Category : Producers BlogDED_HERE
So far I have clocked over 350 hours on my next album. I know that because I actually track my time. Through out the process of writing tracks there are some major landmines you have to avoid. One of the biggest ones is tweaking things to death. Since I am getting all my tracks ready to send to mastering I am finding myself running into those landmines, so I am writing this article as a reminder to you and myself.
My good friend Danceher once shared the concept of diminishing returns with me. The idea is there is a point in which your effort brings you less of a return. So in this case working on a track past the point of anyone being able to notice or care.
I am so honored to finally share this. About a year back Akara asked me to do a remix of the track. I have been able to play this at festivals this summer, and was so excited to share it online. The original always moved me so deeply and it was an honor to blend in some of my own craft and interpretation.
Original Track: akaramusic.bandcamp.com/track/project…album-version
An important part of any mix is the Low End. Getting that sounding solid, having a punch to it, and bring out a lush bassline is the key to an epic track. Mixing all the Bass Elements is also one of the hardest things to do. The first key in understanding the low end of your track is to understand there is more than one layer to your bass.
There are multiple layers and frequencies that make up a good bass. The way they flow together and interact with your other elements is what will make the bass truly punch through, or be a murky mess. A bass can have a click on it, a warm mid range, a synthy top end, or more. In this article I will go over the different parts that make a up the domain of the low end and share some insight on how to wield it in your music.
Here is a chart to show off the 4 Layers of Bass:
There are a lot of DJ’s and performers out there. It can be a monumental task climbing up the endless heights to be known as a performer. One way you can quickly rise above the crowd and get recognition is through bootlegs and remixes. You can take any track and make your own spin on it. By taking popular dance tracks and adding your own spin you can quickly get your sound and vibe out to the world.
I just created a new Bootleg Remix Pack to help speed up the process and wanted to share some techniques and tips I use a lot in remixing.
WHAT IS A BOOTLEG REMIX?
To start, lets define what a Bootleg is.
A Bootleg is one type of remix of a song in which the remixing DJ uses an entire song or samples from a popular song without the explicit permission of the original artist. A bootleg remix generally uses the stereo master track and or accapella of the track.
In production sometimes I am working with harmonically complex samples or found sounds. For instance, if I a wind sound it has a lot of frequencies and isn’t necessarily in key to my track. In some of these cases I use EQing to bring out the frequencies of one note to make it resonate more to the key of my track.
I do this by using Audio Effect Racks and EQ8 in Live.
This technique lets me bring out certain frequencies of a note, or even take them away. This can be a great way to make something that might not have a distinguished note, be interpreted as if it were a specific note.
I have gone through and used my List of Notes by Frequency and made an effect rack that can bring up all those frequencies at once. I then repeated this rack for each of the 12 notes.
I have included this collection of racks in the updated Mix Down Toolkit to help in production, but am also releasing it for free to members of the site.
Login or join the site to download files:
This is but a fraction of the tools that can help you with mixing found in the Mix Down Toolkit. Check it out, and order it if you want some slick and easy tools to level up your mix.
When I am mixing and working on sound design I sometimes like to turn to a list of the frequencies of notes. It helps me bring up the resonance of a note, or keep the fundamental harmonic of my sound design at to fit the key of my track.
Here is the list of frequencies. Keep in mind this is for equal temperament with A being at 440.
Frequencies of Notes at 440
Octave Note Name Frequency Hz -3 C 32.7031956626 -3 C#/Db 34.6478288721 -3 D 36.7080959897 -3 D#/Eb 38.8908729653 -3 E 41.2034446141 -3 F 43.6535289291 -3 F#/Gb 46.2493028390 -3 G 48.9994294977 -3 G#/Ab 51.9130871975 -3 A 55.0000000000 -3 A#/Bb 58.2704701898 -3 B 61.7354126570
I have been really inspired by ios music apps. They give you amazing new tools. Things like Samplr lets you chop up samples using multi touch to make you feel like your hands can truly get dirty.
If you are an ableton user, which most of you are, the first thing you might wonder if how could you use this in a live set? How is it a better tool? Is it worth the money? Here is a little rundown of the advantages and disadvantages of using an iPad in the studio. (more…)
One of the most amazing things about Electronic music is our ability to collaborate across borders, space, and time. A lot of producers don’t jam with other musicians live, but they can grab stems from someone and craft them into an amazing remix.
I am proud to be apart of such an endeavor. Numatik creates deep and flowing music from Asheville USA. I got to perform with him at Kinnection Campout this year and he blew me away. Numatik teamed up with the not for profit label Mycelium music and myself to create a remix contest. You can download the stems and shape your own track from them. Winners will get a private one on one class with me, and $100 worth of Live Packs and Samples.
Check out the lush track here:
To download the stems and join the contest clink the image below or go to http://myceliummusic.com/contests.
Compression is a key to controlling the Dynamics of your track. In this article I will be going over the basics of Compression, other resources, and share a collection of Compression Presets I use in production. This will include Parallel compressions, Drum Compressors, and Side Chain Compression Presets.
Wikipedia explains compression as:
Dynamic range compression or simply compression reduces the volume of loud sounds or amplifies quiet sounds by narrowing or “compressing” an audio signal’s dynamic range. Compression is commonly used in sound recording and reproduction and broadcasting and on instrument amplifiers. Audio compression reduces loud sounds over a certain threshold while quiet sounds remain unaffected. The dedicated electronic hardware unit or audio software used to apply compression is called a compressor. Compressors often have attack and release controls that vary the rate at which compression is applied and smooth the effect.
Compression is a tool that lets us tighten the gap between the loudest and quietest parts of an audio signal. Most compressors have pretty much have these same basic controls:
1. Threshold sets the level when the compression starts. If the peak of the sound is under the threshold, then nothing happens to it. If it is above the threshold amount it then becomes compressed.
2. Ratio sets the degree of compression above the threshold level. A ratio of 2:1 represents mild compression and means that when the incoming level (that is, the level above the threshold) rises by 10dB, the outgoing level will only rise by 5dB. The different ratios let you decide how obvious, and how much the compression is happening to the signal.
3. Attack is measured in milliseconds and sets the time taken for the compressor to start working once the signal has passed the threshold. For drum parts like snares and hi hats you will want some attack to come through. Other things like Sidechain compression you might want a slow attack to give it a pumping sound.
4. Release sets the length of time it takes for the compressor to return to its normal state once the signal has gone back below the threshold.
5. Gain lets you raise or lower the final output sound. Sometimes in compressing you make the sound much louder and it will clip. You can turn down the signal with the Gain Knob.