Tag: best song recording studio in Pune.


Let’s first start by understanding when and why we need to create demos before going into the studio for a recording. 
As I’ve discussed in the previous blogs its very important to have your demo tapes ready, here’s why.

  1. Remove Ambiguity 
    Working with music can be an extremely subjective thing, what may appeal to you may not appeal to me, and when it comes to finding the right people to work with and put ideas across the best way to do it is through demos.
  2. Clearer Picture
    Music sounds very different played live as opposed to an actual recording, by creating demos you get a clearer perspective on the song and the arrangement and the right way to proceed with it.
  3. Improving Performance
    A recording gives you a clear snapshot of your performance, by analyzing a demo tape a musician can get ideas on how to better the performance in terms of dynamics and pitching and tweak them before they go into the studio.

Now let’s get on to the guide to recording the demos:

What you will need:

  1. A microphone
  2. Soundcard
  3. Computer PC/Mac

The first thing you would need to is to get familiarized with the software on which you will record these demos.
If you’re using a PC you can get a version of “Reaper” which is a DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) with which you can record, edit and playback your recordings.

On a Mac, you can just get a copy of “GarageBand” from the App Store.

Step No: 1

Find your Tempo and Key. Play around with the metronome to find the right tempo that grooves with your song. Do the same with the key till you find the right Key that works for your voice.

Step No: 2

Record your backing instrument, this can be your guitar or piano or any other harmonic instrument that can be a backing for the melody. Record through the song and decide the structure that you want to keep. Let’s say for eg your song structure can be Intro:Verse:PreChorus:Chorus:Interlude:Verse2:Chorus: Outro

or Intro:Verse:Prechorus:Chorus:Bridge: Chorus

Step No: 3

Record and program in all the ideas and sounds that you can think of, or ideas that will work for the song. These can be multiple layers of Guitars or Vocal Harmonies. Just go along with it and add as many ideas that you can hear on the track. Play it back, listen to it and keep filling it in.

Step No: 4

 Once you have a layout with all the elements of the song in place, play around with the volumes and balance the tracks so that they fit with each other. 

Once you have a few demos that you’re happy with, the next step is to find a producer who understands your music and shares a creative vision with your music. 

Then you’re good to hit the studio and bring your record to life. 

What you need to know before you hit the studio

Today’s post is a quick run through of what you need to be aware of before you hit the studio to record. If you are a newbie and haven’t ever recorded anything in a professional studio, then read on!!

Plan your recording:

The first thing you need to be aware of in a studio, TIME = MONEY.

When it comes to recording your music, there are many ways to approach the execution. You might want to just produce a few ideas that you have in your head and record every element individually to have more control on the sound. Conversely, you might want to have the entire band in the room tracking live.

Communicating with the chosen engineer for the project makes sure that you an approach the process that is best suited for your song, making the whole recording process efficient.

I would suggest that you draft up a working budget for your song (gotta adult guys…) and find the studio that can give you give you the most value for your money. Once you know the rate (factor in the GST too), you know how many hours you have.  When you know how many hours you have, you can make decisions on how to best spend the time. If you are in a band, make sure each member has an adequate amount of time to lay down their parts.

Also, try and factor in some ‘experimentation time’ in your sessions. I have a few clients that do this. They will come in, record their parts, and once the base is set, experiment with their equipment, instruments, recording techniques and FX to try and create a sound that hasn’t been heard before. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. When it does though, it’s usually tends to become one of the artists’ sonic signature.

Ideally, recording in a studio should be fun and fulfilling for you as an artist. In my experience a well planned recording makes this possible.

Practice, Practice, Practice:

Artists sometimes knowingly, or unknowingly come in unrehearsed. Seasoned session musicians can pull this off, but it can be a nightmare situation for the average musician. The longer capturing a good performance takes, the more tedious the process becomes. There is also a chance the engineer will lose interest and objectivity listening to the same part repeatedly for a long time.

The more rehearsed you are, the more time the engineer and producer can take to work on the finer points of the performance.

Gear up:

Make sure your equipment (or voice) is in the best condition possible before you get to recording it. Here’s some advice on how you an go about it, depending on what your instrument of choice is:

  • If you are a singer make sure to have a regimen to take care of your voice and get enough sleep.  A rested voice in my experience is easy to work with and get a great performance out of. I would also suggest entering  the studio a little earlier to settle in and warming-up before the session.

