Choral recording

So, I’m well into my project now. I’ve got 6 of 10 scratch tracks and am planning on having a small “chorale” (let’s say 8 people) come over and lay down the vocals. Here’s the problem – how do you hear the scratch tracks without having them bleed back into the vocal mics? Headphones are unrealistic for 8 people I think…

There’s got to be a way to do this. Brook Tab does it with many more people. Surely they’re not doing it all live?

Open to any and all suggestions and thougths.


Set up two speakers - pump in the scratch track as mono for them to listen to, but flip the phase on one of the speakers - what’s in the center will cancel. With selective mic and placements you can get the sound coming from the speakers to be very low in the new recorded tracks. This works VERY well when recording mono, like a single lead vocalist that doesn’t like headphones, but it can work as well when recording stereo though it’s a bit harder to find the sweet spots.

Also, keep playback volume low enough and the mics close enough to the performers that a little bleed won’t matter when mixed in overall - it will be masked.

A method I’ve used effectively when recording a choir is the use an FM transmitter broadcast to a Walkman each choir member has. These transmitters only have a range of 20 feet or so and typically cost under $30.