SkyMuse Session Planner
If you are a pro with lots of session experience you have probably learned the hard way how to plan your recording project. Studios organize sessions in terms of hours. So for the artists, groups as well as the Studio time is money. You need to do your best work with the clock ticking and not waste time if at all possible. The key is to be prepared. A group pr an artist should record when you are at the peak of your performance. We can fix many things with all the recording tools available, but we can not fix a bad performance. If anything the modern recording studio leaves nothing to hide with. A good approach is to have rehearsals until you have the music down. Then get out and perform for live audiences and really put great effort into achieving your best performance. If you do these steps you will save time, money and get your best results. If you are going into the studio to literally make stuff up, you will need days, weeks and maybe months and a huge budget. For most artists that approach is not the way to go. Work out the music ahead of any studio dates.
Here are a few questions to ask.
Do I have the music down or am I really not ready to record yet?
Have we rehearsed enough, performed enough?
It is important to figure out how much you need to record and how many hours would be realistic for sessions. The professionals who record major artists typically plan for 3-4 songs per 3-hour session. Remember, the first hour of a session typically involves checking levels, mic positions, headphone levels and just getting comfortable wityh it all. Our professional engineers always have the studio and all the gear set up and ready. Even so, there are always adjustments and that first hour is critical for making it all perfect.
How many songs or pieces do we need to record?
Based on the rule of 3-4 tunes per three-hour session, how many session hours do you think you might need to plan for?
Will you be laying down basic tracks and then overdubbing vocals, solos, other parts?
Figure the same rate of 3-4 tunes per 3-hour session.
It is very rare to record everything at once, though it can be done with experienced groups. Once the tracks are all recorded the next step involves mixing those basic tracks.
How many songs do you need to mix?
How complex are the tracks?
This has a major affect in that the more parts, the more attention must be spent on each part. A simple recording of a solo piano or guitar involves just getting that part fine tuned.
How many individual parts are there to mix?
Mixing is typically complex and time consuming. If your music is easy it can make the mix go faster than if it is complex.
Are the tracks simple or complex?
Some great popular songs have recored in one or two takes and mixed quickly. The more a studio and studio staff has worked under pressure and if they really know what they are doing, that can save you time.
How experienced is your mixing engineer?
Here is a very generalized rule of thumb for estimating your mixing session time.
1-2 hours per song if it is simple, not too many tracks and well performed. That is a fast mix.
3-5 (or more) per song if it is more complex and has many parts.
How many hours does this project need for mixing?
In estimating the time needed for a film score, a dub, a podcast we can directly help those artists and producers customize a package rate. In many cases we can usually help those doing a record project by figuring a package rate. As you can see, this is very demanding and there are many aspects to concider.
Start the conversation. Ask your questions. We are here to help and usually can work it all out so everyone is very happy. This is what we do and we love creating music. Let us know how we can help.