weedywet wrote:it's the mindset, though
if you want to do another solo, are you willing to wipe the one we have?
that's often a helpful way to think
With my guitarist hat on, this is how I work. If I find myself doing multiple unsatisfactory takes, they aren't saved, I just work until I get the right one. And it's nearly always obvious when it is the right one and then that's that and we move on to the next thing....
That has its risks too - players tend to hyper-focus on their performance until it's perfect without being good. I've often kept a take that was a great performance in the context of the record though not what the player intended. Then the fireworks start.
This is a great point, and brings three things to mind that support it:
1) I can't tell you how many times I've done a solo live on the take, wanted to replace it, and been told "no!" by producer, artist, or trusted engineer. Then, listening back through that lens assuming it's good (instead of assuming it's bad based on the way I felt when I played it), I can almost always hear what they thought was special, which is almost always a sort of personality or energy or human quality my ego would've missed while it was busy being bugged by an unintended note, or bit of sloppy technique or whatever.
2) Very on-topic: at least twice working on multitrack tape I've done a solo live on the take, listened back, thought it was shit, resolved to go back and "fix" it on a later day, then later put the reel up and couldn't for the life of me hear what was supposed to be wrong with the original solo, and kept the live take.
3) With the above two in mind-- a lot of jazz and acoustic music gets recorded at our place, and it's pretty much standard operating procedure for people to ask to punch things on their solos or re-do solos without listening to what they did or asking anyone else to. And they go and do ten little punches on their solo, and it stays that way forever... their ego is satisfied, but nobody ever listens to the 'flawed' original to see if it might be better, or have a stronger energy or personality. Based on personal experience I feel this is a mistake... classic "perfect is the enemy of good".