So, you’ve written a song, tweaked the lyrics to perfection, mastered the melody and harmonies and now want to send it out to the world. But as soon as you start looking at the cost of studio hours or hear how terrible your music sounds through your computer microphone you stopped and thought recording might be harder and more expensive than you thought. But it doesn’t have to be. A home studio is closer than you think.
1. Pick your location. If you want isolated sounds with no reverb, try recording in your closet. Seriously! More often than not, closets are interior spaces far from street noise and your clothes will work as sound dampeners. If you want a more ambient sound, tiled bathrooms work exceedingly well. Many songwriters actually practice their vocals in bathrooms because of the great acoustics.
2. Get some basic equipment. You don’t need the fanciest equipment around to get good sound. You just need the right equipment: a decent vocal mic, direct out from guitar amps, a portable recorder, or even a stereo mic, will get the job done. It’s all about how you want to record. The following videos have great tips for finding a variety of equipment at a reasonable rate.
The next video is from Tiny Desk. They do fantastic recordings with minimal equipment.
3. Spend time mastering the track. I don’t mean mastering the melody and chord structure, rather the final version of the song once everything is mixed together. Spend time getting all of the levels correct, balancing each instrument with one another for the best sound. You don’t need an expensive program for this if you know how you want your song to sound and have the ear to get it there. If you don’t know how it should sound, spend a lot of time trying different things. No one, not even the greats, got the song right their first mix.
Where you distribute your music is up to you, and it should be empowering to know that the ability to produce and record your own music is in your hands.