Audio Engineering Program
Tweed Recording is offering a series of workshops covering four key areas of audio production: digital audio workstations, recording studio techniques, MIDI and electronic production, and live sound production. These introductory workshops will be offered over a 10 week period in the fall of 2019 in one and two week intensives. Students may take one or more of these workshops to gain expertise in a specific area or all of them to gain a well-rounded approach to audio production. Students will learn in state-of-the art professional recording, mixing, and production facilities in a hands-on environment that applies the theory of the classroom immediately to its practice.
Costs and Schedule
TWDR100 - FOUNDATIONAL PRO TOOLS - GETTING STARTED (1 WEEK)
There are several audio platforms in wide spread use in the professional audio world. Ableton, Logic, and Pro Tools are the three most common and they each have their use in the world of sound. Pro Tools has become an industry standard so we are singling it out for this workshop. Students will learn Ableton in the Midi Production workshop, which we are also offering. In this workshop we will introduce the student to the language of the Pro Tools environment, including navigation, editing and operation of the software. For students with some prior experience, this workshop is designed to be a crash course in how to become more comfortable and efficient in the use of the software. For those who are new to the software, this workshop is designed to give them the tools, skills, and confidence to create their own music.
- Setup and Hardware Peripherals – Creating Your IO Setup and Connecting an Audio Interface
- EDIT and MIX Window Navigation/Operation
- Shortcuts to improve speed and efficiency
- Markers, Memory Locations, Window Configurations
- Track Organization and Customization – Templates and Presets
- Pragmatic and Creative Editing Techniques for Music – Playlist Comping, Corrective Editing, Cleaning things up
- Basic Mixing Techniques to create a better sounding Demo and Getting Started
TWDR101 - CREATIVE STUDIO TECHNIQUES (2 WEEK)
This workshop is aimed at helping musicians and bands create better-sounding studio recordings and mixes. It will introduce the beginning recording engineer to the gear and best practices for its use to capture sound in a professional studio as well as in a home studio environment. Students will receive 24 hours of instruction over a two week period and at least 16 hours of studio time to work on their own projects in a guided lab environment, with the goal of providing them with sufficient time for self-exploration and practice to discover their own sound.
Included in the two week period is a tracking day and a mix day with a group of professional musicians. Students will observe and participate in this production. This is a hands-on, highly intensive workshop that touches on the science and business of sound recording and their practical applications. Students will come to better understand the techniques, psychology, and standards necessary to their continued development as professional sound engineers. Students will come to perceive themselves as walking businesses, capable of not only creating memorable experiences for listeners but also creating revenue streams for themselves and jobs for others.
Geared to be fun, this interactive workshop will help students become better freelance engineers, record better demos, and deliver professional products to their intended markets while keeping clients coming back. Acquiring and retaining customers is the goal of every business.
- Understand and creatively expand on troubleshooting the signal flow in a major studio setup from both the analog standpoint and the digital standpoint
- Develop the terminology used to better communicate creative ideas to non-technical individuals to keep the session running smoothly and maintain a common goal
- Experiment and develop your own microphone technique and placement style for a variety of intended goals or “vibes” from minimalist to mics on mics on mics as well as traditional and off-the-wall techniques
- How to choose the right processor to get the job done – preamplifiers, equalizers, compression, and FX
- Garner a solid understanding of the mixing process and how to balance the elements of your production for an evocative and compelling mix that reaches the listener
TWDR102 - BUILDING AND RUNNING A HOME STUDIO (1 WEEK)
In this workshop students will learn how to prepare a room for a home studio environment and how to choose equipment and gear of various budget levels to provide a balance of components to create professional sounding recordings.
This highly condensed and informative workshop will help the songwriter, musician, band, producer, or freelance engineer grasp what it takes to start a business at home and turn their passion into a full-time career. Objectives of this workshop include treating the acoustics of a small room, outfitting it with the right equipment, learning the basics of digital audio software, and developing a working business model will be the focus of this workshop. The goal of this workshop is to move the student from hobbyist to a professional understanding and approach in one week.
Students will receive 12 hours of instruction and 12 hours of guided studio time to become familiar with the gear and technique of recording in a home studio environment.
- Developing a goal, mission statement, and business plan for a home studio
- Treating your acoustic space properly – Understanding the basics of acoustics and treatment to get the most out of your space
- Equipment Acquisition – What gear do you really need and what will it cost?
