HOW TO PRODUCE OLD SKOOL TUNES? (vintage style)

Talk to your hearts content.....but keep it sweet! No record sales, live events listings or ebay labba labba.

Moderator: B&F Moderator

Re: HOW TO PRODUCE OLD SKOOL TUNES? (vintage style)

Postby CHRIS RIDDIM » Mon Aug 09, 2010 9:16 pm

Junior wrote:When I'M trying to recreate some old stuff, I usually fail miserably and wound up making something completely new.


Fixed!

Junior wrote: I for one don't like the clear and polished sound of computer music, and I just want to make it sound more dirty, simple and dry.


Then what you want is some instruments, four guys,or gals, and some microphones
CHRIS RIDDIM
 
Posts: 330
Joined: Tue Apr 28, 2009 12:56 pm
Location: Amsterdam

Re: HOW TO PRODUCE OLD SKOOL TUNES? (vintage style)

Postby dougie conscious » Mon Aug 09, 2010 9:27 pm

and a decent live room,decent mixing desk,someone who knows how to record live instruments{especialy drums}
its all starting to get a bit expensive,
you can see now why computer music is so popular,
dougie conscious
 
Posts: 2535
Joined: Mon Nov 29, 2004 8:05 pm

Re: HOW TO PRODUCE OLD SKOOL TUNES? (vintage style)

Postby Ola B » Tue Aug 10, 2010 8:42 am

+ you need good and vibesful players of instruments, another cost..
Ola B
 
Posts: 114
Joined: Mon Dec 28, 2009 10:46 pm

Re: HOW TO PRODUCE OLD SKOOL TUNES? (vintage style)

Postby Junior » Tue Aug 10, 2010 10:26 am

Nuff respect to people working with live musicians and real isntruments.
But personally I rarely hear new reggae music with real instruments that actually sounds good. It's very rare.
Dougie is right. In order to make that kind of music sound good, you need expensive equipment, good musicians and some very specialized skills in mixing and placing mics.
With a computer you can achieve much more with much less.
Junior
 
Posts: 420
Joined: Wed Dec 08, 2004 9:14 am
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark

Re: HOW TO PRODUCE OLD SKOOL TUNES? (vintage style)

Postby Chocolate Soldier » Tue Aug 10, 2010 10:40 am

dougie conscious wrote:and a decent live room,decent mixing desk,someone who knows how to record live instruments{especialy drums}
its all starting to get a bit expensive,
you can see now why computer music is so popular,


Yes acoustic drums are the hardest technically as they encompass all the frequencies in the audio spectrum from lowest lows (kick & toms 30hz-200hz), mids (snare, rim, initial kick/tom kits, part of cymbals/hats) to highest highs (cymbals 7khz-20khz - with overtones that go beyond the capability of digital to pick up eg: 30khz 50khz), transients, overtones, high sound pressure levels & you get into issues of phasing if you use multiple mics.

To get a good drum sound you generally need a good drummer who tunes the kit well, good sounding drums, a good sounding space, quality mic preamps, good mics & someone who knows what they are doing, with good ears to capture the sound. If all those elements are there it can be as 'easy' as 1-2-3 throw up a mic and hit record, if not - a grind.

Recording live tracks is expensive - cost prohibitive for pretty much every modern roots, UK & Euro producer around I would think....

Bring on the PC.
Chocolate Soldier
 
Posts: 5796
Joined: Mon Nov 29, 2004 7:24 pm
Location: Spaceship Earth

Re: HOW TO PRODUCE OLD SKOOL TUNES? (vintage style)

Postby Inyaki » Tue Aug 10, 2010 10:46 am

To each their own. We just do what we can with limited resources, equipment, money, talent, time....
I've done both analogue and pure digital stuff and still do (sometimes uncredited!)
For me personally, is "easier" to get an "authentic" sound aiming at digital 80s/90s productions than a 70s analogue (traditional musicians) sound. Just the drums (as mentioned here) is a huge challenge ( the hardest thing) ......Maybe other people feel different.
But still, each style requires different skills , and very few people can produce quality in either style.

If people want to replicate something from the past ( late 80s Jammys or late 50s Blue note Hard Bop or medieval or baroque music) is up to them, whatever they feel. If they want to mix and blend and "create" something "new". Is up to them.

