NOOB HOME RECORDING (000) - Welcome

Welcome to the NOOB HOME RECORDING segment. This is where I will share my experiences (and frustrations) on budget home recording, its basics, EQ's, Compression, and all sorts of recording stuff, as I learn them.

I've buried my nose into how-to books and online articles on the subject but as a consequence, it took time away from actually recording music. I do have one work in progress and it's coming along fine. I hope by the time I'm ready to do a serious mix, I'll have enough knowledge to put out a decent product.

In the meantime, what better way to test-drive what I've learned so far than to actually do a practice project? Ever since I got the Line 6 UX2 and a bunch of recording software, I've finished two to three songs and a few sample melodies. The end results were varied but I knew I could have done better. The problem was at that point I didn't know much about digital recording.


80's Nostalgia
I love 80's music. My high school days pretty much revolved around it. I remember spending countless hours creating my own extended versions of Russian Radio with a couple of blank tapes and a double cassette recorder. Good times.

Back in 1995 I thought it would be fun to cover one of my favorites... Berlin's The Metro. Here's the result of my early foray into home recording:



The Metro "Pillverized Version"


This was done with a Tascam 4-track tape recorder, Boss Dr550 drum machine, my Epiphone Les Paul Jr electric guitar that doubled as bass. Since I didn't have a keyboard back then, the guitar also played the synth parts. All effects were through a Zoom 505. I used a cheap Sony mic for vocals and mic'ing a 15W amplifier. The 4-track was plugged into a Dell workstation via the soundcard's input jack and into Audacity. That was pretty much it. I didn't know anything about EQ, Compression, Gates, etc... It was pure levels adjustment and panning.

I think I did a good job on the drum programming. I obviously made a glaring mistake on the rest of the recording. I should've FIRST figured out what key it should have been before laying down the melodic parts. My recording was probably an octave higher. No wonder I almost popped several veins singing the song. On the other hand, I had so much fun I really didn't care.

I thought it would be great to do a cover of The Metro all over again so join me as I record the song from start to finish.

NEXT: NHR 001 - The Scratch Track