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MusicianERA |OT| Producers and Artists Welcome

SweetVermouth

Member
Mar 5, 2018
3,788
My song is flat-ish. Like if you did an average on it, it would be close to right, but as it stands, looks more like a seismograph. Is this something to do with mastering, or is my EQing still kinda fucked up?
I wouldn't worry about it. I'm one of those people who overanalyzes everything and it has only lead me to putting roadblocks into my own way to the point where it got incredibly frustrating. I then decided to do it differently by using my ears a lot more and it has improved how I do things a lot. Like for example I used to mix things by looking at the volume meters of each instrument. That's incredibly stupid though because the it doesn't say anything about how loud an instrument playing in the track is. The same applies to EQs and frequency analyzers. They can show you things you might not hear and they're good for fixing that, but never make the mistake of looking at the frequency response of one track and try to get yours as close to that as possible, in my opinion that's the wrong approach.

Imo you should train your ears and carefully listen and only use any visual assistance to fix specific problems, they're not the be-all, end-all part of production.
 
Oct 29, 2017
1,924
Minnesota
I wouldn't worry about it. I'm one of those people who overanalyzes everything and it has only lead me to putting roadblocks into my own way to the point where it got incredibly frustrating. I then decided to do it differently by using my ears a lot more and it has improved how I do things a lot. Like for example I used to mix things by looking at the volume meters of each instrument. That's incredibly stupid though because the it doesn't say anything about how loud an instrument playing in the track is. The same applies to EQs and frequency analyzers. They can show you things you might not hear and they're good for fixing that, but never make the mistake of looking at the frequency response of one track and try to get yours as close to that as possible, in my opinion that's the wrong approach.

Imo you should train your ears and carefully listen and only use any visual assistance to fix specific problems, they're not the be-all, end-all part of production.
My problem is I'm not mixing on the best equipment so having these visual things to match is really nice. I agree that it's not the best approach.

That being said, ten minutes playing with a multiband compressor to "even" things out got the song sounded a lot better than without, so there's clearly a reason most professionally produced tracks look the way they do through a visualizing EQ.

https://soundcloud.com/chad-waller-513060169/the-eighth-circle-1/s-zsake?fbclid=IwAR3XjCXfZ8itchJ1UbJmS6wj8G2hFdptQTpeeXpjYGO0K6nEOAyUOgv_hiw

This is the song in question.

One of the things I think I'm tackling incorrectly is the masterfader itself. I have a light compressor to bring all the busses together (only compressing like three or four db on the really loud bits), a multiband to just compress the lows because goddamn mine are still out of control, and then a third to raise the volume. I saw a guy on youtube do it that way, but that means jack all because anyone can throw something on youtube :P
 

SweetVermouth

Member
Mar 5, 2018
3,788
My problem is I'm not mixing on the best equipment so having these visual things to match is really nice.
Me neither, I have decent monitors but I also use my headphones where I can hear some things I don't hear while listening on my monitors. Using headphones also means being aware of their characteristics like for example the stereo is always wider on headphones because they sit right on your ears. I'm only satisfied with my stuff once it sounds good on my headphones and my monitors.
there's clearly a reason most professionally produced tracks look the way they do through a visualizing EQ
I've analyzed hundreds of tracks and the songs from one of my favorite artists are always super flat. But then I listen to another artist I like and it's the complete opposite. Both sound very good to my ears though. I don't think you can objectively say what's good and what isn't especially considering things have changed dramatically between the 60s/70s and today and music genres are different too. I don't think there is a one thing fits all solution.
This is the song in question.
So I listened to this and the drums have no punch at all and the vocals sound like they were recorded through a drain pipe. You can't fix this by doing anything on the master. The drums could be improved by mixing them better, the vocals might have to be re-recorded completely, I don't know, I never recorded vocals myself but I can hear a big difference between this and the few tracks with similar vocals I listened to.
One of the things I think I'm tackling incorrectly is the masterfader itself. I have a light compressor to bring all the busses together (only compressing like three or four db on the really loud bits), a multiband to just compress the lows because goddamn mine are still out of control, and then a third to raise the volume.
well whatever takes you to your destination is the right thing to do. I only ever have 2 effects on my master: An EQ and a multiband compressor. I'm not a fan of people going "oh I need to compress this so I can gain 3.5db and I use this one specific compressor for this singular purpose I bought for 200 bucks". I've talked to a lot of producers and I'm gonna be honest the way some of them are doing stuff is literally just "dick around in a studio, never actually produce and release anything, but still wanting to sound smart" and I'm not having any of that. There are examples in forums like KVR where people debate over how much better that one compressor is and then you listen to their music and the stuff they make and it sounds terrible although they spend thousands of bucks in software and hardware...

