Recording Connection Music School FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions from Students

We are very different. Other schools put you in a crowded classroom where you will fight for attention from an overwhelmed instructor and compete with other students for lab time and time with the gear and equipment.

These traditional diploma mills can charge you between $18 and $50,000 for education in audio or music-related careers.

We don’t play that game.

Recording Connection puts you in a real recording studio where you learn one on one and privately in a working professional recording studio. With us, your classroom is where records are made!

We also pledge to not charge you anywhere near $18,000- 50,000! Our mission is to keep you out of massive amounts of student loan debt and get you connected to employment and creative opportunities intended to help change your life for the better.

Our extern-apprentice method is well known, tried and true, unique and, most importantly, it works!

All of the above. If you are a music creator and want to learn more about the creation of music as an electronic musician, hip-hop artist, DJ, rock ‘n’ roll, country, soul, pop or R&B artist click here. We have programs in which you will be creating your music and helping you to develop your brand as an artist.

If you are interested in a career as a technician and want to study for a career in audio engineering, music production, studio owner, chief engineer, Live Sound, or music business please click here.

Or call us and get things moving even faster:

(866) 951-5412

We were founded in 1983 as part of a mission to destroy the student debt crisis, that is – to keep students out of debt. It is our stated goal to find a program that will fit your budget so as to keep you out of debt. We also work hard to keep our curriculums at an affordable price that nearly any budget can afford. To be honest, we could charge a whole lot more for our programs, but we keep them low as part of our mission to keep students either debt free or manageable. Very manageable.

Great question. Learning from inside the actual environment where music gets made professionally is a proven way to acquire industry skills, experience, and connections. When it comes to getting a career in the music business, it’s smart to start out from inside the business. It’s what we’ve been doing for more than three decades and it works. Read about our ‘Disruptive Approach’

The value of interacting with professional audio engineers, music producers, and their clients from within a real recording studio environment cannot be overstated. You must learn within the environment in which you want to work. It’s all about being able to grow usable skills and showcase your abilities and determination to the very same people who do the hiring.

With The Recording Connection, you do not have to fight over lab time, experience overcrowded classrooms, or work to get your teacher’s attention. With us, you are the only student. It’s just you and your mentor who trains you in the studio setting to achieve the program requirements. A real recording studio is your classroom. It’s within this environment that you acquire skills and knowhow in a way that makes sense—hands-on.

The amount you can make in the music business varies greatly and that largely depends on you. Like other careers in arts and entertainment, you’re going to have to pay your dues which can mean earning a lower wage while you’re starting out. The duration, cost, and setup of our unique approach enables our students to incur less in student loan debt (vs. traditional 4 year college and university programs) and get themselves in, right where they need to be to gain skills, get connected, and get on with building a career in music—without drowning in debt. If your goal is to get paid for doing what you love and music is it, then training with RRFC allows you to extern inside a real recording studio what a way start. Read Mix Magazine Asks Us How Do We Do It!

Our mentors are selected based upon their qualifications, achievements and personal background. These credentials are validated as our mentors own and work in the studios where Jay Z, Solange, Kanye West, U2, Blake Shelton, Rihanna, Jason Mraz, Aerosmith, Lady Gaga, Eric Clapton, Beck, Willie Nelson, The Roots, Eminem, Janelle Monáe, Taj Mahal, Deadmau5, Skrillex and many more have recorded. In fact, our students and graduates have met and/or recorded/collaborated with artists including Miley Cyrus, Aerosmith, Beyoncé, Lady Antebellum, Justin Bieber, Kylie Minogue, The Killers, A$AP Rocky, Shawn Mendes, Carlos Santana, Lil Wayne, Scorpion Child, Fetty Wap, Mae, Trinidad James, The Ting Tings, Sia and more!

