• Things I've been learning while at school

    So I currently attend an audio engineering school in Tempe AZ (I wont mention the name but yes its that school)
    And I have learned A few big tips that have opened my eyes to Audio Engineering and Producing in general thought I'd share ten eye opening experiences (not in any specific order). Also if you dont agree tell why or if its redundant just ignore it was intended for ppl just starting out

    10. You dont have a studio. Lol this is like day one at school. Technically a studio is the room where the band performs. The control room is where the engineer is at with the console and the iso booth is well just that an iso booth. Also studios are treated and have floating floors to help with rumble. Instead of wasting your money recording in an inferior room and letting you talent go to waste buy studio time in a pro studio. If you want afford that than save. There's not Walmart of audio. Also you should pay to mix your beats to maintain the highest quality of sound if you not good at it.

    9. You can make a shit load of money in live sound!!! I dont know why I never see ppl chatting about live sound but I think its where the money is!!! A year ago a former grad was interning with taylor swifts crew and he is now her in ear monitoring engineer. He makes 5k a month! Also since most ppl cry about the mixtape game and how artist go tour off mixtapes isnt it a good idea to learn live sound since concerts are still a great source of income for artist. I believe Rihanna made 90 Million last year of her tour.

    8. Learn to solder!!! Its a must in live sound. And also if you want to intern at studio. Patchbays are a pain in the A** and most have to be soldered. Also if you can solder you can make cables that are just a good as monster cables but 3 times cheaper!

    7. Stop buying crappy gear. Seriously this goes without saying. Ive answered a lot of questions about ppl asking is this okay or that...you know its not. When ppl say "I'm hear noise when I record" the common answer is check your cables but if all is well your just witnessing low inferior gear. (Its actually a good thing you realized it) now you know stop buying crap. Buy the best have it for life.

    6. Learn how to read transient response graphs and frequency response charts. I have found so many mics that have very similar frequency responses to u87's. A MXL v69 ME is a great mic for 299 and it has a similar response as a u87 the high end is a little sharp but if you tilt the mic 45 degrees of axis the highs roll off. (Illmind used this mic to record Skyzoo's mixtape) and it sounds great. Also you get to learn how do things compare in sound. Beats by Dre headphones are good but so are Sennheiser hd280 and cost one third of Dre's but sound just as good maybe even better

    5. Stop calling yourself a producer. I know this one seems a little disrespectful but the game of this forum is "future producer" not current producer. Ppl be like "I've been producing for ten yrs and want to finally step y game up what a good mic under 100 dollars?" WTF if you are a real producer you would know that. I've been guilty of it too but I have since stopped bc its disrespectful to Quincy Jones

    4. Read the Manual before buying the gear!!!! Please read it. Stop asking how to do something before reading the manual. Also I will let you know how it works and if it is suitable for you. I have been looking for a console for two months and I have read several manuals to see how they work. Most fall short bc of my price point and my needs. But at least I didn't buy the console that find out its not ideal. So read the manual before you buy!!!

    3. Watch Pensaco's place - Pensado's Place - ITL #31 - Hardware Compressors and EQs - YouTube its so informational and you get to see a great engineer work and it will show you little tricks and tips to improve your overall sound. Learn how to get your mix like "Johnny Juliano or Vybe Beatz" LMAO

    2. A.This is a two parter. There is a thing called "producer mode" lol. This is funny to me but its true. Inline consoles have a big and small fader and most usually have a flip or rev button that will switch which fader that is going to the mtr (tape or daw) it is useful because if your working with Madona and her daughter is in the control with you and she says I want to hear mommy's vocals louder and the most logical thing for her to do is reach for the large fader. Every one knows the large fader turns up the volume (it doesnt do that lol) but if you slap her hand away you get fired. So put it in producer mode and let her have at it. She doesnt mess up the tape and you dont get fired for slapping Madona's kid.