- Understanding and using the equipment you already have compared with what equipment you don’t have or need — How do I plug it in? How does it work with the software? What does this knob do?
- Professional evaluations and analysis of your own recordings and how to improve them
- How to act as a home studio proprietor to keep clients coming back and create a community of audio professionals who collaborate instead of compete
- Digital marketing and social media strategies to expand your network and reach a larger client base
TWDR103 - MIDI MUSIC “IN-THE-BOX” (1 WEEK)
The digital audio revolution and MIDI (Music Instrument Digital Interface) have changed the game for future music makers. What used to be captured live and in-person can now be programmed and triggered from a laptop. The beatworld has grown exponentially and is open to everyone who wants to participate in it. But it is crucial to understand the technology available to be able to maximize the use of MIDI in the world of electronic music making. This workshop focuses on MIDI production and digital composition based on Ableton Live and Reason.
Students will come to understand and apply concepts and skills such as synthesis, sampling, loops, and REX files for creating unique and personal soundscapes that fit the student’s aesthetic. By understanding “in the box” tools, students will be able to create any sound their imaginations can envision. Students will learn how to make their own “beats”, their own compositions, and their own productions, as well as understand the legal and business consequences of such creative work.
- Demonstrate the ability to create music digitally “in-the-box” using audio and MIDI sequencing from a Digital Audio Workstation and Rewire from multiple DAWs
- Understand hardware and software requirements for digital composition with appropriate terminology
- Creatively integrate and control software synthesizers for subtractive, additive, granular, or wavetable synthesis to create almost any sound imaginable
- Learn how to creatively sample original sounds and the applicable techniques and methods used in procuring, editing, and managing those samples for digital production in multi-timbral setups using synthesizers and samplers
- Understand the basic rights associated with various samples and sound recordings and how copyright plays a vital role in exploiting the use of those sound recordings for monetization as well as protecting yourself from infringement
TWDR104 - LIVE SOUND PRODUCTION (2 WEEK)
This two-week immersive and comprehensive workshop is designed to prepare students to go to work as front of house or monitor engineers for live events of all types. Students will spend eight days working in 4 different venues and receive 48 hours of hands-on instruction culminating in a live concert that they will mix.
This workshop will help bands and musicians to better understand the challenges of amplifying sound in any environment. As common as live sound production is, it remains a complex and difficult challenge to get it right. Creating safe and balanced sound levels to enhance the communication of musicians and others with their audience is surprisingly difficult and unevenly practiced. This workshop will address that by giving students a highly practical and experientially based education in all areas of live sound production. This includes critical listening and the ability to identify why something doesn’t sound right and the options for correcting it.
Topics will include the setup and implementation of live sound reinforcement systems, signal flow block diagrams, various types of PA systems from simple to complex line arrays, troubleshooting various issues that may arise in a live sound setting, tuning a live sound system to prevent feedback and for tonal balance, use of FX processing/GEQ, loudspeaker construction, and microphone technique as it applies to live sound on both smaller and larger systems. Students will also come to understand that their skills and abilities make them a business as well as a critical link between the intentions of the artist and the experience of the audience. Hearing health is an important component of this workshop. FOH engineers often subject audiences to dangerous levels of sound pressure that adversely affect the hearing of those present in permanent and destructive ways. In this workshop students will become acutely aware of their responsibilities, both to the music and programs they are amplifying as well as to those who are experiencing them.
- Understand the mechanics of planning, setting up, and implementing a live sound reinforcement system for corporate A/V, place of worship, theater/venue or small convention application
- Design and explain block diagrams of advanced audio systems used in live sound applications with both analog and digital audio transmission protocols.
- Demonstrate troubleshooting and problem solving abilities typically used by professional engineers in live sound for both the touring engineer but also the sound for worship engineer
- Develop the FOH mixing skills and knowledge necessary to deliver a good performance and experience to everyone present at your events
- Develop the MON mixing skills, knowledge, and people management skills required to deliver a proper sound to the members on stage that doesn’t interfere with the FOH mix or cause problems with the room
- Develop a critical listening ear to identify sonic anomalies as they arise in live sound acoustic environments while being able to properly address those issues with graphical and parametric equalization and steps to avoid problems in the first place