask a specific question and have it come back to you directly, rather than sifting through everything on the board or trying to find a page dealing with the information you're after.

 

I, for one, would definitely be willing to work with you on this. (I changed my profile so that my e-mail should show up on my postings now.) It is true that I am a rookie engineer, but I am a professional just the same. At the very least, I can offer opinions. (Like I did above.) http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/biggrin.gif

 

In any case, I wish you and your new family the very best.

 

-Danny

 

------------------

Of all the things that I have lost, I miss my mind the most.

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Hi Hippie:

 

Thanks for your input.. http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/smile.gif

 

Shee-it your a busy man! I'm actually kinda glad I don't have that much on my plate cuz I definitely wouldn't be able to keep up.. http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/biggrin.gif

 

As far as being around more, what you're saying makes a tonne of sense. I'm around a minimum 18 hours a day; before we moved here we saved enough dough to see us through the building of the studio and start-up time, so I don't really have to worry about a day job, etc. I mean, I'm in the house, anytime the wife wants to bring the kid over for a visit, I'm right there. But she doesn't. I spend a few hours a day taking care of him, and even that's not enough.

 

 

As far as having to "go and get it", what do you mean? As in something to tell her to justify networking, or...?

 

You're right, drugs do help. Particularly a nice phatty... http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/biggrin.gif However, wife hates that too..lol

 

Is it safe to say that new moms are simply insane? http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/biggrin.gif

 

Thanks again.. http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/smile.gif

 

Harold

 

This message has been edited by rold on 05-20-2001 at 03:18 PM

meh
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Hi Danny:

 

Thanks for your input!

 

I love the idea of the email thing, not having to sift through junk to get what you need...works well with specific stuff, but what do you do when it's more obscure or generalized things? Like for instance the 96/192 debate...I'm learning a tonne from that...With research, it's hours of surfing trying to find studio designs and such. There aren't a lot out there...

 

Thanks as well for the thoughts on scaling back work and changing the lifestyle. You're probably right; although it will delay the opening of the studio, I think it needs to be done.

 

Networking though; everything that's gone well for me in this business started at a club. I get to spend maybe 8 hours a week total in the scene as it is, and I'm meeting people, session players and potential clients like crazy, other engineers etc....Maybe that needs to be scaled down too, but at what cost?

 

Thanks again for your input; will be putting it to use... http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/smile.gif

 

Harold

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Check out the "Married to a Musician" thread in this very forum. We're not alone here. Doctors, lawyers, and busy CEO's all have the same problem. I say we do what they do and keep the little missus so busy spending our money that she doesn't have time to complain. Waitaminit... oh right... we don't have any money ... shit ...

Stephen Fortner

Principal, Fortner Media

Former Editor in Chief, Keyboard Magazine

Digital Piano Consultant, Piano Buyer Magazine

 

Industry affiliations: Antares, Arturia, Giles Communications, MS Media, Polyverse

 

 

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Rold,

 

To preface, I'm 27, have a day job that keeps me going about 50-55 hours a week, I have a studio in the basement, a woodshop in the garage, a good group of friends, and most importanly, a wife and a 4 month old son. I believe that this makes me qualified to be able to answer?

 

Originally posted by rold:

I am a new Dad (three months),

 

Congratulations!! This is a great thing. I'm very happy for you and your wife. As a new father myself I can sympathize with the difficulty in adjustment and share in your excitement when your baby does the most adorable things.

 

Originally posted by rold:

My wife and I just bought a house,

 

Congratulations again! This, too, is a great thing. My wife and I bought our second house three years ago and there's nothing quite like turning the lock on the door for the first time and walking in with the proud sigh that says, "Ahhh.......this is mine". Between this and the baby you must be very proud!

 

Originally posted by rold:

Here's the problem: between tracking, figuring out the new studio, networking (and reading/learning from these forums http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/biggrin.gif ), I easily spend a good 12 hours a day (on a short day) trying to accomplish everything necessary.

 

Actually, I think that you may have misidentified the problem. It sounds to me like you made a commitment 12 months ago and weren't sure of everything that was going to be involved in the commitment. Being a father is not just an evening activity for an hour that consists of reading a quick bedtime book and changing a diaper to validate your fatherhood.

 

Being a father means that you owe a tremendous amount MORE time to the family than you ever did before. If you are the breadwinner in the household and your wife is a stay at home mom, you still have a tremendous amount of obligations. In the evenings you need to take on MORE of the responsibilities than she does because your wife has been watching the child all day.

 

Now I'll tell you this. I'm a bad father so far. Kind of. I mean I'm just not very good at some of these things. First, I'm really bad at breast feeding. Second, I can never seem to get the bugger to sleep. And third, when he's REALLY putting up a good fuss, I just am totally incompetent at getting him to calm down. The natural motherly instinct is a wonderful thing, and when Avery is putting up a fit, all my wife has to do is pick him up and it all goes away.

