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post #1 of 6 Old 07-06-10, 12:17 PM Thread Starter
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I need vocal tracking technique examples

Vocal tracking examples.

I need some input and if you could sight some examples of the end result on tracking comping producing vocals from another producers / engineers point of view.

Can you sight some main stream female artists, in the rock, new alternative venue you have worked with whose final vocal track on that song is a meticulously punched in, tweak and punch each word or sentence verses as an example the vocal track of David Lee Roth, Running with the Devil circulating on the web. That is more the extreme opposite. Live with a punch or two during the solo.

I also donít mean cite a postproduction technique of a track like Chad Kroeger's where the mid EQ is automated to give that subtle edge on words. I need to hear a finished vocal track that has more pieces than a Big Ben jigsaw puzzle but to my ears sounds like a conducive flowing performance that works.

I typically donít work on a single track as punch! Stop! do it again.. Nope.. do IT again.. Nope accent only the T in do iT again.

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post #2 of 6 Old 07-06-10, 05:50 PM
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Re: I need vocal tracking technique examples

You're requirements are pretty stiff! It's possible (I've done it), but only because I wasn't the recording engineer - I had to clean up a mess someone else made and the client was no longer available. However, I don't have the tracks to give you (perhaps someone does).

I don't think what I did would pass your tests, though. (I never allow this to happen when I'm the recording engineer, because it obviously requires hours of work for very slow advancement.) Ultimately, my recording sounded rather botchy when soloed. However, in the music, it became unnoticeable.

Pitch correction and voice timbre were the biggest challenges on the project - dynamic changes in level were child's play, compared to the timbre dynamics due to varying distances between mic and mouth.

Hopefully, someone has some tracks handy for you.
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post #3 of 6 Old 07-06-10, 10:14 PM Thread Starter
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Re: I need vocal tracking technique examples

Thanx for the input -

FYI this may be more of a mid life crisis for me perhaps trying to confirm what I know to be true. No body cuts vocals like this anymore. .. do they? My 'doubt' stems from an older artist in the studio who swears this is how her producer did her vocals in the 80's. Sing one line, one phrase rewind, hear it punch in, do the next.

FYI my mode of operatus - I leave, tell them to warm up while I grab a coffee.. OK I'm back let's hear one before I print. Now I have two complete tracks they don't even know I recorded.

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post #4 of 6 Old 07-07-10, 08:17 AM
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Re: I need vocal tracking technique examples

I think another factor is that your vocalist needs to be spot on in a number of different ways:
-immobile in front of the mic
-very consistent in angle
-very consistent in dynamics
and probably most important
-VERY consistent in performance

If the singer is this kind of professional you could probably pull off a comp style like that. For the rest of the singers (99.99% of the ones I've worked with, certainly) the differences between the various comps will make it into the nightmare that ejbragg is referring to.

I find comp'ing guitars to be just as tricky even though the amp never moves or changes (the differences in performances are killer).
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post #5 of 6 Old 07-07-10, 09:12 AM
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Re: I need vocal tracking technique examples

I have worked with some less than par singers, some good ones and lucky enough to work with some great ones. For any type i'll have them sing the whole song through (unless the tail of a verse interferes with the beginning of a chorus or visa vera) once or twice and we'll decide which parts are strong and which parts have a mistake or lack energy. whether it is one syllable or an entire line, i'll generally have them do the entire section (or maybe half) again as to maintain a consistent feel. A singer's voice will be changing throughout the session so for a less experienced singer having them punch in one word could make for an awkward line with one word having a different timbre than the rest. But even with a great singer it is still worth it to do a whole part over just in case. It doesn't hurt, and plus sometimes you and the singer will be happier with that whole part than the original.

The only time i'll ever do a single word punch it is if the singer is having trouble hitting a high/low/hard/long note because they are out of breath (inexperienced/untrained). It seems to happen quite a bit with less experienced singers, where they write a song but don't practice it enough to either realize that it is out of their range or to be able to hit all the tough notes.
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post #6 of 6 Old 07-07-10, 09:43 AM
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Re: I need vocal tracking technique examples

Yeah, even with the very best musicians I think it's still a difficult method and you do indeed have to be selective about where and when you're punching. It just gets exponentially worse for you as the variations I mentioned start to build up (to the point that eventually the performances will simply differ too much for the engineer to compensate without seriously detracting from both parts).
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