  • Mark Christensen (Alicia Keys, The Killers, Trey Songz, 50 Cent)
  • Larry Goetz (Katy Perry, Selena Gomez, Ariana Grande)
  • Josh Monroy (Ludacris, Justin Bieber, Quincy Jones)
  • Ira Parker (Wiz Khalifa, Jadakiss, DMX, Zaytoven Beats)
  • Devon Kirkpatrick (Lauryn Hill, Marilyn Manson, Timbaland)
  • Brian Boland (Rihanna, Timbaland, Macy Gray, Y.G.)
  • Matt Stein (DMX, Trey Songz, Jason Mraz)
  • Oscar Diaz (Dr. Dre, Jay Z, Snoop Dogg)
  • IV Duncan (Eminem, ASAP Ferg, Dej Loaf)

For a full list of mentors, click here.

Meet pros who mentor for us.

We are guaranteeing only access, education and real world training via our blended education model, but make no mistake: such access can be an essential part of your success. We put you in the door, guarantee you a one-on-one education inside a real studio, no-cost tutoring, Pro Tools (or Ableton, Logic Pro), and a year of career services if you are not hired by the studio where you trained as an extern. Doesn’t it make sense to learn the music industry from inside it?

Yes, we try. If you are into hip hop we will try to place you in a hip hop studio. Rock students go to rock studios, etc. But working in this industry requires its professionals to be versatile, capable of working in multiple genres and with all types of clients. The Recording Connection believes in what we call the Cross Genre Principle — this means we will train you to be a certified Recording Connection audio professional who can work in all genres. This unique approach to learning enables you to maximize your chances for success and to remain tapped in to a myriad of opportunities.

Our hands-on, project-based assignments and workshops are designed to get you attuned to working as a professional within a professional environment. You receive private classes in the studio which are reinforced with lessons in our comprehensive eBook. With us, you learn at the pace of one lesson per week. The work is intensive and structured to get you thinking and building the foundation you need to achieve your goals. Furthermore, you’re training in an environment where you get to learn theory and practice in-tandem. When you have questions about something complex, your mentor is there to answer your questions, in depth. For many, this is where the real learning and understanding takes place.

Like many other creative industries, the music business does not run on degrees. The studio owners, music executives, artists and producers who are hiring generally don’t ask for degrees. Knowing what you’re doing is generally what they’re after. Having experience and connections matters because they’re markers of someone who is trustworthy, hardworking, and dependable.

The job of being a parent means setting your children up for success. We understand that. Degrees are necessary for people who want to work as doctors, lawyers, scientists and other such careers. But degrees are not commonly necessary when it comes to working in the music industry (as a musician, audio engineer, music producer, DJ, music business professional, hip-hop, EDM producer, and in other areas of the business) unless you want to be a professor of music, perform with the philharmonic, or be an entertainment lawyer, in which case, getting a degree is the prescribed path to follow.

But don’t get us wrong. Education is great and so are degrees (when suited to one’s goals). Having to spend lots of hard earned money on an expensive music degree is not a prerequisite for working in the music industry. The majority of recording studio owners are not going to ask you for a degree. Instead, they want to know what you’ve worked on and what you can do. Degrees don’t automatically get you access, connections, or real world experience you can put on your resume. So, if your parents have questions, encourage them to do their research online or contact us directly. Knowledge is power. When you understand how the music industry operates, you can make an informed choice that works for you.

Mentors usually help with career advice and guidance, while teachers teach a course. Typically, the best teachers are also mentors. With the Recording Connection, your mentor is your one-on-one, in-person instructor (a working professional audio engineer or music producer) and your Academic Facilitator also works with you remotely (telephonically and online) to oversee your progress and assist where needed.

Great question. The Recording Connection has earned thousands of professional endorsements. We do not know of any ordinary recording schools that can make that claim.

