PRE PRODUCTION TIPS
These tips are only guidelines to help give your music the absolute best quality that it can be. They will not make or break your recordings, but they will help your engineer/mixer get the best possible sounding mix for you.
Guitarists and Bassists
- For killer tones especially in metal and hard rock, it always begins with the player, and not just the amplifier and cabinet you're using. Picking and palming technique, the right type of pick, and strings, a high quality guitar with high quality pickups (I always suggest EMG's, but that's just me) will give you that awesome attack, and bite.
- Make sure your instruments are in good playing condition. Be aware of shorting or wiring issues, fret buzz, properly intonated and they stay in, and hold tune well.
- Have new strings on your instruments before you record.
- Make sure you have fresh batteries if your instrument uses active pickups.
- ALWAYS make sure you or your engineer records DI (direct In) tracks for possibly re amping later in case you are not happy with your tone.
- Most important is to obviously make sure you are well rehearsed, and know your parts.
- Make sure your drums are in good playing condition (no missing lugs, broken hardware, or bass drum pedals), and please no metal click pads on your kick drum heads.
- Try to have fresh drum heads before recording, and make sure they are tuned.
- Make sure your cymbals are not broken and are in good working condition.
- Knowing how to play with and being comfortable with a click/metronome is also very important, especially if you are wanting that pro and tight modern day sound. Requires less editing, which can also save you money, unless you are a skilled drummer going for a more of an organic live approach with no click, which is okay too.
- Knowing and understanding a little about microphone proximity is important to know while recording, by keeping proper distance and control when your voice gets louder or more energetic in areas, and not to ever cup the mic.
- Do not always rely on your mixer to use autotune on your vocals if necessary for major out of key or pitch issues. Always be prepared to give your best performance possible.
- Make sure you are well rested and feeling healthy before recording vocals.