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Why did your studio close? Recorders, Players & Tape Machines
Old 3rd February 2015
Motown legend
Bob Olhsson's Avatar

I suspect the best stuff on the internet will be audio only, i.e. live radio. That's insanely easy and cheap to do. I don't know that people will pay but I can easily imagine new artists breaking that way and attracting a huge listenership.

Needless to say they'll need to be really good and their material will need to be really fresh and timely. I think a lot of why music is laying an egg so often today compared to the '50s and '60s is the immense length of time between when a song is written and when people actually get to hear it.
Old 3rd February 2015
Originally Posted by drbob1 View Post
Dave Barber, welcome to the thread!

I've had just a little experience with this. I provided gear for a regional band that was making their break thru record at Mammoth in Minnesota. They had a producer with some top 5 pop record credits who was a "friend" and had a sound that worked for them. They had a decentish budget (enough to spend about 10 days at the house recording), really cool vintage amps and guitars. House engineer. The producer and the engineer spend a solid week fiddling with the partly broken desk, mics and outboard trying to get drum sounds they liked while the band loitered. By the time the budget was gone after 10 days, I believe they'd tracked drums for 3 songs. The record never happened, the producer left for greener pastures and the band broke up...

So, part of the impetus for home recording is that you know what you're paying for! It's not going to be wasted on an egotistical producer or engineer, not going to be spent while folks trouble shoot broken gear, not going to be frittered away while you have no control. Sure, you may not get the quality you wanted, but it's YOURS and there's no waste or manipulation.
No-one in a commercial situation should be paying for downtime due to gear breaking - on a commercial session, if the gear stops, the clock stops. Your buddies should have pulled this one after the 2nd day.

Easy to say in retrospect of course. And nothing to suggest they wouldn't have broken up anyway - successful bands have to go through worse a lot of the time.
Old 3rd February 2015
Gear Guru
Brent Hahn's Avatar

Originally Posted by Bob Olhsson View Post
I suspect the best stuff on the internet will be audio only, i.e. live radio. That's insanely easy and cheap to do. I don't know that people will pay but I can easily imagine new artists breaking that way and attracting a huge listenership.
I've been mixing a live internet radio show for the last several months and it's a blast -- the live music has a compelling energy even when it isn't all that good, and most of the time it is all that good. And there's a line around the block of artists wanting to be on it. The live aspect appeals to the adrenaline junkie in me, too.
Old 28th October 2015
Gear Nut
stephenmatthew's Avatar

Maybe all those studios that closed just couldn't wrap their heads around Fetty Wap. Is there any drug on the market (legally) that makes modern top 40 listenable? How do you become one of those guys who works on Fetty Wap tracks without committing suicide? Maybe you have to make a blood pact with the satan of the music biz, or something worse, like pay that Pensado guy protection money. I'm just wondering if there's a conscious thought process along the lines of a reaffirmation or mantra that makes the ear rape all worth it. I can imagine creative visualization being a help here, like imagining yourself actually affording rent for a 200 sq ft apartment in San Francisco for example.
Old 28th October 2015
Lives for gear
Ernest Buckley's Avatar
Originally Posted by RyanC View Post
The way I see it, success in the arts boils down to one simple thing; connecting with people. It doesn't really matter how you do it, but if you connect with enough people thats how you have a career.
This is so true. I think its pretty safe to say that most success in ones career comes from his contacts/network. You can go down the line of successful engineers, producers, artists, etc… and discover they all had a contact that propelled them to the next level or opened another door for them. Of course some talent is necessary but who you know is probably even more important in the beginning. If they have talent they`ll go even further but its that network at first.

We live in interesting times though…. technology has eliminated much of the human interaction but its still necessary for networks.
Old 31st October 2018
Lives for gear
bitman's Avatar
Small insignificant community demo studio in a resort area.
In 2008 all the bars in town switched to DJs at once and so the phone quit ringing except for mid life guys wanting me to produce them,
when I was used to tracking garage bands and mixing it up for them. Easy in, easy out.

So I it wasn't fun anymore so I quit. And tried to liquidate what i wasn't going to personally use.
Old 31st October 2018
Gear Nut
cdruzeta's Avatar
Sad Thred

Ladies and Gents,
this is a very sad thread.

I lost my studio back in the mid-90's. We had a mid-level 2 inch 24 track room with a generous live room. On some days it really sounded glorious - you can't beat a big tracking room (IMHO).

We were cut at the knees with ADATS and computer recording. Since we were renting the warehouse space we had to run - as we were falling behind with the rent and the landlord was threatening to shut us down and grab all the gear.

I lost my shirt.

Many years later I have become involved in other industries which are fairly lucrative. However, my passion remains with recording.

Note 1 - there is a low barrier to entry in starting a home studio that competes with business with a larger "pro" studio. This is key to establishing value.
Consider UBER. Drivers are making half the money they were a couple of years ago and taxis have been decimated. Race to the bottom.

Note 2 - Gigging musicians appear to be much worse off than they were 20 years ago. Reduced clients. I don't know if its just my perception but the take from bars appears to be 1/10 of what it was in my day. Taking blood from a stone is near sighted.

So I am on the verge of opening another "pro" room. I plan to buy the building (good investment) and I hope thereafter to just break even. Why?

Because I love recording. Put the business aside, I just love to be in an air conditioned environment that is silent working on the finer points of eq and compression. I consider it a privilege. This will be my retirement.

Yes there is much wrong with the business model, but I will not be able to fix it. All I can hope for is capturing some exceptional performances and making more of tracks that are given to me for mixing. I will be selective about who I let in my door - hopefully minimizing the impact on the decent people here trying to make a living.

Although this may seem high handed, please recognize it has taken me almost 30 years to get to a place where I can reclaim "my studio" (God willing). Also note that Mozart was not paid by royalties.

Old 31st October 2018
Motown legend
Bob Olhsson's Avatar

Income for gigging musicians has been in a steady decline since the Beatles made it fashionable for upper-middle-class kids to form bands. By the mid-'70s the biggest stars needed to tour for months just to break even.

That's the proverbial elephant in the room.
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