IMVHO of course!

( ...please check my inverted commas before anybody jump into a heated debate....how many **** smilies are necessary to get a point across sometimes? )
Inyaki
 
Posts: 1109
Joined: Mon Nov 29, 2004 11:07 pm
Location: South London

Re: HOW TO PRODUCE OLD SKOOL TUNES? (vintage style)

Postby Ola B » Tue Aug 10, 2010 11:55 am

Junior wrote:But personally I rarely hear new reggae music with real instruments that actually sounds good. It's very rare.
Dougie is right. In order to make that kind of music sound good, you need expensive equipment, good musicians and some very specialized skills in mixing and placing mics.
Agreed.

Record live is much harder but IMHO very rewarding on those occasions when it turns out good. As has been mentioned drums seem to be the most difficult part to get good. I ve tried it years ago with only ok results. Found that recording onto tape helped but that didnt do enough. Im soon gonna try to slew the dragon and record live drums, we work with a good player w a good set, got killer pres on the console, still inexperienced about the micing part and havent tried the room yet. Any tips on micing (models/placing etc) or good ways to dampen the room is welcome...
Ola B
 
Posts: 114
Joined: Mon Dec 28, 2009 10:46 pm

Re: HOW TO PRODUCE OLD SKOOL TUNES? (vintage style)

Postby Chocolate Soldier » Tue Aug 10, 2010 12:27 pm

In my experience quality pres help a lot & make the job far easier.

What kind of console pres do you have?

The best drum recording tips I ever saw - courtesy of UK engineer Mike Pelanconi (Drum Drops, On-U)

Proof of concept is he gets killer drum sounds on recordings...





General

1. Use two room mics on the kit as well as conventional close mics and overheads- one in front of the kit for a bass drum heavy sound (positioned 50 cm in front of the bass drum at head height- move closer or further as is required) and the other above the drummers head pointing to the snare (for a snare heavy sound)
2. Unless its the desired effect dont over compress bass drum, snare and hi-hat microphones when recording. Save it for the mix
3. Remove any cymbals or toms that are not being used so as to avoid extra resonance
4. When using two microphones on the snare (one on top & one underneath) remember to check/reverse the phase on the bottom microphone. Avoid having the microphone's too close, the top mic should be 2-3 inches up and out aimed at the centre of the head. The mic under the snare should be aimed at the centre/snare band and no closer than a couple of inches
5. When a microphone is placed too close to the head, it doesn't pick up as much of the "crack", it catches more of a timbale sound and will sound unnatural. Listen to the snare in the room as the drummer is playing - and then listen to the snare on tape - are they the same ? If not, they are probably too close
6. Experiment with the microphone beneath the snare, if it's too close to the snare band it wont sound natural
7. Use the bottom snare microphone as an FX send (a spring reverb always works for me!)
8. If the snare is buzzing find the cause of it and retune it, usually it's the toms. If that doesn't work try gaffer tape over the snare band (bearing in mind to stay close to the rim)
9. Between 5khz and 6khz is always a good frequency to EQ/boost on snares
10. If you want a fat snare sound, keep the bottom skin low pitched - regardless of the pitch of the top skin
11. If you want a more cutting snare sound, tune the bottom skin up in pitch and keep the top skin lower in pitch than the bottom
12. Use two bass drum microphones, one close to the beater (for attack) and the other just outside the outer skin(for depth). If you mix the two microphones together to create one killer bass drum sound, remember to check the phase. (check http://www.littlelabs.com for tools to help with this technique)
13. Movement of the microphone as little as a few cm in the bass drum can make big changes. Closer to the inner head results in more definition and less "boom" from the drum. Careful not to get too close to the beater or the mic amp will overload and distort and/or you will damage the mic. Wooden beaters are my personal favourites as they give a good natural definition
14. If you're recording on less than 24 tracks, try to keep the amount of tracks to a minimum. If you take care whilst setting up the sound, and by mixing 'overhead', tom and room mics together into one big stereo pair you will be able to achieve great drum sounds and never use more than five tracks - (taking into account a separate track for kick, snare and hats). If you are unsure of your sound/balance you can always bounce once you have your take recorded and you are happy with the sound
15. Record any clicks/loops or guide music to tape before you record so you don't have to wait for sequencer to catch up if doing any drops and to minimise any sync problems (especially if using Ataris or drum machines- sync it back up when you have finished recording). If your clicks/guide music are on tape, you can experiment with the vari-speed whilst recording. If the song is too fast for the drummer try slowing it down as it may help them achieve a better feel. I do this a lot as I like the way it affects the sound and helps to iron out any laziness in the delivery
16. When bouncing the toms, ride them up in the fills. Louder is always better and if later on you find its too much use a compressor (often a nice effect in breakdowns)
17. If the hi-hats are too loud in the natural balance (i.e in the live room) try making the drummer use a lighter drumstick (or nylon tipped) on hats and a heavier stick on the snare.
18. If you're using clicks on a sequencer - make a simple percussion pattern and even a bass line/tambourine as opposed to a brain numbing vibe killing blip. (Quantized of course)
19. Get the best sound you possibly can before recording - always think like your mixing and give the drummers a good headphone balance- check and ask if they want or need something louder in their headphone mix
20. Be adventurous with the low frequency, especially with room/ambient mics and kicks
21. If possible quiet cymbals are always best for recording, so the older the better. Raising them high above the kit works best, might look funny and the drummer might complain, but the sound is better as you will have less spill on tom mics. Jazz drummers and Buddy Rich fans will fight you on this one!
22. If like me you like compressed sounding drums but don't like the way it always affects the crash cymbals- overdub them later on and then bounce them into your stereo room/overhead track. (Dave Grohl often records like this)
23. Spend time making sure the tuning of the drums is as good as possible. If the drums naturally sound good then getting them recorded is a breeze. Once you have a rough sound together record a minute or so, then play it back whilst vari-speeding both faster and slower, so as to check whether the sound of the drums are better up or down in pitch
24. Assuming you're working on analog tape, record drums loudly and don't be scared to rock the meters so as to guarantee maximum tape compression
25. If you're working on analog tape with SMPTE (and are in-sync with sequencers) prepare 3 takes for each rhythm. All three sharing the same SMPTE time (i.e starting from 0 min on each take). By having the same sync/smpte reference you will be able to edit between takes and still be in sync (as long as you replace the same sections from one take to the other i.e Verse 1 on take 1 for Verse 1 on take 3 (and your edits have to be clean of course !)

