Seeing as how I just released a new album, I thought I would take the time to tell you all what the process is like!
Getting ready to release an album is a pretty involved process that starts long before you’re even close to actually being ready to record. Writing or arranging the music takes months, and maybe even years. When I have 12-15 completed songs, I start to think about my album theme, the artwork, the package and presentation I want to offer, etc. I then set a timeline for my release. I contact my engineer to find out his availability for mastering and recording and get him booked. I then contact my artwork designer to get on his schedule. And I contact my transcriptionist and proofer to get on their schedules as well. Once those major pieces are set in motion, I start preparing to record.
I record at home, in my own studio on my piano, with my own gear. I set- up my piano to record using mics that work well for my specific piano. Those mics run into my pre-amp, which then runs into my audio interface, and then into my computer. I usually fly my engineer, Joe Bongiorno at Piano Haven Studios) out to spend the week with me so we can record together because he makes it easier. But sometimes, like with my most recent recording (Christmas - Plain & Simple III), I record on my own and then just send him the final files for mastering.
Check out my Facebook Live videos about home recording on my two latest albums (with and without my engineer):
Once the songs are recorded, my engineer masters them and gets them CD ready. I then send the mastered files off to my transcriptionist so I can have sheet music for all the songs. Being self-taught, I have to hire someone to transcribe my music for me. Rebecca Oswald is my transcriptionist and she’s amazing!! I then have Kathy Parsons proof the transcriptions to make sure they’re perfect. When I have final transcriptions in hand, I assemble them into a single PDF file with a table of contents, a biography page, and front and back covers for the songbook, and then send that file to my songbook manufacturer for print.
In the meantime, I send all the mastered audio files, and all the final artwork for the album to my manufacturer to have the albums printed and made. All the final printed products typically arrive at my house 10 days after they’re ordered.
And then comes the really fun part… promoting, marketing, advertising, and getting the word out there about the new album! It typically takes 2-3 months before a release, and 2-3 months after a release to promote the new album and get the word out. I’m always very excited when I have a new release because I love sharing my music with you all :)
Want to buy a finished product? Head to my store to shop them all!