I wanted to do that.
Fast forward decades. My very first “single” is now available and every vocal harmony and background on it is mine. (Click HERE or click the cover art image to download it or listen to a clip.)
Why did I wait so long to release a recording? One big reason is that I knew how much it would cost and I just couldn’t justify spending the money when I knew I’d never recover the expense:
The studio time was free, but
Leasing the track for recording cost $140.
Mixing/mastering cost $50 (EXTREME discount)
Licensing and royalties were $42.
The distribution service was $15
(to get it on itunes, Google Play, Amazon, streaming services, etc.)
So why now? Why this song? Not because I had an extra $247 to burn, that’s for sure. I’ve been recording covers for nearly 5 years now and this is the first one that wasn’t actually a full out cover of a song by a popular artist. In the back of my mind, my thought has probably always been something like this:
Given a choice between listening to an original artist’s version of a song and my version, why would anyone listen to a copy when they could listen to the “real thing?”
But this song isn’t a copy of an original. It’s a Christmas medley that a music track making company created in 2009. The artist on the demonstration track is an unnamed studio vocalist that nobody will compare me to. It starts out slow and soft with I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day, then transitions to Ring the Bells and build to one of my favorites, Carol of the Bells. It’s packed with harmony and overlaps. It was challenging to record, but it was flat out FUN at the same time.
Will I release another single in the future?
Probably at lease one more. A few years ago, I paid the $140 to lease a track for “How He Loves” (also affectionately known in my family as “the sloppy wet kiss” song) but never found someone to mix and master my recording. Having already paid for the track lease, it wouldn’t take too much more money to get it mixed, mastered and distributed.
Meanwhile, I’ll keep recording, singing my own harmonies. Just like Karen Carpenter did.