Popstar for a Day! – Tried and Tested

Last updated on 7 May 2021

At Activity Superstore we pride ourselves on offering only the best experiences to our customers and to ensure we maintain our high-quality standards; we try and test out the activities ourselves!

One of our employees, Tzarina tried the Platinum Recording Studio Experience from the Once in A Lifetime Experience Package.

Once in a Lifetime Experiences are a wonderful gift for special birthdays and occasions. Or if you fancy ticking something off your bucket list and fulfilling a life-long dream then these are perfect for you!

Here’s how Tzarina found her experience at Soundmagic Studios based in Great Totham, Essex.

Firstly, the booking process itself was very easy! After validating the voucher, she booked her recording session with the studio over the phone. This experience is offered Monday to Friday so there’s plenty of availability.

Before the studio session, she was emailed a catalogue of over 3,500 songs to choose from to record. These included a variety of old classics to more up-to-date tunes from different genres, so whether you’re more of a hardcore pop fan, musical lover or rock enthusiast, you’re covered!

If there are songs that don’t appear on the song list that you’d like to record, if you provide the backing tracks and song lyrics, you can record these tracks too. The studio are also very flexible- if you’d like to bring another singer to join you in the studio you can do so for an additional fee, if you’d like to play your own instrument then this can be discussed in advance.

Tzarina provided a list of 10 songs a mixture of songs from the catalogue and her own backing tracks. You might not get to record all 10 tracks on the day, but this is the maximum number of songs that can be recorded in the given timeframe. She also selected a photo and title for the album, which added a more personalised and special touch to the experience.

Interesting Fact

Jessie J actually recorded her first demo CD at Soundmagic Studios!

When Tzarina arrived, Steve the owner of Soundmagic Studios and an experienced producer, warmly welcomed her and provided a brief overview over the running of the day.  Then it was time for her to choose the first song to record! Being able to record songs that she loves performing live or just practicing in her bedroom made the experience even more special for her.

The process for each track would be to record two takes of the song, then listen back and go through the first take, highlighting any areas you’d like to substitute with the second take version or re-record. Steve also provided his input and remained very enthusiastic and supportive throughout, which Tzarina found incredibly helpful. It’s a great opportunity to gain insight into the recording process of artists in the music industry, where you learn about some of techniques and editing used in recording, including auto-tune.

Her favourite songs to record were ‘Viva La Vida’ by Coldplay because that reminds her of the positive crowd reaction when the song starts playing  and ‘Don’t Call Me Up’ by Mabel because she was able to put her own twist on this sassy tune by recording the acoustic version.

Time flies when you’re having fun and by the time Tzarina had recorded 6 songs, it was time for the session to finish and to compile the tracks into an album!

Tzarina decided on the order of the songs for her self-titled album ‘Tzarina’, which was more of a challenge than she expected. She never anticipated to end the day having recorded 6 songs that she was proud of, adding that ‘It was surreal leaving with a mini-album, it’s something I’ve always dreamed about’. She received a free album and was given the option to buy more for £5 each. What Tzarina also thought was handy is that Steve keeps your recordings on file so if you wanted another CD or you’ve lost yours then you can just easily order another one!

Tzarina also purchased a personalised black record plaque (which is completely optional) with her album cover on, which now has place of pride on her bedroom wall (well if you’re going to be a popstar for a day you might as well milk it 😉). Steve also provided a personalised certificate for you to take home, which is a delightful memento of your day.

This Platinum Studio Recording Experience was a dream come true for Tzarina because she fulfilled her dream of being ‘Popstar for a Day’. She’d definitely recommend this for any budding singers who want to develop and enhance their knowledge of recording music, along with doing what they love for the day!

Tips to make the most of your experience:

  • Bring plenty of water because it is challenging but enjoyable singing for nearly 4 hours!
  • Pick songs that you enjoy singing because this will shine through on the tracks
  • Hearing your voice back in a recording studio can be daunting at first, this can be a very positive experience because you find a new appreciation for your voice and also learn more about what you’d like to work on.
  • Just have fun and get lost in the music

To check out more of our tried and tested experiences, click the link here 😊

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