Professional recording of vocals for a song is a very meticulous but fun process. Producers and engineers have to have their ear really tuned into what is happening with the song which requires in many cases to have a copy of the lyrics or sometimes having a vocal guide of what the song intends to sound like so that way the engineer and the producer can guide in the best way possible the singer who is going to be in the cabin recording
Sometimes artists come to the studio and may not have a perfect understanding of the song they’re going to sing so that, in turn, makes the process more timely and more expensive if you’re paying for studio time so the first thing when you are going to record professionally, as logic as it may seem but it’s always important to mention, is that you really have to know your song as best as possible. Abraham Lincoln used to say “if I have six hours to cut a tree I’m going to spend one hour sharpening the ax” that means that the preparation is one of the most important things before you get into any type of endeavor, its the same with vocal recording, the better you know each part of the song the more probabilities you will have to do less takes of the same phrase when recording.
Something that I would advise, specially with beginners is to grab a metronome and sing the song with the metronome many times because timing is very important in vocal recording, when you hear a song and you want it to be solid and that implies really good tuning and really good temple so singing with a metronome is something that can always hope for preparing before you go into the studio number one number two if you if you have access to some software tools like for example logic or garage band or any way that you can actually do a recording of your vocals and perhaps two on those vocals so you can hear the perfect notes that you have to hit before you go into the studio so that makes two things fall into place one is the timing of the song with the vocals in reference to the temple and two is the pitch and tone of the N-Too and perhaps two on those vocals so you can hear the perfect notes that you have to hit before you go into the studio so that makes two things fall into place one is the timing of the song with the vocals in reference to the temple and two is the pitch and tune of the voice people think that with electronic instruments things can be fixed but with all the technology in the world will not be able to fix a poor performance so before going into the studio you want to make sure you have the timing of the song and the notes really clear in your head
After these two things we mentioned are very clear by the singer you want to make sure you go through a little bit of microphone technique. When singing, pro studios may have compressors that they can place on vocals in order to regulate the dynamics of the song when it’s being recorded but that will not take away the ability necessary by the singer to also know when to come closer to the mic and went to separate in order to not create too drastic dynamics in shorts amounts of time or phrases and this is called microphone technique there are many great teachers and books that refer to the subject but what is essential is to keep in mind that you will need to have some knowledge of how to and where we’re to be placed in front of a mic when you’re recording the song professionally
After these things are in place and I’m still talking about the preparation before going into the studio what you really want to bring into the professional recording after you know your song really well and you know your timing and you have a clear picture in your head of all the notes and what you’re going to sing its important to mention that a great pitch with great timing will do a lot for the song but it will never replace a song that has these elements in addition to a great feeling and emotion behind what you’re saying. If you don’t feel what you’re saying when you’re singing that is ultimately going to reflect in the final product of the song, so complete preparation comes with timing, with notes and really practicing the song and the feel you want to give it. What you as a singer want to bring to the studio is that factor that is going to differentiate you from all the other singers, there is a unique form of singing and a unique feeling towards a song that only you as a singer can give and the color is what you want to bring to the studio when you’re going to lay down the final vocals, so if you’re thinking about timing and hitting the right notes you will not be able to put 100% of your emotion into the song, that’s why I make so much emphasis in the right preparation.
As a producer I’ve had singers sing songs so many times before ago going into the studio to record it that sometimes they get a little overwhelmed of how much I make them practice but the results speak for themselves because the writ after good practice going into the studio recording is a very pleasurable and fun process versus when there’s poor preparation recording a song can become tedious and a real headache.
So you really want to know your material well and after that when you’re really prepared you’ll go into the studio and enjoy your craft you will save money and you’ll save your producer and the engineered time which is always a very valuable
once you’re in the cabinet and your recording there are many different intentions and many different ways a recording can take place sometimes you’ll go and record the verses then the pre-chorus and skip to the second verse and finally recorded the chorus and the ad Libs it’s never written in stone but many people like to do the soft parts and then the stronger parts of the song with the idea of recording the soft parts when the voice is not as warm and then the stronger parts when the voice has warmed up there are many Pro singers that can breeze through a song from bottom to top with just a couple takes and they’re done but this is because they prepare themselves very well but in most cases the productions that I’ve been part of songs are recorded in sections the artist will be the one who determines which is the way that is most comfortable for you.
I’ve heard of many artists that first record as amateurs and then go into a professional studio and the commentary that I hear most of the times is that in the amateur studio they would have to accommodate them selves to the studio when the correct way to record is that the studio accommodates to make the artists feel more comfortable and doing their craft so something very important to to recognize a good recording environment is that the people are there for the artist to make it possible so the artist can bring out the best of their vocals which will result in having a much better finish product or song
To summarize good preparation being in the right environment and knowing your intention and feeling in the song you’re going to record will ultimately give a much better finish result I hope this post has served as a small clear view on the recording process on tips for recording vocals and please don’t hesitate to leave your comments below