Always Change

Discussion in 'Studio & Stage' started by dcm_guitar, May 16, 2018.

  1. dcm_guitar

    dcm_guitar New Member

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    All the electric work in this comes from the new Vela.

    I found the opening riff saved on my phone. I recorded the riff two years ago. I guess it was time to actually develop it into a song.

    https://soundcloud.com/radiomoved/always-change
     
    Shawn@PRS, RaySachs and ScottR like this.
  2. ScottR

    ScottR If nobody saw it, it didn't happen.

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    Very cool! I was really digging all the guitar parts especially! Thanks for posting this!
     
  3. toothace

    toothace At least I'm good at dentistry

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    Nicely done!
     
  4. bodia

    bodia Authorities said.....best leave it.....unsolved

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  5. dcm_guitar

    dcm_guitar New Member

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    Thanks!!! Really appreciate the feedback.
     
  6. dmatthews

    dmatthews Dave's not here...

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    Good on ya buddy!
    I used to write and record. Now it's all about the cover band.
    You did well! Great playing.
    Tell us about your process. What did you use for all the instruments?
    :cool:
     
  7. dcm_guitar

    dcm_guitar New Member

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    Thanks for asking! I love talking about this stuff. I may go overboard with the description.

    The acoustic guitar is a custom made baritone 28" scale tuned standard A to A (built by Fabrizio Alberico).
    The bass is a Fender American Jazz
    The electric guitar is a PRS Vela (I've had it about 6 weeks)
    Drums are from EZ Drummer

    Process:
    My audio interface is a UAD Apollo 8. It's the older silver face model. I've had it a while and it's a great piece of gear. I use the UAD unison preamps to get really vibey and great sounding material. For the acoustic guitar, I recorded in stereo running through UAD's 1073 emulation. For the vocals, I recorded using the Manley Voxbox emulation. The electric guitar process is listed below.

    My DAW is Ableton Live 9. While Ableton seems to be primarily an EDM / DJ tool, I find it's an absolutely amazing song writing tool. If you're not familiar with Ableton, it has two separate user interfaces; session view and arrangement view. If you think of session view as the most insanely complete and flexible looping pedal ever created you won't be too far off from reality. Arrangement view is a standard linear recording view like Pro Tools or Logic.

    Generally, I have an idea for a riff and.....that's about it. They tend to be anywhere from 20 seconds to a minute. That's where I start.

    I record my riff into a slot in session view. For this song I started with the baritone, acoustic guitar that you hear in the opening. I recorded it using a spaced pair of Blue Humming Bird, small diaphragm condensors. Since I record by myself, these mics provide a lot of flexability. The diaphragms are on a swivel, so I can easily adjust mic placement as I'm sitting in the recording chair and get the sound I want.

    This song is pretty straight forward and has an A, B & C part. I recorded each part into a separate slot in Ableton session view using the baritone acoustic.

    I recorded a separate acoustic guitar part that's a simple picking pattern to play along with the main riff. This provides more depth and interest during the verse.

    Next, I laid down a bass line. I run my bass through an Ampeg SCR DI into my interface. I run this signal through a UAD unison 1073 emulation to get a thick bass tone. I recorded a bass line for each part (A, B & C)

    Next I blocked out a drum part. After laying down the bass, I try to pull together a drum part where the kick drum and the bass accent the same beats. I usually just pull together a basic drum groove for each part (A, B & C). EZ Drummer is an amazing piece of software and really fun to play with!

    I've worked for a while getting my electric guitar signal path, and I'm really happy with my current set up. For electric guitars I used the following:

    I used the PRS Vela into a Wampler db+ boost into a Mesa Mark V:25 head. I used the clean Fat channel and the Mesa 5 band EQ. The Mesa runs into a UAD OX Amp top box. The OX is a dynamic load box and a speaker / mic modeler. This way I can record the amp at any level I want AND record silently. In the OX I used a 2x12 cabinet model (can't remember which cabinet) with greenback speakers. The OX let's you choose stereo mic setups along with room mics and you can mix them all together before sending a stereo line signal into your interface. I put a touch of delay on the electric guitar parts (quarter note delay with not too much feedback) and laid down the electric parts.

    For the verse I used the neck single coil on the Vela. For the solo I used the bridge humbucker.

    For vocals, I used a Cathedral Pipes Notre Dame large diaphragm tube mic. I ran it through a Manley Voxbox emulation. I recorded the lead vocals, then went back and added backing vocals and ooh/aah vocals on separate tracks.

    I'm not an accomplished singer, so this is my process for vocals.

    I work out a lead vocal part and record it. It's usually about 70% okay at this point.

    I import this vocal take into Melodyne and analyze where I'm struggling and "pitchy". I use Melodyne to fix the picth issues. This is nice because I can simply drag vocal parts to different notes and try different melodies on the fly with my vocal take.

    When I get the vocal part arranged and tuned I go back and re-record the lead vocal using this Melodyne adjusted take as a guide track in my headphones. I "sing along with myself". This way, I can use the guide track to help me stay on pitch.

    I do this same process to record an additional vocal part that's generally a third above the main vocal track.

    My range is somewhat limited. I can go down an octave with no issues, but going up an octave is often out of my range. I again use Melodyne to raise my lead or backing vocals anywhere from a fifth to an octave. This way I can get the high parts that I'm simply incapable of singing.

    I print all of these vocal parts to separate tracks (usually anywhere from 5 to 10 vocal tracks).

    From here it's all about mixing and mastering.
     
    Alnus Rubra likes this.
  8. dmatthews

    dmatthews Dave's not here...

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    Nicely done!
    The OX is a really interesting piece of gear. When I get back to recording I'll be using the Kemper for similar reasons. Also, I should check out EZ Drummer.
    Thank you for the detailed explanation. Exactly what I was looking for!

    Cheers,
     
  9. Alnus Rubra

    Alnus Rubra Loving nature’s wonders

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    Great work. Catchy riff:D
     
    dcm_guitar likes this.
  10. dcm_guitar

    dcm_guitar New Member

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    The OX is amazing. I wasn't sure about it when I got it. I thought it might be nice and a little more convenient than what I was doing before I got it. However the sound is just fantastic. It's really a great piece of studio gear. I can't recommend it enough.

    Kempers are awesome!! If I was playing live that's probably what I would get.
     
  11. alantig

    alantig Sassyless pants

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    EZ Drummer is a brilliant piece of work. I have several drum packages - EZ Drummer 2, Steven Slate, a few Native Instrument packs. I use EZ Drummer to get a basic drum track, then I'll edit the MIDI to get just what I want from it. From there, I'll sub drums or kits from the various packages to find the sound I want.
     
    dmatthews likes this.
  12. goat-n-gitter

    goat-n-gitter Dismembered

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    Nice tune! I enjoyed it and listened to several of your other tracks - thanks for sharing.
     
    dcm_guitar likes this.
  13. dcm_guitar

    dcm_guitar New Member

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    Thanks!!!!
     

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