  • Guitar & Bass players can prepare their guitars by shining their frets, conditioning the neck and changing strings a day or two before the session. Stretch your strings so that they hold tune better, and make sure your electronics are up to scratch. Fresh strings will have a zing & brightness that old strings just won’t have, giving you richer guitar sounds. Some people love the sound of a freshly re-strung guitar. I personally prefer the strings to be a few days old.

  • Drummers and percussionists can change their skins. This isn’t as necessary as new strings, since some aged skins can have a very characteristic sound that might work great for the song. New skins will give you a brighter, snappier sound.  Drummers should carry fresh sticks and moon-gel (or whatever you may use for damping).

You should make sure all of the above should be taken care of well before you enter the studio. If you come in and find out that your intonation is off, you’ll be wasting your time and thus your money.

Don’t come as you are, come prepared !!

Bring in some references:

Depending on which websites you visit, you will find that words like warm, shimmery, sparkly, muddy, bite-y are used to describe a sound. These words are incredibly subjective.

When communicating with your engineer, you need to understand that your bright can be very different compared to your engineer’s bright. Make sure to carry a reference that is in the same ballpark as the sound you are chasing. This ensures there’s a starting point to work from since you both are on the same page.

In closing

So we’ve gone through a few things you can do to prepare for your time in the studio. The above are your bare minimum basics to adhere to if you want a stress free recording. I can go on about how you shouldn’t walk in with distractions like drugs, alcohol or girlfriends but that isn’t very rock and roll is it? The important thing is to make sure you enter the studio in the best frame of mind.

And remember,

TIME = MONEY!!

Cheers,

Ronak

 

 

We usually see a very high volume of people who come to the studio to record their vocals, but often enough, what seems like an easy/ fun job usually end up becoming a daunting task. This blog is written with the intention that clients know what preparation is required before they step into the recording studio and it becomes considerably easier for them to record their vocals. Gray Spark is one of the best song recording studio in Pune with diverse range of solutions and services for all your recording requirements.

  • Know your Vocal Range:

Yes, everybody wants to be able to sing like ‘Adele’ but not everyone has a vocal range like her. Knowing how high or low you can sing and what key is ideal for your voice is always a good idea. Knowing this information, you can inform your recording engineer about this and ensure that you don’t end up stressing your voice, in turn getting a better recording of your voice

  • Dynamics:

This is singlehandedly one of the things that sets apart the amateurs from the professionals. Recording inside the studio is like looking at your voice through a magnifying glass. Every small detail and artifact gets enhanced, unlike singing in the bathroom where it’s mostly just the reverb. Among the things that get amplified, the one thing that people miss out on most is Dynamics.  Dynamics essentially is the control you have on your voice in terms of volume and expression.  Imagine this, the microphone is like an ear that captures your voice, when placed in front of a voice that has a very big dynamic range i.e. can be too soft and loud, your ear will find this sound unappealing. But on the other hand, a trained voice will know how loud certain parts of the song should be, how loud or soft certain words should be so that they bring out the most emotion.  A good way is to look for the dynamics in the song you want to do and practice them over.

  • Pitch:

This one goes without saying, if you can’t sing in pitch it’s going to sound bad. Yes, there is always auto tune, but there is only so much even a computer can do. If you’re out of pitch and use a tuning plugin, it most definitely ends up sounding robotic. Usually, it takes time to be able to hear pitch and if you’re going sharp or flat. There is a very simple exercise to amend this; it’s called a ‘Tanpura’. Tanpura is an instrument with a drone like element that plays different notes from the scale that you choose. The idea is to pick out a note form the Tanpura and keep singing it so that your vocal chords get used to the note.

  • Expression:

This one is also equally important and usually left out. This is what defines your voice from any other voices out there. The expression of your voice is what gives your vocals a certain ‘goosebumps’ like character. It takes time to find your expression, but once you know which direction you want it to head in then it’s just a matter of practice.

If you need any further assistance with vocal recording, you can subscribe to our newsletter by dropping us your contact details at contact us@gray-spark.com and we can keep you posted about workshops that we conduct at our music recording studio in Pune.