Like most people in the U.S. and across the world, I’ve been struggling with the new reality of living in isolation. So far, one of my best coping mechanisms has been to head into my studio and do some work.
Since I can no longer visit friends or family, play gigs, attend rehearsals or even watch sports on TV, I have more free time than ever. Rather than spending it watching the news and getting progressively more freaked out, I’ve thrown myself into my music. When I’m in my studio producing or playing, I forget about the coronavirus threat and experience a temporary return to normalcy.
If you have a home studio, I recommend spending as much time as you can in it—without alienating those you live with, of course—and use the enforced downtime to be as productive as possible.
Here are some of the things I hope to accomplish with my extra time.
- Finish producing and mixing several original songs.
- Write more compositions for a music library that I work with. I hope to finish two per week.
- Record my tracks for a collaborative project with one of my bands. Although all of our upcoming gigs are canceled, we can work independently on our tracks. (Remote collaboration is the epitome of social distancing.)
- Practice! I play several instruments and never find enough time to work on improving my chops and expanding my horizons. Now I have an opportunity to do so. I plan to put in at least 30 minutes in daily.
- Clean and organize my studio. I did a significant reorganization of it a few months back, but all those neatly laid wires and uncluttered surfaces have reverted most of the way back to their messy, spaghetti-like form.
- Optimize my computer. My internal drive is continuously more than 90 percent full, which my hard-drive-repair software keeps reminding is a no-no. I need to hunt through my applications and files to see what I can delete to gain space.
- Organize my plug-ins. I have a lot that either require updates or that I never use. I want to go through my AAX, AU and VST folders and move old and never-used plug-ins to a non-active folder. My DAW will be happier, and probably less crash-prone, as a result.
There aren’t many silver linings to this pandemic, but having extra time in your studio could be considered one of them. Be prolific, and stay safe!