 

This does NOT, however, excuse me from responsibilities. Not only do I need to participate in the best ways that I can, but I also need to contribute an incredible amount of time at taking care of the rest of the family obligations. This means giving up on my weekly basketball games, not playing racquetball in the evening, and getting home from work 15 mintues to an hour earlier than I used to. When I AM home, if my wife is feeding the youngun, guess who's on dinner committee? How about paying bills, mowing the lawn, picking up the house, scrubbing the toilets, doing the laundry, and pampering the wife committee??

 

The problem isn't the amount of time that you're trying to squeeze in elsewhere. The problem is the amount of time that you're not squeezing in where you need to.

 

Originally posted by rold:

The wife is starting to get fed up.

 

Well, to be honest, I really can't blame her. Man to man, of course, and no offense intended.

 

Originally posted by rold:

She claims I don't spend enough time with her and our son, which sometimes is true, and she refuses to accept the time I have to put in to finish all the things I have on the plate right now.

 

OK, now here I see some of the problem. You claim that she refuses to accept the time that you have to put in to finishing all the things you have going on.

 

The problem to me sounds like you are refusing to accept the time that you obligated 9 months before the child was born. You may not have realized at that time that the decision to have a child was going to mean that your time would be cut drastically, but negligence is not a valid cop-out here. You are now obligated by yourself, recognize it or not, to giving every waking moment that you're not at work to parenting: hard core parenting. The problem is that you are trying to get out of this time now to invest in something else.

 

Originally posted by rold:

In particular are networking and spening time online to learn and research.

 

OK, so I know very little about networking, and am unqualified to comment on this. As for the time learning, I think that Hippie makes a few good points.

 

As great as these forums are for some things, I belive that there is probably a more efficient way of learning and researching. Many of my clients utilize me directly for that. Many people read books. One of the ways that I learned a lot was just by diving in and screwing up every now and then.

 

Originally posted by rold:

How do you explain these kind of things to your significant other?

 

You don't. Unless, of course, you want to hear an earful about the amount of time that she has to spend rearing the child right now. I guarantee you that this conversation would be an impass. I think that the best thing for you to do is to slow down your studio plan to a pace that can accomodate the responsibilities of fatherhood. I have done the same myself. There are still those days when I am gone to a tracking session, or where I have to lock myself up in the basement mastering a project. Typically, though, I let my wife know well in advance of these rare occasions, and then I offer to her an equal opportunity. Example - I take the child all day Saturday while I give her some much needed time to have a quiet house and get some voice lessons in.

 

Originally posted by rold:

I've tried explaining to her that the studio will be our living soon enough, and networking, researching and continually learning are extremely important to being successful at the studio game. It doesn't seem to sink in.

 

This is very important, and requires a complete paradigm shift. The studio business is just flat out NOT a lucrative business. Further, it takes WAY too much time.

 

OK, now that out of the way, it clearly is not condusive to early fatherhood. Just the same, my wife's profession of being a touring opera singer is not very condusive to new motherhood. Both of us had to put our dreams on hold for a bit....or at least slow them down. Someday I may have a studio that is my complete source of income, but I would encourage you that if it doesn't need to be, it shouldn't be.

 

Having a studio is great fun, and deserves to be a part of your life, but the less you are obliged to it the more fun and rewarding it will be.

 

Just like sex - some fantasies are best served to remain a fantasy. Sometimes the logistics involved in making a fantasy a reality just aren't worth it.

 

I would highly encourage that you take a second look at what you're getting yourself into. You now have three months of experience in the dual life of a studio cat and a father. Look where it's going so far. I'm only feeding off of the energy and the vibe that you're sending to me. The vibe is telling me that this game isn't working so far. I guarantee you you're wife's perspective isn't going to change, so the only thing that can change here is you.

 

If you need any more insight into the topic of "taking a studio from hobby to livelihood.........and then back again." let me know. I have MANY MANY customers that can give you a lot to chew on in this field.

 

Originally posted by rold:

How does your wife (or husband) react when you come home from 16 hours in the studio or 4 hours at the clubs networking?

 

Just like I would expect her to.

 

Originally posted by rold:

How do you get them to understand?

 

How does she get YOU to understand?

 

Originally posted by rold:

I'd really appreciate anyones thoughts on this; it may be critical to holding my family together.

 

Harold,

 

I don't know about you, but holding the family together is job #1 for me. Everything else (including my job) is sacrificable for the sake of holding the family together. With this in mind, figure out what holding the family together is going to take and move that direction full steam ahead. Do not look back. If this means that the studio becomes an agonizing three year process instead of a chipper three month process, fine.

 

You do not have an inalienable right to have a studio, but your wife has an inalienable right to have a husband and your child has an inalienable right to have a father.

