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#451099 - 01/14/18 10:35 AM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Turn UP those DRUMS!!!
floyd jane Offline
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TURN THOSE DRUMS UP!!!!!!

Songwriters who are new to producing - and some who are not so new - often do not understand how IMPORTANT drums are to the overall sound of a song.

So...let's talk about that a little.

We grow up writing songs on our guitars (typically). So what we hear is our song with guitar. Voice and guitar. That's what matters, we think. "Yeah, that's how I wrote it!"

That's great. BUT... That is seldom how a "radio song" is produced.

Guitar players (writers) don't even HEAR drums in a song, generally. They only hear the guitars. Because that is what they know. And their guitars are, quite often, too loud in a full mix. I often tell people "the drums could be a bit louder". And "old guys" often say "I don't like loud drums".

If you stopped listening to music around 1979 (which a lot of "old guys" did), then you likely don't "get" drums. Music prior to that had pretty wimpy drums compared to today's music. A lot of people continue to listen to only the music they grew up on (if at all).

Since then, drums have been getting louder. And louder. And LOUDER.

But 1979 guys still don't hear them. They are GUITAR GUYS.

Get a current record (or any made in the last 20 years) and put it on your iPod (if you have one). Or find a new record on YouTube (or any streaming service) and listen to the whole thing - with headphones or earbuds. Anything after 1990. And PAY ATTENTION to the drums. Listen to the record ONLY listening for the drums. After a while you should finally "get it". It is ALL ABOUT THE DRUMS (and a little about the bass).

START your mix with DRUMS. Get them LOUD. Then add your bass. Get it to play nicely with your drums. Then add your vocal. You can have had all your other instruments involved earlier to track your vocals... but after that, do your FIRST FULL MIX with just DRUM, BASS and VOCAL. THAT should sound really good. Then add those other things - guitars, piano, mandolin, strings... UNDER that basic track of DRUMS-BASS-VOCAL. Add them one at a time. Let them "add some flavor", not "take over". Drums, bass and vocal should rule.

When you get everything you want in there (your mix, that is), if you are "hitting the red", mute the drums. Likely you will no longer be in the red. If that is the case, don't worry about it. I know that will cause a flurry of "rules guys" to start citing those rules they live by, but most of those rules are held over from analog tape days. If the cause is the snap of that snare, who cares? You likely will not hear any distortion from it - it's a fraction of a second. It will not distort everything else. Give it a try and see. And, that little bit of red on the snare can actually give it a small amount of "warmth" - even in the digital world.

Give it a try. Pick a song that you have mixed that might have the drums low. And TURN 'em UP! One way to accomplish that is the simple make a duplicate copy of the drum track and add it in. If that is TOO loud (unlikely), turn that one down a bit...

(Guitar guys often mix pianos too low, too... but that is a different discussion...)
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#451100 - 01/14/18 10:43 AM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Turn UP those DRUMS!!! [Re: floyd jane]
sslechta Offline
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Registered: 12/27/13
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Loc: St. Louis, MO. USA
Could not agree more sir. I feel the same way. Spoken from a keys guy..... smile
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#451110 - 01/14/18 11:57 AM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Turn UP those DRUMS!!! [Re: floyd jane]
MarioD Offline
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Registered: 12/27/03
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Loc: Hamlin NY
What do you mean there is more to music than a guitar? whistle whistle

Seriously I agree with you. The hardest thing for me was to actually listen to other instruments when mixing a song. I was so used to either listening to the guitar and/or the chord progression. Of course the guitar is still the main instrument but the other instruments deserve some space, I guess.

Ducking and running for cover.
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#451140 - 01/14/18 02:52 PM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Turn UP those DRUMS!!! [Re: floyd jane]
David Snyder Online   happy
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#451143 - 01/14/18 03:09 PM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Turn UP those DRUMS!!! [Re: floyd jane]
Noel96 Offline
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Registered: 10/31/08
Posts: 12599
Loc: Australia
Originally Posted By: floyd jane
START your mix with DRUMS. Get them LOUD. Then add your bass. Get it to play nicely with your drums. Then add your vocal. You can have had all your other instruments involved earlier to track your vocals... but after that, do your FIRST FULL MIX with just DRUM, BASS and VOCAL. THAT should sound really good. Then add those other things - guitars, piano, mandolin, strings... UNDER that basic track of DRUMS-BASS-VOCAL. Add them one at a time. Let them "add some flavor", not "take over". Drums, bass and vocal should rule.

floyd,

I've never tried the above approach before! I'll definitely give it a shot with the present song I'm working on. Thank you for taking time to write your thoughts down.

