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SoundHouse
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28th March 2013
Old 28th March 2013
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Going into my studio full time

After 6 years of having to be at job that I hate but I had to do to support my dream, I am finally leaving and turning my studio into a full time career.

This year in my job, I have been accused of things I have never done or said, been harassed because of various things and I was coming home angry and not wanting to deal with clients. As I result of having a supportive wife and family, I decided that in the summer, I was moving into full time studio work. Since then, I have felt a huge wait off of my shoulders and all of a sudden an increase in productivity. I know the road is going to be more challenging than I could ever imagine, but with the support I'm getting, I've never felt so bold to make this move.

I know that these are trying times in the studio world, but for the first time I can really go out and hustle instead of hoping people will just show up. Anyways, I just really needed to write this down.
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#2
28th March 2013
Old 28th March 2013
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Good luck helps if you already have a decent studio
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28th March 2013
Old 28th March 2013
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Good for you! You're living my dream. Good luck. Hope it all works out!
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28th March 2013
Old 28th March 2013
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Originally Posted by mrfortune View Post
Good luck helps if you already have a decent studio
I think I have a pretty decent set up. I'm really the only person in my town that actually has a background in engineering as the other two commercial studios are run by people that are strictly producers and have their niche (not hating at all). I've been able to compete so far, but I feel now with what I have I can start moving up.
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28th March 2013
Old 28th March 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike333 View Post
Good for you! You're living my dream. Good luck. Hope it all works out!
Thanks for the support. I really thought that I was going to make a smoother transition, but things didn't really go that way. I don't think that anyone is really 100% sure when making life changes like this.
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29th March 2013
Old 29th March 2013
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Patiently awaiting a JDK R22 that a got a killer deal on. Heard good things about this comp. should be a nice addition.
#7
29th March 2013
Old 29th March 2013
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Best of luck to you sir!
Aside from most of us probably originally wanting to be the guys on stage, the dream for most people I know in music or recording related fields is to own and operate their own studio.

I'm not sure how large your metro area is, but in my area there are less than 500,000 residents (and it is not an area known for a thriving artist culture or community). I have seen (and known the proprietors of) many start-up studios over the years and some have managed, but many have folded.

Currently there are around 4 dedicated commercial recording facilities, but not one of them survives on solely recording/producing music. Two of the studios do mostly video and web production to even keep their tracking rooms afloat, one studio relies on a live sound venue and old-friends-who-now-have-money-to-spend-on-their-country&western-album clientele.
There is one studio in town that has nice tracking rooms and good gear and while they do commercials and web production/graphic design to supplement income I would say the majority of their income does in fact come from producing and recording actual albums!
But, keep in mind that the studio owner spent 20 years playing, teaching and producing on the side to build up his name before he decided to start his own studio (and even then he had a couple of start-up investors to help him out).

I don't know anything about the gear you've been able to amass or the clientele and reputation you've been able to build before starting your commercial venture, but hopefully you've been able to objectively weigh the options in terms of supporting a family and paying bills.

I suppose the only advice I can offer (from the experience I've seen and gathered) is to:
(A) - Be very involved in your community. Go to shows, join the chamber of commerce, cold call people you want to work with!
(B) - Try to offer something no one else in town has. That could be a certain type of gear, a good tracking room, or maybe just a friendly personality!
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#8
29th March 2013
Old 29th March 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by El_Snap View Post
Best of luck to you sir!
Aside from most of us probably originally wanting to be the guys on stage, the dream for most people I know in music or recording related fields is to own and operate their own studio.

I'm not sure how large your metro area is, but in my area there are less than 500,000 residents (and it is not an area known for a thriving artist culture or community). I have seen (and known the proprietors of) many start-up studios over the years and some have managed, but many have folded.

Currently there are around 4 dedicated commercial recording facilities, but not one of them survives on solely recording/producing music. Two of the studios do mostly video and web production to even keep their tracking rooms afloat, one studio relies on a live sound venue and old-friends-who-now-have-money-to-spend-on-their-country&western-album clientele.
There is one studio in town that has nice tracking rooms and good gear and while they do commercials and web production/graphic design to supplement income I would say the majority of their income does in fact come from producing and recording actual albums!
But, keep in mind that the studio owner spent 20 years playing, teaching and producing on the side to build up his name before he decided to start his own studio (and even then he had a couple of start-up investors to help him out).

I don't know anything about the gear you've been able to amass or the clientele and reputation you've been able to build before starting your commercial venture, but hopefully you've been able to objectively weigh the options in terms of supporting a family and paying bills.