 

Choose your priorities from here on out very wisely.

 

I hope that my writing has not been too strong and unsympathetic. I really tried to have my wife respond to your question so that you could have the female perspective here, but she is too busy taking advantage of a few moments here in the middle of the afternoon to do what SHE wants to do.

 

Meanwhile, I apologize also if my writing has been disjointed. Avery has learned that, while sitting on daddy's lap, hitting the keyboard with open palms makes the same sound that daddy makes when he's typing. Between that and getting dinner on this post has taken a bit long to type.

 

I seriously hope that you read it in the way that it is intended, and I hope that you gain something from it. I'm just trying to put it all on the line for you.

 

Let me know if I can be of any benefit.

 

I wish you the best, Harold.

 

With the utmost in sincerity,

Nika.

 

 

This message has been edited by Nika on 05-20-2001 at 07:28 PM

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dude, i feel for ya but my advise is cut out the clubbing. your work will speak much louder than you can at a club. i have a 16mo and quickly got in the doghouse doing the same thing the first 6 months. at least you will have time to spend with her at night before she passes out from exaustion. sometimes when they say you arent spending enough time as the father, they REALLY mean your not giving THEM enough attention. gotta make this quick as i got to go tuck my little boy in bed as well.

 

focus on two things, getting your studio done and your family. when its done, get some bands in and you will be suprized how quickly others find out about the work if its any good. i got so many lined up right now i dont even have time to do all of them. go out to clubs later when the baby is older and you can take your wife with you... she is going to want to get out too after the baby is stabalized more. my wife and i just went out the other night and saw some great bands, had this incredible band in to record and they loved my son... he was showing off playing the drums for them. i'll check back later, gotta run now.

alphajerk

FATcompilation

"if god is truly just, i tremble for the fate of my country" -thomas jefferson

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Originally posted by Nika:

If you need any more insight into the topic of "taking a studio from hobby to livelihood.........and then back again." let me know. I have MANY MANY customers that can give you a lot to chew on in this field.

 

Nika, *awesome* post... You should rewrite it into an article for publication.

 

Just my 0.02 here -- I never owned a studio, but I used to work in a few... And I'm *soooooo* much happier now with a little home studio for fun (not profit) and a full time job doing something else. What I observed with studios (at least where I live) is that they're generally not money-making businesses. (Q: How do you make a small fortune in the music biz? A: Start with a large fortune.)

 

I agree with Nika -- you should probably slow down what you're doing to focus more on your family. You didn't specify if recording is currently your full-time job or if you were doing something else full-time, but I'd recommend doing the recording thing part time and then also doing something which would provide a more stable source of income.

 

Sorry if this post seems a little pessimistic -- perhaps you're located in an area of the country where many musicians will gladly pay a fair price for someone else to record them. It's just that, where I live, I've seen that nearly every studio which I had some contact with five years ago is no longer in business today.

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Hi Nika:

 

Congrats to you too! If you're ever in BC we'll need to grab a beer and exchange experiences!

 

Much appreciated post...in most ways you are comletely right! For others you would really have to see this...it's not something I would want to describe in a public forum; it's pretty extreme.. http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/wink.gif

 

In a general way, though, you're right, and I appreciate hearing it from someone who understands in a general way.. http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/smile.gif BTW I saw that pic of Avery - congrats again! Looks like a really healthy, happy child.. http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/smile.gif

 

And no worries about how you're saying things; after reading these forums for months I have a pretty damn good recognition of your no-bullshit-in-your-face approach! Need more people like that on earth.. http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/smile.gif

 

Now, I would like to address the most-likely-to-fail-looks-like-it's-failing-now thing I've read in both yours and pop's posts.

 

I've been doing nothing but music, biz and peripheral stuff for 13 years. I hear ya pop; I too have seen a lot of ventures like this fail. My education (both college/experience) was based on this studio. This will be my fourth (first serious one), and I know the troubles I ran into every time and you won't see those mistakes happen anymore.. http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/smile.gif

 

Part of that was finances. I think it's pretty simple: go easy on recording bands - they typically don't have a lot of money, most of them under the poverty line - I know, I've done the circuit myself and spent a good 13 years dealing with that. It's been covered in the business plan.

 

Also, the whole wearing multiple hats at the same time thing really does kill a lot of people. The whole jack-of-many-trades-master-of-none thing will easily see a good engineer a sour businessman, and that's been covered too - I've only been professionally playing the consoles three years, so I'm not by anyone's standards a seasoned pro.

 

That's why, with this studio, I will be the owner/junior engineer/sales guy, and other, more reputable and capable engineers are being hired for the good stuff. That way I stay up on the humble learning curve, and concentrate heavily on the business side of things. The studios I've seen fail have all failed because the owner/engineers were really poor business people. Not nearly enough marketing, not enough time spent going out and getting those kick-ass-(financially too)gigs. Of course it's gonna fail!

