These tips are only guidelines to help give your music the best quality that it can be. They are not absolute and will not make or break your recordings, but they will help you, and your engineer have the best possible experience.

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, and I will do the rest!
  • Always make sure your instruments are in good playing condition and they stay in, and hold tune well.
  • When possible change the strings on your instruments the day before or day of the scheduled session.
  • It’s not a bad idea to have your instruments professionally set-up and properly intonated.
  • Make sure you have fresh batteries if your instrument uses active pickups.
  • Most important please 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.
  • When possible change or have fresh drum heads before recording day, and make sure they are tuned.
  • Make sure your cymbals are not broken and are in good working condition.
  • Please make sure you have a microphone hole in all outer kick drum heads, and set at about 3 or 4 o'clock.
  • Most Important please make sure you are well rehearsed, and know your parts. 
  • Knowing how to play with and being comfortable with a click/metronome is also very important, especially if you are wanting that pro modern day sound. Requires less editing too, which can save you money. 


  • Make sure you have your lyrics prepared or memorized.
  • Knowing and understanding a little about microphone proximity and control is also important.
  • Do not always rely on your engineer to use autotune on your vocals 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 day.