The BIG question-What does it cost to make an album?

Music projects come in all different shapes and sizes.

What it takes to create your art is completely different than what it takes for another artist to create their art. Music is not a “one size fits all”. Your music is unique to you and therefore each budget is unique. Give me a call and we’ll talk about your music and the goals for your project and come up with a budget that will work for you.

Do you have any Package deals?

I can create a comprehensive budget which you can call a “package” if you want but, I do not have a pre-formed “value menu” style packages. Your music is too distinctive and personal to fit into package “A”, “B” or “C”.

How can I pay for my project? Do you take Credit cards? Will you consider a payment plan?

I do take Credit Cards/Debit Cards via Pay Pal. The client is responsible for any fees associated with transactions done through Pay Pal. Payment Plan- uhhh…not so much. Sorry.

Do you work on demos and EPs or just full albums?

Yep! Singles, three song demos, 5 song EPs, 40 song box sets… whatever you got!

How many songs usually go on a CD?

Most folks consider 10 songs to be about the minimum for a full length CD in the pop/country/rock genres.

I pretty much have all my songs written… but I don’t really know what to tell the guitar player, drummer, bass player and the weird guy at the piano what to play?

No problem, that’s what I’m here for. You don’t need to notate everything, in fact you’re better off leaving a lot of room for the players to work within. As you’ll find, the players are artists themselves and if you give them too many parameters, it will squelch their creative minds.

I want to record a full album but I only have 2-3 songs…Can you help me write some more songs?

Absolutely! I can help in many ways. We can co-write together, I can set you up with some really great song writers here in town or I can always find some catalogs of songs that you can browse to see if there are any songs you’d like to cut.

I’d really like to collaborate with some songwriter to come up with some really great material. Do you know of anyone that I can write with… and I want to write with somebody that has written for big and famous music superstars. Can you make that happen?


What Studio do you work at?

I work all over the place, not just here in Nashville but all over the world. You can come to me or I can come to you.

So, is there a studio you recommend?

ABSOLUTELY! I have a special arrangement with some of the very best studios in Nashville so, I can help you negotiate an incredible rate.

Have a lot of famous people have recorded there? I don’t think I can afford that….

You’d be surprised how affordable it is. As I said, I can help get a great rate for you.  Let’s talk and I’ll twist a few arms for you.

How long does it take to record a song?

It varies from weeks (highly unusual) to just a few minutes (once again… unusual). To do the foundational rhythm tracks for a country/pop/rock/folk song it typically averages out to around one to three hours. It really depends on how complex the song, how prepared you are and how many changes on you want to make in the studio.

So, how many sessions will I need for my album?

That’s pretty hard to give a generic/one size fits all answer…it really depends on the scope/style/budget of the album

When do I sing?

When the time is right. There are times that it is best to cut the vocals the same day as the tracking session with the band. Other times, it’s best to let the artist take some rough mixes home and practice for a few days or weeks before jumping into the vocals

What about Back ground vocals? Can I do my own? I’m not that good at hearing harmonies and different vocal parts… can I hire someone to sing those?

You can either do your own BGVs or hire in some amazing singers that will compliment your vocal style. I can help map out harmony parts for you and/or the session singer… it’s one of my favorite things to do!

I’ve heard about things you can do to people’s vocals that make them sound amazing even if they can’t sing in tune. Can you do that with my vocals?

Yes… however, we can’t take an average or bad singer and make them AMAZING… we can just help make their average or bad singing more in pitch with the rest of the track. I always strive for a real and honest vocal delivery. We’ll work hard to get the best takes and then if necessary we’ll use some technology to enhance some parts. It’s always best to work hard to get it down with out the use of a bunch of editing but if we need to make that happen we can do some pretty amazing things.

All these studio musicians that you’re talking about… how much does that cost?

It depends on the scope and budget of the project. When we talk on the phone or via e-mail I can explain how all of that works.

I was thinking of having my friend come and play guitar/piano/drums/bass on my album… is that cool?

While it’s “cool”, it may not be the best thing for your project. The talent level is so high and the pace that we work at is so fast, that those that are not used to working in the Nashville studio environment can very easily be put in a difficult position of being the guy or gal that holds up a session. It’d be pretty tough to bring a friend in to help only to have that friend cost you hundreds or thousands of dollars in down time. This is something we can talk about in more detail as we lay out a production schedule.

What does mixing do exactly?

Mixing is essentially the blending of all the various parts of the recording (bass, drums, vocals, etc).

How long does it take to mix my songs?

Completely depends on the budget and size of the production. As you can imagine a guitar and vocal track takes less time then a song with over 100 different music tracks or elements

Can I attend the mix session?

Yep, however you might find it to be a tedious process that actually works best when the engineer (myself or someone else) works alone.

I can’t attend the mix session…. What if I don’t like some of the decisions made during the mixing?

I always give my clients the chance for a mix revision at no additional cost. There are creative and technical decisions that are made during a mix and some of the creative decisions may not be exactly what you had in mind.

I want a record deal. If I hire you, can you get me a record deal?

Well… Yes and No. The “yes” part- I can create an album that sounds as good or better than what you hear from “signed acts” that you can pitch to the labels. That’ll get you into the game of pursuing a record deal. However, if you’re thinking “If I hire Dave Bechtel he’ll get me a record deal with all of his big shot Nashville contacts!!” well then.. no. If anyone gave you the impression that they can get you “record deal” if you record with them… run away.

How do I get my songs on the radio?

It’s a long and expensive adventure but I can connect you with some fine folks that will be more than willing to help you out.

Can you get my songs to publishers?

Yes… but only if they are some of the best songs I’ve ever heard in my entire life (and I’ve heard a few good ones over the years)

My songs are really good but I’m not that great of a singer. Can I hire a singer to sing my songs? How much does that cost?

Session singers are about the same cost as the instrumentalists. I can help you through all of that.

Mastering and duplication-So I’ve approved my mixes; Is my CD done now?

You’ll want to get your project mastered.

I’ve heard of mastering but I’ve never quite fully understood what takes place during mastering… Can you explain what mastering does?

Mastering is the final step- The mastering engineer takes all the songs and puts them in the appropriate order, makes EQ and dynamic range adjustments so the album has an even flow from song to song. This gets the album ready for public distribution both in a hard copy (CDs) or file distribution (MP3, AAC, etc)

So, do you master my album?

Nope. Remember, “Aces in their places”. I have some friends I like to recommend.

How much does mastering cost?

I don’t set anyone else’s rate so you’ll have to speak with whomever you hire to master your project but it generally averages out to somewhere around $100 a tune.

I want some physical product to sell at my concerts…can I order CDs from you?

No. However, I can point you in the direction of some good duplications houses.

I need someone to do the graphic design and layout for my CD… any thought there?

I have some very talented friends that do that sort of work. I can get you in touch with them.

Oh and I need some photos of myself who should I call?

Yep… I have some very talented friends that do that sort of work. I can get you in touch with them.

Hey! I got my CDs… how do I get my songs on iTunes?

You should check out CD baby http://cdbaby.com/

All right, I got boxes of CDs in my living room, and my songs up on iTunes… how do I sell my music?

Get out and play some gigs!!!