6 Ways to “Reboot” Your Studio

these boots were made for walkin'When you think about your studio, what comes to mind? I’ll admit, it’s easy to hone my attention on the things I don’t like about it. Perhaps the fact that a few of my mic stands don’t work very well anymore. Or how I need to stain the wood on my homemade gobo/booth. Or that I don’t have a dedicated monitor switcher box to switch between speakers and sources and quickly listen to things in mono. Or maybe I think about how I need to tidy up the cables back behind my desk, which makes me think that I really should buy all new cables, so I don’t have mismatch of different brands and lengths.

It’s endless, really. And don’t get me wrong. I harp on “Gear Acquisition Syndrome” all the time, but there’s no doubt about it — gear is fun. Buying gear is fun. Studying gear can be fun. Unfortunately, however, too many of us become so obsessed with the gear over the music that we end up sinking lots of money into a “studio,” even when that “studio” hasn’t released a single piece of music in years. (Or perhaps you’ve never finished a project in your studio?) (more…)

3 Reasons You NEED to Be Good at Audio

If you’re reading this, there’s a good chance you WANT to be good at audio.

You want to get better. You want your recordings to sound great.

But do you NEED to be good at audio?

My vote? Absolutely.

Here are 3 reasons why:

1. Extra Income Potential

Would you be happy with some extra income? Of course you would.

As the economy continues to do its crazy dance, lots of people (perhaps even you) are nervous about their financial futures. Jobs that once seemed “secure” don’t seem so secure anymore.

Or maybe that same old paycheck just doesn’t go as far as it used to. (more…)

Brave Toddler Shames Audio Engineer

So I’ve got a little boy named Owen.

He’s almost 2 years old now, but back before his first birthday, he was a beast.

We would take him to a park, and he would crawl around the playground. He couldn’t walk yet, so he just trucked around on all fours.

One day he came to a big ol’ slide. (One of those spiraling tunnel slides.) I assumed he’d look down the slide, get scared, and crawl the other way.


He looked down and just went for it.

Head first.

No fear.

And he loved it…and went over and over and over. (more…)

Make a Big ol’ Mess

Last week my wife Pam and I took on the task of refinishing our kitchen cabinets. They were very dark, so in an effort to brighten up our kitchen, we refinished them with a nice white color.

The problem with working on cabinets is that once you take them off the hinges, you’ve got to put them somewhere. So our entire kitchen and dining room was covered in cabinet doors. PLUS you get the added bonus that all of our cabinets were wide open, leaving plenty of things for our 1-year-old to get into.

Needless to say, our kitchen was a MESS.

And that’s exactly how it needed to be.

The mess kept us motivated.

The longer it took us to finish the project, the longer we had to live in a disaster area. The motivation to get our house back in order far outweighed the desire to be lazy and take our sweet time.

And there’s a big ol’ lesson here for us studio folks, too. (more…)

Just Dive In

Are you a “dip your toes in the water” kind of person?

Knock it off.

Take a lesson from Arlon, one of my new Understanding Compression —www.UnderstandingCompression.com — customers.

He writes:

“I am a performing artist who has gotten half dangerous at recording in ProTools. I sort of know what I am doing, but there are holes…being filled with every new song I record. Thanks for your videos and fun emails! I am learning new stuff all the time – Thank you!”

Too many people want to learn EVERYTHING before they dive in and start recording. Arlon dives in and learns as he goes (a little more with each new song), and that tells me he’s gonna keep getting better and better. (more…)

Hard Drive Full of Unfinished Songs

George, a new customer of mine, sent me an email that seems to describe a lot of my subscribers. Perhaps you’re in the same boat?

Check it out:

“My biggest problem has always been time. I recently stumbled upon Graham’s website as well as your podcast. Both are very informative. All this led me to the Production Club [www.HSCProductionClub.com]. I like the idea so I decided to join. It’s funny because the first thing you ask on the site is ‘Do you have a hard drive full of unfinished songs?’ Why yes, yes I do. That seems to be the joke between my singer and me. So I’m determined to finish one of them!”

Ah, the old hard drive full of unfinished songs. It’s a double-edged sword. (more…)

The Secret to Making Better Music

Today I shall keepeth it short and sweet.

You knew I do a podcast with my buddy Graham Cochrane from The Recording Revolution, right?

Well, today I’ve got a brand new episode hot off the presses for you.

In this episode, we talk about the secret to making better music. It might not be what you think. We talk about two myths that are KILLING lots of home studio folks.

Take a listen here:


P.S. If you haven’t jumped on the VIP bandwagon yet, we talk about it a little bit on the podcast. You can become a member in roughly 60 seconds here:


Recording Tip from…an Orthodontist?

Funny story.

I took my wife to an orthodontist the other day.

Since it was her birthday month, they gave her all sorts of goodies (including a cupcake that our one-year-old son promptly inhaled).

One of the gifts was a little calendar.

I was flipping through it, making fun of all the cheesy inspirational quotes, when I came across a DOOZY.

This one goes for the jugular.

And I thought, “I’ve GOT to share this with my HSC peeps.”

Here ’tis: (more…)