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Old December 5th, 2012, 12:44 AM   #1 (permalink)
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The Word - Rubber Soul

This has been a long time in coming. Our first cover I believe, from Rubber Soul.

I just got the first pass of the drums in tonight. This song was very difficult to do because of the vocals. The mix is rough yet.

See what you think....

The Word v.01

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Old December 5th, 2012, 01:43 AM   #2 (permalink)
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A great song to attempt.
Overall it's pretty loose, but I think that's because you are attempting to replicate a tricky drum track. The drum fills are problematic and throwing everything else off. If you can nail down the drums it will go a long way to making the tracks you put on top of them tighter.
I do hear some great harmonies (as usual) and like the sounds of the extra percussion. Someone really learned that bass line.
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Old December 5th, 2012, 02:03 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I thought Bird was the Word...
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Old December 5th, 2012, 02:14 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I just loathe programming midi drums. I spend 10 hours getting it roughed in and it's "problematic". I think my record for spending the most hours on a drum track is 50. Maybe I can exceed that on this one.

By the way, we did Bird....
Bird
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Old December 5th, 2012, 04:41 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I thought Bird was the Word...
The Bird is the word!
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Old December 5th, 2012, 09:13 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Well, that's what everybody's heard!
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Old December 5th, 2012, 10:58 AM   #7 (permalink)
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At it again, eh? Good rough draft, all the bricks seem to be in place as Peteycaster would say. No real criticism at this early point as I know it'll change as it goes along. Re MIDI drums: I feel your pain!
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Old December 5th, 2012, 06:42 PM   #8 (permalink)
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At it again, eh? Good rough draft, all the bricks seem to be in place as Peteycaster would say. No real criticism at this early point as I know it'll change as it goes along. Re MIDI drums: I feel your pain!
Still at it!

Made some progress today....

Still chasing a timing issue but I made dozens of other improvements today in the mix and vocals.
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Old December 5th, 2012, 07:05 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Programming drums isn't too tough once you get a system down that works for you. I can remember spending days step-sequencing an Alesis HR16B to get a three minute tune done, nowadays I use a MIDI keyboard to play the drums in real time (layering parts in multiple passes), and I clean up everything in the piano roll. I can do a good drum track in about an hour or so this way.
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Old December 5th, 2012, 09:10 PM   #10 (permalink)
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here's version 2....

Mixed more, EQ'ed more, Melodyned vox tracks and timing issues fixed. This is closer to how it should sound.

The Word v.02
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Old December 5th, 2012, 09:39 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Just three things that jumped out at me:

* The main "big" guitar part seems a bit forward, not kind to the vocals.

* Did you massage the 16th-note snare roll fills? I may be a victim of geezer syndrome, but I remember thinking they seemed mechanical on the first version, but sounded more natural on the second.

* That great big sustained synth note needs to get in the background.

But of course you know I'll nitpick in a heartbeat! Good version going, drive on.
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Old December 5th, 2012, 10:01 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Just three things that jumped out at me:

* The main "big" guitar part seems a bit forward, not kind to the vocals.

* Did you massage the 16th-note snare roll fills? I may be a victim of geezer syndrome, but I remember thinking they seemed mechanical on the first version, but sounded more natural on the second.

* That great big sustained synth note needs to get in the background.

But of course you know I'll nitpick in a heartbeat! Good version going, drive on.
haha..!! nitpick away!

I might have over done the double stop guitar verse part but on the original, it is very forward. I'll try balancing it against the vocal a bit better.

Yes, I fixed a lot of the snare fills.

The distorted organ (Harmonium) is BIG in the original and I was following their mix. I can lay it and the verse guitar part back a bit in the next revision.

The big thing I fixed was the doubled vocal clip timing was off just a smidge at the 0:29 second mark and now it's more settled in.

I fattened the drums and the piano also.

Those things aside, I think Mimi and I are starting to hit our stride with this stuff but I'm definitely biased.

Thanks again for your inputs!

By the way, we're starting to analyze Help! as the next victim.
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Old December 5th, 2012, 10:23 PM   #13 (permalink)
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The distorted organ part is different on your version than on the original. It doesn't just hang on that sustained D note.

Here ya go. (I didn't try very hard to get the organ sound)
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Old December 6th, 2012, 12:29 AM   #14 (permalink)
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The distorted organ part is different on your version than on the original. It doesn't just hang on that sustained D note.