 

Anyway, that's been my experience, and what I've learned has been addressed in the plan. However, I still need to learn, and Nika, I will take you up on that "let me know if you need more insight thing".. http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/smile.gif Please let me know how!

 

Thanks again for your posts and support! Yes, my ass does need to be kicked into motion once in a while.. http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/smile.gif

 

All the very best,

 

Harold

meh
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Pops, thank you for your post... http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/smile.gif

 

I can see how you'd feel the way you do about turning the studio back into a hobby. However, I feel that when a venture is really, really succeeding, the fun is back - cruises with the staff, parties, etc. I mean, it takes a tonne of work to get there and that's all a massive headache, but when that level is reached, where different people wear different hats, and all is honest and good, it is very enjoyable.

 

I could see people like George, Ed and Roger having a tonne more fun with what they're doing, because they're not the ones that have to worry themselves with all the frustrating and menial shit like collections, etc. Makes engineering engineering and peripherals secondary.

 

As far as engineering being my fulltime job, it isn't, never has been and will hopefully be when the right time comes. For the next few years, I will be doing some hardcore learning and studio management, and when I'm truly comfortable being a fulltime engineer, that'll happen. For now, I have to get a studio ground up and running, serious engineers in the rooms and a bottom line raising out of the reds. BTW, making this studio a hobby and getting a consistent day job is neither a necessity nor an option. The only reason we were able to talk the bank into giving us enough money for a house, an acre of near-ocean-front property, and a budget for a pro studio ground-up and skeleton-staffed is because of the proposition of the studio itself. There is a fairly good budget to this whole operation and it will be done properly, and that takes time which brings me to the family.

 

The family definitely needs more of my time...this is all new to me and music and it's mazes have been my life since I turned a teen. The adjustment is slow and sometimes painful (othertimes really pleasureable), but I am willing and devoted to make it work. Which is why I need, and do take in suggestions like yours and nika's. Thank you again.. http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/smile.gif

 

All the best,

 

Harold

 

PS As for the area we moved to, imagine a population of 1000, made up of well-to-do hippies (wierd concept, have to factor in BC's second largest export.. http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/wink.gif )99% of which are musicians (some ridiculously famous), and actors on a semi-isolated coast which is mega-beautiful and within a 40 minute boat ride to Canada's most thriving film and TV scene. North Hollywood they call it.. http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/smile.gif Have you ever seen the show Beachcombers? This is where it was based.

meh
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>>You're right, drugs do help. Particularly a nice phatty... However, wife hates that too..lol<<

 

Harold, do pardon me for chiming in here, but...

 

This is anectdotal, but I quit smoking weed several months ago. After about 4 weeks, it hit me how my powers of concentration have become greatly enhanced compared to when I was smoking. You may want to consider laying off the weed, at least until your kid is old enough to look out for himself. In the meantime, you'll need to keep your wits about you at all times. That's the nature of being a responsible parent. Drugs do not help, contrary to whatever hype may be thrown your way. Stick to beer and wine.

 

Just my $0.02US...

curvedominant

Eric Vincent (ASCAP)

www.curvedominant.com

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Originally posted by alphajerk:

dude, i feel for ya but my advise is cut out the clubbing. your work will speak much louder than you can at a club. i have a 16mo and quickly got in the doghouse doing the same thing the first 6 months. at least you will have time to spend with her at night before she passes out from exaustion. sometimes when they say you arent spending enough time as the father, they REALLY mean your not giving THEM enough attention. gotta make this quick as i got to go tuck my little boy in bed as well..

 

Hi Alpha, appreciate your post..I guess clubbing twice a week @ four hours at a time maybe a little much...It's just that it's helped so much: met the guy who's the consultant for the studio and will be the head engineer, session players that will trade for studio time, other engineers, great bands, labels, distributors, it's all been really positive to the process..it's a hard thing to let go.. http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/frown.gif

 

I remember reading somewhere you had a son...glad you mentioned this because there's something I want to talk to you about that may be a little radical on these public forums...about a study done on jamaican kids, and how the parents help them have a better childhood, and a better adulthood as they adjust better...I'm positive you'd want to hear this... http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/wink.gif Drop me an email if you're interested...How's he doing?

 

 

focus on two things, getting your studio done and your family. when its done, get some bands in and you will be suprized how quickly others find out about the work if its any good. i got so many lined up right now i dont even have time to do all of them. go out to clubs later when the baby is older and you can take your wife with you... she is going to want to get out too after the baby is stabalized more. my wife and i just went out the other night and saw some great bands, had this incredible band in to record and they loved my son... he was showing off playing the drums for them. i'll check back later, gotta run now.