For this technique to work there are a few simple things to be aware of :

* Make sure the drummer plays the same arrangement on each take
* Choose the best take and then replace relevant sections. Don't be overly fussy about it, but you will need a good drummer!
* Use natural places to edit from - snares, the start of fills etc. Try and avoid downbeats (especially if you are playing/recording with other loops that are being triggered on the downbeat)
* Be careful when editing after a cymbal (listen out for the decay) it might sound Ok at low volume or on the close mics but when you compress the room mics and overheads, the decay becomes longer and more audible
* Set your sequencers SMPTE page correctly - most have a sensitivity threshold that can be adjusted (if your edits are clean you shouldn't have any problems). Some software/smpte synchronisers are more sensitive than others so experiment
* As you are recording make notes - as you have three takes you can make sure you get exactly what you need. If you've got it in two takes let the drummer know and let him go mental on the third take, you might get something extra

Drum Drops
Recording on Digital or PC

1. Keep it simple. It's far too easy to waste time at the screen while your musician is sitting getting bored and losing the great idea he/she had when you first played the track!
2. Yes you can keep a million takes of everything and edit them all together, but it's very tedious and uses lots of drive space. Don't accept the 'Oh well you can always ProTools it' attitude. If they play it right in the first place, the feel is better and it doesn't take hours to put together.
3. Try and use some analogue gear (compressors/EQs/pre-amps) when recording as once you're in the digital realm nothing will give you that warmth and depth (and yes noise!). Music that is purely digital sounds sterile and thin.
4. Give your session a start time of 10 seconds or start your sequence at bar 3 or 5. This means that if you need to synchronise any tape machines, drum machines or other DAW there is time to lock up and your first bar will not sound rushed or clipped
5. If you hit the clip/ overload on the meter, you can get away with it up to a level, like tape. But hit it too hard and unlike tape, it sounds horrible. If your level is hot or very dynamic, either back off the level or use an analogue compressor on the input path.
6. NAME THINGS! Life is so much easier if all your audio files aren't called 'Audio 1#blahblahblah'.
7. Just because you can run 128 tracks simultaneously doesn't mean you have to! Mono can be a beautiful thing....

