tweed recording sign

Tweed Recording sign on Broad Street on Aug. 7, 2020. (Culture Editor/Anna Thomas)

Recording studios often require a close and intimate environment to form the creative industry it has. Recently, local recording studios have been introduced to new methods of production and are adjusting their business methods due to the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.

The Glow Recording Studio and Tweed Recording Audio Production School have witnessed a new reality for the recording industry. They’ve taken unconventional measures to promote social distancing and ensure safety, such as only allowing solo artists to come into the studio to record or working with artists remotely.

Not only has this furthered them into a cohort of artists they may not normally record with, such as the hip hop scene in Athens, but it allows the producers to advance their skills and branch out.

“I’ve been taking more time mixing and mastering, which doesn’t always require the artists to be with me,” Jesse Mangum, owner and operator of The Glow, said. “Not only that, but it allows me to go over recordings that I’ve started with solo artists before the coronavirus hit, or I’ll just have one member of a band come in and we’ll work on recordings even more.”

Tweed Recording has typically been a production school over a commercialized recording studio, Andrew Ratcliffe, CEO and recording instructor of Tweed, said.

The intention of Tweed’s recording school is to provide an “in-depth, over 550 hours of contact and 18-week semester program” to allow future recording artists and musicians to find a job in the creative industry, Ratcliffe said. However, the pandemic has put a halt on this form of schooling with Tweed only allowing 24 people in the building at a time, Ratcliffe said.

“Having people work in a recording studio is very difficult to do six feet apart, and it’s even more difficult to do when you’re trying to teach someone how to run a console or a microphone,” Ratcliffe said. “We decided that it was best for our business and Tweed family to postpone the recording school for the time being.”

Tweed decided to delay its audio production program to 2021, according to its website. Instead, the staff has allocated their Saturday Sessions to take place online so participants can “attend, interact and share with [their] instructors as [they] compose and produce music from home,” Tweed Recording said on its website.

Aside from postponing any programs or decisions in the recording studios, the studios have found new methods of production that continue to keep the industry in business.

The Glow has artists record from their homes and then send the recordings to the studio for any mixing and mastering. This is a new but productive change they may not have seen pre-coronavirus, Mangum said.

“It’s actually fun to not know exactly what environment something was recorded in, what microphone was used or how exactly the experience was but still being able to work on it,” Mangum said.

These music industry professionals intend to accommodate the current economic situation they are in to continue to bring music to Athens and teach music production to others, both Mangum and Ratcliffe said.

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