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#219894 - 11/03/13 04:38 PM [User Showcase] Re: New Song: "Brighter Than Any Star" [Re: Noel96]
F.M.M. Offline
Expert

Registered: 12/26/11
Posts: 1183
hi guys this is excellent peace really top notch guys arrangement vocals mix plus +1 thanks eric

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#219898 - 11/03/13 04:57 PM [User Showcase] Re: New Song: "Brighter Than Any Star" [Re: Sundance]
Noel96 Offline
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Registered: 10/31/08
Posts: 13528
Loc: Australia
Hi Josie,

If these forums were hooked up to webcam, you'd see me smiling big and bright right now as I sit here writing to you.

I'm really glad that you got a chance to have a listen. I always value your thoughts and insights into how you hear my songs. Thank you smile

I also appreciate your confirmation of Pat P's theories. He's an amazing man and I've learnt such a huge amount from him over the years. Believe it or not, one of the most important lessons I've learnt transfers incredibly well into mixing. It relates to the unstressed words we use in language: words like 'the', 'a', 'and', 'or', 'me', 'her', etc. I often find that these syllables are over-emphasised in my recordings and so I use volume shaping to throttle them back to conversation levels. This REALLY does make a difference.

Once again, thank you for test-driving this production.

Best wishes,
Noel
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#219906 - 11/03/13 06:49 PM [User Showcase] Re: New Song: "Brighter Than Any Star" [Re: boehm]
Noel96 Offline
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Registered: 10/31/08
Posts: 13528
Loc: Australia
Hi Guenter,

Gosh! Those words sound like they'd make great lyrics wink Thank you for dropping in, clicking the link, listening and taking time to comment. Much appreciated.

All the best,
Noel
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#219907 - 11/03/13 06:58 PM [User Showcase] Re: New Song: "Brighter Than Any Star" [Re: jphillips]
Noel96 Offline
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Registered: 10/31/08
Posts: 13528
Loc: Australia
Hi John,

Thank you for listening. I'm grateful for the feedback.

I came across Jason at demosinger.com.

I was looking for someone whose voice I liked and who had the facilities to overdub a backing track. Luck was with me. Jason was the first person I contacted from the site. His turnaround time was sensational. From the time I sent him the backing to when I got a draft of the vocals was about 5 days. He was outstanding to work with and his price was incredibly good value.

Jason is found at http://www.jasonwyattmusic.com/

Once again, "Thank you",
Noel
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#219914 - 11/03/13 07:17 PM [User Showcase] Re: New Song: "Brighter Than Any Star" [Re: Noel96]
bluage Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 12/10/09
Posts: 446
Loc: Washington State
"Noel96"...

Talk about "emotional intensity"! The song has the gravity of an anthem, or a hymn. If I was married, I'd play this for my wife on her birthday, or on our anniversary.

Congratulations to you and Mr. Wyatt for bringing this beautiful baby into the world!

[i]bluage[/]
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#219947 - 11/04/13 01:36 AM [User Showcase] Re: New Song: "Brighter Than Any Star" [Re: rsdean]
Noel96 Offline
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Registered: 10/31/08
Posts: 13528
Loc: Australia
Hi Bob (rsdean),

It's always a pleasure to hear from you. Thanks for giving me some of your time. Appreciate it.

Regards,
Noel
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#219950 - 11/04/13 02:33 AM [User Showcase] Re: New Song: "Brighter Than Any Star" [Re: Guitarhacker]
Noel96 Offline
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Registered: 10/31/08
Posts: 13528
Loc: Australia
Hey Herb,

Thanks for the positive comments! Much appreciated.

A bit about the volume shaping ...

I use Reaper. Eighteen months or so ago, I used to mix the tracks first and then run the mix through Ozone. While this worked fine, I found that sometimes individual tracks that sounded ok before adding Ozone needed boosting after the plugin was operating. These days I find that keeping Ozone always active as the final plugin in my Master channel makes it easier and quicker for me to get to the final mix.

Because Ozone is constantly on and because I always have it adding some level of compression, it often means that volume shaping of individual tracks needs to be more exaggerated in the initial mix to achieve a good balance in the final mix through the Ozone plugin. Thus the pronounced volume shaping. Have you ever played around with having Ozone always active as the final plugin? I'd like to hear your experiences if you have smile

Thank you for dropping in and taking time to listen and comment.

Regards,
Noel
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#219955 - 11/04/13 03:23 AM [User Showcase] Re: New Song: "Brighter Than Any Star" [Re: Danny C.]
Noel96 Offline
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Registered: 10/31/08
Posts: 13528
Loc: Australia
Thanks Danny.

I like the phrase "from first word to last note". Thank you for having a listen.

Best wishes,
Noel
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#219967 - 11/04/13 05:12 AM [User Showcase] Re: New Song: "Brighter Than Any Star" [Re: dani48]
Noel96 Offline
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Registered: 10/31/08
Posts: 13528
Loc: Australia
Hi Dani,

That was strange that you couldn't get the song open on Songspace. It's good to see that Soundcloud worked for you. Thank you for taking time out to play through the song. I appreciate your positive thoughts.

