How to Have an Expert Music Producer Produce your CD


Having an expert music producer produce your CD is a much easier proposition than you might think. And it is certainly more necessary than you might believe. After much time candidly interviewing the engineers that end up acting as surrogate producers, their main observation of most of the bands and artists who come into the studio to record with them is that they don’t know what they’re doing. Let me clarify that statement. Of course they know the song they wrote because, well, they wrote it. And they know how to play it because they’ve usually performed the song at some of their shows. So what do these engineers mean?


Expert Music Producer David RandleWhen bands play live, it’s usually up to the sound man to get tones on the drum mics, and make sure that any instruments run through the PA system sound right. So what the band plays live may be totally the wrong thing for a recording. And most bands don’t do any pre-production analysis of the song, it’s structure, possible arrangement treatments, vocal harmonies, etc., etc. And that’s a band, where supposedly all the members are on the same page. What about the singer/songwriter who normally plays alone at the coffee houses and hasn’t got a clue about how to layer parts and include the correct instrumentation to make their song sound great.


The great complaint from my engineer brethren is that when the band or singer/songwriter comes to the studio to record, virtually no one is doing the job of a producer, and so the engineer has a great dilemma. Do nothing but engineer and watch the band or singer/songwriter waste a ton of money going over and over things they were totally unprepared to record, or step up to the plate and attempt to do some producing. Doing nothing actually makes the engineer more money because they’re getting paid by the hour and the more time the client wastes, the more the engineer gets paid. However, these engineers are top professionals and they usually won’t sit idly by and watch the session go down the tubes. So then you get engineers who are stepping up and doing a job they’re not getting paid to do, and quite frankly they are more than a little resentful, not to mention that it distracts from doing the job they are paid to do.


Enter the professional producer. An expert music producer has a complete plan. They have worked their way through the structure of the song in pre-production meetings with the client and theDavid Randle Productions guitarist, David Randley know the exact instrumentation, vocal arrangement, and musical style that is perfect for the song. They have a short list of the best players in town, the best engineers and have good relationships with the studios you want to record in. Even though as a client you will have to spend some money for this pre-production meeting, it is far less that the money you’ll spend utterly wasting time not knowing what you’re doing in studio. When the session actually begins, the musicians appear in an orderly fashion, scheduled at just the right time so as a client, you’re not paying people to sit around and wait until it’s their turn. The session is efficient. It follows a blueprint. You get way more done in less time and it sounds better because all the players are more into it because the session is crisp and someone knows what the heck is going on. Just think, if you’re paying a studio with engineer $100 per hour and paying studio musicians $75 per hour each for 2, 3, or even 4 musicians, it can cost you up to $400 for every hour wasted not having a clear direction. An expert music producer like me, who only charges $75 per hour and includes guitar performance and instrumental and vocal arrangement services included in that fee, plus keeps the session organized and on schedule, has excellent musical taste and sensibilities, and can deliver you a far better end product, is totally worth the investment