Recording Advices by David Russell


The famous classical guitar artist David Russell answers a my question..

Hi David,

my name is Daniele Lazzari, an italian guitarist actually living in Budapest.

I am at the first solo recording experience in these days (I am at the end..). I have discovered a “new world”: now I know that to prepare a recording is a different thing from a concert.

My question is: how do you prepare a recording and what is your manner to concentrate during it?

Thank you, Daniele

Sun, 2008-04-06 15:07

Hi Daniele

Yes, recording is another world and it’s not easy to learn how to do it without doing it.

I think of performing a concert as a stage performange for theatre and a recording like making a film.

Here are a few suggestions that may help.

Be prepared so as to save time. You don’t have unlimited time to record. Get the scores prepared for your producer. Bar numbers have to be easy for her-him. I like to print or photocopy the repeats so they don’t have to say “take it from bar 55, second time”.

Get the sound set and then have a break before starting to record. Settling on the sound is a bit disconcerting, so it’s good to get it over with separately. I’m lucky to have made many CDs in the same hall and Tom Knab has been my engineer for at least the last 10 CDs, so we usually don’t loose too much time and energy setting up the sound.

If you can, get a second guitar to have new strings stretching out all the time. When you need to change them you will be in tune sooner.

If you are a heavy breather or sniffer, take some nose spray. It’s a pity to lose a good take because of a sniff in the wrong place.

Have people around that you like (the producer following the score, the sound guy, etc) It’s not nice to air your errors for people you don’t trust. They can help you through the difficult bits if you get stuck and help you get the best from your playing.

If possible get experienced people who know what they are doing. If everybody is inexperienced then the time spent learning what to do might be fun but it takes ages to get it right.

There are many more things, if I think of more I’ll add them later.

All the best, David


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