One of Nashville’s most iconic and historic studios, RCA Studio A, on Music Row had a close call with closing its doors this month.
The RCA Studio A has been a recording space for countless major artists for 40 years. And last month, it looked like new developments on Nashville’s Music Row might see the historic recording space closed for good. Thankfully, the builders relented after an open letter was published by the studio’s main vendor, Ben Folds. But the event raises the question as to whether big studios are capable of surviving anymore in the digital age.
Here are the three main challenges big studios face in tomorrow's music industry:
Cheaper Better Gear
By far, the greatest threat to big studios has beenand will continue to bethe advent of recording equipment that is better sounding and more affordable. As artists producers are able to create great recordings and mixes in their homes and the cost of gear becomes less than the cost of renting a big studio space, it’s easy to see how big studios will struggle to attract enough business to stay viable.
Less Profitability in Recorded Music
Another challenge for big studios is the shrinking budgets for recording projects. This due to the fact that recorded music just doesn’t make as much money for artists and labels as it used to. While much of this is due to pirating, services like Spotify and Youtube have essentially provided free ways for fans to listen to music with very little kickback to the creators.
The proliferation of high quality samples, along with better MIDI programming interfaces, has also meant that some instruments can now be programmed where they would have once been only recorded. Naturally, as artists want to lay down a harp part, for example, they’ll be much more inclined to use a sample rather than book a musician and a recording space.
While these are three big obstacles in the future for big studios, it’s also important to recognize that there’s still a strong movement for bands to record live on analog gear. Because analog is more expensive and requires more skill to record with, this movement has found using professional big studios to be the best way to capture the real organic nature of what’s being recorded.
Moving forward it’s likely that many big studios will be forced to close their doors as the demand for big budget recordings drops off. But, there will always be a need for large spaces to record ensembles, bands and other artists who want the most human performance as possible in their mix.
Make Pro Songs
Welcome to Sage Audio — where we’ve been providing top-tier studio mastering services and audio education for over two decades now. We understand the challenges of achieving that elusive "professional" sound and are committed to helping you attain it in your own mixes and masters.
That’s why we created the Sage Audio Membership™.
Just for signing up, you receive 10 free mastered songs per month with your own dedicated mastering engineer, unlimited mixing feedback, and access to Sage Audio University™ mixing and mastering courses - which include start-to-finish walkthrough sessions for various genres and 35 multitrack sessions for hands-on practice.
This platform is supported by our thriving community and tight-knit network of audio engineers. Every day, we see and hear great wins in the membership from both new and seasoned engineers, noticing a huge improvement in their mixes and masters after joining.
There are 6 unique value-points inside the Sage Audio membership, so let’s go over each one so you can decide if it’s the right fit for you.
1. 10 Free Mastered Songs Per Month
- Get 10 free mastered songs per month with your own dedicated professional mastering engineer so you can get all your mixes sounding like professional songs.
- All 10 free mastered songs per month will accumulate in your account and will not expire as for as long as you remain a member.
- You’ll get your own dedicated Sage Audio mastering engineer to discuss all your project needs 1:1 so they can create custom masters that are specific to you and sound exactly how you want.
- Unlimited revisions with your dedicated Sage Audio mastering engineer. As a standard of our service, we are not happy until you are happy with the sound of your masters.
- All masters are delivered as commercial, industry-standard high-resolution 24-bit HD WAV masters so they will sound clean and clear on every platform.
2. Unlimited Mixing Feedback
- Get unlimited mixing feedback from Sage Audio engineers and community members so you can quickly improve your mixes.
- This is highly valuable - giving you access to a thriving community of mixing engineers who can provide you with feedback about what you can improve first before sending your mix to be professionally mastered.
3. Sage Audio University™ (SAU) — (Mixing and Mastering Education Platform)
- SAU is a modern audio engineering education platform that includes in-depth mixing and mastering course curriculums that match the new music industry.
- SAU is designed for every experience level, ranging from first-time mixing engineers to advanced engineers. The techniques and concepts taught can be applied to any DAW to create industry-leading mixes without expensive software or plugins - and free plugin alternatives are suggested throughout every course curriculum.
- SAU course curriculums include Start-to-Finish session walkthrough lessons for multiple genres so you can follow along with your preferred genre.
- SAU Membership Degree Certification, which can be downloaded and showcased on your website, social channels, and portfolio for as long as you remain a member.
- Get first access to all future SAU course curriculums to continually build and refine your mixing and mastering skills as the industry evolves.
4. Sage Audio Community
- The Sage Audio community is a tight-knit community of passionate audio engineers that can provide you with real-world mixing feedback, discussions, mix competitions, networking, collaborations, and more.
5. 700+ In-depth Sage Audio Mixing and Mastering Videos
- Access 700+ in-depth Sage Audio mixing and mastering videos - curated and organized into playlists so you can take a deep-dive into all aspects of audio engineering with thousands of hours of concise, expertly crafted Sage Audio videos to continually improve your mixing and mastering skills at your own pace.
6. 70+ GB of Curated Sage Audio Downloadable Content, Including:
- 36 multitrack sessions spanning multiple genres for mixing practice.
- 57 un-mastered mixes spanning multiple genres for mastering practice.
- 62 Recommended Free Plugins List (vetted, tested, and approved, so you don’t have to).
- 39 Recommended Paid Plugins List (vetted, tested, and approved, so you don’t have to).
- 58 Sage Audio custom plugin presets to improve your mixes and masters.
- Sage Audio Membership Badge to showcase on your website, social channels, and portfolio.