On one hand, laying down vocals is simply a matter of hitting ‘record’, doing your thing, and relying on the power of technology to ...
August 4, 2022
Music videos as an art form have withstood many drastic technological and creative shifts. The fact remains that as people, we are highly visual consumers. That’s why TikTok currently dominates the internet, having surpassed Google as the most popular website. In 2020, 96% of people increased their online video consumption, with the average person spending 100 minutes a day watching videos in 2022.
Video is a compelling channel for musicians to showcase their ability and identity as well as gain exposure across multiple online platforms. However, before you dive in there are several factors to consider. Shooting a music video can be a daunting task, especially if it’s your first time. It can, however, be just the thing you need to kick things into high gear and get your music out there.
Before you begin filming, think about what your ‘big idea’ is. What’s going to make this video stand out and exemplify exactly who you are as artists? Every decision you make about your video should have this question in mind. Also consider who your fans are, what they like and what matters to them. Getting everyone on the same page is important in terms of both the creative vision and the practical requirements such as budget. It may also help to be prepared with some ideas and examples that support your ‘big idea’.
Ask yourself which of your songs is the right investment for this project. Creating a live video requires a significant amount of time and work, even a simple one that’s filmed in the studio. Choose a song that speaks to your passion and defines your sound! We also recommend you start small. A snippet of a song in a music video can take hours to produce, so maybe don’t choose your 8-minute track and risk running out of steam.
Now you’ve got the big idea, what’s the ‘big picture’? This involves fleshing out your concept into something that best showcases your talent and artistic vision. It’s also crucial to figure out if the video will focus on the band’s performance or if you want to ‘tell a story’ with your video. Both can be achieved through an in-studio recording, whether you want to evoke your desired reaction purely through performance (alongside studio effects such as lighting) or by cutting between studio footage and a secondary narrative.
There are those out there who could record, edit, and produce their own music with little more than an iPhone and a laptop – but for the most part, expert videography is a fantastic resource for both a growing band and the hosting studio. The pros that come with using a trained videographer far outweigh the cons because they come with a wealth of knowledge to apply to your vision. They can advise you on things like location and budget, as well as high-quality production – things that truly make your video stand out in a sea of competition.
A videographer will be able to advise you on where to shoot your video depending on its style, direction and plot. Shooting a video in a single location like a studio rather than many different locations also simplifies the process and lowers the budget significantly, especially if this is your first music video. It will save you time and money and helps keep the direction and format of the video consistent. A recording studio such as Kore is a very useful resource. We understand factors such as lighting, space, reflections, sound quality, and setup. We also employ a dedicated team of professionals to assist with sound quality and engineering.
Budget is affected by location, equipment, crew, and more, with every element adding costs. The most expensive music video made to date is Michael and Janet Jackson’s Scream, costing an eye-watering $7 million, but don’t let that get you down!
Live studio recordings can help keep budgets under control. In fact, they’re the best way to make a limited budget shine. This is because there’s no worry about hiring an expensive venue as good studios offer deals at off-peak times and can include equipment, props, and sound crew in your package. You also don’t need to worry about transporting your equipment, having to edit out background noise, bad weather, or limited shooting time – you book for as long as you need and costs are transparent and upfront. If your budget is limited, an in-studio video recording offers the best value and impact for your money, creating a highly professional audio and visual experience without hurting your pocket.
There are several benefits to using a recording studio that are not available elsewhere. Top-tier equipment, engineer assistance, world-class soundproofing, and the add-on services offered by studios will save time and money. For instance, outdoor recordings have quite a hefty list of requirements: power sources, transport, manpower, and often filming permissions (to name a few). These are all expenses that could be avoided by recording in the studio. Below are just a few examples of benefits and things to consider when filming bands live in the studio:
One thing that you can rely on in a studio is consistency. The controlled environment will allow you to perfect your set-up so that your chosen space delivers a high-quality audio recording as well as impactful visuals. It’s also likely you’ll need the guidance of recording studio professionals if this is your first time. Treat your initial visit like a consultation, ask as many questions as you deem necessary and hopefully, you’ll leave the studio feeling that you would be in safe hands.
One of the biggest benefits of shooting your video in a studio is the professional soundproofing and availability of equipment and props. Everything you need to record your best sound and add great visual components is at your fingertips, all thanks to a single provider. Kore Studios, for example, has different types of professional mics for audio recording, as well as consoles, instruments, amps, plugins, and FX. We also have a huge range of props to achieve the perfect look for your studio recording, and we’re experienced in helping artists from an eclectic mix of genres get their sound exactly right.
In music videos, you need both the visuals and the sound to shine, and that’s where professional mixing and mastering takes your product to the top. With professional studios, you get a sound that stands out thanks to high-quality harmonic filters, equalisers, dynamics, and dither techniques that deliver the emotion, balance, and integrity your song deserves.
Want to take a behind the scenes look at recording at Kore Studios? We met Nuns of the Tundra at the BBC Music Introducing Live Expo in 2020, and to say we had fun working with this high octane alt-rock band is definitely an understatement.
