How to finish 5x more songs in your home studio.

Johnny and Bob have identical home studios and the same level of talent. Johnny recorded one song this month, and kept adding tracks, editing and mixing until he thought it was 100% perfect. Bob recorded 5 songs this month, but felt that each song was only about 80% of the way there. Bob however, has pure rock n’ roll flowing through his veins, and he’s cool with the fact that his songs feel a little “raw.”

In a year, who will be better at making records: Johnny “one song” or Bob “rock-n-roll for blood”? I’d put my money on Bob because he’s building his studio skills five times faster than Johnny. Pretty soon, Bob’s “80%” is going to be WAY better Johnny’s 100%.

If you’re like most home studio owners, you spend about 80% of your time working on that last 20% of each song. That last 20% of each song also causes you 80% of your studio stress and self-doubt. There’s a famous saying in the recording industry: “You never finish a record, you give up.”  When do you “give up” on a record? When you’re 99.9% happy?

Here’s what would happen if you started “giving up” once you hit 80% like Bob:

  • You’d finish 5 times more songs.

  • You’d avoid 80% of your studio stress.

  • You’d improve your studio skills 5 times faster.

  • You might actually finish your album.

Letting other people hear your flaws is pretty terrifying, but being more like Bob will eventually make you a healthier, more satisfied home studio owner. I’d love to hear what you think about the “80/20 rule” and if you’ve found other ways to apply it in the studio.