Jenn’s Jams ♪: Recording at Home

Hey everyone! Today, I don’t have a cover for you all (yet, because it’s in my next post!), but I wanted to show you something a little different. Yup, this is another behind-the-scenes post!

Rather than my usual recorded-with-professional-equipment covers and songs, I’ve been working on recording on my own at home. Part of this is because I’ve been spending a lot more time at home in general, but the other part is that I’m a graduating senior in high school, which means my time at Sunset Media Wave is coming to an end soon. Leaving The Wave shouldn’t mean leaving my music, so I’m trying to commit more to making simple covers and songs on my own, even if they’re not the best quality.

With that in mind, I bought a new little microphone a few months ago and have been trying to grow accustomed to it, and I’m slowly getting the hang of it, I’d say. It’s obviously not what you see in recording studios, but it’s a good start for me, considering I used to make all my SoundCloud covers on my iPhone.

I bought this for around $30, and it's been working pretty well
I bought this for around $30, and it’s been working pretty well

I generally try not to record in big, open spaces, because that always results in some sort of awkward echo in the audio that I really want to avoid. My room (coincidentally, as the 18-year-old that I am) is pretty messy and cluttered, but I like to think that means it absorbs more sound and there’s less weird ambient noise in my recordings.

As you can see, the microphone I have is a clip-on microphone, but I’ve learned not to actually clip it onto my laptop while I’m recording, because it’s sensitive to sound and can pick up on the whirring or vibrations of the computer. After getting a newer and more advanced laptop, my life has been a lot quieter (since my old one had an incredibly loud, angry fan that would always distract me). Despite the new silence I’m enjoying from this computer, I don’t want to risk anything since I’d say my microphone is pretty good at picking up on even the slightest noises.

I usually put the microphone at the edge of my desk, and I sit about a foot away from it with my guitar and sing as I usually would.

Sitting one to two feet away and playing into the mic
Sitting one to two-feet away and playing into the mic

I sing a lot louder than my guitar plays, so I try to make sure I’m farther away from the mic, while my guitar is closer. On days when I have extra time on my hands, I’ll record my guitar or piano separately as an instrumental track, and then record a track of my singing over it. I’ll show you all those covers sometime in the future, maybe.

Playing into Audacity
Playing into Audacity

On lazy days, I’ll just do one or two takes, compress everything in Audacity, and export it. I made my SoundCloud account because I wanted it to be a casual outlet for whenever I wanted to make random, spontaneous covers. I really like the homemade and calming feeling I’ve tried to build my SoundCloud up to be, so hopefully you guys like it too.

Anyway, that’s how I record covers at home! Even if I leave Sunset Media Wave to go to college, you can bet on it that I’ll still upload on my SoundCloud!