Drum Drops
Mixing Tips

1. For bass drum look for punch (1.5-3 KHz boost) as well as depth (60-100 Hz boost)
2. For snare drum look for presence (4-5 KHz boost), attack (1-2 KHz boost) and watch out for low mid mud (200-600 Hz cut)
3. For hi-hats and overheads look for high top end (12-16 KHz) for Hi-Fi and RnB sound
4. For Dub and King Tubby sounding hi-hats try filtering top end off or boost midrange (1.5-3-Khz) or find some nasty old hi-hats
5. Try not to share/equalize the same frequencies on each track, find the sweet spot for each drum/microphone
6. Turn up the overheads and room microphones on fills and instrumental breaks for extra dynamics
7. Try taking a mastering approach when sub-mixing drums i.e. listen out for possible EQ and compression improvements, experiment whilst listening at low levels
8. Instead of individually compressing everything try just a stereo compressor or EQ on the sub mixed drums.
9. Use different combinations of room / ambience in the arrangement, e.g. more ambience in the chorus of a song can help in dynamics / energy.
10. If in doubt turn the drums up in the mix, too loud is always better than too quiet as far as I'm concerned (watch compressor settings).
11. No room or ambient tracks? Send sub mix of drums to an amp or speaker and find desired ambience texture by microphone selection/placement, try a ribbon microphone, fuzz pedal or some crazy compression to impress your friends!
12. Try radical compression and EQ on the input of reverbs and FX
13. Don't over mix reverbs-usually the snare and overheads are enough for subtle production values.
14. Want to go crazy! Compress or filter FX returns-make them pump and scream!
15. The bass drum and bass line need to work together, usually it helps if they do not share the same sound/frequency i.e. if the bass is very low/sub sounding the bass drum typically will have to have some attack or you will lose energy / movement. The opposite will also apply, if the bass is bright or melodic try a lower sounding EQ or tuning on the bass drum
16. If you're mixing in a digital environment, try using spare inputs/outputs on your interface for analogue FX sends and re-amping. If you don't have a zero latency interface you can always record the return to an audio track. Your crusty old guitar amp reverb might not sound big and posh like a high end plug-in, but it will quite likely sound cooler. Cassette machines can be used for sub-mixing, giving an exaggerated tape saturation sound that's great for big retro drums as well as making things like soft-synths and keyboard emulators sound more lifelike!!

Drum Drops
The 70s sound

1. Detune drums all the way down. Yes, ALL the way ! But not too far with the snare.
2. Tape Gaffer tape in a criss cross fashion over all the toms
3. Take off the bottom skins on the toms and place the mics inside (on some makes however the lugs will rattle, so keep the skins and tune low, but not as low as the front skins.)
4. Take out inside padding if you have any in the bass drum-try using a small cushion or bits of soft foam instead of pillows
5. Use wooden beaters on the bass drum
6. Try and find old and big 15" hi-hats
7. Try and use both wooden and metal snares at least 6" deep-preferably old and dirty
8. Replace your skins with Calfskin, can be expensive and tedious but it's worth it

Drum Drops
Want to be a Jedi?

1. Look for interesting sounds by experimenting with the tuning, different beaters, sticks and skins
2. Look for cheap old drums and cymbals, military snares or toys for extra character
3. Don't be scared to experiment!
4. Apply your mixing experience to your drum recording
5. Don't be scared of drummer's. Let the drummer know your looking for a good drum sound, most players will be co-operative
6. Record and play back the first take so as to let the drummer hear the sound, check the feel etc. If it sounds good the following takes will be better
7. Learn how to edit for extra freedom but don't over-edit performances. If you have a "Fix in the Mix!" approach you will never be a Jedi!
8. If a drum track needs a lot a work it means its not good! Push for a great take
9. Energy and vibe should always be at the forefront of your objectives
10. Listen and discuss the other instruments to record or overdub for drum tuning choice
11. In the grand scheme of things remember that the snare tuning defines the sound of the drum kit more than anything else
12. Always check the phase relationship between your microphone set up, use your ears and in general keep it simple
13. Remember the drummer, if he or she are inspired and made to feel good they will deliver a better take and in doing so they will make you sound better
14. I always reccomend setting up the drums and sound the night before your session, leaving your ears fresh for the recording and saving energy for the drummer