 

It's good to hear you have a lot happening... Thing about taking the wife is she's really not social...thing with networking is a lot of times you have to talk to people you really don't know and she's not into that as much as I..makes it even tougher, but may explain why she doesn't understand why it needs to be done so much...

 

Re: your son playing the drums: mahn that has to be the best feeling in the world! Proud daddy moment.. http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/smile.gifI can't wait until my son can work the board or even just pick up an instrument and play and sing...I set up an automation for him where the console goes all crazy, the faders fly all over the place and the lights blink and the instruments fade in and out - he loves it! Turns all smiley and laughs and stuff...probably thinking "dad, gimme a break - that panasonic nowhere near touches a capricorn" http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/biggrin.gif (don't I wish)

 

Thanks again!

 

Harold

meh
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Originally posted by Curve Dominant:

>>You're right, drugs do help. Particularly a nice phatty... However, wife hates that too..lol<<

 

Harold, do pardon me for chiming in here, but...

 

This is anectdotal, but I quit smoking weed several months ago. After about 4 weeks, it hit me how my powers of concentration have become greatly enhanced compared to when I was smoking. You may want to consider laying off the weed, at least until your kid is old enough to look out for himself. In the meantime, you'll need to keep your wits about you at all times. That's the nature of being a responsible parent. Drugs do not help, contrary to whatever hype may be thrown your way. Stick to beer and wine.

 

Just my $0.02US...

curvedominant

 

Hi Curve:

 

Appreciate your post!

 

You have GOT to be kidding me!LOL I don't smoke very much myself (a phatty lasts about 4 days now), so no worries about sobriety...HOWEVER, you have GOT to be joking about sticking to beer and wine! Just look at the most probable wife beaters: what do you see in their hand? I know you're kidding, you have got to be... http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/biggrin.gif Besides, the 'erb is good for you.. http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/smile.gifAs far as the hype goes, most of this post should reaffirm who's sending that hype... http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/smile.gif

 

All the best,

 

HaroldMahn http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/biggrin.gif

meh
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Hi

 

"I can't wait until my son can work the board"

 

You know Rold, before you realize he is old enough to do, or maybe he will do something else.

 

IOW give him as much care and love as you can and enjoy being his dad, for he will be 18 sooner than you think.

 

Nika is so right, i speak out of experience, i too got to work at seven in the morning and came home at one thirty in the night too many times.

 

When i read your posts, i'm shure you will succeed.

 

I remember what an old lady told me many years ago: sunny, nothing will hurt you more than having regrets over things you did not do!".

 

I wish you lots of wisdom and happyness.

 

Peace to you all.

The alchemy of the masters moving molecules of air, we capture by moving particles of iron, so that the poetry of the ancients will echo into the future.
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Rold you are a man!

 

I have forgotten to mention your lady. Man, she loves you, keep that flame burning!

 

I can tell you man, i have had a day job for many years, a PA business in the evenings and weekends and a studio in the time between all of this and boy, was i stressed!!

 

There comes a time when you look at the road ahead of you and you think: i know the direction it is going to and i've been there before.

 

So you go to the left or right and boy i did! I quit my job and sold the PA and chose for the music and my family (and half of the money i was used to) but i never have regret it.

 

My son is 14 now and i never go angry anymore on him, for i'm not stressed! He still kisses and hugs me many times and i love it.

 

We, as a family have lunch and dinner together every day now and my wife and i take lang walks now and then in the morning.

 

I should have done all of this many years ago, but better late than never huh!

 

I have to go to my studio now 'cause within half an our i have a band coming in, it's 12.30 in the afternoon where i live.

 

Peace to you all.

The alchemy of the masters moving molecules of air, we capture by moving particles of iron, so that the poetry of the ancients will echo into the future.
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yo harold, i get your second biggest export down here every so often. the wifey and i are both into that sort of thing. she is also very social too so that made for an easy compromise on going out.

 

when i record my son its always begging to come down to the studio wanting to check it out. he loves music. always has. he hates classical though, pitched the biggest fit one day driving down the road to baby mozart [my mom was in the car so we were trying to play something she could enjoy as well] soon as i popped in the beastie boys instrumental album, he settled right down. he loves rock & roll.

alphajerk

FATcompilation

"if god is truly just, i tremble for the fate of my country" -thomas jefferson

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Hi Rold. Congrats on the new baby... no more full sleeping nights, right? http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/biggrin.gif

 

Well...

You must define the following:

 

1) Of course, our families (for the most of us) are the most important thing in the world. If your music is more important, you should not bother on asking.

 

2) You family must understand how important is music for you, so the ideal scenario is your familly being happy with what actually makes you happy.

 

So the wife should (ideally) understand you have to be a happy entity so you can make happy to other people. Music makes that magic. Perhaps music also makes a living for you... so it has more weight in the equation.

 

Of course, you have to make them feel you care about them. Guess what is (most of the times) the most important asset for them?

