Hit Factory and Cello Studios...who is next?

Discussion in 'Strings' started by therecordingart, Feb 13, 2005.

  1. therecordingart

    therecordingart Well-Known Member

    Big studios are dropping like flies! Does anyone have the inside scoop on why they are going out? You can't tell me with a straight face that it is ONLY the home studio that is killing the commercial studio. Yes I get good results on my $15k set up, but it doesn't touch a Neve or SSL with the drums going to tape! Not even close on my best day with a horseshoe and a four leaf clover up my ass.

    Is it bad management? Record labels providing smaller budgets forcing the artist into a smaller studio?

    I have hopefully a soon-to-be client that is on a pretty big label, and the label only gave them 5k for the artwork, recording, and mastering!
    If this is the new trend for the labels....that explains it, but I highly doubt that the Ashlee Simpsons of the world are only getting a few grand to record an album. I'd charge more than that just to set up AutoTune for her.

    Anyway....I'm not looking to start an arguement....I just don't have anyone else to bounce this off of.
  2. Todzilla

    Todzilla Active Member

    Call it a crazy hunch, but I'm guessing the reason is....


  3. Todzilla

    Todzilla Active Member

    Call it a crazy hunch, but I'm guessing the reason is....


  4. Trakz99

    Trakz99 Guest

    i heard that the hit factory is closing because the owner died but dont quote me on that.
  5. took-the-red-pill

    took-the-red-pill Active Member

    It IS the technology all the way.

    I'd bet the record company is starting to realise that Joe Sixpack can't tell the subtle difference in quality between a Neve to tape and a Mac with software. And if Joe Sixpack can't tell, and he's the one buying the album, then why hire the big boys?

    Maybe the company would rather hire you with your horseshoe and your 4 leaf clover and get the job done than risk a hundred thousand bucks recording an artist. they're just trying to stay viable and saving money is one of the few ways to do that.

    I think the record companies are sweating bullets themselves. Look, if they make a product and most of the target market of that product, those under the age of 30, just download it for free instead of actually buying it, there have to be significant repercussions to them and their precious bottom line. If I were the betting type, I'd say look to a few record labels going "Enron" in the next 5 years.

    I think that ultimately it's the technology that's screwing everybody in lots of different industries. I used to be a photographer. We've seen film strippers, retouch artists, and a host of other former imaging professions go the way of the dodo bird, their jobs taken over by a computer on a desktop and a designer.

    In photography, recording, or whatever, we have a situation where 20 years ago there were a precious few people on earth could afford the equipment to make an album, or create and print a professional design. Now we have very high end tools falling into the hands of the masses and the landscape is being irrevocably altered. For crying out loud, you buy a Mac and get Garage Band for free!

    Hell, I'm right now designing a four plex I'm going to build and I have in front of me a home architect program that 10 years ago would have made a real architect drool. I hit a button and the whole roof is done. BINGO! In a few keystrokes I take one more job from an architect.

    Now I can hear the heads shaking from here as you're saying "Yes, but there will always be the need for a trained professional to use the technology."

    That may be true...for now...but not for long. Soon you set up a mic, hit a button, and choose "hip hop mix," "rock mix," "pop mix" or "alternative mix." and TA DAA! Here's you'r new recording ready to go. Would you like that downloaded to your iPod or installed directly into you're 'brain chip' so you can listen to it any time you like by pulling your earlobe? You can even share it with your friends by e-mailing it to their "brain chips."

    Who needs the Hit Factory?

    Cheers Mates
  6. Johnjm22

    Johnjm22 Guest

    The Enterprise just closed. Man that place is huge! I wonder what there going to do with all that gear.
  7. therecordingart

    therecordingart Well-Known Member

    Hopefully give it to me?!?
  8. Todzilla

    Todzilla Active Member

    Not to be cold and unfeeling, but what is so bad about recording technology getting wonderfully affordable?

    Sure, it breeds technical complacency as amateurs crudely approximate good technique with noodling.

    For my dollar, I will always heartily endorse bringing art production down to the masses. Does it create more crap? Oh, hell yes, but it also creates some really cool stuff, that is worth the sifting.

    Let's not forget that when recording technology is controlled by an elite few, only the guys with money decide what gets puts out. By and large, that means the least common denominator. Unleash it to the masses and let the cream rise. Otherwise, let the Brittney Spearses and the Kid Rocks rule the industry.

    My $.02
  9. gdoubleyou

    gdoubleyou Well-Known Member

    I think it means that it's hard to make a living if you are just recording bands.

