Media Production Mentoring

Online film school designed with beginning filmmakers in mind.


Recording Session

Last Friday night we had a mini-recording session for a band I know. I told myself I had to blog about that experience, but I didn't get around to it till now. Better late than never, right?

So, you'd like to think that two guitars and one vocal track would be a simple setup, especially since I was going to record only one at a time, but no such luck. Granted, my system is set up for editing not recording and I hope to one day have a DAW, but that's a long time in coming, me thinks. All that to say that it took an hour before we were ready to jam. Why did it take so long? Three reasons:

1. Incorrect connectors. For some reason the 1/4" input on my USB interface doesn't work but we didn't have an XLR for one of the guitars, so we tried several different ways of patching through, but kept keeping noise or nothing at all.

2. Inexpensive/lacking tools. I haven't put much money into my audio recording equipment yet so we often get erratic results and a realization that we're missing something.

3. General ignorance. Add the previous two to my already limited audio knowledge and you get a lot of head-scratching which adds up to time spent fiddling.

Once we got a signal we were willing to work with, we put down the first track. Then we played that back in the headphones while we got the next track. However, we found that the two tracks drifted in and out of sync. We tried recording again, this time beating out the time while the musician played. There were still problems.

We ended the night recording a single guitar track and the accompanying vocals. It sounded good, but we decided to do more research before we tried again.

Thus far we have found that the "screeching" of the guitar strings that was giving us trouble was likely due to the strings' age and just needed to be replaced.

Hopefully our next attempt will go better. But I must say, despite the frustrations and failures, I had a blast.

~Luke Holzmann
Your Media Production Mentor

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