 

YOUR TIME. Period.

 

Try to understand your wife... recently had a baby... if she's breast feeding, man, that hurts and it is a very tired job... but explain this (about the happiness and money coming from it) to her.

 

Ask her the question: "would you like me to do a job I don't like?"... frustration at work always have sequels at home... remember it !

 

So, good luck... if you do love each other, balance will come... for sure... if not, well... balance will come, either...

 

GusTraX

Músico, Productor, Ingeniero, Tecnólogo

Senior Product Manager, América Latina y Caribe - PreSonus

at Fender Musical Instruments Company

 

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I dunno, man. I'm single w/o kids, and I felt like the pot was crampin' my style. I don't know how you family guys pull it off. If y'all got any tips, pleez school me, and I'll be happy to re-think my position on this.

 

Could it be the fifth of scotch to wash down the cotton mouth that was doin' it? http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/biggrin.gif

curvedominant

Eric Vincent (ASCAP)

www.curvedominant.com

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Curve,

 

I think pot affects different people differently. And how much you smoke over how long a period seems to affect the equation too.

 

For MOST people, if you smoke too much over too long a period of time you become extremely lazy and/or paranoid or self conscious and/or start focusing too much on minute details that don't matter in the big picture, while forgetting about the big picture. For an engineer, or an artist trying to do a recording on a budget, that can be a disaster.

 

But MOST people, if they smoke one just every now and then, don't have those problems and the overall experience in general is better.

 

I've known a few people who can smoke it all the time without being that affected but not many. Myself, I don't smoke very often or very much and frankly I fail to see what all the fuss is about. I mean I enjoy it once in a blue moon, but it doesn't rock my universe or anything. I don't think it's worth the money or the hassle to buy it, and I certainly don't get the "pot culture" thing. I certainly think it's ridiculous that it's illegal, but even if it were legal I just can't see putting as much emphasis on it as many people do, and I still doubt I would ever buy any.

 

No need to apologize for being a musician and having quit smoking. I would hate to think I was doing it just because it's "cool" in our circles. You got some balls, Curve.

 

--Lee

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Originally posted by Lee Flier:

No need to apologize for being a musician and having quit smoking. I would hate to think I was doing it just because it's "cool" in our circles.

 

--Lee

 

I'm with you all the way on this one, Lee. Alpha can tell you of my extensive drug experiences. Needless to say, the drugs aren't necessary for me to :

 

be social

be knowledgable

be helpful

know equipment

engineer

be a musician

relax

be cool (although I may not qualify as "cool").

 

I can't imagine that at this phase in your studio that they're actually HELPING you at all.

 

Just my incredibly biased thoughts.

 

Nika.

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Rold,

 

I know I'm a little late to this thread, and jeez... You've had PLENTY of good ideas...

 

For me personally, I own my own business and can easily fill every waking moment with its demands.

 

I find that I actually have to SCHEDULE my wife and kids into my plans. I treat this with the same committment I would have for a client and NEVER break it... For me, (with a 5 and 8 year old) it means at least 2 "family nights" with kid oriented fun times a week, and MOST IMPORTANTLY at least one COUPLES night out with my wife.

 

Remember that being a new Mom is one if the most nerve wracking and numbing experiences you can have... the whole "crying equals dying" thing... (Just wait to see if you leap out of bed at the first cry from your second child! http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/biggrin.gif)...

 

If your wife's like mine she WANTS YOU TO LIE about her getting her figure back, that she still looks attractive to you, that all the close and special times you had pre-kids are not gone... etc.

 

She may not want to go out alone with such a young baby... MAKE HER DO IT!

 

Find a family member, close friend who's another Mom, whatever it takes to make her feel comfortable. Make a detailed phone list of every possible place you'll be and every concieveable emergency number... whatever it takes to make her feel at ease... then, when you're at the place get her a couple of glasses of wine, (you have a soda), so she can "turn off" the motherly instinct for a couple of hours.

 

She'll feel better, and that means happier working conditions for you!

 

Good Luck!

 

guitplayer

I'm still "guitplayer"!

Check out my music if you like...

 

http://www.michaelsaulnier.com

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Originally posted by rold:

Hi Nika:

 

Congrats to you too! If you're ever in BC we'll need to grab a beer and exchange experiences!

 

My favorite bar is gone. I used to go to O'Ryans in Gastown in Vancouver. It was a great piano bar with two pianos and "teams" of players that would play and sing in harmony. An unbelievable experience!! We can settle for another if you wish.

 

I've been doing nothing but music, biz and peripheral stuff for 13 years. I hear ya pop; I too have seen a lot of ventures like this fail. My education (both college/experience) was based on this studio. This will be my fourth (first serious one), and I know the troubles I ran into every time and you won't see those mistakes happen anymore.. http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/smile.gif

 

OK, so this is important. What I've still yet to glean from all of this is where you make your money NOW. I mean, before the studio is up and running, where do the funds come from NOW? Because if it is anything stable at all, I'm encouraging you to continue with it and leave the studio as a longer term plan.

