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Music

Open Mic: Do You Have Some Advice for This Teenage Band?

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How would you like to give some helpful advice to a keen teenage band? Joe, the band's leader, left a detailed comment on our post A Beginner’s Introduction to Home Recording. He sounds genuine, and his concerns can't be dealt with by a single comment, so I thought some crowd-sourced advice would be best. Read on to learn of the band's challenges and leave offer suggestions.

I am the drummer and secondary vocalist of a metal band, and I also take care of all the tech (since I seem to understand it best). Being that we are teenagers, we don't have a whole lot of money. We are currently just using some Behringer mics (3 for $30), a Shure mic, and a crappy cheap karaoke mic.

Our biggest problem right now is that three of our four cables just blew out. The karaoke mic has the cable built in, so we have the ability to record with two mics. We plug them into a PA head, which is then plugged into a soundboard. We found this sounds better than going straight into the soundboard.

We record the band all together, and the record the vocals afterwards. We have all the amps around one mic, and the karaoke mic in the bass drum, since that drum seems to be the quietest.

Do you have any suggestions to help fix these problems:

  • The guitars sound distant, like they are across the room.
  • On drums, the toms are inaudible, and the cymbals just barely.
  • The vocals fluctuate too much, from too loud to too soft.
  • We have a steel snare (not by choice), and it rings way too much. When I tried taping the head, it got too muffled, where the snares would not vibrate enough to sound like a snare drum.

Any suggestions on hardware to buy would be incredibly helpful as well.

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