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Bands don't understand what I am offering...
Old 1st October 2012 | Show parent
  #121
Lives for gear
 
logicll's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Both great post! I agree that a seasoned mastering engineer is indispensable, I was referring to guys who go out, buy a couple pieces of gear and call themselves mastering engineers. I own enough hardware and plugins to tout myself as a mastering engineer (and understand the complexities of mastering), but out of respect for the top mastering engineers I have worked with I refuse to to downplay the profession by offering mastering services.


Quote:
Making sweeping generalisations won't help either.

Were you making albums 15 years ago? I was, and 20 years before that too.

Making albums these days isn't 'dumbed down'. More challenging? Certainly!
We have to adapt and put our experience and ingenuity to good use.

Getting a gig in this industry is all about getting your foot in the door, and keeping it there. At the lowest level you need to make yourself useful and maybe even indispensable, if only for 5 minutes. At the upper levels it's all about fitting the profile and meeting spec.
Back in the day, unless you were at the local demo-studio level, you didn't deal with bands directly, you dealt with labels and management. Now we have to, and we have to offer management, marketing and career advice too - all skills that need to be learnt.

With wee baby bands, I offer them a 1 track freebie, recorded on location at their rehearsal space - 6 hours record time and however long I feel necessary back at my place - but I do the latter on my own.
I then give them the track and let them listen for a few days and then we meet - I explain what could be achieved under different conditions and scenarios, time-scales etc. They explain their personal stuff, finances etc....and, if an agreement can be made, off we go. So, I'm playing multiple roles there...99% of the time I talk the band out of doing an album, talk them into doing an EP and we do a wee deal where we'll do a few days pre-production in their rehearsal space and then record wherever we can afford over two days.
Will the results be any good? That depends on much, but one thing is for sure, I will ensure they get exactly what we all agreed on and they will be under no illusions.
Do a few of them successfully and you'll get a steady stream of work - not great money, but it all helps. You can also help them out with live sound, be an all round great/useful bloke.
If you don't want to aim that low, get a manager and let them bring the work in, but I gave that route up years ago - purely because I'd had enough of it, but if your profile is as good as you say, it's a viable route.
Old 1st October 2012
  #122
Lives for gear
 
ssaudio's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
It's also who you get to know, how you get there, and the impression you leave.

These days, in the UK, if you are regularly clearing £500+ a week for studio work you are doing very well (you can do much better taking the live route) - the big pay days are few and far between and things like mortgages and cars are a dream; that's the reality.
Nearly everyone I know just takes what they can and diversifies as much as possible - any gear owned is written off in terms of a client pricing structure and if you can work from home and avoid passing on a rental fee, all the better.
There's work out there, but not from the traditional sources and routes - you can concentrate on solely 'music', and that's OK when you are young, but not much use if you have a family.
Old 1st October 2012
  #123
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
One will get us completely there (assuming guitarist can play well). While the other gets us 75% of the way there, but that is actually completely ok with most clients. 75% makes us more money, easier to live off of... you get the idea. Clients still leave happy, but we the engineer feel ashamed or like we've cheated and could've done better.
I don't feel ashamed or like I've cheated at all. I would prefer to mic up an amp in almost every situation myself, but I think the better sims these days get you a lot closer than 75% (especially since more of the records clients are listening to use sims themselves than anyone wants to admit). If the client's happy then you don't have anything to feel ashamed about. If it makes you feel better, you can tell him that he can rent in a specific amp if that's an option...

Quote:
Based on the gear obsession here on GS I assume many are still miking up drums, amps ect... (right)?
Well, you have to keep in mind that your potential clients are likely not on GS. If people aren't doing it much in your area then it doesn't really matter what people "here" are doing. Once you get your foot in the door you may want to start enlightening your clients, but it's not something I'd lead with.
Old 1st October 2012 | Show parent
  #124
Lives for gear
 
logicll's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
AND... yes, yes I am starting to realize that most clients don't know much about gear...
Old 1st October 2012 | Show parent
  #125
Lives for gear
 
brockorama's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
logicII, do you have a website? You keep telling me why I should know about you, and this and that. That is all good. You are confident and I like that.

When Dave Pensado gives an endorsement, there is a website attached to the face that I can visit and see the discography and the room and equipment list etc.

I think you should have your credentials in a central location, is what I am saying.

Let me know if you need some help (free) with that. I can do fast wordpress installs and have a website up in short order.

