When we're recording music, it always feels like there's never enough time. Whenever I finish a mix, or an entire album, I always think, "But what if we'd had more time?" We could explore more possibilities. We could spend longer on a mix. Track more vocal takes, looking for the magical performance. Maybe the artist should have practiced more? Should we have taken a few days off between tracking and mixing? It seems as if every mix project I get ends up tracking overdubs up to the last minute, no matter how far in advance they book the session. But I also must be highly aware of the days allotted for sessions, and find ways to get the work done on time and at the highest quality possible.

When we plan to use a commercial recording studio we "book time." Our budget is dependent on how much time we estimate for a project. If we record at home, we might consider the sessions unrestricted by time, but we all know we have to "set aside" time in order to have the time to do the recording. Because music is an art based in time, it takes time to write and create, and it takes time to capture and manipulate in the studio. Do you have enough time to get done what you needed? Can the project be completed in time?

It all comes down to time. It always has and always will. How will you spend your time?

Tape Op is a bi-monthly magazine devoted to the art of record making.

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