I hate recording. And in two weeks I’ll be doing it again. Some musicians really like it – but I am not one of them. You see, you need to walk a delicate line – you want things to be exciting, risky. You want to have a feeling of spontaneity and celebration – like a concert. But then you need to be able to play things accurately – and the more risks you take musically, the less accurate you become. Some things are fine in a concert – a slightly out-of-tune note here, and missed cue there – but these don’t cut it in a recording session.
Rehearsals beforehand can become a bit fraught. Everyone’s nerves get a bit frayed. You start to doubt yourself – your ability to play, to be creative. For me, there’s one movement that I am not looking forward to. It’s really fast. It’s very hard. And I hear voices of teachers from music college say things like “You really shouldn’t play fast pieces like that, Rachel. You’re just not good enough.” (And yes, that did happen. And yes, I know where that teacher is now.)
I have also made things harder for myself by deciding to control the whole process. I book the studio. I keep all the accounts checked. I write the CD notes. I am funding the whole process. It’s a huge mountain to walk up. A big financial gamble. If I think about it too much, it makes me hugely uncomfortable. Actually, it makes me very uncomfortable.
I do know that it’s my choice to do this. No-one is forcing me. And I choose to control the lot. That way, I know it’ll be done the way I want it. I have help. I trust my producer and editor with my life – both literally and musically. I have someone who has paid the recording studio fee for me – which is a HUGE weight off my shoulders, and so wonderful.
But I do feel like I’m starting to walk up a very big mountain. The path is now sloping upwards.