"Singing In The Studio" Review; Question About Using Monitors Instead of Headphones
Hi Judy -- I wanted you to know how helpful your DVD and book [Singing In The Studio package] have been. In particular, I have really benefited from the following:1) Your suggestion to print out lyrics and go carefully over phrasing, learning the "rhythm (as you say) of the song". I do something similar when I prepare my guitar parts but had forgotten to do this for lyrics...it makes so much good sense!2) I like the suggestion of studio hands and expressive hands. As a singer-songwriter, I am used to singing with the guitar so I really don't know what to do with my hands without the guitar. Your advice here is very helpful.3) I also really like the image of not getting breath on the glass so as to promote focused energy.4) Of course, I also sppreciate the details about what to wear, when and what to eat, how to stand etc.Your product is unique, practical and useful.My question has to do with a possible way we were going to record the vocals. Since I am not that used to hearing my voice through headphones when I sing (I tend to observe my vocal rather than being in my vocal), my producer has suggested that he play the musical tracks over the studio speakers and that I sing the parts without headphones just using the natural resonance of the room. As a fall back he would use the more standard approach where I would hear the tracks and my voice through my headphones (one ear half off...another really good suggestion of yours)while I sing. Have you ever had success with the first approach i.e singers singing tracks without headphones and, instead, using the studio speakers to play the tracks and using the natural resonance of the room for vocal production? I would love to get your opinion.
Matthew, thank you so much for your feedback on the course... As to your question: Some of the older session (background vocal) singers I used to work with didn't like headphones either because they didn't have them 'back when'. The engineers sometimes accommodated them by having a specialized speaker in the vocal booth which was designed so that it didn't get into the vocal mic too much.Here are the limitations of using speakers instead of headphones:· You'll have to keep the volume coming through them (which will be your instrumental tracks) as low as possible. This may make it harder for you to sing in tune (and sometimes to stay in the groove), and to feel the music enough for emotional delivery.· It will be harder to 'punch in' if you make a mistake. You may need to sing the whole song from top to bottom for every take (pass).· Though it may be muted, there will almost certainly be some track leakage that gets into your vocal mic. This may make any post-processing on your vocal more difficult, or it may not matter. Be sure you take it into account when you make your decision.That said, you could try it and get magic. It's such an individual thing. Other options are for there to be just the right mix of instruments and just the right level of your voice coming through your headphones that it feels quickly natural to you to use them.One other thing...go back to using headphones with one ear half-off, and be sure you focus on singing TO someone, which should help you ignore yourself better and help you get 'into' the conversation.
Labels: headphones, Judy Rodman, Recording Vocals, singing in the studio, singing without headphones