  • Ryan Hewitt (The Red Hot Chili Peppers, blink-182, The Dixie Chicks)
  • Al Schmitt (Paul McCartney, Michael Bublé, Diana Krall)
  • Niko Bolas (Beyoncé, Billy Joel, Stan Getz, KISS, John Mayer)
  • Bob Bullock (Shania Twain, Reba McEntire, George Strait)
  • Bil VornDick (Bob Dylan, Béla Fleck, John Oates)
  • Carmen Rizzo (Coldplay, Alanis Morissette, DJ Tiesto)
  • Steve Marcantonio (Taylor Swift, Faith Hill, Blake Shelton)
  • Rafa Sardina (Lady Gaga, Elvis Costello, The Roots)
  • F. Reid Shippen (Dierks Bentley, Lady Antebellum, Jewel)
  • Adam Moseley (U2, Beck, Rush, The Cure)

“I am very impressed with the way Recording Connection trains students in real recording studios and how hard they work for their students. This is a special program run by visionaries.”

Dave Pensado, Grammy Award Winner, Mixer for Beyoncé, Pink, Michael Jackson.

“I endorse this program.”

Hans Zimmer, Grammy Award-winning Composer for films including The Dark Knight and The Lion King

“I recommend this program. Excellent way to break into the business.”

Larry King, award-winning television & talk show radio host

“The Recording Connection puts students into a real world work place. Students learn first hand what it means to be in a recording session with producers, engineers, musicians and songwriters. It’s on the job career training! You learn the practical, technical, and people skills that cannot be found in any classroom. I highly recommend the Recording Connection.”

Warren Huart, producer for Aerosmith, Better Than Ezra, The Killers, The Fray, James Blunt

No. You need a good attitude, a sense of responsibility, and a hard work ethic. Your acceptance depends on you making a lasting first impression with your prospective mentor. Our admissions staff will help you prepare for this meeting.

Externs learn on the job, they learn one-on-one, from a professional audio engineer, music producer, or music business professional (for applicable programs). Make no mistake, externs are students, only with externship they get:

On the Job attention. Our students learn via our eBook, materials, and from inside a real recording studio.

The opportunity to get their hands dirty (so to speak). We believe the way to get a job in this business is to get inside and learn from a pro. This allows students to show what they’re made of, starting on their very first day.

The ability to connect with the professionals who do the hiring. Working in music takes knowing the people who do the hiring. Our approach eliminates the searching and guesswork and places you right where you need to be to show what you’re made of.

We offer programs in EDM, Hip Hop, Beat Making, Audio Engineering, Music Producing, Electronic Music Production, Music Business, Live Sound, DJ, Post Production for Film and TV, Advanced Audio, and more. A full list of our workshop and program offerings is here.

We’re probably a lot closer than you think! With us you can go to school i.e. an externship location in a recording studio in cities in the U.S., Canada, Australia and the UK. Chances are, we have a location within easy commute distance of where you live. We are in more than 250 cities and towns, on three continents! View a full list of our US locations.

Students are expected to put in 10 hours per week. Students start off their externship at a pace of twice per week until Lesson 4 or four weeks into their training. If you’re hardworking and reliable, do not have excessive truancies/ absences, and get the okay from your mentor, we can arrange for you to go 3, 4, or 5 times per week. Many of our students spend up to 8 or more hours per day in the studio, while others choose to work around their work schedules. Either way, we are here for you. Days, nights, and weekends may be available, depending on the mentor’s schedule. Schedules are set and agreed upon by mentor and student extern.

Most of our programs are designed to last six months. Your length of time may vary based on the time you make available for your studies. A list of all our programs is here.

Yes. Many of our students work while they do the program. Scheduling is set by the mentor and student. Externs must do a minimum of two in-studio lessons per week, although we strongly encourage them to go into the studio as much as possible to observe, assist, and learn.

We offer open enrollment, year-round, to all students. You can start at any time.

Our curriculums are comprised of 20 lessons. Upon completion of the 20 lessons, graduates will automatically be entered into our career services program.

