Recording Your Concerts (Updated)

(Updated with recordings at the bottom of this post!)

You are going to have a concert, I feel it is the season! So, how are you going to record it and listen/watch to it later with your students? This is part of the National Standards for Music – Evaluate music. This gives you and your students a chance to sit back and enjoy the hard work and effort you have put into the performance.

I had a concert tonight with my electronic group that is fused with traditional instruments. I have a couple of Christmas concerts coming up soon as well. I wanted recordings so I actually remembered to hit the record button a few different ways tonight!

My Melodic Fusion concert tonight was recorded three ways –

  1. First of all I went basic – quick and easy… I had my daughter use my iPhone and she recorded video. Boom…. instant go back to class tomorrow and watch it as well as hear it!
  2. Secondly I went for easy but a step up in sound…. we stuck a handheld recorder in the front row of the audience. Now we have stereo sound not just the mono iPhone mic.
  3. Thirdly we used our digital sound board and captured 16 tracks of digital audio right from the electronic instruments and microphones.


Here is a picture of the handheld recorders I used….


Then I took that SD card, stuck it into my computer and used an app called Final Vinyl, much like Audacity, to open the entire concert. Once opened in Final Vinyl it was VERY quick and simple to divide each song, take out the in between stuff and export the four songs into iTunes. Here is what that looked like when I opened it at first….

Screen Shot 2015-11-17 at 9.39.50 PM.png

Then I marked each piece start and end.

Screen Shot 2015-11-17 at 9.47.53 PM.png

Screen Shot 2015-11-17 at 10.40.31 PM.png

That one long file quickly got turned into these four Aiff files you see to the left.

Of course the PreSonus StudioLive sound board we use allows us to easily record 16 tracks of digital audio right straight from the sound board into my MacBook. PreSonus has a nifty, straight forward app called Capture that is FAST to open and create a new recording. Then almost instantly you are recording all inputs from the board PLUS a stereo track of the main mix.

Of course THAT audio has to be taken into a DAW and sliced up into the individual songs.

Then it has to be mixed into a final recording. Of course along the way you can edit each individual track, apply EQ, Effects, Compression and all sorts of digital audio magic… it’s a raw 16 track recording! It’s beautiful!

Of course it’s also a LOT more time consuming and takes extra steps to end up with your final product BUT the sound quality will be WAY better than anything you will ever hear from a handheld recorder, iPhone or video camera. Here is what the concert looked like in Capture, all 16 + 2 tracks of digital audio straight recorded from the live sound….

Screen Shot 2015-11-17 at 10.23.55 PM.png

Now I just gotta go find time to open THAT up in StudioOne or LogicProX and mix it, edit it and spice it up! 🙂 Such fun…. stuff that just a few short years ago would have required a professional studio and a WHOLE lot more equipment to be able to handle.


1)Do you want Fast, Easy, and Quick with pretty decent sound AND video? – iPhone videos are pretty decent these days!

COST – probably in your pocket?

2)Do you want fast, easy and quick but with better quality stereo sound? – Handheld recorder like the Marantz or Tascam ones pictured above (Zoom H4n is another marvelous one as well!)

COST – $150-$400

3)Do you want to really do it up? Buy a digital board like the PreSonus StudioLive or RackMount Series.


  • SOUNDBOARD/INTERFACE – for 16 tracks starts at $900, for 32 tracks starts at $1,800 – You can even get 48 or 64 tracks too!
  • COMPUTER – Yup, you are gonna need a computer for this too.




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