It's so urgh... At that point you're not making music anymore. You're like that weird neighbor you have that "repairs" his car every single damn weekend although it's perfectly fine.
 
Oct 29, 2017
1,924
Minnesota
So I listened to this and the drums have no punch at all and the vocals sound like they were recorded through a drain pipe. You can't fix this by doing anything on the master. The drums could be improved by mixing them better, the vocals might have to be re-recorded completely, I don't know, I never recorded vocals myself but I can hear a big difference between this and the few tracks with similar vocals I listened to.
Weird. I'm using an Amon Amarth song as one of my references, and while I don't sound like that bear of a man, I am happy with how I got the vocals to sound. They were recorded on a Rhode mic, which was recommended to me by someone who makes a lot of hard rock and metal. Even on a pretty bad pair of logitech speakers, they sound fine.

Not sure what to do about the drums. They sound pretty well and good on my Seinhesser cans and my Bose, though I don't really trust the Bose in that regard.
 

SweetVermouth

Member
Mar 5, 2018
3,788
well I can only tell you what I hear and it's not supposed to be an insult, I hope you don't think that was my intention.
 
Oct 29, 2017
1,924
Minnesota
well I can only tell you what I hear and it's not supposed to be an insult, I hope you don't think that was my intention.
Naw. Not at all. Pretty much everything I do sounds different on every sound system, and that's making this really frustrating.

I had a friend of a friend listen to the song over his studio monitors, and he says I'm on the right track. Gave me some pointers, which I'm in the process of executing. So far so good. At this point I'm not looking for AMAZING but competent. Going to test some of these songs in my mom's car. She's got a Lincoln with a pretty nice sound system. See how things balance out there.
 

Aranjah

Member
Oct 27, 2017
931
I'm not sure if this is the right place to ask about this, but it's the closest thread I can think of. If this doesn't go here, let me know and I'll quietly disappear.

So, we have a hangout thread for guitarists and guitar stuff. Is there any interest in one for drums? I'm a super-beginner drummer and I'd enjoy a place to talk about drum stuff, but neither this thread nor the guitar one seems to be the right place to do so, since this thread seems to be mostly production-related and the other one is, well, specifically about guitars. I haven't seen any other thread that seems remotely related, and was wondering if anyone besides me would be interested, or if the fact that it doesn't already exist is a hint as to the interest level.

I'd happily make the thread myself (and am willing to if there's interest but no one else wants to make it) but as a beginner I feel like I'm not the most qualified person by a long shot to be the OP of such a thread.
DrummEra |OT| Hell, It's About Time
 

Ovaryactor

Member
Nov 20, 2018
82
I played my first show finally. It got delayed a bit but I recorded the dang thing! It was super fun other than some dude who, during that first song, yelled “poser” and said I was playing “soundtrack” music, lol.


It starts a couple min after a blank sound check. I played a few wrong notes in the beginning and played a few songs I didn’t mean to play but overall it went well and I need to do more:)

If you listen have any advice please let me know!
 

Oneself

Member
Oct 26, 2017
1,232
Greetings music friends! A soundtrack I did years ago is now available for free via bandcamp. The short can be seen in a bunch of different places including Amazon videos, it's quite David Lynch-esque.
Here's a link to the soundtrack anyways!
I'm quite happy with the results as it went to Cannes and got often compared to Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross' soundtracks.
You may enjoy if you liked Thom Yorke's Suspiria too...