I suppose the only advice I can offer (from the experience I've seen and gathered) is to:
(A) - Be very involved in your community. Go to shows, join the chamber of commerce, cold call people you want to work with!
(B) - Try to offer something no one else in town has. That could be a certain type of gear, a good tracking room, or maybe just a friendly personality!
Sound advice, really appreciate it . As a result of careful planning and many try before buy purchases, I've been able to amass quite a bit of high end equipment over the years. Advice A and B are already part of my routine. I've actually been in contact with a couple of music management companies that I have befriended, one if which manages major label artists. Cold calling has actually worked better than I thought as I have two upcoming projects from that alone. I have also connected myself to a local college where the chair of the music department as well as the chair of the music business program are wanting to use my services.
#9
30th March 2013
Old 30th March 2013
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Congratulations and best luck. I strongly admire that attitude.
#10
30th March 2013
Old 30th March 2013
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Bonne chance comrade.
#11
30th March 2013
Old 30th March 2013
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Go for it! Good luck!

Regards,
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#12
30th March 2013
Old 30th March 2013
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I love your attitude! Best of luck to you! May I ask where your studio is situated?

Kind regards,
Mul

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30th March 2013
Old 30th March 2013
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Good luck man! For me it is just 2 years I took the big leap!!!
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#14
30th March 2013
Old 30th March 2013
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good luck man!!
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31st March 2013
Old 31st March 2013
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Thanks guys so much. Just spent the whole day putting the R-22 through its paces and it handles a lot of tasks surprisingly well. It hangs in their with my others (xpressor, rnd 5043, a designs nail). Also, did some preproduction on a 10 song project (James Taylor like). I'm really going to look into being a part oft local chamber of commerce.
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#16
31st March 2013
Old 31st March 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mullaha View Post
I love your attitude! Best of luck to you! May I ask where your studio is situated?

Kind regards,
Mul

Sent from my GT-I5500
Thanks so much. I'm located in central Florida in a city right between Orlando and Tampa. It's a college town with a pretty good indie scene. The trick is to convince them to record here instead of going out to Orlando or Tampa.
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1st April 2013
Old 1st April 2013
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This week I'm set to meet one of the marketing professors at the local college here to get some more insight on marketing the studio. The only marketing I've been able to do has been word of mouth from friends and acquaintances. This should be interesting.

What has been some of the most valuable lessons learned while going into this full time?
Audio X
#18
7th April 2013
Old 7th April 2013
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What has been some of the most valuable lessons learned while going into this full time?
Don't take anything for granted .. bust your ass everyday ,.. all day .. set goals.. knock them out. ..buy stuff as you need it and don't bury yourself in debt or jones for gear you can't afford... ... make every session count.. word of mouth is the best advertising..and cheapest.. sell yourself, not he studio... ..answer every phone call and email immediately.. learn to listen,, get the best monitor system possible.. treat your room, so there's no second guessing.. trust your instincts... ....take calculated risk that you're confident will pay off. ..network everywhere....DIY. .. failure is not an option..I could go on.. have fun .. and Good luck...
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7th April 2013
Old 7th April 2013
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WOM!!! Even when you don't feel like it, give it your all. Just today I had a session with a band, I wanted to cancel it or reschedule because I was dog ass tired from a hectic week and sleep depravation. Plus, they had been a bit of a pain in the ass in the past so I was tempted to just say F it!! But I value my reputation, did the session and it turned out awesome!! Great song, great performance and renewed mutual respect. The key is I didn't need the money but I still held to my principles. Have core values and you can't go wrong
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10th April 2013
Old 10th April 2013
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Awesome stuff. My room acoustics in both live and control were the first major upgrade a while back. Made a lot of portable DIY treatments that really helped to understand the space that I'm in.

Couple of cool updates:
Last Friday, I invited a band to come over to see if the would like to record at the studio. Doing one song for free as a little taster and they decided to come record their album because they loved what I was doing and the vibe. Also, a studio in Tampa, about an hour away got a hold of some of the my mixes that I've done and wanted to chat with me at possibly freelancing. I thought it would be a great idea because it would help get my name out in a bigger market while still cultivating the market in my town.

I have found that no studio here is really targeting the local scene and charge more than what they can afford. So I have been connecting with local venues as well as others in the music to community. It's really been fun getting to know people in the local scene.
#21
10th April 2013
Old 10th April 2013
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GOOD FOR YOU!!!!!

