I have never enjoyed recording. It’s confusing, it’s complicated, it’s finiky, it’s repetitive, it’s boaring.
It’s also necessary . Profoundly necessary .
Over the last few years I have come to view being able to record (and when I say record I mean the entire process from base tracks to final mix) as being just as important as any skill a writer has. Recording is as important as writing. Recording is as important as performance, recording is foundational.
Without the ability to record you have no control over how your work is experienced. We live in a YouTube world, and if you are having any success at all you can bet that someone, somewhere, has posted a video of you preforming. If that clip, good, bad or indefferent, is the only widely available example of your work, then for all intents and purposes it IS your work.
This was brought home to me last July while friends and I were visiting Columbia MO for an eclipis party. After the main event some of us were sitting around playing music and two of my friends said they had a suprise for me. They picked up their instruments and procceded to play a piece that I’d written just a few weeks before during an SCA event. The song had only been played once, and that performance had been recorded and uploaded to Youtube where they had stumbled on to it. Later they told me that if I were to play a song in the woods with no one around to hear it, they fould fine it on Youtube the next day.
There is just no escaping having a performance captured, not in a world where everyone has a video camera in their pocket. Now, there’s an argument to be had about the act of publishing performances without the expressed permission of the performer, but the truth on the ground is that it happens, and will continue to happen.