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Drums Last!?!? (part 1)

A New Way of Recording for Completed Songs

A lot of clients present already completed tracks wanting their programmed drums replaced with live, acoustic drums. There are many reasons for this: bad programming, unrealistic drum sounds, lack of knowledge regarding how a drummer would approach playing a song, etc. However, the most common explanation is that programmed drums, many times being the only thing quantized or programmed, lack the feel of a human drummer.

Many times the artist does not want to re-record new parts on top of my finished drum tracks. Instead they would like to retrofit the drums into their already finished song. This style of recording flies in the face of traditional “drums first” recording. Granted, it’s more difficult to put drums in last but there are many ways to get a great sounding drum track mixed into a finished song.

When recording even the best musicians can feel time differently or just stray from the click. When this happens it’s very difficult to retrofit drums (or any backing tracks) into a song using the traditional way of recording the entire song in one pass. Inevitably there will be small time anomalies in the song.

In the next article I'll address the different ways you can successfully add acoustic drum tracks to your already completed song. Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions about this article or about any of the services offered by You can reach me at

Best regards,


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