 

I'm partially concerned because I make a living out of helping people put studios together and I see so many of them have a more difficult time than you're anticipating. As for the lucrative venture that you're eyeing down the road, I have yet to see it in any of my clients go from an upstart to a financial boon in a short amount of time. Most of them it takes 10-20 years to put it together so that it is a solid source of income. For most of THOSE ones it started as a part time hobby, or part time living and grew into a sufficient source of income.

 

My client list ranges from project studios to the largest and most famous studio in the US. I repeat that these things take a VERY long time. Further, most of them are commercial rooms (in that they do commercial projects - i.e. commercials, television spots, canned music, needle drops, etc.)

 

Most of the clients that I have with large studios are not actually looking to make any money in it at all. They just ENJOY doing this. (I am not unlike this). I'm serious that I have people that spend $100k and more - sometimes up to $1m to build their basement, or a guest house up into a studio.

 

Then, because they have all of the equipment (and a bit of money) when people need a project done they don't mind doing it at all! "Sure, let's record your daughter. Is $5/hour OK? Is that too much? Yes, I know I earn $150/hour in my daytime job, but............" So what happens is that the studio market fills up with people who are willing to do it for NOTHING. Really, I'm not kidding. I just did a complete CD release of a children's choir. We used $30k in mics, many tens of thousands in recording equipment, the best of everything, etc. I woke up at 6:00 in the morning to do this gig. I took two weeks to mix it and a weekend to master it. I'll bet I spent 40-50 hours on this. How much did I get paid? About $10/hr. And why did I do this? Because I could and because I enjoy it. So your competition out there is guys like me - or even guys worse than me. We are NOT good for your business, and we're a very large part of where the industry is going. Right now this may not exist in your neck of the woods, but think of how many millionaires there are in the Pacific Northwest. Paul Allen has vacation property a few miles from you. He also owns the nicest studio in the Seattle area. Somebody is going to plop down several hundred thousand to build a studio in their backyard near you because it's fun and he'll be happy to do everything for free. I see this all over the country right now.

 

I'm not saying that your business plan isn't carefully spelled out, but I'm alluding to you that the market is changing very fast.

 

Part of that was finances. I think it's pretty simple: go easy on recording bands - they typically don't have a lot of money, most of them under the poverty line - I know, I've done the circuit myself and spent a good 13 years dealing with that. It's been covered in the business plan.

 

So you've got me curious - who ARE you marketing to? I know you've said no recording bands, but who are you going after? I'm not saying this tongue in cheek. I'd really like to know.

 

Also, the whole wearing multiple hats at the same time thing really does kill a lot of people. The whole jack-of-many-trades-master-of-none thing will easily see a good engineer a sour businessman, and that's been covered too - I've only been professionally playing the consoles three years, so I'm not by anyone's standards a seasoned pro.

 

That's why, with this studio, I will be the owner/junior engineer/sales guy, ....

 

...read, "I will be very very busy at all times, always on the go, and if my wife thinks I'm never available now......just you wait! I've got another thing commin'!"

 

I can see how you'd feel the way you do about turning the studio back into a hobby. However, I feel that when a venture is really, really succeeding, the fun is back - cruises with the staff, parties, etc. I mean, it takes a tonne of work to get there and that's all a massive headache, but when that level is reached, where different people wear different hats, and all is honest and good, it is very enjoyable.

 

OK, so here's a good point. Where do the wife and kid fit into the "massive headache" and the "tonne of work"? So this is all supposing that the studio DOES succeed, and 10 years down the road you ARE lucrative and making enough money to live the high life. Your child will be 10, and will your wife be around? That's an incredibly large sacrifice to make for the very low statistically percentage chance that you have of the studio ACTUALLY getting to this level.

 

I could see people like George, Ed and Roger having a tonne more fun with what they're doing, because they're not the ones that have to worry themselves with all the frustrating and menial shit like collections, etc. Makes engineering engineering and peripherals secondary.

 

First, I don't believe that Roger is primarily a studio owner. I believe that he's primarily a world class engineer, and I believe that it is this money that affords him his studio.

 

Second, I don't belive that George is primarily a studio owner. I think that he's primarily a world class engineer, producer, and equipment designer, and I belive that it is the money that he makes from this that afford him his studio.

 

I don't know Ed at all. And I apologize to the men above for speaking WAY out of place on hypothesis of their personal financial issues.

 

Thirdly, though, do you think that George and Roger AREN'T involved in the day to day peripheral stuff like collections? Eh gad - even at the largest studios the principals still are involved at that detail, and I would bet that this is ESPECIALLY true of Roger and George. I'm not sure that this was your point, though.

