Frequently Asked Questions

I get so many e-mails asking all kinds of questions. Hopefully, the list below will answer some of these.

Questions Answers
How much do you charge? 12 UK pounds per hour. This includes an engineer on hand.
What is the rate for recording a three song demo? We do not do package deals. The cost is 12 UK pounds per hour for however long it takes.
Do you do rap? We record most types of music.
How long would it take to record an album? How long is a piece of string? Every band takes a different amount of time to record. There are so many different factors involved.
What space do you have for recording larger bands? The studio is only small and mostly geared up towards electronic based music. If your music features a real drummer then there are two ways around this. The first option is that I can arrange for the recording to be made at a different studio but mixed here. The second option is to have the drummer help to program the track using samples. Cymbals and hi-hats can be recorded live.
Do you offer any form of sponsorship? No.
Do you have any job vacancies in your organisation? No. The Basement Studio is a home based studio which I run in my spare time. At present I do not see this changing.
How long is the session tape kept for? Unless paid for, the session tape belongs to the studio and would generally not be re-used for at least 6 months after being recorded on.
How did you get started? I had a couple of keyboards, an effects unit and a drum machine. I wanted to get some of my own songs down on tape so I bought a portastudio. It just sort of built up almost on its own. Extra pieces of equipment were bought over the years and just added. I started recording one or two of my friends and the word spread. Check out the history section for more info.
I am currently studying for my 'A' levels and I am about to make my choice of university course. At the end of my studies I would like to become a record producer. Could you please advise me on what path I should take to get into production? I may not be the best person to advise you on what you should do to become a record producer. Most record producers have managed to get to their positions by working up through the industry. They will probably have engineered many records and they will know exactly what it takes to make a track sell. Most producers are good musicians in their own right. It takes years of work getting to the level where you can tell accomplished musicians that they should play their parts differently. A record producer has to be very diplomatic and above all, MUST earn the respect of the musicians that he/she is working with. Having a formal education may help you as it may open doors you never knew existed. While studying, it could also be a great benefit to perhaps get some work experience at a local studio.
Could I do work experience at your studio? The Basement Studio is something that I do in my spare time. It would therefore be unrealistic to do work experience here.
I've been writing and composing songs of my own. I have completed a demo but what can I do to establish my music? The first wish of an artist or band is for people to hear their work. Many bands sell tapes or CDs of their work at concerts they perform at. This is the beginning. What you really need to do is create a 'buzz'. People need to be talking about you (not necessarily about the music). Posters and adverts can help. I remember in the 80's reading that the Pet Shop Boys had put photos of themselves in Smash Hits magazine in order to gain interest and they didn't even have a product to sell at the time.
How do I get a recording contract? Like any company, record companies are only interested in selling a product to make money. You will only get a recording contract if they see that they can make money from you without them needing to do much work. Obviously, if they think that with some work they can make even more money, then thats up to them. If you have a good following and could sell 1,000 singles without their help, a small record label may take you on. On the other hand, if your work is so different to anything else, you may get lucky and they may see their profit via marketing techniques.
I am a singer but I don't write songs. Do record companies write songs for their artists and is it possible to use other peoples songs? Record companies will generally do as little as they can in helping an artist. It is generally up to the artist or band to write their own songs. It is not recommended to use a well known song belonging to another artist on a demo. It is not original and if published would cause much of the earnings to be paid off in royalties to the original artist. Remember! Record companies are out for as much money as they can get and if you are trying to make a living from music, you should too! In certain situations, I can arrange to have songs written to order. There are also people out there that write songs but don't sing.
Do I need backing for the songs I have written? Yes, most definately! You should try to get the demo as close to release quality as possible. A song with backing gives more of an impression as to the finished product. At this point, it is about presentation. Remember being at school where the pupils who got the highest marks had their work typed out and presented it neatly in a folder? Without backing, a record company may think that you're not making the effort.
Do you know of any musicians who could play on my song? Yes, please check out the contacts page.
Who designed your web site? My main occupation is web design as part of the Vision Internet Services team. This site has been jointly designed and written by the team and hosted on our own servers.

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Last modified: March 12th, 2000.