Posts in Engineering
3 Desert Island Plugins

On this blog, I decided to do something a little different and fun.  Let’s play desert island plugins! I’m hoping this will spark some conversations with everyone out there on the interwebs, as I’m sure we’ll all have very different opinions on what is necessary on our desert island studio.  So, you’re trapped on this metaphorical island with nowhere to go but you have great mixing monitors and an awesome control room built out of driftwood and coconuts as diffusers. You can only bring 3 plugins, what are they?!?  Here’s my desert island plugins:

Read More
Enriching The Mix Process

I know that this can be a redundant statement and that you don’t need me to tell you something so obvious. However, I don’t think it can be overstated how massively the player/performance impacts the tone of the Bass. Finding a player who really understands the instrument and how it fits into a recording will save you a lot of headaches and get you bobbing along a lot quicker. I know that we don’t always have access to amazing bass players for every session, just remember that even if you are working with an inexperienced player, the more you can help him or her understand the instrument and perform better, the easier your life will be down the line.  

Read More
5 Tips For a Great Bass Tone

I know that this can be a redundant statement and that you don’t need me to tell you something so obvious. However, I don’t think it can be overstated how massively the player/performance impacts the tone of the Bass. Finding a player who really understands the instrument and how it fits into a recording will save you a lot of headaches and get you bobbing along a lot quicker. I know that we don’t always have access to amazing bass players for every session, just remember that even if you are working with an inexperienced player, the more you can help him or her understand the instrument and perform better, the easier your life will be down the line.  

Read More
Mute Everything!!!

So stoked to be making a guest appearance on the blog here. Today I’m going to lay out an approach I use to create effective arrangements that I call “producing by muting”. I developed this technique to deal with a problem that plagued me early in my career (and still shows up now and then); OVER CREATION! Let me walk you through a scenario that I’m sure we’ve all been through at least once.

Read More
Effective Ways To Setup Parallel Compression In Your Mixes

Hey guys! Brad Simons here, and today I want to talk about parallel compression and a few ways to set it up in your mixes. It’s a great technique that can really make your mixes come alive. Setting it up in an efficient manner allows you to really get creative with your mixes. So let’s dive in and learn how to do that!

Read More
5 Reasons To Care About Our Recordings

I absolutely love what I do and consider myself extremely lucky to have been able to do it professionally for all these years.  Some of my best memories are creating music with my clients/friends in the studio, and I hope they have the same fond memories. Today, I want to list 5 reasons of motivation as to why it’s important for us to care about the music and clients that we work with.  

Read More
How To Get A Great Guitar Sound In The Studio

Hey all, Brad Simons here again. As a guitar player, getting an awesome tone is very important to me, and also one of my favorite things to do. As with most things we do in the studio, there are a million and one ways to get an awesome sounding guitar tone. However, I’m going to go through my process, and I hope that it lays down some principles that you can use with your process. Let’s dive in.

Read More
5 Tips To Get The Best Out Of The Artist

As much fun as we all have nerding out over engineering and production tips, it’s important to keep in mind the main reason we are in the studio: to create music with emotion and vibe that will resonate with listeners. In order to do that, we need the Artists more than they need us.  And more importantly, we need them at their absolute best. Here are 5 tips that we as Producers/Engineers can do to ensure that our clients are at the top of their game.

Read More
Metering Methods Using the Klanghelm VUMT Plugin

Hey everyone! It's Brad Smith here. Today I’ll be diving into the Klanghelm VUMT plugin, what it is, how it works, and how I use it in all three phases of the recording process. This will be broken out over two (potentially three) blog posts. Today's post will be an introduction to the plugin and I’ll talk about how I use the plugin while tracking.

Read More
6 Mistakes I Made As A Beginner Engineer

When I was 18 and first getting into recording, I had no idea what I was doing. Today, I still feel like I don’t know what I’m doing, but I have made enough mistakes along to way to learn what NOT to do, and that has helped me more than any blog/book/seminar ever has. During the process of recording my band Forester's full length album, I did many things incorrectly that one often only sees in hindsight. Some of these may seem like rookie mistakes by seasoned recording vets but with so many elements that make up a great recording, everyone makes mistakes somewhere along the way.

Read More
5 Tips To Get A Huge Kick Drum Sound

Hey guys! It's Brad Simons here, and this post is all about making your kick drum sound huge. There are few things more satisfying in the studio than getting that kick sound just right. As always, I'm going to talk about how I go about it, rather than describing all possible ways that it's done. We're going to talk about the process from tracking, all the way to mixing, so we can make sure the final mix has that much-needed kick drum sound. Here we go!

Read More
5 Home Recording Hacks

Alright, let's face it. Studio's are damn expensive and sometimes are just out of the budget. But what do you do if you want to get an idea out into the world? In comes home recording. I'll be honest, you can make some pretty incredible stuff at with todays technology. Also, it's probably a good idea for every musician to atleast have a rudimentary understanding of how recording works. It will help you when you get into the studio. So, today we're going to give you 5 home recording hacks that can help you get the most out of your home recording.

Read More
Ideas For A Vocal Chain

Getting a great vocal is the cornerstone of almost every song ever written. So we need to focus on really making sure that it sounds killer and cuts through the mix. My vocal chain is always evolving, but I thought I would describe the way it is currently working. And of course, every vocalist requires a slightly different setup, but this is a go-to for me that generally gets the job done.

Read More