While the pre-vaccination era of COVID annihilated any chance for musicians to earn revenue from live shows, it also boosted collaborative, home-recording projects by insane degrees. Everyone was quarantined for a time, so anyone with an idea for a tune could trade digital tracks back-and-forth with the entire world. Non-stars with a bit of moxie could even interest big names to contribute to home recordings that, in a pre-COVID world, these renowned players would have never considered. In fact, megastars were often forced to make records at home, too. Large studios were not an option as they were shut down, and most everyone had to depend on doing the best they could without gigantic mixing boards, a collection of expensive microphones, and the expertise of engineering professionals.

In other words, for possibly the first time ever, the “little peeps” had access to much the same level of recording power as the big boys and girls. Crazy!

The downside was you sometimes got tracks to work with that were, um, crap. Not every home-recording musician possesses stellar engineering chops, and for the sake of courtesy and empathy, I won’t share details of some of the abominations I was asked to mix during the long months of lockdown.

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