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  • mmcnichols

Into the Weeds

Updated: Mar 1, 2019

So even though I’ve had experience in a studio environment, after 15 years or so of not doing anything, I’m practically starting from scratch. Where to start? The Internet of course. All of the people posting, on YouTube especially, are a great resource.


I started out with Ableton Live which came with a Scarlett 2i2 audio interface that I purchased. I picked up a couple of JBL LSR305 speakers, a Casio CDP-130 keyboard/controller, a Rode A1 mic, and ran the software with my Surface Pro 4. Eventually, I went with Pro Tools which just seemed to fit me better. I also bought a desktop PC with more oomph to work on.


Then came the accumulation of plugins. A lot of Waves stuff, Sound Toys, Izotope, Ujam, Scheps, WLM Plus, Youlean Plus, CLA, GWells, F6 RTA, Reel ADT, Aphex, EKramer, JJP, Maserati, AVOX, and the stock plugins that were included. And more YouTubes…lots more.


A year later, my voice was starting to sound tolerable enough to fix in the mix and my tracks were sounding much better. I wasn’t throwing everything I owned into tracks and began experimenting with the “Less is more” strategy. It’s true. Leaving space to let instrument nuances and intimate vocal expression come through really keeps the living parts of the music flourish. Plus the listener has a place in the song to sort of plug themselves into and become a part of the performances.


There’s always something to learn and new stylistic and genre paths to traverse, but what an adventure. Here’s to the journey!



#musicrecording #musicproduction #makingmusic