Now shipping....

I'm curious who is doing a lot of recording collaboration with players or producers in other cities, states, countries? I know we have lots of talent here and people from all over the world come here for it. I'm not just talking about sending music tracks out but also bringing music tracks in.

For instance, I have a friend in India who offered to have his studio players do overdubs (authentic Indians on authentic instruments) on a song we were recording here. Pretty cool.

So, show of hands? Any tips for finding talent or work outside of Nashville? Any pointers on what to do vs. what not to do, just as far as practical technical matters?


Lynn Fuston

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I've done a few of these-the farthest away was Vancouver, BC. Oddest location was a travelling circus train for the Music Director of one of the Ringling Bros. Circus Bands!
I'm on Esession as well as Still, most of my business comes from word of mouth and referrals. I need to get off my good intentions and upload some audio files to Esession for promotion-too busy working lately to do that. Not a bad thing...
The biggest challenge is getting an understanding of how many times I will redo something for a client. I think Esession has a nice strategy. Still navigating how to file Union contracts on this....
I'm not sure if it's the same thing, but me and some other guys around here have been using NiceCast ( It's basically live podcasting. We've even streamed it thru a laptop to regain the small amount of dsp power it pulled from the main mix system. It's a pretty neat idea, but it can be a pain in the butt to setup thru your network. if you have a fairly complex setup (by complex, I mean a simple router thru comcast), you're more than likely going to have to assign a static ip on the local network, and use port forwarding thru the router's firewall to set this up. Other than that, it works flawessly for me, although I've only used it on mix sessions, not tracking.

The cool thing is, you're sending an output straight from Pro Tools or Logic (at least in my case), and u can use Cycling '74's SoundFlower to hijack all system audio (itunes, ichat bloops and bleeps), and send that to the client. this way, the client hears what it sounds like in his home studio where it's familiar, and you can work in your underwear. (well, sometimes I do, regardless of where I'm at)

Not seen Ustream or nicestream, but if that's the same thing, I'm an idiot and just ignore my findings! let me think I'm cool! :-)

The John-a-Tron
I have a Studio in Panama City Fl. with some great gear and there is a lot of good pickers in the area so, We do a lot of tracking here, then send it to Nashville for certain overdubs like fiddle and steel just to have that Nashvile edge on it. Don't get me wrong there are some good fiddlers and steel pickers here, I was just using them as an example. Sometimes we get tracks that were done in Nashville and the client will bring them here to do vocals, especially if they live close by so they can take their time. I have even been known to send work clear across town to another studio,,,,,,,,

As far as mix approvals on CD, I remember when my Father had the studios in Nashville (18 Ave S.) getting it on 1/4 tape at 15 IPS with comments written on a sheet of paper and put in the box. Those days are gone but, actually missed. Excuse me, but I still like the fatness of analog. Oh,,,, can I say "fatness" on here,,, is that even a word anymore?

The truth is, Nashville is the greatest town for music, and we all need it. Thank God for the new ways to work together.

Love from the worlds most beautiful beaches!

>>I have my own dedicated server to FTP files, but also send session files on disc via FedEx.

I remember the days (not so long ago) when a great location for a studio was near a FedEx office or drop box. As recently as 1998, that was a prime consideration.

I had to send some files via FedEx just last month. It struck me as odd since it was probably the first time I've delivered masters that way in almost four years. Everything else is uploaded to my site and downloaded by the client.
One of the problems that I repeatedly hear is that people can't find the files on their computer when I post them at my ftp site.

They don't realize that clicking on the link simply opens the file so they can listen to it. But when it doesn't show up in iTunes, I get a call.

Then I have to explain about "right-click" or "control-click" and the method for "save to disk" so that the files are on their local computer. Then they can burn them onto CD or transfer them to their iPod.
I've been using Esession for a while with some good and bad results. You can get some amazing performances, especially if you are specific about what you want. Some players will shoot you ridiculous prices, but you can get into the $150-200 a song with pretty cool results.

Piecing together these long distance collaborations requires alot of editing. For really specific things I will get local players, but I like sending something off and saying "Do something creative". Sometimes people do the best stuff when no one is around, which is exactly how I feel about my playing. Check out my friend Pete Generous, he has been doing drums via the web for many years now. You can hear his stuff on my page.
For the last 3 years, about 80% of my sessions have been sung from my home studio for people I've never met and most that I've never spoken to. I mostly sing jingles and station IDs -clients send me tracks, I record vocals and post them on my ftp site. I love the flexibility of it.
thought i'd revisit this thread to give you the latest example of working via source elements "source connect."

we've had great success, though sometimes when we're dealing with clients who don't have the bandwidth, it can get a little finicky.

most recently, we set up to do a session in frankfurt. our engineer and the engineer in germany communicated directly via the talkback, setting up the session so that our protools rig was slaved to the rig in germany. we needed to lock to picture on both ends...and by setting up a session with a quicktime video locked to the session in germany, we made sure we were in sync. it was amazing how dead-on the lock was.

it was really exciting to work in a way that seemed so natural and seamless. no isdn charges. no phone charges! and i can't say enough about source elements online customer service. they're on of the best companies i've encountered.
So far for me, the best way to meet potential out-of-the-country collaborators is through the MySpace page. People seem to be able to stumble onto me there in a way that I've never had happen in any other way before. I'm really just getting started on this kind of thing, so it's not a mainstay of my recording career- yet. But I've done B3 tracks for some nutty Norwegians in Trondheim, and working on another now. Swapped back and forth with a producer/studio owner in Israel. I did piano, organ and vocals one one thing, and he added drums, bass, searing guitar and a female vocalist. Two Jews Blues, I call it. Ha! I've been using the YouSendIt site to swap files. Sending a CD to Tel Aviv cost me $75 once, which obviously is just way too expensive. I also find that it's seems helpful to specialize in something that's hard to find in foreign lands. Which in my case happens to be various Hammond B3 styles, but could be anything that's typically American. Or a personal specialty/notoriety, which I have yet to nail down on the world stage.
I have been trying to do this, but know one is ever interested in distance recording, i am always looking to collaborate.
I've been quite a bit of bass tracks from my home studio including some upright tracks for clients in town who need some tracks done that day and didn't want to wait for me to drive to their studio, get set up, etc.

A method that has seem to work with a producer in LA that I've been working with is for us to use ichat to communicate and cut/listen in real time. Not full resloution audio in that situation but then I just upload the full resolution file to his idisk. We've worked enough that he trust me on getting the right sounds so he's not concered about that when he's monitoring my performance during tracking. I realized that this method is not viable for full band or more than a couple of tracks at a shot but its been great for my situation.

I've also been on esession, but the bulk of my work has come from word of mouth, MySpace or other internet resources. Has anyone else out there on Esession got work as a direct result of your profile on Esession?


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