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Tips for Recording your Rehearsals

Tips for Recording your Rehearsals

There are some basic ways of recording your rehearsals to help improve your live performance. That’s right! Why not record your practices? Learning how to do that in the cheapest, fastest, easiest way possible can help improve your playing and your overall performance!

But why record rehearsals? Well, doing so can help you hear the things you don’t otherwise hear when you’re in the room, when the loud music playing and you’re “into it”. This affects your playing and a lot of the times you don’t notice some of the details outsiders may hear. If you look at live videos and you wonder why you make mistakes or why something’s “off”, then the answer lies in the rehearsal room. By knowing the very basics of recording, you can simply do a low profile recording of your jam session and listen back and see what parts need more work. Sometimes it’s a also good idea to film it, or play in front of a mirror, or simulate a live setup.

Recording can be complicated, but for a simple recording all you need to know is the two possible methods you could use. The first method involves a computer, an interface and microphones. You need microphones to pick up either the room, or individual instruments and vocals, and to record with them you need an interface and a computer that will convert your sound to a digital format on your daw (audio software). Overall it can be a cheap way to get started, especially since you can find great (and FREE!) audio software online.

Another way to record your practices is by buying a recording device that is all built into one. This is often cheaper and easier to use than the first method. The most common device currently is the Zoom product, their newest model being the Zoom H6. (Stay tuned for a video review of the ZOOM H6, we’ll be posting it soon!).  These devices have microphones built into them and extra inputs for other microphones or line inputs. This is an affordable way to record your rehearsals and play it back later and analyze it.

As stated above, there is no need to understand how compressors work, or EQ, or anything else when it comes to basic rehearsal recordings for the purpose of hearing things you wouldn’t in the room while you’re playing. You can just simply record on a free software and then adjust some volumes using the faders that all programs come with. It can even be done on a simple program like Garageband.

Another great reason for recording your rehearsals is to judge your choice of tone for a particular song or in general. You may realize that the bass clashes with the guitar and they don’t blend so well together. You can then adjust your tone and check it next time you practice together and see if that works out better. This can help to have fewer problems live with your mix (though of course, ultimately the sound guy is the answer to a good live mix, but anything helps).

Try it out, record your rehearsals and help yourself improve! Not a lot of bands do this and it’s a great way to sound incredibly tight live. You will look, sound and be more professional!

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