Drum Drops
Troubleshooting

1. If you are not getting good tom sounds, take the bottom skin off and try the microphones inside for extra retro quality (see 70s sound)
2. Use new snare skins for the top if you are missing natural brightness or attack and old heads if you are after a warmer more dampened sound.
3. If your bass drum is not sounding fat enough it could be because the microphone is too close to the beater or the bass drum itself is too dampened i.e check your cushion or pillow isn't resting on the beater head and listen to the tuning
4. If the bass drum is booming try taking the front head off or try more dampening
5. Listen to the drums in the room, do they sound good? If you have placed the drummer in the centre of the room and the sound is too ambient or coloured try facing the drum kit into a corner close to the wall as the microphone stands will allow. If the walls/floor are reflective i.e brick or shiny surface try hanging up heavy curtains or quilts and use carpet on the floor
6. Is the room too dead or lifeless? Try building a wooden platform for the drums for extra resonance. If there is a hallway leading to the live area or another small room/vocal booth try and use them for extra ambience and vibe. If it's a two room set up try a microphone in the control room and monitor of headphones whilst recording
7. Do your drum sounds lack dynamics? check your compression settings are not too extreme
8. Listen to your favourite sounding drum recordings before and during the session to compare, if the results are encouraging you will feel better about what your doing
9. Are you looking for a heavy sound and not getting it? Try heavy sticks, bigger and deeper snares and encourage the drummer to be an animal
10. Let the drummer know what you want by either playing him an example or encouraging the right direction, they will feel better knowing they are playing the right thing and in doing so will deliver a better performance.

Drum Drops
Compression

* A compressor reduces the dynamic range of audio material: i.e. it makes the loudest bits quieter so you can make everything louder, keeping the level more consistent
* A limiter stops the output of a signal/audio going above a pre-determined level (threshold)
* Attack and Release settings determine how much the compressor pumps so experiment
* Threshold controls the level above which compression/limiting occurs
* Ratio settings determine the amount of gain reduction (usually expressed as a ratio 2:1 etc.)
* Make up gain or output level determines final ouput level of the compressed signal

In use

* The ambience/room tracks tend to be a good starting point for the typical big room sound, start with high threshold and low compression ratios, experiment with the attack and release settings for pumping sound
* If you have applied Eq try alternating between pre and post and choose the best sounding
* If you are going crazy and pumping the drums at obscene levels then listen out for cymbals and if you are monitoring on small speakers remember wild compression will affect your over all bottom/bass end so when listening on large/club speakers it might sound muddy or undefined
* If when you've compressed, you find there's not enough of a hit, back off the attack or raise the threshold.
* If you've got a cool sound but you want more 'boom', try using a heavy compression on an aux, group or bus send. Use a fast attack and release, low threshold and high ratio. Feed it up a channel (or 2 if stereo) and balance it in to your mix or record it.
* Use your ears and not your eyes i.e. don't worry about the meters and listen at low levels for reference

Different types

* VCA: tend to be fast so they are popular such as DBX 160
* Optical: still reasonably fast and tend to have more character (than VCA) and are more expensive
* Tube: The most expensive and depending on the model tend to be the best such as Fairchild 660 ( if you are rich) or Altec 436c (if you're on a budget) for character and warmth
* Others: The ultimate in our opinion are Vintage Pye Compressor/Limiters or BBC AM6, Telefunken/Siemens U73b and original black face vu DBX 160
* Plug-Ins: There are many different software compressor plug-ins available, as well as software simulations of many famous and popular analogue compressors and generally they behave like the hardware originals, have all the same functions and have the huge advantage of being able to use any number of the same compressor at one time. The best ones look ahead slightly, or have a 'smooth' setting which prevents the nasty click you can sometimes get when using heavy compression with a fast attack. However, all plug-ins have an inherrent delay involved in the time it takes to process the signal. This varies from plug-in to plug-in, but it can affect the phase relationships of the different tracks. If this becomes a problem, you should use the same plug-ins across all of your kit, giving them all the same delay.
While they are cost-effective, we have yet to hear the plug-in that actually sounded the same as the real thing; they don't colour the sound or give it the same body and warmth as real analogue circuitry.
Chocolate Soldier
 