For what it's worth, part of my plan of attack with mixing is that I always listen to tracks in pairs to make sure that there are no audio conflicts that need resolving. For example: bass + drums; bass + guitar 1; bass + piano; guitar 1 + piano; etc. While the above takes a little time, I find that it's time well spent. Also, low frequency audio clashes such as those that can occur between bass and drums, and piano (or guitar) and bass, can seriously impact the overall quality of the arrangement/production.

Regards,
Noel

P.S. I think I'm one of those 1979 guys (maybe earlier even)!
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#451158 - 01/14/18 04:25 PM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Turn UP those DRUMS!!! [Re: floyd jane]
Janice & Bud Offline
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Registered: 12/05/11
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Loc: GA USA
Damn, what about us bass guys? grin

Good info floyd! You and a few others here have “the” drum sound on the forum and, yep, it sounds like what I hear listening nowadays to multiple genres of music from various sources. And you nailed it regarding the snare red lining. That was/is hard for me to overcome due to my analogue mixing days - recording and gig house/monitors. I’m in the midst of remixing some of our earlier BiaB productions and the first thing I notice on them is the lack of drum presence and in particular the snare.

Thanks for highlighting this issue.

Bud
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#451178 - 01/14/18 06:14 PM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Turn UP those DRUMS!!! [Re: floyd jane]
David Snyder Online   happy
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Registered: 08/29/14
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But seriously, Floyd is right and there is more than one way to go about it.

IK Multimedia has released TR5 with some cool engineer presets, like a bunch from Dave Way.

One utilizes a tool set called Mic Room (wicked cool) to mimic mic'ing the drums--another EQs the set.

Pretty cool. These are regular old BIAB real drums being run through the processors.

https://soundcloud.com/david-snyder-mixing-lab/miced-drums-master

Dave Way Presets and TR5

http://www.ikmultimedia.com/news/?item_id=13118




Attachments
Mic-ed Drums_Virtual.jpg


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#451241 - 01/15/18 05:51 AM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Turn UP those DRUMS!!! [Re: David Snyder]
floyd jane Offline
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Registered: 08/10/12
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Loc: Florida



YES!!!!



(excellent)
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#451260 - 01/15/18 08:18 AM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Turn UP those DRUMS!!! [Re: David Snyder]
Samuel Davis Offline
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Registered: 08/09/17
Posts: 204
Loc: Florida
Originally Posted By: David Snyder

LOL Thats awsome!
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#451261 - 01/15/18 08:25 AM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Turn UP those DRUMS!!! [Re: floyd jane]
Samuel Davis Offline
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Registered: 08/09/17
Posts: 204
Loc: Florida
Seriously though, great info here Floyd.

I just recently picked up a trick from David Snyder on another forum post to enhance your drum tack. I used it in my last song which I will be posting here in the forums soon. I trippled the drum track then EQd one of the tracks to isolate the kick and one to emphasize the snare then mixed the three to my liking. It really helped to bring out the thump of the kick and the snap of the snare.
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#451278 - 01/15/18 10:10 AM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Turn UP those DRUMS!!! [Re: floyd jane]
David Snyder Online   happy
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Registered: 08/29/14
Posts: 3176
Loc: North Carolina
Ok, this is hilarious. I was analying an old song with software to "match the EQ" and the sound of it using IK Multimedia's Master Match.

I chose Carolina in my Mind (1979 version) by James Taylor because I was looking for a good acoustic mix reference/EQ match.

I could have SWORN that song had a very lush, warm, midrange in your face acoustic with everything else WAY in the background.

But NO. All you hear in the beginning is some pretty thin and tinny sound picking and then a HUGE FAT BASS that dominates everything, with moderate drums. And some little tinkly piano stuff way in the background.

I am like--Is that REALLY what I heard all those years ago? Yes. But in my imagination I remembered something totally different.

Weird man! If Floyd's rule applies to Carolina in My Mind (which it apparently does) God Help Us All on Death Metal.
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#451282 - 01/15/18 10:25 AM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Turn UP those DRUMS!!! [Re: David Snyder]
Guitarhacker Offline
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Registered: 04/03/09
Posts: 5414
Originally Posted By: David Snyder


boy... you ain't right.
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#451284 - 01/15/18 10:35 AM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Turn UP those DRUMS!!! [Re: floyd jane]
Guitarhacker Offline
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Registered: 04/03/09
Posts: 5414
Good advice.

