My 2-year-old Owen recently loves a show called Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood. (It’s a spinoff of Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood.)

Anyhoo…

There’s this one episode where they keep singing:

“Friends help each other, yes they do, it’s true.”

Okay, so that part is super cheesy, but the next line of the song applies SO well to home recording:

“Even if you can do it by yourself,
It’s much more fun when friends can help.”

Boom.

Yesterday Lao Tsu was dropping knowledge bombs. Today it’s a cartoon tiger. I’m keeping you on your toes.

Okay, quick story.

Back in college, my buddy Ben was a big fan of a “band” called Self. Self was just one dude who played every single instrument on the album.

Initially you think to yourself, “Wow, that’s impressive!” But unless you knew that information before listening, you wouldn’t be as impressed.

People are impressed by great-sounding music. They don’t care if you did it all by yourself or not; they just want it to sound great.

And that’s where we home studio folks get into trouble.

We think that since we CAN record every part ourselves (or program every part with virtual instruments) that we SHOULD record every part ourselves.

But doing everything by yourself takes away some of the magic of making music.

On my first album, I did almost everything myself — I programmed the drums, played all the guitar and keyboard parts, and sang all the vocals.

On my most recent album, I outsourced a lot more. My buddy Tim played drums. Joel played bass. One of my VIP members Justin played B3. Ian Shepherd mastered the album.

Could I have done all those things myself?

Technically, yes.

Would it have sounded as good?

Absolutely not.

Would I have had as much fun doing it by myself?

Nope.

Think about branching out of your studio cave and interacting with other people. It’s amazing what can happen.

Need a great place to do that? The VIP members forum is a perfect place to collaborate and meet some awesome people.

Subscription details here:

www.HomeStudioCorner.com/VIP

Joe Gilder
Home Studio Corner

  • Kevin Parton in McMinnville, T

    Hey Joe, I love all the help you put out there for us! You mention, the band sElf, the brainchild of Matt Mahaffey. He’s back in the Nashville area and has a studio, Fresh Imperial. He records and produces bands, but he seems to be doing quite a lot of work for Nickelodeon and cartoons. The band, sElf, seemed to be caught up in the major label conundrum of having an album “shelved”, recorded but never released.