How to Get Pro-Sounding Demos at Home!

By Jeff Hutchins

Pro-sounding demos at home? Not likely, you say. Well, before you say anything else, think about this:

When you listen to someone's demo tape, you always seem to be more impressed if the tape has been done in a studio. Admit it. No matter how good or bad the song really is, there's just something about it that makes it more likeable than one done by someone standing in front of a cassette recorder playing a guitar and wailin' into the microphone.

Instead of guitar and vocal, you can easily add drums, a few piano chords, maybe a bass sound, and before you know it your seemingly average-sounding demo has become lots more "pro" sounding.

By now some of you are thinking, "But record people just want to hear the 'raw' sound -- that real honest-to-goodness unproduced, natural-sounding, straight-from-the-gut feeling I'm tryin' to get across."

Well, maybe you're right. Maybe that's why the songs on the radio sound so "raw." I DON'T THINK SO!

First of all, any producer with any experience at all can listen to a song and hear it for what they could do with it, not what's already been done with it. If you think about it, when you listen to someone's demo you kinda have this deep, dark thought inside, "I would have done it this way" or "I would have done it that way," or "I could have done it better." HAH! This is the same thought the producer has, but if you have a pro-sounding demo (even if it could be done better), at least it will sound good to begin with, and have a much better chance at getting listened to from start to ending. Then the producer can say, "I would have done this." Who cares? At least they have listened to it all the way through.

The point is simple. The better your demo sounds the more impressed the listener will be with it!

This will be a multi-part topic on "How to Get a Pro-Sounding Demo at Home," or "For the Money I Spent on Those Two Studio Sessions I Could Have Bought Equipment and Produced My Own Demos for the Next Two Years!"

Next time I will explain the steps to take to start your own demo studio at home and how inexpensive it can be to get those pro-sounding demos at home.

(Jeff Hutchins is a Product Specialist at Music Warehouse.)