Nope. We’re the real deal and happy about it too. None of the students or mentors are fake. These are all real people who believe in our in-industry approach.

You get three things when you graduate from the Recording Connection. The first is a certificate of completion. The second is a skill set that you have used in actual recording studio sessions—in other words, actual job experience you can put on your resume. The third is one year of graduate employment and job placement assistance. Helping people get themselves hired in the industry is an intrinsic part of our graduate employment and job placement success. Read some of our student success stories here.

Yes. You will receive a certificate of completion, certifying that you have completed the workshop or graduated the program in which you were enrolled.
Graduates of the audio engineering program will receive a certificate of completion which signifies to the music recording industry that you have enough experience to hold a position as an Assistant Audio Engineer or Audio Engineer. Upon completion, they will be an RC Certified Audio Engineer – Musi Producer with on the job experience.
Graduates from any of our externship along with distance education programs will have accumulated at least 6 months of real life studio experience which is something studio owners often look for when hiring.

There are 4 ways we help you: Your mentor is a successful producer and/or audio engineer. He or she therefore knows hundreds of people. If you have impressed your mentor, he or she can go the extra mile for you and introduce you to those colleagues and friends.

As a Recording Connection student you will be interacting with clients — clients with money and contacts. Money and contacts often lead to jobs.

Graduate Employment Assistance & Job Placement — we have real job placement. We will call studios in our network on your behalf and we’ll teach you how to market yourself with our social media and internet marketing curriculum. The Career Services Department is committed to assisting each graduate in aligning the deserved employment opportunity, no matter where the graduate is in their career exploration process. On-going assistance is available to every graduate as long as they remain in good standing with the school (RRFC).

If you’re a good student and master the material and work and there isn’t a job opening at the studio where you train, you may even find they create a job just for you because they see value in what you bring to the table (such has been the case for many of our students). For example, one of our students in Los Angeles was given a job as a drum tech after proving his chops setting up for Aerosmith, whom he met as a Recording Connection student. Another student got hired as an EDM and hip hop engineer so that his former mentor and another engineer could expand their offerings while maintaining focus on the work they’re doing with punk and rock clients.

Recording Radio Film Connection & CASA Schools provides a distance education delivery model coupled with a program and industry specific externship. Students complete coursework online at a location of their choosing, while simultaneously completing an externship at a private place of business.

Other Frequently Asked Questions

We’ve had students in their early teens to well into their sixties and older. If you are under 18 you will need to have your parent or legal guardian approve your application. We strongly encourage applicants to get their parents involved so that we may answer any and all of their questions.

While we would never advocate not finishing high school or its equivalent, we would never hold it against you. As long as you can read, write, speak English, have basic computer skills and a passion for music, you’re eligible to apply.

Yes. If you are invited back to your mentor’s studio, we have no problem with that. In fact, we encourage it. We urge all of our students to show up to every class, never be late, and to be helpful. Build a relationship with your mentor that will last a lifetime.

Not at this time. Since you don’t have to move to attend the Recording Connection, if you already have a roof over your head, your housing is taken care of. If you have a job, you can keep it and schedule your externship around your work schedule too.

We accept international students provided they have the necessary VISA requirements. As for VISA issues, upon acceptance into our program we are more than happy to furnish a letter of enrollment for your consulate/embassy to qualify you for a visitor visa. It is recommended, however, that you attend a community college in your city of choice as they have the necessary facility and faculty to petition F1/J1 Student Visas. A Student Visa is valid for the entire duration of your studies at the community college and would enable you more than enough time to attend this program and take full advantage of our career services program afterwards.

  • A private mentor in a real recording studio.
  • Our course curriculum taught by that mentor and overseen by an Academic Facilitator.
  • The opportunity to extern in that studio and make real-world connections while taking our structured course curriculum.
  • Your very own Student Services Representative who calls you every 2 – 4 weeks to assist you and make sure that you are going to class.
  • Upon graduation, a certificate of completion that certifies you as a Recording Connection Certified Assistant Audio Engineer (if applicable), plus one more full year of career services assistance.

