Awwww.... how come?

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cale w
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Awwww.... how come?

Post by cale w » Fri Feb 12, 2010 10:39 pm

So I had a pretty sweet project lined up to do tracking for... but the band just let me know they decided to go with a different engineer instead. Is it advisable to ask them why? Right now I'm thinking, is it my rates? My 'sound'? My equipment? I'd like to know what swayed their decision without sounding like a bad sport.

Any ideas?

cale w
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Post by cale w » Fri Feb 12, 2010 10:40 pm

wooo I've made 'ass engineeer'!

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Snarl 12/8
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Post by Snarl 12/8 » Sat Feb 13, 2010 2:32 am

Maybe they wanted someone who did more work around the front?
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Post by sir hills » Sat Feb 13, 2010 6:47 am

Maybe they wanted someone who did more work around the front?
hahahaha. I almost snorted coffee out my nose.

Are you friends with any band members? Might be best/easiest to breech the subject casually. I'd probably just move on if the moment wasn't right...don't want to put someone on the spot & then have future dealings awkward. I hear you though...it'd be nice to know why & if it's something you can improve.

You posted recently about raising your (ridiculously low) quoted rate on a band mid-project...or during tracking or something. If the bands run in the same circle that might be something that's getting around?

thethingwiththestuff
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Post by thethingwiththestuff » Sat Feb 13, 2010 7:38 am

i think it would be perfectly reasonable, if you have even a casual relationship, to say, ya know, "no hard feelings, its just business. best of luck to you. can i ask if there was anything specific that swayed your decision? anything i might be lacking here? t'would be most helpful for me in the future. have a good session!"

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Post by Gentleman Jim » Sat Feb 13, 2010 8:19 am

Also, you may consider waiting a few weeks, or until you know they've finished tracking. This will dispel any thoughts they may have that you're desperate and trying to 'steal them back,' as it were. Oftentimes the stink of desperation is more of a turnoff than anything else.

Unless of course, you are desperate to 'steal them back.' Then go to one of their homes right now and stand outside with a boombox over your head.

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Post by Gentleman Jim » Sat Feb 13, 2010 8:25 am

sir hills wrote:

You posted recently about raising your (ridiculously low) quoted rate on a band mid-project...or during tracking or something. If the bands run in the same circle that might be something that's getting around?
If they got cold feet based on your calling the previous band on their BS, then you should be very happy. You don't want to be known as The Guy Who Will Work For $1.87 An Hour.

Seriously.

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Post by sir hills » Sat Feb 13, 2010 8:57 am

Sure, you definitely don't want to be "that guy" but quoting a rate (whether it's thought through or not) & not living up to it could be a turn off...especially how the situation is recounted by the "customer" to other poeple. I was just theorizing/speculating based on a recent post by the OP.

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AnalogElectric
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Post by AnalogElectric » Sat Feb 13, 2010 4:23 pm

Yeah, it happens to us all. It's happened to me more than I'd like especially with bands I REALLY wanted to work with.

It's harder to swallow when I've worked with them before and they go elsewhere without any explanation... or I don't ask anyhow to the why cuz I usually can figure out why. It's usually for a different reason in that case. Being they're ready to move on and/or want a different perspective with their work.

I had several studios over the years on various different amateur to professional levels and it doesn't really matter except for the product of money and time... vibe too.

A client wants to feel 100% about who will handle their art. Sure, they don't always make the right decision, hahaha! But, I've learned not to take it personally even though I can't help but feel less of an engineer and studio owner when it happens.

As far as I'm concerned it's a business and it's not a bad thing to be upfront with them about why they made other decisions. If you're frank with them, they'll be frank with them. Just make sure you're ready for their response cuz it could be something you don't really WANT to hear... be prepared. If anything else it'll give you something to consider in the future or solidify you're going to stick to your current approach, realizing their decision is based on things you don't believe in and you'll continue to be yourself. Make sense?

Businesses thrive on feedback, it what makes that business even better. Without feedback there is no growth or awareness. We tend to get lost in our own ego.

Absolutely quote a rate you deserve tho. I think some bands get nervous about people who offer really inexpensive rates... cuz I've heard that before early in my career.

I've also had other studios who treat it more "business-like" by putting the smooth moves on them, stroking their ego and such... "we're going to get a killer recording in half the time" and "we have better gear to get the classic sounds you need" sorta-thing.

To wrap up: ask them why, they'll tell you, and be prepared for the response (it might be just a bit too honest).

Good luck!
-- Adam Lazlo
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cale w
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Post by cale w » Sat Feb 13, 2010 8:29 pm

Gentleman Jim wrote:Unless of course, you are desperate to 'steal them back.' Then go to one of their homes right now and stand outside with a boombox over your head.
If I did show up with a boom box, it would be blasting this tune: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dQw4w9WgXcQ


Thanks for the feedback guys. This band doesn't run in the same circles as the one mentioned in my previous post. That dilema got solved pretty easy: I was told they were thinking about offering me more money to finish up the project anyway, so I took a risk but it came out well.

In this case I'm pretty sure it's a bigger project for this 9-piece jazz pop band, and I don't have a super extensive resume at this point. I've done a little work for them in the past, and they didn't flinch at my rates, so I'm sure it's nothing major that swayed them. I'll wait a bit and play it professional when I ask them their reasons.

Thanks again for all your great feedback guys ! (except you snarl, you witty guy ;) ) The TOMB is such an amazing resource for anyone trying to record audio, it's just incredible. I try to tell my non-audio geek friends about how cool this thing is and they look at me like, well, like I'm an audio geek. But I love it!

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Snarl 12/8
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Post by Snarl 12/8 » Sat Feb 13, 2010 10:18 pm

cale w wrote:If I did show up with a boom box, it would be blasting this tune: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dQw4w9WgXcQ
You just rickrolled me, you bitch;)
Carl Keil

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Post by @?,*???&? » Sun Feb 14, 2010 11:57 am

I'll guarantee it was because they were cheaper and the band doesn't know the difference sound-wise.

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Post by Gentleman Jim » Sun Feb 14, 2010 1:47 pm

@?,*???&? wrote:I'll guarantee it was because they were cheaper and the band doesn't know the difference sound-wise.
I'm not sure if I should point out the bitterness dripping from this statement, or that you're projecting all over the place.

Ah, what the heck. Why not go with both? :wink:

Maybe one of the band members is an old close friend with the other guy. Maybe the other guy sold them on superior equipment. Maybe they just got a better feeling from the other guy. Perhaps when the OP speaks with the band he'll be humble and honest enough to fill us in on the details.

I'll guarantee he does. :wink:

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Post by DrummerMan » Sun Feb 14, 2010 2:48 pm

Snarl 12/8 wrote:
cale w wrote:If I did show up with a boom box, it would be blasting this tune: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dQw4w9WgXcQ
You just rickrolled me, you bitch;)
holy crap! I don't think I remember that video from my childhood, or ever even knew what Rick Astley looked like. It's as if he got laid one time after doing that dance for some girl and thought that from that point on, all his mojo would be contained in that leg-swaying thing, so he just did it over and over again. :shock:

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Post by Shane Michael Rose » Sun Feb 14, 2010 6:45 pm

the real bullshit is when a band you have been working with for six months tracking a full length decides to mix with someone else.

the tracking went great and they thank you, but will not give a decent explanation as to why they are mixing with someone else.

can't offer them a test mix because you mixed the last record, which they said that they love.


and you gave them a deal up until this point, so you lose the credit, the control, half of the money and the satisfaction of saying you made the record happen.

so what do i do? find a better band to work with and try to charge more.

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