I recorded my new album Carousel in a professional recording studio, and here's why.
My previous albums were either live recordings during a concert or recorded in a home-studio. There is nothing wrong with these options, actually they were a great introduction to the world of recording for me. But there was a trade-off for each one. The live recording of Wadhom was good at rendering the energy of the live show but it didn't capture details like the overtones of handpans. And while recording in a home-studio allowed us unlimited recording time for Keona or Confiture de Hang, there was still a major drawback: I am no sound engineer! Most musicians aren't. Sure, they understand the basics of recording and can do a decent job. But they are more creative than technical and often times, the result (let alone the experience) is much better when a sound expert takes care of that.
These past experiences prompted me to save up and do the recording, mixing and mastering in a professional recording studio. It was a new experience for me and I want to share 3 things that came out of it:
1) The Quality:
Strangely, I listen to Carousel frequently. If you're a musician, you'll know what I mean. Musicians spend countless hours composing, rehearsing, recording, mixing and mastering their album and when it is finally available... Well, they're kind of sick of it and don't want to listen to it. I have to admit that it was sometimes my experience with previous albums. Not this time though. My sound engineer's approach and his work was refreshing. I like the way he made me sound. Not only am I proud to share my new album but I still listen to it!
2) The Experience:
Not having to think about the mic placement, backing up files or even looking at a computer screen during the recording sessions was awesome. I could focus on my music. I just had to show up and do what I love doing, play music. Sure, I had to perform well in the studio to avoid spending too much money but besides that, the process was extremely enjoyable from beginning to end.
3) The Connections:
Spending a lot of hours in a recording studio (and with your sound engineer) means they know you and you know them. If they liked working on your album, they will most likely share it to network of friends. That is especially true if you are recording handpans. Since these instruments are so rare, I bet the recording studio will be glad to share your work because it is a good experience for them too.
Have you recorded an album? Did you use a home-studio? Was it recorded at a live event? Or in a professional studio? What are your thoughts about these different options? Feel free to share below.