Happy Traum has worked in the music industry for over 50 years, playing with musicians such as Bob Dylan, Phil Ochs, and Pete Seeger, as well as providing video musical instruction via his company, Homespun Tapes. We talked to Happy about his experience with Camo, and the impact of COVID19 on the music industry.
“I stumbled upon Camo in an article, and I thought it looked cool, so I decided to try it. I record videos for YouTube and my website, and I thought Camo could help me to improve the look of them. Before that, I was mostly recording videos directly from my iPad. I was using the selfie camera so I could see what I was doing, so the quality of the video wasn’t as good as it could have been.
“Since using Camo, I’ve noticed a huge quality increase in my video calls and recordings. I’ve primarily been using Camo with OBS. It’s been working well as a recorder, it’s really nice software. The documentation on the website is very good, and I was very impressed with the support I received from Lucian and the rest of the team. I’ve had many people comment on the quality of my video in Zoom meetings.
“I think most people don’t pay enough attention to their video quality. I’ve been in the video business for a really long time, making instructional videos. We’ve been doing it since the earliest VHS tapes, through to DVDs, and now with online videos and streaming, so I’m very conscious of the look of things, and the sound of course, being a musician, but I think video quality is important for musicians to consider, and they often don’t think about it.
“Every musician I know is doing online stuff now. I’ve been collaborating with other musicians online using apps like Camo and Acapella. So many people I know now are doing things online, like concerts, or guitar lessons; I led a guitar lesson with 150 students recently! A lot of the pictures that people are transmitting at the moment are really crappy, I think it’s something that a lot of musicians don’t really think about. With the internet, there are a lot more opportunities for musicians, and it's easier for them to put themselves out there. At the same time, there’s also more competition than ever before. I do think a good camera, and a good recording setup can put you ahead of the crowd. The better the presentation, the more people are going to appreciate what you’re doing.
“For years and years my wife and I have brought people here to my home in Woodstock to record, obviously, we can't do that right now, so I’ve been trying to encourage musicians to record from their own homes, and I think something like Camo is going to be really helpful there, to help them improve the quality of the videos they’re making.”