 

As for the area we moved to, imagine a population of 1000, made up of well-to-do hippies (wierd concept, have to factor in BC's second largest export.. http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/wink.gif )99% of which are musicians (some ridiculously famous), and actors on a semi-isolated coast which is mega-beautiful and within a 40 minute boat ride to Canada's most thriving film and TV scene. North Hollywood they call it.. http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/smile.gif Have you ever seen the show Beachcombers? This is where it was based.

 

So you may have figured out right now that I'm an entrepaneurial pessimist, and I might admit that that is rightly so. I forgot the percentages of upstarts that fail, but when you take it into the studio world it does seem to get worse. Having said this, I do have just one more anecdote to share with you.

 

I'm familiar with where you live. I spent many a weekend vacationing on Roesland on Pender Island, and have taken the Tsawassen Ferry and the Victoria/San Juan ferry many times in my life.

 

The tip of long island is kind of like this. There's a lot of money and vacation homes there. People like Billy Joel and others have nice estates out at the end of Long Island.

 

One of my clients was in a similar situation to you. He got a loan and wanted to build a studio that would cater to this type of money and these types of clients. He started doing homework as to what type of equipment would be needed to bring in the clientele that would make this venture profittable. For part of this homework he asked me. He happened to know that two of my clients are artists in this calibre that happen to have vacation homes on Long Island and that happened to be in the middle of recording projects.

 

Upon analyzing this, though, he came to find out that my clients owned and were very particular about all of their equipment. Further, they had a nice room on their estate that was designed for the ability to record in, though it wasn't a studio. It was just too easy to pack up the entire studio, throw it in a truck, and take it to their Long Island compound. They take the engineer with them and make a week of it. Then they get to record on THEIR turf, at THEIR leisure, which is the whole idea of Vacation in the first place.

 

If they DID need to cut a serious track at a world class studio when they were on vacation it was pretty easy ($1000) to hire a helicopter to take them to the city for a couple of hours to cut the track at a large studio.

 

My client analyzed all of this, and with the insight of several others, came to the conclusion that this quaint little studio would need to cost millions of dollars (2-3) to REALLY appeal to this clientele.

 

I'm not sure if this is exactly parallel to your situation. I felt that the anecdote was appropriate nonetheless.

 

In any event, I must run. My wife is beconing me. I hope this this doomsday post is taken in the light it was intended, and I hope that you consider all of these factors very wisely.

 

I'm sure I'll have more to say later. Then again, am I ever really short of words?

 

Hmm.

 

 

Again, sincerely,

Nika.

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"Somebody is going to plop down several hundred thousand to build a studio in their backyard near you because it's fun and he'll be happy to do everything for free. I see this all over the country right now."

 

this is why i say the work you do is EVERYTHING, not only that but the vibe of the place. for me to sell my studio, all i have to do is have them come over and play them something i have done. sometimes, all its takes is something i have done make its way into their hands. every project i have put out has brought in more bands. i had to even raise my rates.

 

BUT i still have a very profitable multimedia design business that nets MUCH more profit on way less investment. and i would be kidding you if i said my studio did more than break even. fortunately my design work flows into the studio keeping it afloat... if i had to rely on bands alone, shit.

alphajerk

FATcompilation

"if god is truly just, i tremble for the fate of my country" -thomas jefferson

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rold,

 

This is a highly biased post, so feel free to file it in the nearest wastecan if you don't like it.

 

A child under the age of three requires an extraordinary amout of attention. In my highly biased opinion, I think you should SCALE BACK your studio efforts for the next couple of years. That doesn't mean stop working on this project entirely. But you have to be smart about this. If you let the studio consume you - so easy to do - your wife is going to feel as though you're leaving her with the lion's share of the parenting responsibility. Your kids are only going to be young once. Your primary objective right now should be to get the most out of this special time in your life. Try to work on music projects when your wife and child are out of the house, but NOT when you're all home together and NOT when domestic chores remain unfinished. You wife needs support. If she can count on you to help her keep up with the laundry and shopping and cleaning, she'll have fewer objections when you want to spend time on other projects. When the child is a little older, things will get easier. But bringing up an infant/toddler is NEVER easy. Now is the time to put your family first.

 

In Russia, there is a saying. "The work is not a wolf. It will not run into the woods." Your musical projects are not going to run away. They'll be there in a year or two when you have more time. An added bonus is that in two years music gear is going to get a whole lot more exciting.

 

In the interim, consider lowering your expectations and streamlining your setup so that you don't have to spend all those hours just keeping the whole operation running. Shakespeare said, "There is a tide in the affairs of men." Right now, it's high tide in the family port, and low tide out at music harbor. Don't miss the boat.

 

This message has been edited by dansouth@yahoo.com on 05-22-2001 at 12:35 AM

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