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Tuesday, February 24, 2009

How do you get thick and smooth background vocals?

Here is a question recently put to Audio Masterclass...

"How do you get background vocals to sound like Def Leppard?. That is thick and smooth as it is on Hysteria engineered by Nigel Green, mixed by Mike Shipley and produced by Mutt Lange. How did they do it and how would one go about it if you wanted the same today?"

One thing is for sure, Mutt Lange wouldn't want to reveal the tricks of his trade.

However, there isn't really a great deal of trickery involved. Only a little.

Firstly, it is clear from documentary videos that Mutt Lange performs many of the background vocals himself.

He doesn't appear to have an outstanding voice or vocal talent. But he sings very precisely in both tuning and timing.

So this is the first requirement - background vocalists who can sing precisely in tune and in time.

Let's suppose that you only have one person to perform all of the background vocals.

You could achieve a thick sound through multi-layered harmonies. But even if there is just a single background vocal line, it is possible to make it thick, rich and smooth.

If you record exactly the same line four times, then the result will be instantly thicker.

If your system has the ability to vary the speed at which it records, you could set the speed just a little slower on two takes - say 2% and 4%, and correspondingly faster on the other two takes.

Then when you play back the result at the correct speed, the harmonics of each recording will be shifted slightly differently. This is an 'instant thickener' and always works well.

Another method is to pitch-shift the tracks slightly. Pitch shift is measured in cents, where one cent is one-hundredth of a semitone.

If you apply shifts of -4, -8, +4 and +8 cents to the four tracks, then once again the result will be instant thickness. I prefer the previous technique, but this works fine.

Some delay plug-ins allow you to modulate the delay time. So the delay time varies cyclically. And because of this, so does the pitch.

If you process each track through a delay of say 100 milliseconds, with a different speed and amount of modulation on each track, then the result will have excellent thickness.

You can compensate for the delay by moving the tracks 100 milliseconds earlier in time.

Generally if you have more than one singer, then the result will be thicker already. But you can still apply all of the above techniques.

If you work out four background vocal lines, and you record each one four times according to the guidelines given above, you will have a 16-voice chorus that will be thick and smooth indeed.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Will Singing Lessons Ruin My Style?

One of your most recent emails contained quite a few questions. Vocal coach Sophie Shear took the time to write some pointed answers to questions such as: Can anyone learn to sing? Will singing lessons ruin my personal style? Can I learn to sing with the rough tone of a rock singer without losing my voice? You'll definitely want to read her answers written from the perspective of one of Brett Manning's finest certified coaches... Read More and Comment >>

Video Vocal Tip

Brett gives his best three techniques for connecting the voice in one of his most valuable free video vocal tips to date. Go check it out... Watch Now >>

Saturday, February 14, 2009


Does TV Cause Depression?

New study shows possible link

A new study suggests teens who view too much television are more likely to become depressed as adults.

It's unclear whether TV might have the same effect on adults. So, if you're watching the tube too much, try tuning out and tackling chores, talking to a friend or keeping busy in other ways instead.

Our New Musician.(Sessionist).

Symphony Victory S/B - SVS
Introducing New Musician.
Donald Saimon. (Don)

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Have a good laugh - "Worry Husband"

4 husbands were sitting at the waiting room in a hospital while waiting for their wives to give birth.Then a nurse came out and told to the first Daddy, "Congratulation, you got twins!". "Ohh.. maybe its a coincident" said the daddy. "I am working with thePetronas Twin Towers".Then another nurse came out and told to the second Daddy, "Congratulation! you have triplets!" "Wooow!, this is a coincident too" said the second daddy. ? "I am workingfor 3M Corporation"Another nurse came out and told the third Da ddy, ? "Congratulation! You got 4 babies," "Hmmmmm! Maybe this is also a coincident". "I am working at Four SeasonHotel!"
While, the fourth Daddy-to-be were in uncontrolled worry. All the 3 daddies asked him,why do you seem so worry??"He answered, "I am working with Seven-Eleven!"

Will Loud music damage your hearing?

Imagine this situation - you are in a group of people, all talking together in a social setting. But you can't contribute to the conversation because you can't really make out properly what people are saying.
Your hearing WILL be damaged by exposure to loud sound. Both level and duration of exposure are factors. By far the most common source of loud sound is the pair of earpieces connected to your personal stereo. Going to clubs where loud music is played night after night is also a risk. Factory noise can be a problem, but the factory where you work should offer you ear protection. Make sure you use it.
Hearing damage, by the way, is permanent. Tiny hair cells in the inner ear are destroyed and they never grow back.
As a sound engineer or recording engineer, your ears are vital to your career. But you risk damaging your hearing every day you work. Possibly the worst situation is when you are a trainee engineer working in the studio with someone who is already partially deaf. They might want to work at levels that are painful for you. But you are not in a position to ask them to turn it down. Not if you want to stay in the room.
The moral is to expose yourself to loud sound for as short a duration as possible. If you work all day with high levels in the studio, then don't listen to any more loud music at home.
To close, here is one of the standard jokes of the recording industry...
What do you call a recording engineer who over the course of many years in the studio has become totally deaf?
A producer!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

New Musician of Symphony and Bamboo.

Well we're announcing
that a new musician are on trail with Symphony and Bamboo for their next productions.
Officers of both Company is tight lipted once this blogger ask more about the musician but we are understand that the musician is also arranging music at one Top Studio Production situated in neighbouring country Indonesia.
It is also understood that the Bamboo chief sound engineer (Victor Paulus) will be the person who responsible for the trail and to make final dicision on it.

Well for now thats the news we get.

Hehehe...U got 10?

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