My first recording experience.

New Tricks

Platinum Member
Although I have played in band/live situations hundreds/thousands of times, I never made it into a studio. With today's technology, the studio is in most of our homes now so I have been experimenting with songwriting. Who would have thought that the drums would be difficult.


I just had my first recording reality check. Even with a click blasting away it took me 5 attempts on a relatively simple composition to even get close to acceptable.

A lot of slop happens in a live situation but, when recording, you have to play dead nuts on and it ain't as easy as it seems. The timing on all the other tracks have been adjusted perfectly so there is very little slack.

I am recording a 5 minute song with typical fills maybe every 8 measures and the first time thru, I was late coming out of almost every single one. I even built a kick and snare sample to try and help but, about 10% of the snare hits sound like flams because I was early/late.

Crikey. I just gained a bit more respect for the professionals.

The good news is that I improved it about 90% after 5 or 6 takes so I'm on track.

It also makes me wonder how much they fix in the studio, post recording. I can see how it would be easy to fix things once you know what you are doing but it was easier for me to just keep trying. It is also good for my brain to work things out.
 

slowrocker

Silver Member
Recording can be good, but you can identify nearly every weakness you have hearing yourself. Btw I like you signature. Very funny
 

New Tricks

Platinum Member
I am still surprised on how difficult it is to be perfect on simple stuff.

I am going along great but somehow start dragging just enough for me to notice

This is dead pretty much on.



Then a second later, it gets sloppy.



If I seriously work at it, I'll be a studio capable drummer in about six months.


And, yeah. On the sig, I generally avoid public statements about things but I felt that somebody had to to say something.
 

John T

Member
It is surprising the results that can be achieved with DAW software and as you say it makes it all a whole lot more accessible to be able to record our work at home with quality sound.
I find the whole process of capturing sound really interesting.
Enjoy!!!
 

T-rex

Member
After my first couple of recording experiences I was hooked and I have been recording local bands for about 10 years in my spare time. Being recorded and learning to engineer albums made huge improvements in my own drumming. You are literally under a microscope today so any weaknesses become really apparent but that is great for people looking to improve.

and to answer your question, the amount of stuff that gets fixed today is stunning!
 

New Tricks

Platinum Member
I have been recording local bands for about 10 years in my spare time. Being recorded and learning to engineer albums made huge improvements in my own drumming.

2 questions if you will indulge me.

1) After 10 years, can you play through a basic 4-5 minute song with some basic fills and be dead on?

2) Are Edrums harder or easier to record. I'm using E's and I wonder if there is any more/less/different leeway with A's.
 

T-rex

Member
Well, I am by no means a great studio drummer, but yes for basic rock/pop stuff I can roll through a standard song with a click and pretty much nail it. BUT that is only because I had the same realization during my first few experiences in the studio. When my first band recorded our second album; we worked with a producer and he basically kicked our butts in pre-production. He sent us home and made us practice the songs as a band to a click and come back ready to record a few weeks later. It was an eye opener for all of us.

Honestly I can't comment too much on the edrums thing. Everything I have done is pretty much acoustic drums. I had an electronic set briefly a long time ago for practice. I never had a very good feel for the electronic drums so for me I think it would be harder. My gut feeling is that acoustic drums do offer a bit more leeway because of the bleed and sympathetic vibrations you get sonically that don't exist on an electronic kit. That makes a kit gel together and probably does give a little more leeway. Of course all of this goes out the window when you slice up every hit and line it up on a grid for perfect timing regardless of the performance.

Personally unless the drummer is really experienced with a click, I usually track a band without one because a track that feels really good and grooves is better in my world than a track that is perfect and feels stiff. A lot of bands want to force the drummers to play to clicks even when they have never practiced with one and that usually doesn't work out very well. The tracks can end up stiff or sterile sounding and the drummers are usually not happy with their performance. So the trick is to be able to nail the timing and still sound natural and play with a groove.
 
I love being in the studio but it can be tedicous, the drum parts are such a sensitve thing, sets up the entire groove. As for all the home studio stuff, I have been doing that for a while, I recently purchased a plugin called Addictive Drums, similar to the famous EZ drummer. I trigger my electronic set and use the on board sounds and they are AMAZING! The only bummer to me is the "Auto Q" function which automatically sets your playing into a grid of 16th notes or any value you want. My first take I listened back and was like, Oh my god im so good!!! Then I realzied Auto Q was on! I personally refuse to use it, what is the point of working my butt off just to cheat, I would rather do a thousand takes to make it perfect then press a button and have it perfect. When I listen back I want to know its ME playing and thats MY groove, and if it varies a little but thats ok, in fact I like it because it sounds human, god forbid! Everything is so processed these days, we can't tell if the singers can sing, if the drummers can groove, nothing. Keepin it old school!!
 
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