My mixing sessions start out with the drums and the bass. I mute everything except the drums... I EQ the drums for clarity and definition.... I want that kick to kick and the snare needs to have snap in it....as much as is possible using the real drum tracks. Often if that doesn't work and if I'm not in a hurry, I will turn to midi sampled drums to get that drive I want.

Bass is a close second IMHO.... what a properly EQ'd and mixed bass & drum track and a good singer, you have a song that will stand on it's own. guitars and keys, and everything else is filler. I always like to point to this song as an example of this in action.

BLACK VELVET

And the secret with adding the filler is to only add what is absolutely essential. Many folks make the beginner mistake of thinking that...well, they took the time to record the tracks so it'd be a shame to waste them, so we'll just put all 20 of them in the mix and make it sound "full". Wrong. It makes it sound like a beginner mixed the song.
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#451346 - 01/15/18 04:11 PM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Turn UP those DRUMS!!! [Re: David Snyder]
rharv Offline
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Registered: 05/30/00
Posts: 18663
Loc: Marysville, Mi. USA
Originally Posted By: David Snyder
But seriously, Floyd is right and there is more than one way to go about it.

IK Multimedia has released TR5 with some cool engineer presets, like a bunch from Dave Way.

One utilizes a tool set called Mic Room (wicked cool) to mimic mic'ing the drums--another EQs the set.

Pretty cool. These are regular old BIAB real drums being run through the processors.

https://soundcloud.com/david-snyder-mixing-lab/miced-drums-master
..


TBH I liked this better.
I see you have the same issue with certain RDs that I do; there is a ringing in the bass drum that could have been muffled a bit for my taste.
It introduces mud in the bass/low-mids for some stuff.
That track sounded good on it's own, but I suspect it may need taming in a mix.

May be just a preference thing. I dunno.

I've been working on documenting how we record live drums, both the recording method (3 mic, 4 mic and 8 mic) and post recording processes. We have some years behind us so maybe someone will learn or maybe I'll get schooled.

Getting the right amount of ring from all drums is tricky .. from the bass drum, to toms (that often need control) to snare (I love a ringing snare), and even the ring of the ride bell. It can easily be too much, but you gotta have some.

Then there's phasing (mic placement and choice), etc
Recording live drums can get pretty complicated.
Especially once you get one kit set up just right and then another drummer comes in with his stuff ... or even the same kit with a different drummer will need changes.
We have a decent Yamaha kit that a lot of drummers are fine with once they play it, but then they all want their different cymbals, and then they inevitably move the snare a few inches. Having no idea we have 3 nights of moving the mic to get it where it was in relation to the snare. <grin>

Once we get done writing, and start recording actual tracks I'll try to document more of it. I think it will be fun to 'show & tell' how we are doing it, what we got for our efforts, and listen to suggestions from others.

smile
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#451348 - 01/15/18 04:46 PM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Turn UP those DRUMS!!! [Re: David Snyder]
dcuny Online   content
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Scroll down on the SoundCloud page, and it says "Seems a little quiet over here" wink
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Vocal control, you say. Never heard of it. Is that some kind of ProTools thing?

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PG Music News
A Little Bit Of Me Music Video!

A great music video created by forum user Floyd Jane! https://youtu.be/qPrejgnwb4M?t=3600

This song was featured in a detailed "The Birth of a Song" video created by Floyd Jane - watch the complete video here:
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RealBand 2018 Build 5 Update Available!

RealBand 2018 customers can download the latest free patch update here: http://www.pgmusic.com/support.realband.htm#2018_5

Summary of Changes for Build 5
Added: When generating the input file for saving as an MGU/SGU SongMode128= is saved to the input file.
Added: Localization support for 2018.
Added: flyby hints to new dialogs.
Fixed: Save As with a filename greater than 128 chars could cause an error 123 plus access violation.
Fixed: Rebooting RealBand after a filename with 128 chars was saved could cause an access violation.
Fixed: Pressing the Change button in the Event List Window could result in an access violation if an event was not a Note event.
Fixed: When running in Win 10, and using BBW or PT to generate audio harmonies, an error would occur saying that you need BB 2011 or PT 12 to generate audio harmonies.
Fixed: Midi Thru Method was not being saved to the .INI file. It always reverting to Track-Specific when booting up RealBand, even if the user manually changed the setting to Global in the Midi Thru Settings dialog.
Fixed: Delete All Notes on This Peg menu item in notation window right-click menu was missing.
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Band-in-a-Box® 2018 Build 512 Update Available!

