Would you like to know the times when I feel the most productive, the most focused?

It’s not when I’m juggling ten different projects, making tiny progress on each of them. It’s not even when I have 20 items on my to-do list for the day, and I cross all of them off.

No, the most productive (and fun) days are the days when there’s ONE thing on my to-do list. (more…)

4 Reasons to Have a Regular “Recording Day”

Got this awesome email from Peter, one of my Understanding EQ customers

Check it out:

“The whole issue of time was an enormous obstacle for me…and getting together with other musicians to collaborate on projects. So this may be a useful tip for some people.

What I did was to take the randomness out of it. I started by doing a deal with my wife, every second Sunday is totally dedicated for me and my studio.

That doesn’t sound much I know, but a few things happened:

  1. My wife could plan her own outings with family and/or friends on those days (she is actually accomplishing more). Win/win.
  2. My musician friends could actually schedule the day in advance. They all know its an all-day thing at my place, and they know what days.
  3. I could plan ahead and actually maximize studio time by knowing what the heck I was doing before I went in and did it, therefore improving the efficiency of the time that I had in the studio.
  4. I now can set timelines for projects and can produce to certain deadlines.

Anytime that I have on top of that scheduled time is a bonus. So it’s not like I only work in my studio on those particular Sundays, it is just that those days are completely dedicated.

That and producing a song in an hour (albeit usually just guitar,vox and some simple rhythm track), which we have discussed, has greatly improved my recording experience.



Love, love, LOVE that.

He’s dedicating ONE day per month to recording. That’s it.

12 days per year.

And I bet he gets more done this year than most people.

Heck, even Peter said that one day a month “doesn’t sound like much,” but you’d be amazed at what you can accomplish in one HOUR, much less one DAY.

(If you don’t believe me, check out the 1-Hour Challenge I did for my VIP members over at:

One song. One mic. One hour. It turned out really awesome.)

It’s all about getting in there and getting things done.

Kudos to you, Peter, for making it happen.

Now, for the rest of you, can you find time to work on music?

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 — — 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…)

A Case Against “Workflow”

There’s a word out there that I don’t really care for.

I think it’s overused, or at least over-emphasized. (And I’m guilty of using it, too.)

The word?


I wrote the other day why I don’t think control surfaces are all that important to us home studio folks.

Boy, you should have seen the emails I got back. Some folks agree with me wholeheartedly. Others acted like I was trying to slaughter a sacred cow or something. 🙂

Here’s the deal.

Which is more important to you — how good a song sounds or how quickly you were able to finish it? (more…)

10 Ways to Limit Yourself (& Make Yourself Better)

Hidey ho, neighbor.

You’ve heard me talk before about how good limitations can be for you. Having boundaries can actually ENHANCE your creativity.

Well, maybe you don’t believe me. Or maybe you simply haven’t given it a try yet.

Here are some suggestions for you. 10 ways to limit yourself…and make yourself better…all at the same time. (more…)

VIDEO: Productivity Part 1 – Label Your IO

One of the easiest ways you can save time in your home studio is by labeling your inputs, outputs, and busses in your DAW. This is easy to do and will only take you a few minutes. 

Once you do this, your routing life will be much easier. You won’t have to waste time guessing where a certain track is being routed. Check out this short video on labeling your IO in Pro Tools.


How do you set up your IO? Leave a comment!

Productivity: Accomplish More in Your Home Studio

Workflow and time management are crucial in any endeavor. Home studios are no different. I am constantly amazed at how much time I waste in my studio. I could easily spend two hours simply “setting things up” or “trying things out.” By the time I could feasibly begin recording or making music, I’m either tired or have run out of time.

Most of us pursue music in our spare time. “Weekend warriors” they call us. But if you’re like me, you’ve had many a good-intentioned weekend come and go without a single snippet of audio to show for it.

Just this weekend I was planning to make some serious progress on my album. My wife was going shopping, so I knew I had time to get a few tracks recorded. Unsurprisingly, she shows up an hour and a half later, and I’ve barely gotten a thing recorded. I was just getting into it. (more…)