Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How much is my project going to cost?
A: My hourly rate is $40, and that applies to recording, mixing and mastering. Which means the real question is "How long is this going to take?" And the answer is: "It depends." The rule of thumb I use is that it takes about 90 minutes per part to record, mix and master. So a song with guitar, vocal, bass and drums (recorded all separately) might take around 6 hours to record, mix and master. Remember that this is a really rough estimate -- I have recorded a 12 song demo in 3 hours. I have also spend 3 hours recording (and repairing) a single guitar overdub.
Q: Do you accept credit cards?
A: We accept Visa, Mastercard, Discover and American Express. (We also accept Paypal.)
Q: How can I get the most out of my studio time?
A: Be prepared. It may seem obvious, but just being really comfortable with your songs is going to save you time. We can fix almost any kind of mistake, but repair is time-consuming.
If you are going to be playing to a click track, practice with a metronome. If you are bringing an instrument, make sure it is in good repair -- even the smallest rattles and buzzes tend to show up loud and clear in the studio. If you are bringing other musicians in, make sure they know the songs they're going to play. Send them recordings, send them lead sheets (if they ask for them.) You should try to do the work in batches: don't call in a drummer until you're ready to record 3 or 4 songs, then do them all at once. This saves setup time. Another great way to save is to work with excellent studio musicians. They often will cost more up front, but will save studio time when it comes to piecing together good tracks. Plus they sound great. Don't try to do too much at once: a 3 hour session seems to be a good time for most musicians to keep their energy up and do good work. Be ready to stop, change gears, or take a break when you start to drag.
Warning: a BAD way to get more out of your studio time is to rush. You will often spend more time in the long run trying to patch together a rushed session, or you will be unhappy with the results.
Q: Do I need to play to a click track?
A: No. However, if you want to start with a solo recording and overdub a band in around you, it's probably going to be very helpful if you have one. It's less important (though still often useful) if you are going to have a strictly solo recording, or if you are starting the process by recording your rhythm section.
Q: Can we pitch-correct my vocals?
A: Absolutely. As long as your vocals are recorded in isolation from any other backing tracks we can correct them.
Q: Do I have to sing and play my guitar separately?
A: No. If you are a singer/songwriter who plays acoustic guitar and you want to record the way you always perform, that is totally doable. I do it all the time, in fact. The downside to recording this way is that it's difficult to impossible to process those tracks independently -- so we have control over the volume of the tracks, but less control over the tone and almost no ability to pitch correct.
Q: What styles of music can I record at Frog Hollow?
A: Folk, rock, acoustic, electric, country... The short answer is that if you can make the sounds, Frog Hollow can record them. Jud is an acoustic guitar playing singer/songwriter himself, so the styles of music that arise from that foundation are a natural fit here. We are well-equipped to record live bands as well as solo acts, and we have recorded everything from bluegrass and country to rock and blues. If you have any concerns about how your style would fit here, feel free to contact us for a free consultation. We're always interested in broadening our musical horizons, and love the opportunity to grow to meet a new challenge!