I’ve got a great studio with stacks of toys, plug ins, outboard and external synths that sound amazing and very retro;
But I am constantly amazed that despite all of this, I can still function pretty much 100% with a basic laptop and a few choice plugins.
I’m writing this on a plane returning from ‘The Branch Office’ in Portugal, thinking about how to finish my latest commission; a series of themes for three great moments from history. Most of this is done and needs mixing, but while I was away, I did a bit of editing, rewrites, and cut downs based on what I had originally done in the bigger studio. And it worked great!
In fact the previous time, I wrote the entire music score for a client with only the laptop and the plugins provided within the music software. A few tweaks back home and Bob’s yer Invoice!
It’s amazing to think especially prior to a fairly meaty tour,that I can take with me my MacBook Pro, a few additional software bits and pieces and still have control and the ability to compose music on the road.
Ten years ago, I was on a seven month world tour. I had an idea to build a portable studio rig which I eventually did. But it was heavy, clunky and contained so many plugboards and extra cables, it became limiting and very heavy! I used it every day and managed to complete a long running TV series for BBC, several songs and radio pieces, and still made it in time for the shows.
But now it’s a carry on, and so much easier.
Even recording demos and song ideas can be as simple as turning the thing on, and playing.
I love my studio and what it can produce. But it’s great to know that it doesn’t have to stop because you’re on a plane, by the beach, doing a show, whatever.
And if the client is happy that is really all that really matters.