You seem legit, is what I am feeling. You are maybe have growing pains is all. IE....overqualified for newbees (hacks) and underqualified (read unknown) to the pro community. That is a tough spot, and I have been there.
Old 1st October 2012 | Show parent
  #126
Gear Guru
 
Thomas W. Bethe's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by arrowood101 ➡️
I wouldn't say the issue is over saturation. Musicians have very few options to pull a profit from recordings these days and no touring does not cover the costs either. Hence the trickle down effect of them having no money to pay for engineers or studios. Everyone is hurting relatively, large and small. It's sad, but until artists get payed this will continue.
Yes but they still go to places like GC and plunk down $6000 + (been there-seen that) for DIY recording equipment and don't seem to have a problem with that but when the have to come up with a couple of thousands to do a proper recording in a real studio they never seem to have the money. The same goes for mastering.

I was in GC recently and there was a couple of people buying some equipment from the salesman to do their own mastering, He sold them a DBX 1/3 rd octave equalizer and a Behringer do everything box for about $600. They could have gotten their stuff professionally mastered for less by someone on this web board and had some money to have good dinner as well and the mastering would have been done well on good equipment and it might mean the difference between a good album and a GREAT album.

I don't buy the "poor musician" routine. I never have. They have money to buy what they want to DIY their stuff and then cry poor mouth when they are out looking for professional services.

You can't have it both ways...or maybe you can...
Old 1st October 2012 | Show parent
  #127
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas W. Bethe ➡️
Yes but they still go to places like GC and plunk down $6000 + (been there-seen that) for DIY recording equipment and don't seem to have a problem with that but when the have to come up with a couple of thousands to do a proper recording in a real studio they never seem to have the money. The same goes for mastering.

I was in GC recently and there was a couple of people buying some equipment from the salesman to do their own mastering, He sold them a DBX 1/3 rd octave equalizer and a Behringer do everything box for about $600. They could have gotten their stuff professionally mastered for less by someone on this web board and had some money to have good dinner as well and the mastering would have been done well on good equipment and it might mean the difference between a good album and a GREAT album.

I don't buy the "poor musician" routine. I never have. They have money to buy what they want to DIY their stuff and then cry poor mouth when they are out looking for professional services.

You can't have it both ways...or maybe you can...

Well first off apologies to the OP. I accidentally posted in the wrong thread and within minutes deleted it and posted in the correct thread.

Damn Thomas you are fast. My post is now in the internship thread if you would like to respond there. Don't want to take this thread too far off topic, sorry.

Couple quick thoughts on your response.

1. Do you not believe that there is less money in the industry then say 10 years ago?

2. Generally I try not to make my judgements on the music industry from what kids are doing at GC. There has always been musicians that take their craft more serious then others.

3. Have many more thoughts on this but will keep it short, since this isn't the original thread I meant to post in. Would love to discuss your thoughts more on the subject but maybe the internship thread would be more appropriate?
Old 1st October 2012 | Show parent
  #128
Lives for gear
 
logicll's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Hey, I think there is less money to go around, but with 12 million bands if I make an average of 5k an album (very low) and did an album a month I could make 50k a year (and take a few months off). That doesn't include pickup work ...
Old 1st October 2012 | Show parent
  #129
Lives for gear
 
1 Review written
🎧 5 years
Isaac Watts thought that the children's hymns of his day were lousy and somebody asked him if he could do better. It turned out that he could and he did.

If you think you can beat your competition at what they are doing, then that would appear to be an opportunity for you.
Old 1st October 2012 | Show parent
  #130
Gear Addict
 
Bristol Posse's Avatar
 
5 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
While not a studio owner and just a part time player and amateur recorder I can’t tell much about the technicalities of recording. But I have been making ends meet selling people anything from highly commoditized products to one of a kind customized solutions for over 20 years so these would be my observations.
In order to sell anything to anyone they have to see a value in it. You have to understand what the value that each customer sees is and how you fulfill their need.

If you are selling people toilet paper, the value might be that yours is the cheapest that doesn’t leave them with sh!t all over their fingers. In this case once you reach that standard of quality price may become the only determining factor so that wiping their a$$ isn’t cutting too much into their disposable income. They won’t care about number of sheets or how thick or what color or anything else, it’s just what they wipe their bum with.
If you are selling someone a custom kitchen price is still in their minds but there could be flexibility because quality of helping them design something they really want, materials, quality of work, on time performance , appearance of workers, a foreman who is communicative and speaks the same language as the customer, testimonials of workmanship, trustworthiness and customer service and so on. You could be the most expansive guy in town but if the other guys show up late, smell bad, don’t speak English, keep taking off to do other jobs, try and skimp on materials and so on people will be prepared to pay more for exactly the same thing.

