It takes many years to excel at recording, and if your goal is to become an engineer then that’s what’s required. But if you’re a musician who wants to garner a reaction to your song, then you don’t have time for that. You need to make a killer record right now. But how?
First, stop thinking like a recordist. The stated goal of the Musicians Survival Guide to a Killer Record, by Mixerman, is to convert recording decisions into musical ones, and technical decisions into practical ones. Not only does Mixerman explain the musical strategies for making a killer record, he also breaks the technical information down to its core so that you can strategize based on your recording reality. So long as you have what you need to make a record, he can help you make it a killer record. This is the only gear you’ll need.
Mixerman is a gold and multi-platinum award winning producer, mixer, and recordist. He is also a published author, and has a number of books written on the recording arts. He was in precisely your position at the early stages of my career: he was a musician, frustrated that he could write a good song, only to feel the record itself fell short of its potential. Over the course of his decades recording, he noticed that the performance and arrangement had a far greater impact on the sound than anything he did on the engineering side.
This field manual is chock full of recording, mixing, and producing strategies designed to keep recording a fun and focused process. You will return to this manual time and time again to help you overcome any impediment-technical or musical-that might prevent you from achieving the results you seek, regardless of your recording environment, regardless of what equipment you’re using, and regardless of your current skillset.
You can make a killer record under nearly any circumstance. It just requires the right mindset.