Recording a song in a music studio may sound complex and indeed, there are a lot of technical details that someone in the room needs to be responsible for. Still, whether you’re recording in a professional studio or a studio in your home, there are a few basic steps that everyone has to execute for the recording to be a success. Below are four of those steps.
1. A Guide Is Needed for the Instruments to Follow
The other instruments need a guide so they can follow along with the other musicians, and there are three main ways you can do this: use a metronome to set the tempo, use a pre-recorded drum loop, or create a scratch track. A scratch track is created when a group of instruments are recorded as the guide and then over-dubbed one at a time until finally, the original can be deleted, that is, scratched.
2. Record the Rhythm Section First
When recording a song, the drums and bass should be recorded first. If an occasion arises where you’re dealing with a song that doesn’t use either drums or bass, you can choose another instrument instead, such as acoustic guitar.
3. Record the Harmonies Next
Because the drums and bass are considered the foundation of any recording, you can go ahead and record the harmonies after those two instruments are recorded. This consists of creating a chord structure that includes adding instruments such as piano, rhythm guitar, horns, synthesizers, and so on. Once these basic chord progressions are recorded properly, you can move onto the last phase.
4. Finally, Record the Melodies
Most often, melodies consist of more than one instrument. Once you reach this step, you can pick the most dominant instruments to start the process; for example, lead vocals or lead guitar. Once you do this, you can fill in the gaps with all of the supporting melodies.
When you’re done with these steps, you can add a little nuance to the recording if you like. Some of the things you can add include piano or percussion fills, background vocals, or even some unique sound effects. The more experience you have under your belt, the easier it will be for you to add those special touches to make the recording even better. If you’re a newbie, not to worry because there are a lot of resources available to help you, and most of them can be found online.