In both cases the customer has a need and a different perception of what the value is. To be successful you first need to understand the customers need and how you can meet it. And why they see value in meeting that need and what it is that you can bring to give them that value and more, to more effectively to help them meet their goals than their other options would or could.

It seems right now you do not understand what your customer base needs and where they perceive the value to be. You are trying to push what your value system is onto your prospective customers
Obviously you see tape machines, high quality gear and experience as a high value (and many here on GS wouldn’t argue) but clearly your potential customer don’t. So now you have a choice. You either:
1) Spend a lot of time and energy trying to convince your customers how their perception of value is all wrong and they need to come over to your way of thinking
2) Take time to understand why and where your customers see value, what drives their choices and how you change your operation to meet their needs
Option one rarely works as walking up to a customer and telling them everything they want is wrong usually just pisses them off (even if it is true). Option two can take a longer time but once you get it then you can offer individual service to an individual customer based on what they need and what they WANT!
If tracking rooms are a key value driver to your customer base and you don’t have one but you do have 100 channels of tape and 1000 vintage 1176s, it won’t make any difference. You are not selling what the customer wants.

If we take this simple example and I were to take the plunge in this situation, I’d establish a relationship with a reasonable tracking room so that I could get my customers studio time on short notice, maybe even sell some gear or trade time with it to get this so that your clients get to the head of the line when looking for tracking space. I’d keep my hands on the tape machines and offer a service of running home recorded DAW tracks through tape to give “analog warmth” via some kind of online service. Now your tape machines are making you money with the home recording crowd selling the analog warmth dream while your ability to get good time in a reasonable studio, even if you have to record through a 003, is meeting the need of the real band crowd.
Once you have the reputation as the guy who can get bands into the studio and get their tracks down, have done some good mixes and are known as more than a guy with "a 'tude" who used to mix in a big studio, then you can start try to build the value add of recording to tape and mixing through high end gear and see if there is a want or a need to pay up charges to have this

LISTEN MORE, TALK LESS

A lot of times, having been part of a big organization can be a detriment when you find yourself as a little guy. The big guys have an expectation of business from other big guys through contracts or other agreements and as a part of that organization you get used to that expectation of business. The name of the organization is enough to get people in the door, there may be other, better options out there, but everyone know the big guy, what to expect and it’s just easy to pick up the phone and ask them to do it. When you find yourself no longer a part of that system things really get to be about how well you can sell.
Old 2nd October 2012 | Show parent
  #131
Gear Guru
 
Thomas W. Bethe's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bristol Posse ➡️
LISTEN MORE, TALK LESS
My Dad always said that is why you have two ears and only one mouth FWIW
Old 2nd October 2012 | Show parent
  #132
Dz7
Gear Addict
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas W. Bethe ➡️
Yes but they still go to places like GC and plunk down $6000 + (been there-seen that) for DIY recording equipment and don't seem to have a problem with that but when the have to come up with a couple of thousands to do a proper recording in a real studio they never seem to have the money. The same goes for mastering.

I was in GC recently and there was a couple of people buying some equipment from the salesman to do their own mastering, He sold them a DBX 1/3 rd octave equalizer and a Behringer do everything box for about $600. They could have gotten their stuff professionally mastered for less by someone on this web board and had some money to have good dinner as well and the mastering would have been done well on good equipment and it might mean the difference between a good album and a GREAT album.

I don't buy the "poor musician" routine. I never have. They have money to buy what they want to DIY their stuff and then cry poor mouth when they are out looking for professional services.

You can't have it both ways...or maybe you can...
I think it's a little more complex than that though. The equipment will last a very long time where as services are a one shot thing. For these people who are at least willing to learn a bit and invest in some equipment (quality issues, yes, but that's besides the point) it shows a little different approach than signed producers/mixers/mastering engineers who specialize and have a constant flow of work (and therefore no time to "learn" when there is a professional available basically on call).

My main problem is with the GC folk who don't understand that there IS a difference between a professional and the route they're taking. As long as that's clear, the mastering engineer (or whoever) was never losing work in the first place.
Old 2nd October 2012 | Show parent
  #133
Gear Guru
 
Thomas W. Bethe's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dz7 ➡️
I think it's a little more complex than that though. The equipment will last a very long time where as services are a one shot thing. For these people who are at least willing to learn a bit and invest in some equipment (quality issues, yes, but that's besides the point) it shows a little different approach than signed producers/mixers/mastering engineers who specialize and have a constant flow of work (and therefore no time to "learn" when there is a professional available basically on call).