If you’re asking, “What exactly does a music producer do?” Good question.

Say the term “music producer” and it’s likely to conjure up a host of images, from the guy who’s “talking shop” on the phone, to the person in the recording studio who’s laying down a beat, to the person who’s making sure a project comes in on time and under budget. The truth is: a music producer can be all of these things, and more.

In the broadest sense, a music producer manages the recording, mixing, and mastering processes with the ultimate goal of achieving a specific sound and vision for a project. Such “vision” is usually arrived at by the producer and the artist they’re working with. While some producers seek to refine an artist’s vision, others are asked to add to it, to inspire, and to elevate things to new heights. While music producers are most definitely doers, they’re often regarded as being extremely creative in their musical and sonic abilities, capable of bringing the “magic sauce” to a song or album. Always cognizant of an artist’s market, sound, and repertoire, they stay on course to make music that breaks through and captivates an artist’s listeners. View our music producing program.

Today, more and more music producers, especially in the worlds of hip hop and EDM, are fierce collaborators with ample in-studio and music making skills, including the operation of Pro Tools and other digital audio workstations like Ableton and Logic Pro. Producers who can create their own tracks, riffs, beats, and hooks are more effective in partnering up on projects and influencing the artists and musicians they work with. When armed with solid audio engineering capabilities, they’re able to get the respect of the pros they work with and are better equipped to oversee and communicate the vision for a project as well as the particulars of what it takes to get from point A to point Z.

Wondering, “What exactly does an audio engineer do?” Good question.

An audio engineer is a music and sound professional who is adept at using technology to record, mix, and shape sound to meet the particular demands of a project, whether musical or otherwise. While that that definition may sound really technical at first, audio engineering actually calls on an array of skills and not everyone is attuned to the job. In order to achieve a specific result, an audio engineer first needs to understand the sound they’ve going after. In that regard, these studio professionals need to be savvy communicators who can interface with producers and artists to correctly assess the creative needs of a project to put a workable game plan in place. This translates into choosing the appropriate gear, appropriate workflow and knowing how to operate the software and equipment (microphones, digital audio workstations or DAWS, analog consoles, patch bays, etcetera) in an effective, efficient manner that meshes with the music producer or/or artist’s flow.

Besides playing a vital role during the recording phase of a project, audio engineers are also involved during in the post-production of a song, album, or project. After all of the tracks are recorded in a studio, an audio engineer will edit the various recorded tracks as specified by the music producer and/or artist on the project. After the edit, a fellow specialized audio engineer called the “mixing engineer” will move onto the mixing stage of the project which includes adjusting volume levels, EQ, compression, adding effects, and synchronizing the tracks. Learn more about our audio engineering program.

On many commercial projects, an audio engineer who specializes in mastering, referred to as a “mastering engineer,” will be the last to touch a project. These professionals work to release the inherent dynamism within the tracks by giving it a crisp sonic feel that makes it ready for radio play and wide distribution. Besides the audio engineers who focus on recording, mixing, and mastering, there are other related professionals such as “live sound engineers” who ensure the quality of the sound heard during live performances “audio post-production engineers” who mix and edit audio for television and movies, and “video game and audio design engineers” who surprise, surprise create sounds and soundscapes for new media and the video game industry.

  • You learn one on one. Just you and the music professional you are learning from.
  • Your classroom is a real recording studio, not a campus lab.
  • We have more locations than any classroom-based audio school so you don’t have to move to attend us.
  • Flexible class time—in most instances we can work your education around any job or study commitments you have.
  • Costs and expenses of Recording Connection are reasonable and affordable.
  • Our students receive job assistance and job search support upon graduation. Lots of our graduates get working in the music business, many before they graduate. Check out just a few of our student success stories.