    B. Most "producers" in hip hop are not producers. They be in producer mode two and dont even know it...lol but my reason for this one is bc as I have become more aware of the music industry I have been let down by most ppl. Producers know everything about everything. I dont know how many times I watched interviews of producer's and they get asked a technical question and they cant answer it. But Dr. Dre gets slammed for not making every beat. But ask him why he tracks in his vocal chain. Diddy is another prime example of a producer who doesnt make beats. But he's more of the "I want her vocals to sound like shes wearing pink lipstick kinda producers lol if you get my drift) I love Diddy! LOL They're is two of the few real producers in Hip Hop. You gotta give thim all praise. I dont dis any one who makes beats bc I do too and you can still make a gang of money but just know the difference between the two.

    1.School is the best way to make it happen if you want to work in a studio!!! I know most will debate this but if you want to work in an elite studio you need to go to school. Oasis studio in LA only takes students from my school. Eddie Krammer assistant Engineer is also a former grad. We have some instructors that have worked with Stevie wonder, Michael Jackson , price, Paris Hilton (BIG MONEY) and so many more. The thing about school is that the intern dept and instructors have made the relationships and networking already. They go to bat for the their students and have travel to NYC to convince studio managers to give their students a job. 54 nominations at this yrs grammys. And 28 winners is a damn good look. Some have even worked on the watch the throne album. Also you get to see what standard gear is so you dont buy crap. You get to use it too. I'm pissed I cant afford a good pair of monitors but at least I know what they sound like so when I am able too I'm not wasting my money. Also you learn from pros that have tracked vocals with Stevie wonder (and had a session crash on him lol) those stories give you invaluable info that you cant find on forums. Learning Pro tools is cool but you need to really know it. like how to get passed a password protected file in pro tools with out the password. or how to get back a corrupted file when Stevie wonder is cussing you out (talk about pressure) Also you get to learn analog first!!! we get logic when we start but we dont dive into recording into a daw until 15 weeks in. The first 15 weeks are recording to analog tape.

    I just wanted to share some eye opening experiences I have had while on my journey...to the ones who are working in the industry share a few!!!

    Also I'm thinking of doing a weekly video of tips I learning while in school. Would any of you be interested and what topics in general would interest you. Keep in mind my school is super crazy about recording sessions or class time with a video camera. Thats the reason why you never see any sessions on youtube (and why I never mentioned the name lol). Its prohibited! but I may try to turn my laptop camera on during my next session. I'm recording to analog tape than gonna transfer to pro tools later. Full band!!!
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Things I've been learning while at school started by epotts06 View original post
    Comments 109 Comments
    1. epotts06's Avatar
      epotts06 -
      Quote Originally Posted by SVsoul View Post
      Good post and informative... More or less it's all true, but I can tell it was written by a person that views the trade in a cynical manner... There are many facets to this industry that can be mastered and catered to the distinct sounds. I believe it is in the mind's eye of the person recording. Essentialy, and without prejudice as you wrote, I could record an A+ industry quality fully produced mastered and rendered project for pennies in comparison to the elitist market that is the sound gear world. It's a given that u can't use the cables that came with your first Affinity Squire for recording or you might get undesirable noise... I understand stating the obvious for truly green starters, however recorded music at some point is converted or created in digital form.. The study of sound waves and how to manipulate these waves are the essence of the recording, coupled with mankind's desire to create and express... So I say nay folks! I don't care if you start out with FL Studio and record with a USB mic into your phone... You are still "producing" what you intended to produce. If you follow the teachings of this person you will slave in another person's "sweatshop studio" and never realizing the freedom and education that comes from learning.. Start with music theory and composure.. Learn how to fully understand why notes and melodies that turn into ensembles can change everything prior to plugging in your first DAW, VST, VSTi, et al... I was educated in music and hold a masters. I can tell the true value of education at his institution by merely stumbling over his punctuation, misuse of contractions, improper subject-verb agreements, and nomenclature... Read a book. Stop discouraging those poor souls that are beginning. You just want to limit the number of fish in the job pool.
      I hold a bachelors degree from FIU University. I am highly educated. This was intended to be a rant i didn't beed to be grammatically correct. Of course one could learn everything i learned at school without school but there is no way it could be learned by yourself. Some information i learned about the SSL can not be learned by reading a manual. When I referenced that one not being a producer, I meant that one is not a producer until they have album credits. It is very disrespectful to people like Quincy jones to say your a producer if you don't even have credits. The whole industry is based off credits. In fact majority of people on this site who say they are producers are in fact song writers. More often then not the engineer is the producer by default. If you are not in the studio overseeing the performance of the project, record, or single you are not the producer regardless of what the credits say. If you get publishing, which hip hop producers do that means you are a song writer. Producers get points on an album song writers get pub.
    1. LadyNationcne263's Avatar
      LadyNationcne263 -
      Awesome advice I have been takin my audio eng. For ..going on three months congrat.s to u and I love this forum ..peace love and rock n roll