Let me know what you think Era!
 

bill crystals

Member
Oct 25, 2017
400
this is fantastic. i implore you to invest in an audio interface though
Thanks man! Yeah my recording quality is really hamstringing me right now. I've got all this cool gear finally but it kinda sounds like I'm playing in a tin can on the final recording.

I'm totally new to the whole audio interface world, do you have any recommendations or general tips/"things I wish I knew" type tidbits before I start diving in?
 

lacer

Member
Oct 25, 2017
5,454
Thanks man! Yeah my recording quality is really hamstringing me right now. I've got all this cool gear finally but it kinda sounds like I'm playing in a tin can on the final recording.

I'm totally new to the whole audio interface world, do you have any recommendations or general tips/"things I wish I knew" type tidbits before I start diving in?
the kind of bog standard for digital audio interfaces is the Scarlett 2i2/4. you could probably get away with directly plugging your amps line out into the line in of an audio interface, but i'd recommend grabbing a mic stand, an XLR cable, a Shure SM 58 and mic'ing your amp - even on smaller combo amps, a decent amount of the character of your guitar tone comes from the internal resonance of the speaker and the cabinet.

i also highly recommend giving the videos in this Coursera series a gander. there's some kind of heady stuff, but i think it does a great job giving an overview of the basics of how sound works in general, especially in a digital environment https://www.coursera.org/lecture/technology-of-music-production/lesson-overview-wtlDt

also please feel free to ask questions ITT you get lost or overwhelmed. what i've typed here barely scratches the surface, and generally speaking, creative spaces for music on the internet are more helpful than not. as a rule of thumb, Read The Fuckin Manual, but if you can't understand the terminology within the manual using a cursory Google search, feel free to ask 'hey WTF does this mean?'
 
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bill crystals

Member
Oct 25, 2017
400
the kind of bog standard for digital audio interfaces is the Scarlett 2i2/4. you could probably get away with directly plugging your amps line out into the line in of an audio interface, but i'd recommend grabbing a mic stand, an XLR cable, a Shure SM 58 and mic'ing your amp - even on smaller combo amps, a decent amount of the character of your guitar tone comes from the internal resonance of the speaker and the cabinet.

i also highly recommend giving the videos in this Coursera series a gander. there's some kind of heady stuff, but i think it does a great job giving an overview of the basics of how sound works in general, especially in a digital environment https://www.coursera.org/lecture/technology-of-music-production/lesson-overview-wtlDt

also please feel free to ask questions ITT you get lost or overwhelmed. what i've typed here barely scratches the surface, and generally speaking, creative spaces for music on the internet are more helpful than not. as a rule of thumb, Read The Fuckin Manual, but if you can't understand the terminology within the manual using a cursory Google search, feel free to ask 'hey WTF does this mean?'
Thanks so much for the detailed post. I just ordered a bunch of recording shit from Amazon like an idiot. I'm especially excited to dig into that Coursera stuff. Will be sure to post a new and improved vid once I figure all this out!
 

toku

沢山特別
Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,605
Ne Monde
+1 for the Scarlett 2i2/4 and the nice thing about it being so popular/common is you can usually find a used one in great condition on like craiglist or ebay easily
 

Bulerias

Member
Oct 26, 2017
15
Minneapolis, MN
Greetings. I just wanted to ask for clarification about the Spotify rule. I'd love to share some of my music -- I just uploaded three of my latest albums to Spotify -- and I'm wondering why it isn't okay to share links, given that one can listen to the tracks in full using the free version of Spotify.
 
Oct 29, 2017
1,924
Minnesota
Here's a fun question: how hard is it to upload stuff to Spotify? I have a podcast on there and that wasn't too bad, but the podcast client I use did 99% of the work.

Edit: Getting closer to being done with my project. Plan on releasing it for free, but I"m wondering if i should formally copyright everything or not. I largely don't care where the tunes end up if people want to use them, but free also isn't "public domain."
 

Nyx

User-Requested Ban
Banned
Oct 27, 2017
842
Utrecht, The Netherlands
Here's a fun question: how hard is it to upload stuff to Spotify? I have a podcast on there and that wasn't too bad, but the podcast client I use did 99% of the work.