All the best,
Noel
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#219983 - 11/04/13 09:03 AM [User Showcase] Re: New Song: "Brighter Than Any Star" [Re: Noel96]
floyd jane Offline
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Registered: 08/10/12
Posts: 6160
Loc: Florida
Noel,

A GREAT BIG WHOOPING WOW!!!!

One of the finest songs I've heard in these here parts... "On every level" as my buddy Noel would say... Lyrics and Melody, Production and Mix!

Simply Beautiful.

Great use of RealTracks. The opening is PERFECT. The guitar work that Jason added was just right. That type of "adornment" is not covered well by RealTracks - (would be a great addition!).

What an awesome melody! The change at "cold" is so nice. The melody line that opens the chorus is stellar! And then.. the bridge - short and sweet - brings the whole thing up another notch. THEN... the dramatic pause in the final chorus rockets it! MAN!...I wanted the orchestra to start up right there!!! The full orchestra... Not to take away from the production AT ALL - it is TASTY - through and through... (you just got me excited at the finish there - like one of those movie songs that takes off at the end and takes your heart along with it....)

AWESOME. It stays with ya... I could go on and on - but I think I'd rather go listen one more time (I think that makes about 10...)

Do that again!

floyd


(PS - regarding songspace... really like the look and layout of the site - a terrific presentation! BUT... if you pause the song and start it up again, it always goes back to the beginning. You can click the time line to advance to where you want to go, but you have to remember where that was - you can't just stop and go... you might put that in as a suggested improvement...)
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#219986 - 11/04/13 09:14 AM [User Showcase] Re: New Song: "Brighter Than Any Star" [Re: Noel96]
Guitarhacker Offline
Veteran

Registered: 04/03/09
Posts: 5793
Originally Posted By: Noel96
Hey Herb,

... These days I find that keeping Ozone always active as the final plugin in my Master channel makes it easier and quicker for me to get to the final mix.

Because Ozone is constantly on ........

Have you ever played around with having Ozone always active as the final plugin? I'd like to hear your experiences if you have smile


Regards,
Noel


Yes.

I absolutely have Ozone on from the start. One of the first things I do is to pop O4 (with my custom preset) into the master bin. I start working towards the final mix right from the beginning of the first track. I have been doing this for years. I envelope as I go, I add FX as I go (in the tracks) so the further along I go in tracking, I am also working towards the final mastered mix as well. Therefore, when I do get all the tracking done, the final mix is mostly just tweeking the envelopes for levels.

By doing it this way, generally by the time I hit the final mixdown, everything (EQ wise) is in place. Any EQ added to the tracks is balanced upon what it sounds like coming through the master. That way, there is no need to go back and tweek the tracks as when the master plugs are dropped in at the end.... I drop them in at the beginning and this is not an issue.


Edited by Guitarhacker (11/04/13 09:15 AM)
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#220012 - 11/04/13 12:12 PM [User Showcase] Re: New Song: "Brighter Than Any Star" [Re: Noel96]
Janice & Bud Offline
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Registered: 12/05/11
Posts: 6103
Loc: GA USA
Well, we do simple productions mainly because I'm too lazy to venture out too far...so let's say that I don't speak all that talk about volume shaping and envelopes, etc. Guess I'll just have to base it on mine and Janice's ears.

When you think about it there aren'r many pure pop productions, vocals, etc., posted here. "Pop" is not a bad word -- it's just that a lot of pop now days is absolutely over the top, in your face, and short of any semblance of dynamics. This song has NONE of those short comings IMO. I think the lyric and the vocalist compliment each other very well and the production is stellar.

And in a world of overly maudlin, sad and often angst ridden songs it's nice to hear something upbeat. Great endeavor!
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#220017 - 11/04/13 12:24 PM [User Showcase] Re: New Song: "Brighter Than Any Star" [Re: Noel96]
gibson Offline
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Registered: 08/25/03
Posts: 3069
Loc: wales
A professional production of almost a new standard, if you see what I mean.
I have nothing to add to all the praise given already.
I however am amazed, and impressed, at your "clinical" way of writing songs as I "just follow the flow".

I like the idea of someone else singing some of my songs but as most are little vignettes of my life it would be hard for me to accept their interpretation I suspect.

As Guitarhacker I do volume envelopes on a lot of stuff I record but never have used such vertical changes. I shall have an experiment on my latest opus later!
All round that is an excellent song

Alyn
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#220048 - 11/04/13 04:39 PM [User Showcase] Re: New Song: "Brighter Than Any Star" [Re: Steve Young]
Noel96 Offline
Veteran

Registered: 10/31/08
Posts: 13528
Loc: Australia
Hi Steve,

Good to see you smile Thank you for giving the song a listen and for taking time to comment.

To be honest, I can't remember if I posted in these forums or not. I know that I had a version of the song on my SongU website for a while and that I used to have a link to that site in my signature. I think that version was with me singing.

As I'm typing, it occurred to me that I might well have sent you a link to hear Jason singing this when I first tried to mix the song. I remember feeling very intimidated about mixing a professional vocal in with my BIAB backing. I also remember thinking that if anyone knew how to do it to perfection, it would be Steve Young. Your productions have always been light years ahead of mine. I'm a big fan of your skills.