      ---------- Post added at 11:14 AM ---------- Previous post was at 11:12 AM ----------

      Love rule 5 me toooo.. Quincy Jones♡♥♡
    1. Burdge's Avatar
      Burdge -
      Man, thanks for sharing that. I didn't go to school for any kind of audio work but always wish I had. Hearing stories about what actually goes on is like being told about hogwarts lol
    1. TomAusProducer's Avatar
      TomAusProducer -
      thank you

      ---------- Post added at 10:56 PM ---------- Previous post was at 10:51 PM ----------

      great post
    1. edana189's Avatar
      edana189 -
      Is it possible to attend this course from abroad?
    1. MistahRain's Avatar
      MistahRain -
      Preach!
    1. Microlith's Avatar
      Microlith -
      quite interesting
    1. BarronDevoe's Avatar
      BarronDevoe -
      thank you!
    1. KingJonesDaComposer's Avatar
      Great Post!
    1. Raed Bulbul's Avatar
      Raed Bulbul -
      Good post.
    1. Polar Journey's Avatar
      Polar Journey -
      Great post man !
    1. I3low's Avatar
      I3low -
      Thx for the info, learned alot, but i need to comment on this one. Its typical for schools like SAE to let you trow away everything you know, make you feel like a pathetic fool, and then accept everything they say. To myself I'm a producer with a home studio, I love to play music and let people dance. Ok my sound is not top notch but someday, I'm sure I will be able to pay other people to do the mixing for me(or have a label do it for me). Ok i don't have the ambition to work in a "elite studio" but I will never pay 10000 $ for a school. If you really want something in life, you will learn how to do it and eventually reach it. I think the most important goal for a music producer/artist, is to create something that is personal and ingenius in its own way, something you love. And this you dont learn in school. So going to this school doesn't automaticly make you a successfull producer, engineer or whatever. It takes more than that. Whats the word again? oh yeah : it takes passion
    1. jsprinkle's Avatar
      jsprinkle -
      good post!
    1. black gold's Avatar
      black gold -
      There is a lot of valuable insight here. I'm new to the "beat making," game. I am coming from absolutely no formal training. Everything I have learned, I have learned on my own. I will definitely apply what I gathered from this piece.
    1. Jimini87's Avatar
      Jimini87 -
      cool read
    1. VersacciBeats's Avatar
      VersacciBeats -
      thanks for the knowledge
    1. tsr01's Avatar
      tsr01 -
      Loved the post man. Helped me to understand some things and keep it up man. Thank you!
    1. Eduardo Trevino's Avatar
      Eduardo Trevino -
      Some of the advice is OK, but I think the rules of the game have changed. a lot of mics and especially audio interfaces have gotten so much better in the last years , I recommend checking out therecordingrevolution.com , the guy who runs that blog has the exact opposite ideology and he is a professional earning a living recording and mixing other people's music.

      In fact he addresses a lot of the subjects mentioned, about how he actually worked at an " elite studio" but didn't enjoy it, he didn't even get paid and he also encourages people to record and produce with the most basic equipment like studio headphones, audio interfaces, midi controllers,etc.

      In fact he mentioned Dave Pensado, he actually would agree with the more modern way of thinking, he always talks about how today we have the best music ever because of the democratization of the craft.
    1. Majority Bass's Avatar
      Majority Bass -
      This is a bad azz post man. I feel everything you mentioned. cant wait to see your videos.
    1. Sal_Meth's Avatar
      Sal_Meth -
      Nice Post