Band-in-a-Box® 2018 for Windows customers can download the latest free patch update here: www.pgmusic.com/support_windowsupdates.htm#512

Summary of changes for Build 512 since 510 (Feb 15 2018):
Fixed: "Load SoundTrack Song" and "Load song with RealDrums Audio" buttons in the Sound Track dialog were not working.
Fixed: After returning Band-in-a-Box to factory settings the File Open dialog would default to the bb\Data\Lib directory.
Fixed: Choosing a custom chord sheet font would ignore any color choice made in the font selection dialog.
Fixed: Drum names were sometimes truncated in the RealDrums MultiDrums and Quicklist dialogs.
Fixed: Exporting a MIDI file might cause the error, "MIDIConv.exe no found".
Fixed: Mixer changes were not undoable, and would not cause user to be prompted to save their song when exiting.
Fixed: Static in RT2438 and other various RealTracks fixes.
Fixed: StylePicker database various updates. Some styles were displaying the wrong feel (swing/even) in notation. A few styles incorrectly showed missing Drums.
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PowerTracks Pro Audio 2018 is Here!

PowerTracks Pro Audio 2018 is here! PowerTracks Pro Audio 2018 includes many new features and enhancements:

Windows Audio (WASAPI) driver support. This allows for low latency audio recording/playback without requiring ASIO. Note that this supports 1 stereo input plus 1 stereo output at a time. For multiple inputs/outputs, you should continue to use either MME or ASIO.

ABC Notation format support. You can save a track of notation in a popular ASCII text format to import into other programs, or you can paste this format into a user forum as a way of sending the track (usually the melody and chord symbols) to other users without having to attach a file.

The built-in Audio Chord Wizard detection in the Chords window automatically detects the chords of the song, based on the audio data from all non-muted audio tracks. This works similar to the standalone Audio Chord Wizard, except that it uses the current bar lines of the existing song.

Notation Enhancements:
-X/8 time signature support. This is a special method of displaying 6/8, 9/8, or 12/8 time signatures in the Notation window.
-The Duplicate previous chord in notation right-click menu lets you quickly duplicate the previous chord (group of notes on same peg) without having to reenter it.
-Delete highlighted notes in notation right-click menu lets you delete all highlighted notes.
-Delete all notes on this peg in notation right-click menu lets you delete all notes on the nearest peg that was clicked on.
-You can now enter Section Numbers. Previously, you could enter letters (A-Z) only, but now you can also enter numbers (1-9).

...a full list of the new features in PowerTracks Pro Audio 2018 is available at http://www.pgmusic.com/powertracks.features.htm

http://www.pgmusic.com/powertracks.htm

#TBT - The Beginning of Xtra Styles PAKs for Band-in-a-Box®

We released the much-loved Xtra Styles PAKs in August 2016! This release included 164 RealStyles for Jazz, Country, Rock-Pop, and Singer/Songwriter and worked with any Band-in-a-Box® 2016 or higher UltraPlusPAK, EverythingPAK, or Audiophile Edition!

Xtra Styles PAKs were such a hit... we couldn't stop making them! Since their introduction, we've released 3 more PAKs with a total of over 600 Xtra Styles in all!

Want to hear what other program users are doing with their Xtra Styles? Visit our Xtra STyles Contests forum to hear all the songs submitted during previous song contest we've had: http://www.pgmusic.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=postlist&Board=102&page=1

Learn more about Xtra Styles PAKs and listen to their demos at http://www.pgmusic.com/xtrastyles.php?os=win.

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Check out some great feedback we've received on our Facebook account from program users:

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"The premiere reason for me for buying this program; it has given me the freedom to fully complete the foundation for my songs without the confinement of limited minded musicians. After the song concept is complete, it can then be presented those musicians to play as a cover song. Also writing a song with a band gives them partial ownership of your idea... not cool... especially since they may have fought your idea every step of the way.. Every member of an organized band should own a copy of this program to compose or to even give legitimate composition alternatives to the original songwriter."
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Thanks everyone!

Support for ABC Notation Format in Band-in-a-Box® 2018 for Windows!

ABC notation is the simple text-based notation system used by musicians worldwide to store chords, melody, and lyrics of songs. Now with Band-in-a-Box® 2018 for Windows you can open and save songs in ABC notation format!

To save the song in ABC notation format, press the [Save As] toolbar button and choose Save as ABC notation file from the menu. Once opened, select a track that you want to save and choose your other criteria - The [Copy to clipboard] button will copy the file to the clipboard (that you can then paste it into other programs). The [Save as File] button will let you type a name and select the destination in your hard drive.

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