If anyone thinks you can’t track a full band production with a simple two channel USB interface and a laptop, then they’re in for a rude awakening. Today’s reader spotlight features singer/songwriter Leo Weber and how he’s making pro sounding tracks on his laptop. He even shoots and edits his own music videos. Check this out…

The Studio Setup

Leo’s studio centers around a MacBook Pro running Pro Tools LE 8 with an Mbox 2. Add to that a couple of Octava condensors and a dynamic mic from Shure and he’s set. Other than renting out a rehearsal space to track drums (still into his Pro Tools rig) everything on this song was recorded in his bedroom and closet. And Leo’s go to mixing tools? The stock plugins in Pro Tools.

In the mixing process I only used the techniques you show on your blog and products, nothing else. And guess what? THEY WORK!! All the plug-ins I used to mix ‘Give ’em a chance’ (delays, reverbs, EQ, compressors, de-essers, tape saturation, etc.) are Pro Tools LE stock plug-ins. The only plug-in that is not Pro Tools native is Melodyne for vocal tuning. – Leo Weber

Now that’s what I’m talking about. Here’s a guy who took some basic audio training from the web, matched it with his stock plugins and affordable USB interface, and made a killer track. No excuses.

Started Learning One Year Ago

The crazy thing about Leo is this: he just started learning how to record and mix a year ago. He’s only one year into this craft and he’s WAY better than I was 4 years into it. His dedication has paid off big time.

I’ve watched EVERY single one of your videos on YouTube, read EVERY single post on your blog. Your REthink Mixing video series is, without a doubt, the tutorial I’ve watched the most. You’ve done such an amazing job there, it has tons of information it would take me ages to learn from books. And I recorded the drums the way you recommend with two mics in REthink Drums. Those tips were very helpful. – Leo Weber

This guy basically devoured my tutorials and then did the best thing he could have: put them to use! He didn’t just let the information stay inside his head or on the internet. He got to work creating his music with the tools that he already had.

This Could Be You

Leo is a great example of this amazing “revolution” we are living in. Affordable studio gear, access to training online, and a will to create art is all he needed to realize his musical dreams and deliver a great song to the world. His story gets me pumped up as it should you, because the lesson here is, if HE can do it, so can YOU.

Graham, your passion and devotion for what you do have inspired me. I know I still have a lot to learn and that there’s still a lot of mistakes in my tracks, but I’ll keep studying, I’ll keep following you, your blog and your videos. – Leo Weber

And that’s what I want for you. If you’re reading this, I hope you’re encouraged to just get out there and make some great tracks. Take what you know, what gear you have, and just get to work. It doesn’t have to be perfect right out the gate. Shoot for 85% of what you want and you’ll do just fine. Don’t wait any longer. No more excuses. Go make the music you’ve always wanted to.

And while you’re at it, be sure to subscribe to Leo’s YouTube channel. You can also follow him on Twitter and Facebook if that’s more of your cup of tea.