From September our Mobile Recording Studio will be back on the road visiting schools all over the UK
August is the quietest month of the year for us in terms of recording work. Pretty much our entire client base has gone on holiday to one place or another. Schools are on their Summer break and the vast majority of choirs tend not to meet in August either. This means we get to have a break too – yes even sound engineers go on holiday occasionally!
New Paintwork for our Studio
For us it’s not all about holidays and down time, albeit that is nice. The Summer break affords us an opportunity to do a little general maintenance. One of the things we have achieved this Summer is to paint our studio. Last year we upgraded a lot of the kit in our production studio and reorganised it so it’s more customer friendly as well as being a pleasant environment for our engineers to work in. But we never quite finished the decor. So with a few days spare, the studio was emptied, given a good clean and a fresh lick of paint. The colour? Well it’s our corporate blue of course – which basically means it’s a dark ‘greyish’ navy! The official hex colour reference for this in case anyone cares is #204b6d.
So with a clean freshly painted studio, and all our production suite back up and running, we are now looking forward to a busy few months ahead of us.
School Christmas Recordings
In my day the ‘Autumn term’ or at least the term which starts at the beginning of September was known as Michaelmas term. Perhaps in some schools it still is. I must confess I still havent quite worked out whether there are 3 school terms or 6 and whether they have numbers or names. Nor indeed whether half term is still half term or just another holiday?
Regardless of the terminology schools start to think about recording Christmas themed albums with us from about late September onwards. And once the rush starts we are out on the road pretty much every day until about the second week of December. This means lots of early mornings and much driving around the motorway network of the UK. But it’s great fun and we love being out there recording in schools.
Primary School Christmas CDs
The vast majority of our school recordings, particularly at Christmas, are in Primary Schools or Primary Academies as many now are. The format for such recordings is fairly consistent from school to school. Most of the time we are recording pupils singing. Usually this will be 1 or 2 songs per year group (or per class in smaller schools), plus a couple of songs featuring the whole school singing together. As well as singing, we sometimes find ourselves recording music groups. This might be a Ukulele group or increasingly popular is an African drumming group.
From our perspective, it’s great to see such a variety of music being made in Primary Schools. Regardless of whether you want to record an Outer Mongolian Nose Flute, or a table top Harp, rest assured we will know how to correctly mic it up to do justice to your performance. We never like to pigeon hole schools – for example last Summer we recorded a fabulous orchestra in a Primary School. And yes we do mean a full orchestra of about 50 players, all pupils. They were utterly fabulous!
Recording in Prep Schools
When it comes to recording Prep Schools, in a lot of cases the process is fairly similar in terms of recording singing by year group for example. Perhaps the main difference is that sometimes Prep Schools just want to record their school choir or certain instrumental groups. This is absolutely fine. The only difference is that for schools looking to record smaller groups the pricing might be slightly different. Regardless of your ideas, we can certainly help you.
As well as recording school choirs we can also help you record instrumental soloists or perhaps solo singers. A number of Prep Schools ask us to record pupils who have won scholarships to their senior school. This is more a record for them rather than a ‘fundraising CD’. Whatever your requirements, at 4 Part Music we can produce a professional recording which your school and pupils will be proud of for years to come.