Edit: Getting closer to being done with my project. Plan on releasing it for free, but I"m wondering if i should formally copyright everything or not. I largely don't care where the tunes end up if people want to use them, but free also isn't "public domain."
Get the Amuse app, they release your stuff on several streaming services including Spotify for the price of nothing.

https://amuse.io/
 
Oct 29, 2017
1,924
Minnesota
Another question for you fine people: Mastering. I have multiple busses going on right now, and throwing a master compressor on the vocal bus has done it some good. I'm wondering if I should do that to every bus and then just do a simple compressor on the master fader or if that's a terrible idea. My brother has used it so some pretty good(ish) results, but he's about as knowledgeable as I am in this whole shebang. Which is to say not at all :P
 
Oct 25, 2017
1,053
Scrolled around looking for a thread more relevant to this query:

If I want to pick up my piano skills again, any recommend places to start?

Thanks in advance.
 

bill crystals

Member
Oct 25, 2017
400
Just want to follow up and report that I did indeed end up getting a Scarlett 2i2 interface and holy shit the difference is incredible. What a difference a week can make!

Here's my most recent song WITHOUT the interface (just recording with a wireless gaming mic next to my amp)

And here's one from a few days ago WITH the interface

You can actually kinda hear the drums and bass frequencies now lol. I am seriously amazed at how plug and play it was. I'm simply using an instrument patch cable to go from my amp's headphone jack to the first input of the 2i2, then monitoring the sound in the interface with headphones. No mic is even required. The interface is hooked into my Macbook sitting right next to it on top of my amp. Recording with trusty old Audacity for now.

Thanks again for the helpful recommendations, very excited to have slightly less amateur recording quality now!
 
Oct 29, 2017
1,924
Minnesota
Any of y'all try those mastering websites like landr? Saw an ad for one today and figured why not? It's free to try and if it doesn't work, then I'm not out anything.

Uploading now. I gave it my 7 minute climax song since it has the most shit going on. Looks like it might be a bit before I get my results :P

Edit: https://soundcloud.com/chad-waller-513060169/landr-firefrost-medium-balanced

they only let me export as a 192kbs mp3 :\ curious how this sounds on the few good sound systems I have access to. It's not terrible on my Bose speakers. I'll still probably try and msater this myself when all is said and done, but hey, backup options are backup options.
 
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Sphinx

Member
Nov 29, 2017
1,379
Just testing how Facebook videos play on ERA, I recorded and uploaded this a couple of days ago. 1 Minute of Chopin's Barcarolle Op. 60

 

Chris Metal

Member
Oct 25, 2017
661
United Kingdom
Any of y'all try those mastering websites like landr? Saw an ad for one today and figured why not? It's free to try and if it doesn't work, then I'm not out anything.

Uploading now. I gave it my 7 minute climax song since it has the most shit going on. Looks like it might be a bit before I get my results :P

Edit: https://soundcloud.com/chad-waller-513060169/landr-firefrost-medium-balanced

they only let me export as a 192kbs mp3 :\ curious how this sounds on the few good sound systems I have access to. It's not terrible on my Bose speakers. I'll still probably try and msater this myself when all is said and done, but hey, backup options are backup options.
You can send to me if you wish.
https://www.addacmastering.com
 

Chris Metal

Member
Oct 25, 2017
661
United Kingdom
cmon dawg. no self promo
And he doesn't have to pay, there is no paywall on my site, this thread deals primarily in promoting and monetising music though. From the OT "just don't post links that would require posters to pay to experience whatever you are sharing". Everyone here is technically promoting themselves, when they post a link to YouTube it's views which can count towards monetisation even if they're not aware. Post a link to your soundcloud, self promo, or even bandcamp. The only difference is these services don't force an ad on you like Spotify which is what the self promo rule is about, leading to payment services/royalties. I don't charge for test masters/first tracks with clients and was just offering an free alt to landr and I have a pdf explaining the paid options I provide if you choose to continue working with me. However he was asking about opinions on automated services... Well I don't hold them in high regard as they're ruining an industry, they're quick and convenient, not up to standard yet and you can get similar if not better results out of something like an izotope preset where you can render/bounce tracks in flac/wav/mp3/aac or any format necessary. Check my post contributions in this thread, I also aided in the original OT creation when it merged. Site/self promo is OK with direct links, as long as it doesn't lead to paywalls for services to listen to music this includes band or personal websites for musicians.
 
