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D8 Skills #15 & D9 | Unit E | Recording Band, Loft | Session #3

D8 Skills #15 & D9 | Unit E | Recording Band, Loft | Session #3

Today was another day where I had no lessons at college. I arrived at exactly 09:15am which we had earlier decided upon. I checked the schedule of Studio 1 that day, and then moved the best drum kit (which we used last time) into Studio 1 as it was going to be free for the whole day.

The setup went smoothly; I only encountered one issue. I left my phone playing some music on the drummer's seat so that I could go into the control room and by myself check that all the microphones were working. I noticed that OH-L in channel 5 had a noticeable fuzzing sound. To troubleshoot this issue, I first switched it to channel 7. Here I could hear a very low-pitched louder hum. I then changed it to channel 8 and could hear nothing coming through. I thought that there was no way all 3 channels were faulty, so I swapped out the cable. I could still hear the same sound so I swapped out the cable again and FINALLY it worked perfectly.

The drummer messaged me that he was running late and should arrive at around 10:30. At 10:50, he said he was 20 minutes away, but arrived at 11:50. He had missed his train and ended up getting a Beryl Scooter. As I'm writing this I'm aware that this may be perceived as having been a negative experience, however, I'm not one to project negativity onto anything. I ended up reading some of a book and then contemplating the nature of existence.

Since we weren't 100% happy with how he'd slightly sped up going into choruses during our last session, we decided to first get a perfect recording of this to a click track, and then if we had time afterwards, we'd record the drums for the next track the band wants to record. I think that this method of recording drums on their own first in order to get a perfect take for the rest of the band to record to is the best way I've found to record a band so far.

We managed to get all of this done, including the next track.

After doing so many takes, the drummer was getting tired and asked whether instead of him having to tap the kick drum gently in a certain section, he could kick it normally and I could bring down the level in post. I said that's perfectly fine, I can do that.

During the recording process, the drummer was wearing his own noise-cancelling headphones meaning I couldn't speak to him via the ordinary talk-back method, so I came up with my own. I phoned him, and whenever I wanted to speak, I would un-mute myself. He would be on mute the whole time since I could hear him through the overheads.

There was a noticeable frequency that was resonating on the snare. The drummer found this plastic ring (something I'd never seen before!) that solved it completely. Here is the snare before the ring was added:

Bad Snare

And here is it afterwards:

Good Snare

So much better right? I'm so glad I learned about this amazingly simple piece of plastic!

Equipment List:

  • AKG D112
  • Shure SM57
  • Samson CO2 x2
  • Headphone Extension Cable
  • Headphones
  • XLR Cables
  • Boom Stands