Now that you have your objective and your studio, you can start to iron out some of the logistical hurdles. These are the details in your video masterpiece – the small efforts that will make the biggest difference. Here’s how to arrange all the moving parts needed to make the most of your filming day.
Planning the style of your video is one of the most creative and interesting parts of filming a video. It requires thoughtful and deliberate decisions on costume, staging, visual effects and props. This will bring your vision to life, setting the emotional quality, tone and ‘feel’ of your video. Even when bands opt for a more ‘devil-may-care’ style, this is often planned down to the finest detail. Take a slapdash approach and it will almost certainly show in the final product.
Start the day with a plan for how the session will run. Skimp on the details and the process will often just be a headache and a wasted opportunity. With multiple professionals and elements needed for a recording session, you’ll want to make sure everyone is on the same page and knows what tasks are happening to keep it running smoothly. A live studio recording session is a great help here because the team is experienced and knows exactly how to make the most of your studio time.
Logistics not your strong suit? Fear not. At Kore, we’ll work with your band, your videographer and any other teams to set a schedule that gets the most out of your recording time and budget.
Some technical logistics can vary depending on multiple different factors such as the number of musicians, flexibility and creativity (to name a few). The first thing that needs to happen is the audio recording and the second is the video recording. Sometimes doing both simultaneously is not possible. For example, the videographer may need people and props to be placed in areas which may affect the quality of the audio recording. Or there may be a scene where the audio is perfect, but the video is not or vice versa. Thankfully, there are ways to help work around this.
In many studios, it is common practice for bands to record their audio first and then perfect the video content through multiple takes. In post-production, the engineered and remastered audio is synched with the video to create a seamless piece of content.
Sometimes with solo acts, it is possible to record both audio and video simultaneously, often while wearing headphones. Not only can this expedite the process it also offers a more intimate, authentic-seeming video. Just take a look at the below example from the Bloom Twins, filmed at Kore Studios, which has that great sense of rawness and spontaneity many artists look for.
You may have put a lot of time and effort into perfecting your video – but the work doesn’t stop there. Competition is stiff and it may take some time and a bit of creative thinking to get eyes on your video. Here are a few tips for how bands use their new video to cultivate a fanbase.
There are reasons why businesses will throw money at video content creators – it takes not only personality and a creative eye but also a head for marketing. If your band is a business, this video is a product, so you have to think about how to sell it and what it says about you. While there are some pointers below on promoting your video online, we want to take this opportunity to emphasise that this is where live studio recordings can really pay off. They’re the most affordable way to make a music video that showcases your artistry through high-quality sound and imagery, and they show everyone – from fans to recording labels – that you’re serious about your art.
Social media is an essential part of your music promotion strategy, but it needs the right approach. Be consistent with your voice, look, and values to create a personality for your content. Be engaging with your fans and reply to their questions. Consider running small-scale promotions where in exchange for sharing your video they can be eligible to receive free tickets, merch and a shout-out on your social media channels.
While your music video is the star of your social content, there’s so much more you can put out there to build a solid fan base. Take pictures of everything, from what goes on behind the scenes at your video recording to the band taking a well-earned break at the end of the day. Make sure you have several photographs ready for posting during your video recording process and upload them to your band’s or artist’s social media accounts with an intriguing teaser with relevant hashtags. And remember to follow your fans back and comment or like their responses to create that personal connection.
Keep in mind that video clips are now largely watched on YouTube rather than on television. This means that the duration of the clip is important. If it’s key to the plot or aesthetic, you can include an intro and credits. However, don’t go beyond 5 minutes for a music video because time is a barrier to admission for the viewer.
Another feature of YouTube is that playback begins immediately as the video loads. This means that your greatest and most eye-catching, substantial stuff should be shown to the audience right away. This will hook them and entice them to stay, otherwise, you may lose their interest.
TikTok is having a huge moment in the music industry, and it’s not difficult to see why. Some of 2022’s biggest songs such as Doja Cat’s ‘Say So’ found success in part because of TikTok. Quick snippets of your songs can go viral, especially if you have the moves to go with them or a unique style that can be replicated by fellow creators (this was a large factor in the success of ‘Meet Me At Our Spot’ by THE ANXIETY, Tyler Cole and Willow Smith). This juggernaut of a platform is also great for other quick content that allows fans to forge a personal connection to you as an artist.
All of the top music magazines and news venues now have online digital spaces for showcasing everything from new releases to band interviews and promos. They’re a great way to show off your sound and performance abilities, and they provide an existing audience for you to garner new fans.
In 2011, Kore Studios helped create an in-studio live recording session for Scottish band Little Eye. Shot in classic black and white with an emphasis on live performance and showcasing the band’s pure skill, it’s a timeless piece that was used for Verge Magazine.
Kore Studios is a leading London recording studio, having worked with bands such as Kasabian, Stereophonics and Florence and the Machine. If you’re interested in booking a slot at our studio, the team is available to answer any questions. Contact us today to find out more!