My main problem is with the GC folk who don't understand that there IS a difference between a professional and the route they're taking. As long as that's clear, the mastering engineer (or whoever) was never losing work in the first place.
I understand that but I get a lot of calls to do mastering. The artist says they are out of money and can I do him a favor and do the mastering Pro Bono or for very little. One guy said he had blown $1800 on his CD release party and did not have any money to spend on the mastering. Maybe it is just me but I think I would have gotten the mastering done first and then spent what is left on the CD release party???

Different strokes for different folks.

As to the equipment purchases. I see this happening all the time. The band buys a boat load of equipment. No one wants to take the time to learn how to use it so it sits in someone's basement until the band member's significant other (read wife or girl friend) says. "What is all that junk in the basement why don't you start a recording studio with it and another half fast recording studio is born. If they would instead go somewhere where the engineer knows what he or she is doing and has a good studio environment they would get a good recording and they would be light years ahead.

I really don't understand the mind of some musicians. Of course they could also say the same thing about a lot of engineers. I guess we all have to agree to do what we think is best and live with our decisions.
Old 2nd October 2012 | Show parent
  #134
Gear Guru
 
joelpatterson's Avatar
 
2 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas W. Bethe ➡️
... the mind of some musicians....
This is all guesswork-- but it's my best guesswork:

If the mind of some musicians had a proper overview of what they were doing, like if they could see themselves as a music fan on Mars might... and see not only the landscape, but the timescape, see their way past the CD release party... see how the wider public was responding to them, their final product, see the choke points and crucial moments of decision...

They would OBVIOUSLY get the best possible professional help at each critical stage-- fling themselves wholeheartedly into their job, the performing/cult of personality stuff, delegate the tech stuff to the feverish geniuses that do it so well (that's us!) and pursue the whole venture confidently and systematically.

No prayer of this ever happening. More likely, a grand and daring plan with enormous potential rewards (just the way buying a lottery ticket is daring, with a tremendous payoff.) It sure looks delusional from the outside, but buying gear that is also essentially BIG TOYS!, with the hope that it's easy to use and in itself somewhat guarantees a good result-- that's a seductive pitch, no mystery at all why people, hoping for the best, fall under its sway.
Old 2nd October 2012 | Show parent
  #135
Lives for gear
 
brockorama's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Its all very clear to me now.
Old 2nd October 2012
  #136
Old 2nd October 2012 | Show parent
  #137
Lives for gear
 
ionian's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveUK ➡️
My, how emo.

Quote:
Originally Posted by brockorama ➡️
Its all very clear to me now.
Indeed.
Old 2nd October 2012 | Show parent
  #138
Lives for gear
 
logicll's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
A. The whole “emo thing is gay” WTF

B. Myspace sucks for all and got messed up by their crappy code.

Back on topic...
Bristol Posse Great post, makes sense and I think every market is different.
Old 2nd October 2012 | Show parent
  #139
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas W. Bethe ➡️
I understand that but I get a lot of calls to do mastering. The artist says they are out of money and can I do him a favor and do the mastering Pro Bono or for very little. One guy said he had blown $1800 on his CD release party and did not have any money to spend on the mastering. Maybe it is just me but I think I would have gotten the mastering done first and then spent what is left on the CD release party???

Different strokes for different folks.

As to the equipment purchases. I see this happening all the time. The band buys a boat load of equipment. No one wants to take the time to learn how to use it so it sits in someone's basement until the band member's significant other (read wife or girl friend) says. "What is all that junk in the basement why don't you start a recording studio with it and another half fast recording studio is born. If they would instead go somewhere where the engineer knows what he or she is doing and has a good studio environment they would get a good recording and they would be light years ahead.

I really don't understand the mind of some musicians. Of course they could also say the same thing about a lot of engineers. I guess we all have to agree to do what we think is best and live with our decisions.

Lol. Ive never heard of a studio being started that way. Ever
Old 2nd October 2012
  #140
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
After going through this thread, I think that your biggest obstacle to getting work is yourself. Whether it's intentional or not, you come off as either whiny, condescending, elitist and/or demanding -- depending on the situation.

There is no private place on the internet where you can vent your frustration.

It feels like you believe you are entitled to success because of your past accomplishments. It also feels like you are blaming everyone else for your current situation. I hear you blaming the bands for not being smart enough to pick you. Blaming studios for catering to these bands. Is this the way you act in most public situations? Maybe you have developed a bad rep...