Posts: 5796
Joined: Mon Nov 29, 2004 7:24 pm
Location: Spaceship Earth

Re: HOW TO PRODUCE OLD SKOOL TUNES? (vintage style)

Postby Ola B » Tue Aug 10, 2010 1:21 pm

Many thanks for sharing all this, its very much apreciatied!

Console pres will be a Tore Seem 80s console (Custom built in Norway for Swedish National radio use). Its packed w Lundahl tranformers and is very clean and punchy sounding. Unfortunately we wont record onto tape now.
Ola B
 
Posts: 114
Joined: Mon Dec 28, 2009 10:46 pm

Re: HOW TO PRODUCE OLD SKOOL TUNES? (vintage style)

Postby FitZ » Tue Aug 10, 2010 2:07 pm

Chocolate Soldier wrote:Energy and vibe should always be at the forefront of your objectives


TRUTH !
Gangunguru Hi-Fi since 1998
FitZ
 
Posts: 891
Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2005 12:17 pm
Location: Down Deh

Re: HOW TO PRODUCE OLD SKOOL TUNES? (vintage style)

Postby Ola B » Tue Aug 10, 2010 2:25 pm

True dat. Inspired works is a blessing, no matter how its done.

FitZ wrote:
Chocolate Soldier wrote:Energy and vibe should always be at the forefront of your objectives


TRUTH !
Ola B
 
Posts: 114
Joined: Mon Dec 28, 2009 10:46 pm

Re: HOW TO PRODUCE OLD SKOOL TUNES? (vintage style)

Postby CHRIS RIDDIM » Tue Aug 10, 2010 3:30 pm

Junior wrote:Nuff respect to people working with live musicians and real isntruments.
But personally I rarely hear new reggae music with real instruments that actually sounds good. It's very rare.
Dougie is right. In order to make that kind of music sound good, you need expensive equipment, good musicians and some very specialized skills in mixing and placing mics.


Dougie IS right, owning everything to record and produce a full live band IS expensive, but placing a mic is really not that difficult, and mixing a track isn't 'rocket science' (tho to be fair 'rocket science' is one of the easiest scientific disciplines, it's just working out gravity, velocity, resistance, mass and entropy, stuff all scientists learn in before they even go to university, the rest is just blowing things up).

I think moist 'new' reggae music is actually a blend of 'real' and 'virtual'. Sherwood for example will mix a dub 'live' 2 or 3 times, then 'digitally' cut and paste the best mixes together, half of one, half of another, the rationale being that it is VERY difficult to mix a whole track with no mistakes or 'clangers' while retaining the 'spontaneous', 'improvised' or 'off the cuff' approach to mixing a dub.

Junior wrote:With a computer you can achieve much more with much less.


I would say that "With a computer you can achieve much LESS with much less."

Computers are great for PRODUCING music but not so good for WRITING a song (and I consider instrumentals and 'riddims' to be 'songs') that stands up to repeated listening and re-version

I am just suggesting that to get something "more dirty, simple and dry.", the best approach would be to write the music FIRST on a few simple instruments, melodica, bass, guitar, etc. Then record it on the PC having defined the melodies and 'arrangement' first . ALL music is valid, I just maintain that the PROCESS of writing music on the computer results in a different kind of music to music that is written 'off screen'. It's not 2 paths to the same place, it's 2 different paths to 2 different places. Yet I must reiterate that ALL music is valid (even 'jedward'), sometimes I crave those cheesy '50 pence piece' simmonds drum sounds
CHRIS RIDDIM
 
Posts: 330
Joined: Tue Apr 28, 2009 12:56 pm
Location: Amsterdam

Re: HOW TO PRODUCE OLD SKOOL TUNES? (vintage style)

Postby CHRIS RIDDIM » Tue Aug 10, 2010 3:40 pm

Chocolate Soldier wrote:Yes acoustic drums are the hardest technically ................