It is tough,but we are who we are(I actually hate that saying"it is what it is")

Anyhooo,Players play and if it is in your soul GO Baby GO!!!!!! I hope to make a transition from playing full time into something else music related. I can't really imagine doing anything else after 25 yrs of solid playing and recording.

Best of luck to you!

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#22
18th April 2013
Old 18th April 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoundHouse View Post
After 6 years of having to be at job that I hate but I had to do to support my dream, I am finally leaving and turning my studio into a full time career.

This year in my job, I have been accused of things I have never done or said, been harassed because of various things and I was coming home angry and not wanting to deal with clients. As I result of having a supportive wife and family, I decided that in the summer, I was moving into full time studio work. Since then, I have felt a huge wait off of my shoulders and all of a sudden an increase in productivity. I know the road is going to be more challenging than I could ever imagine, but with the support I'm getting, I've never felt so bold to make this move.

I know that these are trying times in the studio world, but for the first time I can really go out and hustle instead of hoping people will just show up. Anyways, I just really needed to write this down.
Best of luck and instead of writing that down, take that post, print it out and put it somewhere you'll see it often. Remember where you came from!
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18th April 2013
Old 18th April 2013
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Always great to see people with a lotta endurance
(you "endured yourself through your day job").

Whenever you're in the studio (yes, in yours!!) thinking about quitting, think back to your so beloved regular job and

yell out f**k those busters.

Regain some energy from that. Think about where you was, and where you never wanna be again.
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#24
18th April 2013
Old 18th April 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beat Poet View Post
Best of luck and instead of writing that down, take that post, print it out and put it somewhere you'll see it often. Remember where you came from!
Definitely going to do that . Starting to countdown the days. Month and a half and I'm free. Today at my day job, I got harassed again for wearing jeans and I passed at least 5 other people were wearing jeans. I have lost count of how many times I have been harassed for my attire. Mind you, I'm no slob and I think I'm a good dresser because I come in with shirt, tie, nice pants. Sorry venting.

On a brighter note, I might have a freelancing job at a studio in Tampa. Pretty excited about that. The guy was really nice so I hope I can get a chance to do that.
#25
25th April 2013
Old 25th April 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Audio X View Post
Don't take anything for granted .. bust your ass everyday ,.. all day .. set goals.. knock them out. ..buy stuff as you need it and don't bury yourself in debt or jones for gear you can't afford... ... make every session count.. word of mouth is the best advertising..and cheapest.. sell yourself, not he studio... ..answer every phone call and email immediately.. learn to listen,, get the best monitor system possible.. treat your room, so there's no second guessing.. trust your instincts... ....take calculated risk that you're confident will pay off. ..network everywhere....DIY. .. failure is not an option..I could go on.. have fun .. and Good luck...
This is really good advice OP!

Best of luck to you.
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#26
25th April 2013
Old 25th April 2013
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One more month!!! Starting to fill up extra time with sessions. I have given a few bands and singer/songwriters one free song recorded as an advertising strategy. Hoping I'm doing the right thing. The big reason I started this is I still get paid during the summer and I'm trying to attract more paying sessions in the summer.
#27
25th April 2013
Old 25th April 2013
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The new thing is video and YouTube. Find a local video guy you can team up with to offer the service.
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#28
26th April 2013
Old 26th April 2013
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Very awesome decision. Stick with it. Best of luck!
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#29
26th April 2013
Old 26th April 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NYCruiser View Post
The new thing is video and YouTube. Find a local video guy you can team up with to offer the service.
I actually have a real good friend who does video editing and we have done projects together. I will definitely check into that since a lot of the younger bands ask about that.
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26th April 2013
Old 26th April 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Audio X View Post
Don't take anything for granted .. bust your ass everyday ,.. all day .. set goals.. knock them out. ..buy stuff as you need it and don't bury yourself in debt or jones for gear you can't afford... ... make every session count.. word of mouth is the best advertising..and cheapest.. sell yourself, not he studio... ..answer every phone call and email immediately.. learn to listen,, get the best monitor system possible.. treat your room, so there's no second guessing.. trust your instincts... ....take calculated risk that you're confident will pay off. ..network everywhere....DIY. .. failure is not an option..I could go on.. have fun .. and Good luck...
.

words of wisdom here!

...except for the fact that unfortunately failure is an option.


that said, here's wishing you much success!

it might help you to to be as specific as you possibly can with your goals.

this way, you'll have a barometer by which to measure career and studio results.

all the best!

.
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