Recently I revisited this song. When I listened to what I had done those couple of years ago, I was embarrassed because I recall thinking that the mix was reasonable at the time. I took that as a sign that I have progressed in mixing and so I set about bringing this mix into line with my current understanding of the process.

Learning to write and produce songs sure is a long slow road for me but I'm loving it.

Once again, thank you.

Best thoughts,
Noel
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#220118 - 11/05/13 05:09 AM [User Showcase] Re: New Song: "Brighter Than Any Star" [Re: F.M.M.]
Noel96 Offline
Veteran

Registered: 10/31/08
Posts: 13528
Loc: Australia
Hi Eric,

I appreciate your comments. Thank you for taking a listen!

All the best,
Noel
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#220119 - 11/05/13 05:12 AM [User Showcase] Re: New Song: "Brighter Than Any Star" [Re: bluage]
Noel96 Offline
Veteran

Registered: 10/31/08
Posts: 13528
Loc: Australia
Hi Bluage,

Thank you! I'm not sure that my composition can stand beside all those wonderful comments you made. You gave me a huge smile, though. It's always good to feel good, I reckon smile I appreciate all your positive thoughts.

Best regards,
Noel

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#220120 - 11/05/13 05:31 AM [User Showcase] Re: New Song: "Brighter Than Any Star" [Re: floyd jane]
Noel96 Offline
Veteran

Registered: 10/31/08
Posts: 13528
Loc: Australia
Hey floyd!

Well that's a first! I've NEVER been given a "great big whopping wow" before. So many exclamation marks! I must say, I like that phrase "on every level". I must make a note of it. I can see myself using that in the future smile

It's interesting you mention the chord on "cold". The major chord on the flattened 7th degree of the major scale is always a bit special, I think. I seem to recall that it wasn't too long ago that I commented on your use of it in one of your songs. In the case of "Brighter Than Any Star", it's this chord that's responsible for making that 9th bar in the verse. I'd like to lay claim for making that discovery but I can't. I'm pretty sure I would have picked it up from someone, somewhere and added it to my toolbox.

I have to say that I'm so very conditioned to 8-bar sequences that writing a 9-bar melody was a bit of a challenge for me. It wasn't until I thought of Shakespeare, and the fact that he liked to end his long speeches with rhyming couplets, that the 9-bar sequence started coming together. The concept of rhyming couplets sounded like it might be a technique I could use for ending my verses. I already had the xaxa rhyme scheme happening and when I tried the xaxaa pattern, everything seemed to fall into place. It made me grateful for studying "Hamlet" in Year 12. It then dawned on me that Steve Seskin also sometimes ends a section with rhyming couplets. That was one of those 'ah ha' moments for me. I've now come to appreciate that a rhyming couplet gives a good sense of closure or completion.

Anyway, I'm probably boring you now ...

Thank for you all the songs you post. I've picked up so many good ideas from you since you started being part of the forum!

All the best,
Noel


Edited by Noel96 (11/05/13 06:58 AM)
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#220339 - 11/07/13 04:42 AM [User Showcase] Re: New Song: "Brighter Than Any Star" [Re: Guitarhacker]
Noel96 Offline
Veteran

Registered: 10/31/08
Posts: 13528
Loc: Australia
Hi again, Herb,

Thank you for taking time to fill me in on your use of Ozone. It's reassuring to see I'm walking along the a well trodden path.

Regards,
Noel
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#220340 - 11/07/13 04:48 AM [User Showcase] Re: New Song: "Brighter Than Any Star" [Re: Janice & Bud]
Noel96 Offline
Veteran

Registered: 10/31/08
Posts: 13528
Loc: Australia
Bud,

It very energetically disagree. There is NOTHING simple about your productions. Whenever I listen to them, I can hear the hours of work that goes towards getting them to sound authentic. That recent one that resonated with the '30s sound is a perfect example of what I mean.

The songs that you and Janice post here are a constant source of pleasure for me. I regularly re-listen to them. In addition, your arrangements and production inspire me and take me to places that I could never have gotten to on my own.

Thank you for listening to "Brighter Than Any Star". I appreciate the 'thumbs up' comments.

All the best to you and Janice,
Noel
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#220341 - 11/07/13 04:56 AM [User Showcase] Re: New Song: "Brighter Than Any Star" [Re: gibson]
Noel96 Offline
Veteran

Registered: 10/31/08
Posts: 13528
Loc: Australia
Hey Alyn,

Good to see you smile

Unfortunately, I can't control my clinical approach to songwriting. I blame my penchant for science for that.

In fact, it wasn't until I discovered that it's possible to approach lyric writing (in particular) using some fundamental principles, that are kind of like Newton's laws applied to lyrics, that it all started to make sense to me and fall into place for me. Lyrics were something that I had no idea how to make them work. Now I see a glimmer of hope on the horizon!

Thank you for dropping in and giving the song a run through. I appreciate your time and your comments.

Hope all is sailing along on smooth waters for you,
Noel
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