We hear this question quite often during our travels through the music scene: how does one contact and find session musicians? What if you need a session drummer, or some other session player, to work on your recording, or what if you need a touring musician to fill in on one of your live gigs? How do you find those professionals?
Luckily, it is not that difficult to find a session musician, and this article will tell you how to do that, the information provided by one of the leading session musicians in Nashville, Kip Allen, Drum Workshop Artist.
Check at the local recording studios for recommendations
Finding a session musician is as easy as a trip to the local recording studios in your area. The music world is a pretty tight-knit, honest, loyal world. It won’t take long for you to have a pocketful of recommendations about the local music scene, who you can trust, who you can’t. Who is good at one genre of music, who is good at laying down remote mixes, and who is good at all genres.
You can trust the crowd at a recording studio. They have been there, done that, and their reputations in the music industry depend upon them giving good information to other musicians.
Go to live music venues
If you don’t feel like taking the word of others, go to local, live shows, and find session musicians that way. You know the sound you want. Who better to give a review than you? Yes, this will require a bit of time and effort, but in the long run it will pay off with you hiring the exact sound you are looking for.
There are, literally, dozens of online sites which specialize in the session musicians scene. There you can find musicians looking for gigs. There you can find bands looking for musicians. There you can find forums and anything else having to do with the music industry.
The advantage to online shopping for session musicians: it is convenient! The disadvantage to this approach: unless you know the people who frequent those online sites, you are really putting your trust in the opinions of strangers.
Ask for recommendations from fellow musicians
If you have been in the local music scene for a while, you for sure will meet other musicians. Chat it up with them. Tell them what you are looking for, and ask them who they would recommend. You may get a variety of answers, but the cream will eventually rise to the top, and two or three names will consistently be mentioned by most of the people you ask. Those two or three names are the gold of that particular music scene.
A word about Kip Allen
Ask around the Nashville music scene about the cream of the crop in session drummers and/or a studio drummer, and the name Kip Allen will constantly be mentioned. Since 2008, Kip Allen has been a go-to guy in the Nashville scene, a respected musician whose work appears on many of the albums cut by some of the biggest names in the Nashville music scene. Call Kip Allen for your next session. You’ll be glad you did.