Recording live tracks is expensive - cost prohibitive for pretty much every modern roots, UK & Euro producer around I would think....

Bring on the PC.


bring on the Roland drums!

Image

the hi hats are not able to imitate a kit but that is a cheap one, they do sell one that has both upper and lower hats and sensors to detect the movement , but i just got the cheaper 'one cymbal' hat and pedal . but the 'brain' is the top one, 10 outputs, the snare trigger can do open, rim or 'rimshot'.

Unfortunately I got skint and had to sell it to Rash who drums in Jah Rej's band, and I'm not really a drummer and decided to eventually get a really good drummer to play on my music and I can write without a 'digi kit' , back to the RY30 I think, unless Rej will sell me his R8
CHRIS RIDDIM
 
Posts: 330
Joined: Tue Apr 28, 2009 12:56 pm
Location: Amsterdam

Re: HOW TO PRODUCE OLD SKOOL TUNES? (vintage style)

Postby Chocolate Soldier » Tue Aug 10, 2010 10:07 pm

Ola B wrote:Many thanks for sharing all this, its very much apreciatied!

Console pres will be a Tore Seem 80s console (Custom built in Norway for Swedish National radio use). Its packed w Lundahl tranformers and is very clean and punchy sounding. Unfortunately we wont record onto tape now.



Those tips are C R U C I A L
The best I have ever seen on drum recordings in the way I like to hear them.
I have used many tips from that list.

As for recording onto digital - the thing to bear in mind is not recording too hot. In the 16bit digital days everyone blasted the levels to
wring every bit of resolution out of the converters and perhaps as well as a conceptual relic from the days of hitting tape hard, for certain reasons - now most systems are 24bit so you can relax on the levels, record inputs ideally at -12 / -20db.

Stay 'green' not yellow, orange or red..

This will help give you a 'warmer' sound ..

With mixing 'in the box' watch your internal levels so as to not max out the digital headroom, especially if you're using plugins, keep the levels low & get the mix volume level higher afterwards if you need to in mastering...

If you are mixing on an analogue desk - you want to be aware of your gain structure, too much input gain on the channel is generally not good, too little can lead to extra noise depending on the circuit. Always keep the master fader up all the way (adjusting the mix level if its too loud by pulling down the master fader can lead to subtle attenuation of frequencies & degraded sonics, high end especially) & create your balance with the track faders. BTW the same holds true for DJ mixers - a common practice is to boost all the levels & then pull the main fader down if its too loud or overloading. The 'correct' practice is keep the main fader open all the way & exercise discipline with channel levels.

Every desk has a certain 'sweet spot' or window depending on how you set up the gain structure & balance. Usually blasting the levels leads to nastiness - think goldilocks & find the area that's just right, some desks are more forgiving, some have a small window, some bigger...
Last edited by Chocolate Soldier on Tue Aug 10, 2010 10:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Chocolate Soldier
 
Posts: 5796
Joined: Mon Nov 29, 2004 7:24 pm
Location: Spaceship Earth

Re: HOW TO PRODUCE OLD SKOOL TUNES? (vintage style)

Postby soul rebel » Tue Aug 10, 2010 10:20 pm

Junior wrote: When you're trying to recreate some old stuff, you usually fail miserably and wound up making something completely new. I think that was basically what happened in most of reggae history. Sitting down with a blank sheet trying to invent something new is rarely the way to go. I for one don't like the clear and polished sound of computer music, and I just want to make it sound more dirty, simple and dry. Learning what they did right in the 80's is IMO a very good idea. It's not about making retro music. But more about trying to find a good computer sound.


I see what you are saying. I too miss the "dirty" sound, although I would say you don't have to look as far back as the 80s to find it. I feel it's only in recent years the music has become a bit too polished.
Anyway, I agree with much of what you have said in this thread, and it does appear that some people are going out of their way to misunderstand your points.

Reggae and dancehall to me is often at it's best when it's almost minimalistic. Whether roots, rocksteady, rub-a-dub, digital, bashment, or whatever. My tip to any producer is to keep it simple, don't add a single sound if it's not necessary...
User avatar
soul rebel
 
Posts: 177
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2004 5:35 am
Location: Sweden

PreviousNext

Return to General discussion

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Yahoo [Bot] and 17 guests