Instead of complaining about your environment you should either work to change it, or find a new environment. It would help if you had something to show people like a website or even something on Facebook. You can get an artist page and link to sound_cloud without spending a cent.

You could also come to forums like these and instead of complaining, offer advice to the newbies, etc. Anything to rehabilitate your rep. It really seems like that is your big problem. Think about how you present yourself.

My personal experience is:

I did my last recording in a major league studio (Nashville's Sound Emporium) back in 1993. Then I left my very lucrative gig as keyboardist/vocalist for the Marshall Tucker Band to raise my family. A few years later I was a single parent with two kids and nothing else. I had to start from scratch with no gear. I got a job in a small local recording studio and built up a clientele. After ten years that fell through and I had to start again. Keeping a keen eye out for opportunities, I found my current gig, quickly sussed out how to get it and went for it.

During my first interview I noticed that they were all-PC and I mentioned to my future employer that I was glad that they weren't all Mac as I felt Mac's were over-rated. I actually have always used both and have no problem with them, but I was told that I was the first and only person that didn't disparage PCs. Everyone else got all uppity and complained that only Mac's were used in proper studios. Well... Now I make six figures with full benefits and retirement and I get to work with the most talented people around. I've got complete job security and it happened because I kept my eyes and ears open and unless I had something positive to say, my mouth shut.
Old 2nd October 2012 | Show parent
  #141
Lives for gear
 
logicll's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Great post thanks..
Old 2nd October 2012 | Show parent
  #142
Dz7
Gear Addict
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas W. Bethe ➡️
I understand that but I get a lot of calls to do mastering. The artist says they are out of money and can I do him a favor and do the mastering Pro Bono or for very little. One guy said he had blown $1800 on his CD release party and did not have any money to spend on the mastering. Maybe it is just me but I think I would have gotten the mastering done first and then spent what is left on the CD release party???

Different strokes for different folks.

As to the equipment purchases. I see this happening all the time. The band buys a boat load of equipment. No one wants to take the time to learn how to use it so it sits in someone's basement until the band member's significant other (read wife or girl friend) says. "What is all that junk in the basement why don't you start a recording studio with it and another half fast recording studio is born. If they would instead go somewhere where the engineer knows what he or she is doing and has a good studio environment they would get a good recording and they would be light years ahead.

I really don't understand the mind of some musicians. Of course they could also say the same thing about a lot of engineers. I guess we all have to agree to do what we think is best and live with our decisions.
Yikes, that's insane. Usually I have "broke" classical musicians trying to steal and redistribute masters so I suppose we all have our crowds to avoid lol
Old 2nd October 2012 | Show parent
  #143
Deleted 56021e5
Guest
Hi,

Why don't you setup a website and other digital platform sites such as Facebook/My Space etc for mixing or producing services
for people outside your geographical area ?

If you are as good as you say you are you can get artists and bands you will be interested in their music to sound as good as possible

I know I would...
Old 3rd October 2012 | Show parent
  #144
Lives for gear
 
phillysoulman's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by logicll ➡️
What I don't understand is bands spending their money on $500.00 a day studios with "ok" gear and a semi experienced engineer VS. being excited to work with me.
It would seem bands understand 003, digi mic pres , plugins and amateur room setups, but don't understand tape, hardware, real amps and production.
If I may ask,what are your rates like??
Old 3rd October 2012 | Show parent
  #145
Lives for gear
 
logicll's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Hello, I am having a hard time establishing a rate, I am not sure if I want to do a flat day rate or hourly. I was pushing my day rate (not including a studio) at $200.00 a day and $300-500a track for mixing.

I was thinking about charging 3-4k for a 6 song EP y/n?

Local rates are 300-$500 a day I have been told I should be charging 50-$75 an hour.
Old 3rd October 2012
  #146
Lives for gear
 
DaveUK's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
http://joehaze.com/
So this is you . ? Nice gigs ! Would love to work with Sly and Robbie :-)
Old 3rd October 2012
  #147
Lives for gear
 
DaveUK's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Or should that be FOR Sly and Robbie ?because I couldn't say **** to them!! Heh heh
Old 3rd October 2012 | Show parent
  #148
Lives for gear
 
Joe Haze's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
yo, Joe here what's up? I lucked into the reggae thing.. then I ended up doing a few reggae projects. Life can be random.
Old 3rd October 2012
  #149
Lives for gear
 
DaveUK's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
So "joe" is the happy go lucky persona :-) stick with that one ! Reggae is a big old market!!
Go for it !
Old 3rd October 2012 | Show parent
  #150
Lives for gear
 
logicll's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
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