About Nigel Turner-Heffer.
My name is Nigel and I have been producing recording and playing electronic music for well over 33 years. I owned my first home recording studio set up back in 1986 and still own a home recording studio today. Things were very different in those early days of home studios. I’ve watched this fascinating and absorbing subject grow into something truly amazing over the years. The advances in home studio and live performance technology are profoundly astonishing.
Over the years I’ve been involved with corporate production music and music for television all composed and recorded in my home studio. I also worked at The Lodge professional recording studio back in the 80s. I have been involved with various bands and solo projects. I’ve learnt a great deal about using electronic music techniques both in the studio and at live performances.
My current focus is helping others set up home recording studios. Blogging and writing reviews on home studio equipment I have used or highly recommend. I would value the opportunity of helping you set up your very own home recording studio.
Current Projects in My Home Studio:
Since 2016 I have been working on a songwriting music project. I’ve looked into the world of streaming music, social media platforms and producing YouTube videos. I’ve had some success gaining over 11,000 FaceBook likes and over 25,000 views on one of my YouTube videos.
Production Music Using My Home Recording Studio:
I have produced commercially used production music in my home recording studio since the late 80s. I have produced music for clients such as BMW, Volvo, MAN Trucks, Disco Mirror, Novartis Pharmaceuticals, Ciba Pharmaceuticals, Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, Colmans and many more. I always like to start the project by finding out the ‘feel’ of the music required. I find the best way to do this is to ask the client for a guide track, a ‘sounds like’ piece of music. If they had the budget to use any piece of music they wanted adapted edited and reworked for their project, what would that piece of music be?
I have produced cover versions of well known tracks and songs, however, you do need to get the copyright holders permission and that’s not always possible. The end user or client must pay a sync-fee if they want to use a piece of music in their video or broadcast. If the music is very popular that can cost a lot of money, and rightly so! Sometimes I don’t think people value the power of a good well known track or song.
Here are one or two of the projects.
The Blackpool Tower Laser Fantasy:
Back in the early 90s I composed seven pieces of music for the Blackpool Tower Laser Fantasy, which ran five times a day seven days a week. The show was about the history of lasers and was narrated by Tom Baker of Dr Who Fame. Mr Baker loved a drink or two or three or four, anyway, we meet up with him before going into the studio and he said, “boys and girls, let go for a couple of drinks in that nice pub over there first, I’m paying” well we couldn’t refuse an offer like that, so we obliged. About ten pints later we said, “maybe we need to get the voice-over done now Mr Baker?” “Oh yes let’s do it!” he slurred! Oh no this is going to be hard! Well, just like the pro he is he got into the vocal booth and off he went. Doing the complete script in one take! A true professional and lovely man.
We spent over three wintery cold and bleak months in an out of season Blackpool synchronising the lasers to my sound track. Although the weather was miserable, it was great fun playing my synchronised keyboard in the enormus Blackpool Tower Circus hall. As I played the lasers would respond. I felt like Jean Michel-Jarre. The entire show with all the cues was then transferred to laser disc. The technician at the Blackpool Tower pressed play on the disc player and the smoke machines, lasers and video playback triggered.
Although this was a great project to be involved with it was also very stressful. Everyone has their own taste in music and what they want from a project like this. The venue owners liked ‘middle of the road’ music, the producer of the show liked U2 and the lighting designer wanted lots of stabs in the music so he could make his lasers dance! He won!
The Trisha Goddard TV Show:
The Trisha show was broadcast every weekday from 2006 to 2010 on channel five in the UK. I was commissioned by TownHouse TV to compose music for the show. This meant that every time the music was broadcast I received royalty fees and still do every time it is repeated on TV across the world. I will never forget the first time I saw my name on the TV as the credits played at the end of the show. Still have the VHS tape today…
The Molson Beda Club Of The Year Awards:
Sponsored by Molson and Disco Mirror, the club of the year awards were staged at the Birmingham Metropole Hotel.
Award categories included regional awards, supplier awards, personnel awards, best lighting jockey and disc jockey and best club manager. Awards were also given for new concept venue and finally the ‘club of the year’.
The events were hosted by Jonathan Ross, year one, and Noel Edmonds, year two. I produced the music for the opening video showing the members of the judging panel and an outline of the categories. I also produced the winners’ fanfares, played as the proud winners took the stage. In the audience there were top DJs and club promoters and musicians so it was a bit nerve-racking to say the least!
Mercedes E-Class Dealers Launch UK
The Volvo 440 Sports Head Office Launch
BMW 5 series Head Office Launch
MAN Trucks Sales conference
I produced the reveal music for a ‘live reveal’ of the then new Volvo 440 Sports. Dim lighting was used to show a silhouette outline of the car, then as the car was revealed up-tempo music with a fast moving light show.
For the MAN Trucks conference I sampled the trucks engine, air brakes and the door slamming and used the sounds for the drum kit. The engine as the snare drum the air brakes as the hi-hats and the doors at various pitches for the toms. All these sound samples were trigger using my keyboard. At the event a salesrep who was told I had produced the music told me from the sounds exactly what truck I had used, the make the model and even the year of manufacture! Boy he knew his stuff!
The Nicotinell Patch:
I composed the ident music used on the Nicotinell patch advertising campaign and at the launch events worldwide.
I also produced music for the Ciba Geigy sales team Hong Kong incentive events in the UK. If the sales team reached their sales targets they would win a trip to Hong Kong. I was given the opportunity to attend the Hong Kong event from the management team at Ciba Geigy who felt that my music had contributed in motivating the sales team to win the incentive trip.
In 2007, I joined Code Indigo an electronica band with a Pink Floyd guitar feel. Pictured above reheasing in David Wright’s home studio. ‘MELTdown‘ also all produced in David’s home studio, was released in 2013 with an album promotional headline appearance at E-live music festival in Eindhoven Holland. I also played guitar and bass guitar on David Wright’s ‘Dreams and Distant Moonlight’ album which won the best international CD at the German Schallwelle awards in 2008.
Mercantile CDs Recorded and Mastered in Home Recording Studios.
MELTdown was composed, recorded, mixed and mastered at mine and David Wright’s home recording studios in 2012/13 and released for sale 2013.
Buy or Download:
‘Take the Money and Run’ is a collection of new, previously unreleased live and newly remixed tracks. All the tracks mixed remixed and mastered in David Wright’s home recording studio.
Buy or Download:
This CD was recorded at various Code Indigo live shows on a MacBook Pro using Logic software. The recordings were then mixed and mastered at David Wright’s home studio.
Buy or Download:
Schallwelle Music Awards – Winner “Best International CD 2008!” An award winning CD all composed, recorded, mixed and mastered in a home recording studio!
Buy or Download:
We composed and played our parts on this CD in our home recording studios. Myself, Neil Fellowes and David Wright then DropBoxed the tracks. The CD was finally mixed and mastered in David Wright’s home studio. So that’s three home recording studio set-ups involved with this collaboration.
Buy or Download:
CAN I HELP YOU WITH YOUR HOME STUDIO?
So with over 33 years of experience in home studios I would now really value helping beginners who want to set-up their own home studio. Or you may just be interested in knowing more about the subject? Please comment on the posts if you need more help and I will do my best to reply ASAP.
MY GOAL FOR THIS WEBSITE
My goal and why I’m enjoying writing blog-posts is to hopefully help you achieve your goal of setting up a home studio.
If you ever need a hand or have any questions, feel free to leave them below and I will be more than happy to help you out.
All the best,