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#437765 10/26/00 09:15 PM
Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 94
T
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T
Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 94
Ain't it the truth..LOL

HOW TO PRODUCE A RECORD! This is real funny

First, spend about a month on "pre-production", making sure that
everything is completely planned out so that no spontaneity is necessary or possible in the studio.

If there are no "hits" there, make the band collaborate with outside songwriters.

Line up extra studio musicians who are better players than the band themselves, just in case.

Next, book the most expensive studio you can find so that everyone but the band gets paid lots of money. The more expensive, the more the record label will take the project
seriously, which is important. Book lots and lots of time.

You'll need at least 48 tracks to accommodate all the room mics you'll set up for the drums, all of which will be buried by other instruments later anyway, and for the added keyboard tracks, even if the band has never had a keyboard player. And for all the
backing vocal tracks, even if the band only has one singer.

Then, record all the instruments one at a time, but make the drummer play to a click track for every song so the music has no chance to breathe whatsoever. That way you can use lots of MIDI gear. Do multiple takes of each song. Use up at least 30 reels of
2-inch tape. Take the best parts of each take and splice them all together. You might even use a hard-disk recording system like
Pro Tools, then transfer it all back to analog two-inch. Spend at least two weeks just compiling drum tracks like this.

You'll need to rent at least a half a dozen snare drums, and you'll have to change drum heads every couple hours. If you
really do it right, the entire band will never have to actually play a song together.

Now, start overdubbing each instrument, one at a time. Make sure everything is perfect. If necessary, do things over and over until absolute perfection is achieved. Do a hundred takes if you must. If this doesn't work, get "guest musicians" in to "help out".

Don't forget to hire someone who's good with samples and loops so the kids will think its hip! Better get some turntable scratching
on there too.

Be sure to spend days and days just experimenting with sounds, different amplifiers, guitars, mics, speakers, basically trying every possible option you can think of to use up all that studio
time you've booked. No matter how much time you book, you can use it up this way easily. Everyone involved will think they're
working very hard.

Make sure you rent lots of expensive mics and expensive compressors and expensive pre-amps so you can convince yourself and everyone else how good it's sounding. Charge it to the band's recording budget of course. Make sure you have at least two or three compressors IN SERIES on everything you're recording. Any equipment with tubes in it is a sure bet, the older the better.
The best is early-1970s-era Neve equipment, old Ampex analog recorders, and WW2-vintage tube microphones, since everyone knows that the technology of recording has continuously declined for the past 30+ years. Don't forget to get some old "ribbon" mics too.

Make sure that by the time it's finished everyone is absolutely, totally sick of all the songs and never wants to hear any of them
again. Oops! Now it's time to mix it!

Better get someone with "fresh ears" (who's never heard any of it before) to mix it in a $2000/day SSL room with full automation. Make sure he's pretty famous, and of course you have to fly to LA, NYC or Nashville to do this, because there simply are no decent studios anywhere else. Make sure he compresses the hell out of everything as he mixes it. Compress each drum individually and then compress an overall stereo submix of 'em. Make sure to compress all the electric guitars even though a distorting guitar amp is the most extreme "compressor" in existence. Compress everything else, and then compress the overall mix. Add tons and tons of reverb to the drums on top of all those room mics, and
add stereo chorus on everything else. Spare no expense. Spend at least two weeks on it. Then take it home and decide to pay for
someone else to remix the whole thing.

Then get some New York coke-head mastering engineer to master it, and make sure he compresses the hell out of everything again and takes away all the low end and makes it super bright and crispy and harsh so it'll sound really LOUD on the radio. (Too bad about all those people with nice home stereos.)

Oh-oh! Your A+R guy just got fired! Looks like the record will never be released!
>>

George, I don't know if you have ever seen this. It came to me via e-mail last night from a producer out of Nashville. Got a big kick out of it! Definately makes you think...
Thanks,
Ted.

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No wonder I'm not famous! My mastering guy smokes pot!

JW


------------------
--
John Whynot
Producer/Engineer
Score Mixer

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I've heard that one before - I think it was written by AC/DC Management....but I might be wrong.

Cheers
John

Joined: Feb 2000
Posts: 2,184
gm Offline
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Hi Ted,

I suppose when you look at it that way it sounds like everybody's getting away with murder. (I would love to know who wrote this.)

Just for arguement's sake, let me defend how records are 'built' these days.

First, look at the list in a positive slant, item by item.

