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Getting the most out of your vocals when recording

I sat down and wanted to write a blog for all our students and readers about tips that could help you out when recording vocals in a studio. Recording in a studio is much different than singing live, but one thing you don’t want to lose is the emotion and feeling when you sing. I looked around for some great tips to give to everyone and I found a few from taxi.com that is a site for songwriters. Here are my favorites that I took away from it.

Get Hold of a Rough Mix. Most musicians can’t afford to waste recording studio time. If you want your recording to turn some heads and get you noticed, don’t rush into the studio before you’re ready. If the instrumental tracks are recorded days before the vocal recording begins, get a rough mix to practice with during preproduction.

Have a Grip on General Vocal Technique. Your vocal technique should be good enough for you to expressively sing your songs on-pitch with good tone and stamina without straining or blowing out. If you can’t do that, you’ll waste time in the studio with endless takes and lots of auto-tuning. Before going in the studio, establish the right key, know the melody and lyrics, smooth out pitch and range difficulties and lock in the rhythm.

Focus on the Message and Emotion. Once the technical details are covered, focus on the message and emotion(s) of the song. Your phrasing decisions relate to emotion and message and should be believable within the feel and style of the music. Your own unique style comes from making the lyrics your communication. Mean what you say when you sing.

Be Well Rested. If your vocal session is scheduled when you’re tired and you’re pushing past fatigue, you risk strain, blow-out and a general poor result. Some studios offer reduced rates for recording late at night. If you’re trying to save money that way, take a nap and arrive once the rhythm section is recorded. You need to be at your physical best for your voice to respond well.

Adjust the Headset Mix: Headset mix makes a big difference in how you sing and perform. You can change volume levels of instruments, other voices, effects—like reverb—or eliminate them altogether. Adjust it at the beginning of the session until you can perform undistracted. It doesn’t matter if you sound good to the engineer and what you hear in the headset is not what is being recorded. If needed, sing with “one ear off.” You’ll get similar complications to a mic mismatch when not comfortable with your headset mix.

Hopefully these tips and tricks will help you achieve a better performance in the studio