How to (pretend to) be the next Stefanie Sun

8Days writer, Sarah Chang tries out the Sing A Song Studio Experience — where you step into a professional recording studio, record a single, and take home a CD of your own in just one hour — and comes away with newfound respect for singers.

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WHAT IS IT? Started by local music production company Playground Studio, the Sing A Song
Studio Experience gives everyone a chance to step in to a studio to “cut an album or EP” — pitchy journos included. There’s even post-recording editing to spruce up your vocals. Shell out more dough for an accompanying live band and a video recording of your experience.

1. You don’t need to have top-notch vocals
“Everyone can be a singer these days! Sound engineering technology has advanced greatly and we can ‘correct’ individual notes onscreen,” Playground Studio’s co-founder and sound engineer Ou Kexin, 41, tells us. Phew, that makes us feel a little less stressed about our maiden recording session. “There was a man in his 50s who wanted to fulfill his lifelong dream of cutting a CD. He loves singing, but he’s a bit tone deaf. I had to touch it up for him, but he was so moved by the end result,” she tells us. Generally, Kexin tries not to tamper too much with the original singing — unless you really insist.

2. It’s all about the song choice
Admittedly, we hit KTV joints mostly for the free-flow tidbits, so choosing a song to record feels more stressful than the actual recording itself. Now we know the trauma all these Idol contestants go through every week. Kexin, who’s been in the scene for the past two decades and produced for many a young and indie singer, forces us to decide on the song a week before our hour-long sesh. “Pick a song you’re comfortable with and confident about. Most people like slower ballads ’cos they’re ‘easier’ to emote to,” she advises. We’re too shy to get all emo in front a complete stranger… so we eventually pick Spice Girls’ ‘Wannabe’.

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