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take_marsh

Member
Oct 27, 2017
2,038
Looking for some recommendation for a budget pad controller. I hate messing with the keyboard as well as clicking and dragging pieces of a drum around. I want to move on to something that gives me a bit more room for play.

I'm currently looking at the Akai Professional MPD218 Pad Controller, the Novation LaunchPad, and the Korg NanoPAD2. They're pretty low cost which is how I like it since I am not too musically productive as of late. I'm hoping to get something that will help with putting down not so perfectly in time, yet will still work and be a lot more fun. Recommendations for a budget?
 

hypercard

Member
Oct 27, 2017
341
Hey all, just a heads up: Cubase is offering an amazing competitive crossgrade deal right now for their anniversary. You can get a copy of Cubase Pro 10 for less than $200 (including dongle) if you show proof of owning one of a few different daws. I was rocking FL Studio producer's edition, so this is going to be an amazing upgrade for me!

https://new.steinberg.net/cubase/celebrate/
 

collige

Member
Oct 31, 2017
5,054
Since I'm not going to recoup any of the money on any of this, I'm trying to go as cheap as I can. Or DIY, which is what I'll wind up doing. But hey, I get two free attempts with landr, might as well try them.
My diy "mastering" generally consists of throwing W1 (a free Waves L1 clone) on the master channel with the threshold at -4. It's certainly way cheaper than trying these dodgy automated services.
 
Oct 29, 2017
1,924
Minnesota
My diy "mastering" generally consists of throwing W1 (a free Waves L1 clone) on the master channel with the threshold at -4. It's certainly way cheaper than trying these dodgy automated services.
Yeah> on the whole I don't like how Landr mastered my track. I tried a few of the settings. It's neat, but not great. Hell, I got presets that I think do a better job.

Going to just try and master it myself. Youtube's taken me this far.
 

Pomerlaw

Member
Feb 25, 2018
2,905
Well I'd like to have an option to master my tracks without doing it myself, frankly. I don'T have time to learn this art at all. I may check these services out...
 

BlueBadger

Member
Oct 26, 2017
926
I worked on a really cool project last week with Aaron Fraser-Nash's YouTube channel. Basically, they wrote a parody song to the melody of Never Enough from the Greatest Showman for the latest Avengers movie, and had me sing the vocals!
I have not seen the latest Avengers movie but the title does say no spoilers are in the video, in case anyone was worried about that!
 
Oct 29, 2017
1,924
Minnesota
Tips on the best way to add metadata to a file? Talking album art, lyrics, album name, etc. FL Studio has a way to add some of it, but when I drag the files into iTunes most doesn't actually copy over :\
Well I'd like to have an option to master my tracks without doing it myself, frankly. I don'T have time to learn this art at all. I may check these services out...
Yeah. The services are a really nice resource, though depending on what you're DAW of choice is, you may have some mastering presets that'll work just as well for free. Thankfully you can experiment with sites like Landr for free if you're willing to wait. And to be fair to Landr, the file I tried to have it master was not mixed super well. I was doing something pretty wrong with the vocals that I only fixed this week, so maybe its' worth another chance just to see what it sounds like with a better mix.
First home recording! I would love to have comments!

I used an AT2020 mic for vocals and guitars. For vocals, I used a software compressor and added a bit of reverb. My room sound is pretty clear...

For guitars I removed low frequencies (under 200hz)... a 10db cut to remove the boomy sound. That's all!

https://choon.co/tracks/0zxn7fpor5n/legendary-live-acoustic/
https://choon.co/tracks/0dkiy3emhze/american-dream-disaster-live-acoustic/
Sounds great dude! Awesome job
 

Chris Metal

Member
Oct 25, 2017
661
United Kingdom
Tips on the best way to add metadata to a file? Talking album art, lyrics, album name, etc. FL Studio has a way to add some of it, but when I drag the files into iTunes most doesn't actually copy over :\
Depends on your file format you're uploading to iTunes. WAV doesn't support metadata Id3 tagging. AIFF will so use that format instead. Either bounce to AIFF or convert to within iTunes to retain metadata, conversion outside of iTunes will lose metatags.
 