1. Do some preproduction, maybe even some rough recording. Make sure that the drummer (who has never cared to learn to follow notes) knows where the 2/4 turn-around comes (he misses it about half of the shows, and it pisses everyone in the band off, but they can't tell him because he owns the sound system and the van). Have everyone listen to what a recording of their material actually sounds like, as contrasted to how it goes over in the mosh pit. Have them make their own calls on their sounds, so that when they get to a studio they don't make the engineer responsible for everything

2. For those points in tunes where the members of the band can't play an instrument well enough to make themselves proud, find a good cat to come in and cover it. Have him come to rehearsals. Give the band an understanding of what the idea is.

3. Book a good studio with effective and thorough maintanence, one with equipment sufficient to so the job. Above all, make sure that the whiney guitar player can't say, "Well, what did you expect from 8 [16, 24, 32, 48...] tracks? I mean, we ran outta tracks man." And get good gear. Have some choices immediately available, guitars and drums for sure, but also percussion thingies in case someone 'hears' something.

4. If the band is so locked in that they can't find the way through the process...can't find that genius idea or force that brilliant moment to bring the piece around, bring in outside ears.

Everything in a complex process that can be done with expertise and sensitivity can be as easily corrupted by ham-handed idiots. But that doesn't mean the process itself is bad.

Let me forward the notion that *in*general* records are *engineered* better than they were 20 and 30 and 40 years ago. This is not to say that a Bill Putnam recording of the Basie orchestra can be beat - I don't think it can. But the *average* quality is up...way up. Part of this is better, much-less-expensive gear. But deconstructing the process, both musically and technically, and working harder on those facets that could use improvement, has done it's share to make a better presentation. At the very least it's improved our craft for those times when everything *does* work and productions don't require tweezering. Now that there's a certain percieved level of quality to mixing (and we got there by way of folks making demands and asking, "but why can't it be better?"), it's clear that one's job is on the line unless (s)he comes up to the bar in some fashion (or re-invents the art of recording entirely).

Hey, you're not going to tell anyone who *has* made a record in an incisive, logical way that it is 1> vulgar and counter-intuitive, 2> too expensive (where do you think that some of that dough goes?) and 3> not successful. Not surprisingly, the guys that whine the loudest are the guys who *can't* or *won't* make this kind of effort. Uh, also the guys who haven't had a 'hit' yet. And, make no mistake about it: nothing affirms and enforces methods, processes as well as prejudices like a hit record. Obviously, this is both good and bad.

I love pure music as much as the next guy. And I loathe clueless A&R men as much as the next guy. But I also really like the times that the intense approach works...like AC/DC records, to name one instance.

George
http://www.massenburg.com


[This message has been edited by gm (edited 10-27-2000).]


George Massenburg

http://www.massenburg.com
Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 94
T
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T
Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 94
Hi George,
Great response! I think the key is to never loose track of what the song/artist needs. Some songs may require the "8-hour" drum sounds while others you had better be ready cause it may go down in one take. Some bands may need the "mothership" studio to produce results while others can get the job done more modestly in a well maintained smaller facility.(probably dependent on how preprepared/focused they are). I feel as an engineer you must be prepared for whatever is thrown at you. It could mean it's gonna be a long day...or it might be one of those instantly created "unforgettable moments" we all cherish. But, we can never quit trying to be/do our best. You either have to capture the moment or create the moment. I am quite dissapointed these days in the overproduced, 120 track, vocal corrected, squeezed to death, throw "everything in the rack" on and then rent some more, lifeless, thoughtless, follow-the-leader, cheesey reductions, I mean productions... that consume the airwaves in an over abundant manner. (Sorry, I lost control. My physician is currently treating me for the Chevy Syndrome. I feel much better now).

I guess I miss the productions that "moved" me. Many of them you produced/engineered. The ones I found myself hitting the "repeat" button cause I couldn't get enough.

George, thanks for the memories. I'm just getting too old.

And remember, George, "Be the ball...Maa Maaake your future..."

I will try to find out who authored the above and let you know.

Thanks,
Ted.

Joined: Mar 2000
Posts: 1,552
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So George,

Then it IS possible to have had a "successful recording", and STILL like to do "real" recordings!!??

Thanks for the realistic post.

It makes me feel better doing shit to make a little money to live on, rather than get a real job.

Still give 100% effort on stuff I really don't LOVE doing, and get into it as much as if it were my favorite material.

Better go to bed, so I can spend another 16 hours tracking "MIDI Masterpieces" tomorrow.





------------------
Bob.


Bob Buontempo.

AKA: - THE MIX FIX

Also Hanging at: http://recpit.prosoundweb.com

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