Here ya go. (I didn't try very hard to get the organ sound)
yessir, I have those extra notes in there but they are very light velocity. I'll have to increase the velocity a little bit so you can hear them a little better. I adjusted it to be subtle, like the original but I guess I over did it.

By the way, the credits on the song say that is a harmonium, played by Sir George. I used a Vox organ synth to get in the neighborhood and then ran it through a Marshall amp simulator.
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Old December 6th, 2012, 12:37 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Re MIDI drums: I feel your pain!
What he said!

Especially when you're trying to duplicate a recorded performance.

You gonna go back and add live drums on this one?

Cheers,
Geoff
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Old December 6th, 2012, 12:42 AM   #16 (permalink)
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What he said!

Especially when you're trying to duplicate a recorded performance.

You gonna go back and add live drums on this one?

Cheers,
Geoff
yes, eventually... when I can get the drummer to come over. He lives 30 miles away.

I should just buy a decent kit to have here so they don't have the excuse of hauling all the gear.
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Old December 7th, 2012, 01:13 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Sat on this for a day and listened to it. Went in and resolved the timing issues that were still bothering me. Long story short, they happen because my accomplice gives me his vocal track audio files and they are just clips with no reference to 0. So, it's a bit like putting Humpty Dumpty back together again and I make small mistakes in positioning them until I listen a bunch and decide what is going on. I think this version flows nicely now.

I also increased the velocity on the organ notes that Kevin was mentioning so they are more apparent now in the bridge.

To Woody's point on the guitar during the Verse vocals, I re-balanced those.

Let me know if you think I slayed the dragon.

The Word - v.03
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Old December 7th, 2012, 02:14 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by 64Strat View Post
Sat on this for a day and listened to it. Went in and resolved the timing issues that were still bothering me. Long story short, they happen because my accomplice gives me his vocal track audio files and they are just clips with no reference to 0. So, it's a bit like putting Humpty Dumpty back together again and I make small mistakes in positioning them until I listen a bunch and decide what is going on. I think this version flows nicely now.

I also increased the velocity on the organ notes that Kevin was mentioning so they are more apparent now in the bridge.

To Woody's point on the guitar during the Verse vocals, I re-balanced those.

Let me know if you think I slayed the dragon.

The Word - v.03
Giving it a quick listen as I type - sounding better already.

For Mimi's parts, record the click track and have him send you a file with the click track and his vocal track. That maybe isn't clear. Whoever's starting does their thing but somewhere on there the click is recorded. Send files over. When the vocal gets sent back, also send back the click track, along with the vocal, both starting from zero. Make sure your click and the one that get sent back are locked in, and the vocal track should be too.

Hope that made sense.

Cheers,
Geoff
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Old December 7th, 2012, 07:23 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Shaping up nicely!

Geoff's click-track method of file exchange is bulletproof, although it adds an extra step of work in the file-shuffling. On the several collaborations I've done with Kevin (ScatMan), he would send a track with the note "starts at bar 40" or whatever, and we never went wrong in the course of swapping many dozens of tracks. Of course this assumes the sending party is dead certain the track starts *on* the beat, not a tick before or after. ... All that said, sounds like you've got them well-placed!
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Old December 7th, 2012, 10:10 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Here's a complication with the file sharing method described. First off, I'm on SONAR and Mimi is on PT. I'm on a pc, he's on a Mac. When we start a project like this, I give him the click track and in this case, The Word came from the 2009 Remaster set. We just load it in and it is not aligned to anything except shoved up against 0 time. We then play our parts to the original song. When Mimi does his vocals, one track might have 5 individual clips in it, another track might have 3 clips in it and so on. When he outputs his tracks for me, what he does is copy ALL of those clips from the Audio Files folder into the CD Burner. For three vocal parts (John, George & Paul), there are doubles for each part and then say, 4 to 5 clips per track, thats 24 to 30 Wave files I'm getting. I have to painstakingly piece all of that back together. If he knew how to do it, I would think he could solo a vocal track with 5 clips in it and output that one track as a single wav file. Do that for all of them and I would end up with 6 wave files, with all of them referenced to 0. He doesn't know how to do that in PT (I know how to do it in SONAR though.). Te problem is, I don't know PT and worse yet, I don't know anything about Macs.

I did another version this evening with an attempt to get better definition of the bass notes. I used a plug-in called a transient shaper and increased the attack on the notes. I then EQ'ed the kick drum with a notch cut where the bass was mainly operating in the 100 -200Hz range and a boost in the 60 - 80Hz range to accentuate the attack of the kick drum a bit more.
The Word - v.04
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