    Media Inc. a regional media trade magazine, every year they release a list on all the media faciclities and estimates on the income they bring in.

    A lot of the top studios around here no longer record bands, they service corporate clients.

    The studios that service bands have income in the tens of thousands. The studios that do the corporate work are pulling in millions.

    An example of a studio that has made the transition is Bad Animals.


    They used to be co-owned by the rock group Heart. They recently sold the large room, and now specialize in post production.

    The big room StudioX, is still a sought after room, but only bands with real budget can afford it. http://www.studioxinc.com

    Also a lot of musicians believe they can do it themselves.
    Don't we?

    Part of my business plan is to get one new corporate customer a year. From my experience one good contract can put my books in the black, and allow me to do the projects that interest me, without having to open my business to any Joe Blow musician.

  10. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    IMO the differences aren't that subtle ... the way I read this is what is suggested is that the animals should run the zoo ... I don't agree. Things are much worse now than they have ever been in my recolllection in tems of the quality of music and production values.

    Like what? I would love to hear something good for a change ... I haven't though ...

    The cat's out of the bag and has been now for 15 years ... yet still all I see / hear ... is Brittny Spears / Jessica Simpson / Kid Rock and re hashes of aging rockers like VR and Motley Crue ... ... and the stuff the kids are producing in their home studios without the benefit of expierenced mentoring and guidance is totally dismal and bad sounding on a number of levels ..

    But take heart ... pretty soon anyone who can remember how good recordings and music can really sound will be dead and gone and no one will be around anylonger to burst your bubbles ...
  11. therecordingart

    therecordingart Well-Known Member

    That is why I'm here picking the brains of those with the knowledge to burst my bubble. I want to be great at what I do. I don't want to see recording to turn into a relic from a former era.
  12. machina

    machina Active Member

    I agree, Kurt. I'm only 24, but I do have an appreciation for producers and engineers that have TRUE TALENT. As I've said before, all the most expensive equipment in the world, in the hands of a novice, isn't going to amount to anything. It takes a good ear, not just a button-pushing finger.
  13. EricK

    EricK Guest

    The reason for major studios going out of business is multi-faceted, to say the least. There are many reasons. Recording budgets, for whatever reason, are getting smaller. You also have incredibly large portions of the budget going toward producing the videos, hair, wardrobe, make-up, etc. Those used to be either nonexistent, or minor considerations, now they are the priority. You also have an incredible portion of the budget going into marketing the "artist". It takes a lot of money to make your "artist" #1 with the teeny bopper crowd.

    The type of music that is predominant these days is also a factor. What is the point of going into a large tracking facility when producing a Rap, R&B, or Pop record? A large majority of these productions are sample/loop based.

    Finally, technology is a huge factor. Those who do require a large studio for tracking dates are going into a studio for a couple days or weeks and getting their basics done. Then, they either go to a much smaller facility, or even the artist's or producer's home studio and spend months overdubbing. They may return to a large mixing facility, or they might not. They do not have to mix at a studio anymore. They can mix ITB. Back "in the day", artists would often book 1 larger studio on lockout for weeks and months at a crack while working on their album. That just doesn't happen anymore.

    It used to be, a 48 track digital recorder cost $250,000+. That was not even that long ago. Now you can get a rocking PT rig for under $50,000 easy, and that's not just a recorder. It's a mixer and all your outboard gear as well.

    Even the larger facilities depended on the "weekend warrior" types to come come in on weekends and the graveyard shift. Now these types are hammering it out at home on their own gear, or someone else's $20/hr basement "studio".

    Take this as fact, or just my opinion. These are the reasons I feel you are seeing many of the large facilities going under.
  14. anxious

    anxious Guest

    My dad used to tell me that Jazz sucked, because the musicians couldn't read, and that the sax was a "bastard" instrument. OK.

    Music serves many roles in society. One of the big ones is enjoyment. If kids dig what they hear, its hard to say that music is in totally dismal shape.

    Plus, there's a lot more intelligence and politics in today's indie and rap than there was in Motown. So the drums are looped and the vocals have no air. Oh well.

    If people ever decide they want oil paints, Hasselblads and Neumann's again, I'm sure capitalism will oblige. Darwin will take care of the gills and webbed toes.

  15. enginears

    enginears Guest

    Muscle Shoals my friend
  16. sammyg

    sammyg Active Member

    .....video killed the radio star, video killed the radio star......

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