This is where drum software comes to the rescue. It provides realistic drum sounds for those of us who can’t get into a studio whenever we want.
5) In your experience, does drum track creation technology offer a positive compositional (rather than production) tool in a studio context?
Sure. Playing along with a real-sounding drum groove always helps me think up new parts for a song.
6) Do you feel there has been a movement in emphasis amongst music publishers in recent years to the actual production aspects required to realise the artist’s work, rather than the work itself? E.g. the budgetary/time requirements of producing an album of orchestral music using samplers over a live 40-piece orchestra – has this resulted in music being published today that would never have been possible or considered 20 years ago?
There have definitely been changes. The whole evolution of recording technology has caused what almost seems like a flip-flop of roles. Now an average musician can buy a laptop and recording software and record an album.
So yes, the advancement of technology has somewhat leveled the playing field. Someone like me, with the aid of software, can produce a very good-sounding album, for a fraction of what it would have cost 20 years ago.
7) Where do you see music creation technology and its impact on the studio recording setup in the future? Should budding producers and engineers still be given a grounding in microphone techniques, acoustics, outboard gear etc. or should they concentrate on programming realistic MIDI tracks, working VSTs/VSTis “inside the box,” Pro Tools techniques, etc.?
Both. I think most people will focus on learning software, when that’s still only half of the equation. If you can’t get a good vocal sound with a microphone, or if you can’t use an EQ properly, then it doesn’t really matter how well you know the software.
My advice for budding producers and engineers is to go out there and do it yourself. Take the gear you own RIGHT NOW and start working with musicians. As you get paid, buy the extra gear you need.
As you get better, you can charge more. Be entrepreneurial. Take it upon yourself to make it happen.
A passive producer or engineer (or even drummer) will never see much success.
Be sure to join Joe for his upcoming live Recording Electric Guitar class.
Joe Gilder is a Nashville based engineer, musician, and producer who also provides training and advice at the Home Studio Corner.