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The Music Production Guide E-Zine, Issue #003 -- Attitude Issue
August 21, 2012

The Music Production Guide

Issue# 003
Date: 8/21/12


The mission of The Music Production Guide E-Zine is a monthly (sometimes more often…) newsletter to discuss music production and engineering tips and techniques as well as career building advice to help you establish or enhance your music production career!

If you like what you see, forward it to a friend. If this e-zine was forwarded to you, sign up by clicking HERE and adding your name to the mailing list located in the top right column…

In This Issue...

1. What's New at
2. Music Production Tip: When is Too Much, Too Much
3. Engineering Tip: Managing Excessive Takes
4. Career Building Tip: Maintaining a Positive Attitude

1. What's New !!!

1. First Online Music Production Class a Huge Success!

Although there were some technical details that could have been dealt with it better on my part, the overall reception and response to the class was overwhelmingly positive! I Want to personally thank all who participated for the amazing support and feedback that will help to make each succeeding class that much better and more valuable to those who attend in the future.

If you did not attend the last this online class and would like to view a replay, you can do so by CLICKING HERE. Make sure that you leave some feedback on the supplied form.

The next online class is Wednesday, August 29th at 7PM ET. If you have not registered already, please fill out this REGISTRATION FORM to claim your place. You do not need to register if you already signed up for the first class.

2. Online Master Mixing Workshop

Starting the second week of September I will be conducting an 8 WEEK LONG MIXING WORKSHOP that will take you through the process of mixing from beginning to end. This is a truly SERIOUS workshop that will dispel myths, bad habits and completely transform your mixing abilities. I promise you, you will be blow away!

The workshop will include 8 live online classes (2 hrs each) and loads of support materials including video tutorials, audio lectures and eBooks. Each week will focus on a different aspect of mixing and you will be required to apply those techniques to a mix you will submit before, during and after the workshop to track your progress.

Sign up before September 1st and save $50.

Before Sept 1st: $250.
After Sept 1st: $300

3. Membership Site Coming Soon

As if I don't have enough to do, I am building a membership site as the foundation of the online music production classes and workshops. The site will be filled with loads of educational videos, audios and support materials for Music Production, Engineering and Career Development.

This will become the foundation for all the classes, workshops and every other crazy thing I can dream up to make sure you make a career doing what you love to do!

2. Music Production Tip

When Does Recording Too Much, Become Too Much

One of the biggest problems with recording audio on hard drives is that it is very easy to pile up an extraordinary amount of takes for a song. These files, of course, need to be sorted through, assessed and hopefully compiled into a single performance. Dealing with all this information can be time consuming to say the least.

One of the most amazing things about the analog era of recording was that the limitations of the technology forced producers, engineers and artist to commit to decisions about performances. In fact, it was almost always necessary to completely finish and edit a performance before moving onto the next task.

Today, without those limitations, it is very easy to leave unfinished work until a later time so that you can move on to a new task or recording. The downside is that it is almost always more difficult to go back to editing a performance that is not fresh in your memory.

It has always been my opinion, that it is better to finish whatever work you start before moving on to the next task. When you start the process of recording, and focus intently on capturing performances, you are most aware of the details, subtleties, weaknesses and strengths of the performance. This is the best time to finish it off…

To put it simply, finish the jobs that you start as while the material is most fresh in your head. Once finished, it will be very easy to move on to the next task without the lingering effects of unfinished work cluttering your mind. If you are not clear headed about what you have, then it may be best to take a break or leave it to another day. The important thing to remember is that you must be clear headed and focussed to do your best work.

3. Music Engineering Tip

How To Manage Excessive Takes

There is an engineering side to all of this as well. Any production work that requires an excessive amount of recording of the same material over and over usually results in an excessive number of audio files that need to be dealt with by the engineer. The most valuable tool you can use to manage this problem is the playlist.

Playlists allow you to store multiple for performances that are layered within a track. Each performance can be displayed separately from all the other performances and monitored as desired. Many software programs such as Pro tools allow for the ability to organize and rate performances so that you can later compile them into a single performance.

Although this seems like a great idea on the surface, it is usually a lot of extra work that doesn't necessarily yield the benefit you're looking for. The reason for this is that performances may be good in certain sections and poor in others. How do you rate that?

The better way to deal with this issue, is to create a 2nd track parallel to the track you're recording on. As you record performances that come across as exceptional quickly extract them from the recorded take and place them on the 2nd track in a playlist. This way you can quickly extract only the sections that are very good from the average performances.

This process will save hours of wasted time wading through performances that are not worthy of your time. It will also quickly expose sections of the song that are not up to par with the rest of the track so that you can quickly focus your attention where it is most needed in the recording process.

4. Career development tip

Maintaining A Positive Attitude

In last week's online class, I spoke at length about the importance of maintaining a positive attitude while working in any recording situation. I cannot over emphasize how important this is and how much it will help you in your career. The reasons for this are very simple, people like to be around other people who are positive.

We all know people who we have fun with and laugh regardless of the situation or circumstances we are in. These people make the best of every situation. In the recording studio this type of attitude or approach is invaluable. With a positive attitude, you help to create a comfortable environment for the artist.

Inevitably, no matter how positive you are, you will end up in situations where people are frustrated and angry because things aren't coming out as they hoped. The ability to keep a positive presence, without judging the artist's frustration, will help to facilitate solutions to the problem. Always focus on solutions and, no matter what happens, don't take anything personally.

Ultimately, we all get into the creative field like music production so that we can do something we love for a living. Being positive is infectious. When you love what you do, you will attract clients who want to work with you because you create an environment that facilitates good recordings and performances.

Thanks for reading The Music Production Guide E-Zine! I look forward to hearing any comments or questions you may have regarding the content of this E-Zine and what you would like to see more of in future publications.

All The Best,

Michael White

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