Oct 29, 2017
1,924
Minnesota
Depends on your file format you're uploading to iTunes. WAV doesn't support metadata Id3 tagging. AIFF will so use that format instead. Either bounce to AIFF or convert to within iTunes to retain metadata, conversion outside of iTunes will lose metatags.
Oh shit! I didn't realize .wav files wouldn't support it. I'm still working in those until I'm ready to master :P

My album is almost 500mb right now.
 

BennyWhatever

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,708
US
Hi musicians!

I'm looking for some singing tips. I've been singing most of my life, and have even been taking lessons for almost a year now, and I'm pretty happy with how things are going. However, I just can't seem to get my vibrato how I want it. My natural vibrato is very large. Not the tight ones you hear from most of the best singers. It's like my throat is wide open and my vocal chords have a giant area to vibrate in and they're just going to town all over the place. It's almost an entire step in each direction.
Any advice to tighten up the vibrato? Looking for something kind of like at the very end of the long note here https://youtu.be/_tdPuCzdYsA?t=210
 

Sphinx

Member
Nov 29, 2017
1,379
Just uploaded this, will start trying to record and upload more videogame music in the same flowy, mellow, romantic tone like the one on this last video.

First choices are:

To Zanarkand, FFX
Terra's Theme, FFVI
Zelda's Lullaby

I absolutely FUCKING ADORE "to Zanarkand" so is my top choice, can't wait til Juni to and put the work in. I need another place to record the video though, the lighting is awful, the piano is nice though.

 
Oct 29, 2017
1,924
Minnesota
Any of you guys have some tips on mastering? I'd take tutorials or just ... anything. I'm on that step and Jesus Christ is it hard. I feel like there's a lot of art to mixing, but this feels more like science and I somehow never got the textbook.

I've followed a tutorial to a result that's ... okay. I listen to the song and yeah, it sounds like a song! Then I listen to one of my reference tracks and it's bigger and louder by a noticeable amount. I'm compressing something wrong, but if I go too hard, it starts to chug in and out volumewise. My guess is I'm using the multiband wrong. Or the limiter at the end. One of those two.
No problem, let me know and I'll point you in the right direction...if you choose to go ahead with it I have submission/upload guidelines along with faq to help with other stuff on site :)
Otherwise Chris, I know you mentioned doing a song for me for free a few months ago. I don't really want to hold you to it, buuuuuuuuuuut >_> I'm at the point where I wouldn't be opposed to paying a proffesional. Mixing is fun. This is frustrating. :P
 

Oneself

Member
Oct 26, 2017
1,232
Any of you guys have some tips on mastering? I'd take tutorials or just ... anything. I'm on that step and Jesus Christ is it hard. I feel like there's a lot of art to mixing, but this feels more like science and I somehow never got the textbook.

I've followed a tutorial to a result that's ... okay. I listen to the song and yeah, it sounds like a song! Then I listen to one of my reference tracks and it's bigger and louder by a noticeable amount. I'm compressing something wrong, but if I go too hard, it starts to chug in and out volumewise. My guess is I'm using the multiband wrong. Or the limiter at the end. One of those two.
Personally, I pay someone who has analog equipments for mastering. A different pair of ears can (and most probably will) enhance your songs.

- If you do it yourself, make sure to leave enough room in your tracks before exporting your mix. While your goal is around -6db, it shouldn't be obtained by lowering the master volume. Lower all your tracks individually to get -6db overall without touching the master volume.
- Don't compress your tracks before mastering unless compression is used as an audible, wanted effect on a track (let's say you want drums like in Blur's Song 2 etc).
- Make sure you know about "loudness".

Oh shit! I didn't realize .wav files wouldn't support it. I'm still working in those until I'm ready to master :P

My album is almost 500mb right now.
If you go through a digital distributor you won't have to worry about those, you'll be entering your metadata when uploading. If you want to have money from radio plays, make sure your songs are tracked by your country's international performing rights society.
 
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