I\'m quite new to giga and am looking for a string library that might be best suited for recreating the above genre. It\'s all slow legato bowing with no solo sections (although I\'m no orchestral expert). Would anybody here be able to recommend something?
What Diana Krall album are you thinking of? The sound changes with each song, not to mention each CD. And--I hate to say it--isn\'t her best stuff without strings? Sorry, but the best way to make a bad jazz album is to use strings. Strings are used either to bury the voice when the singer is older and losing the ability to sustain notes at pitch (see the \"Tony Bennett Takes a Holiday\" album,) or too young to have heard of pitch.
Please, if you like jazz and singers, stay away from doing strings. Use a piano instead, playing the same notes. Ms. Krall is a wonderful singer, but like too many vocalists, uncertain of the direction in which she should go. She is therefore at the mercy of bad producers who want to sell an album, and force or convice her to record whatever makes the most money and seems vaguely viable. You are not recording Ms. Krall, but you have the opprotunity to instead let your vocalist make a good choice and choose a good arrangement, like Ms. Krall\'s best arrangements: a quartet. Better still, piano and her voice.
Conflict of interests. What is Jazz? Is Jazz a specific musical style where strings have no allowance? Take Pat Metheny for example. His best album is by (his own comments) \"Secret Story\". Its nothing but string arrangements and it just works great as a \"light hearted\" fusion jazz album. In europe they have a movie concept called \"Dogme\". Its the idea of creating certain rules for creating authentic movies. I would hate to see the same thing happen to jazz. Jazz is the release point from classical music - its transformation from classic to rhytmic - strings are a natural element in jazz. Do I need to point at the fiddle? I would say that some of the finest jazz productions are actually the ones using strings.
Jazz is one of my main sources of income as an audio engineer. 2 Grammy nominations (Ernestine Anderson) and a list of musicians that reads like a Jazz who\'s who. I just recently listened closely to Dianas records in SACD and 5.1 because I am currently mixing a Terry Gibbs \"Tribute to Lionel Hampton\" for this format.
Diana Krall analysis:
Voice sound = horrible over-compression, bad punches, no high end, breathing too loud. Piano very muffled seems like was recorded with the mikes outside the blanket over the piano.
Strings are live but are also very muffled. Diana desperately needs a new production team. It breakes my heart to hear a great performer being represented this way.
Strings in Jazz:
It\'s hard to find players who are not spoiled by the simplicity of movie scores. Many times we tried to add strings behind great live performances and we couldn\'t use the results because of the lack of capable players (yet we paid many thousands for studio and first call players). Otherwise strings are a very solid part of Jazz if they can hack it.
I think you will get a better string sound than Diana\'s with almost any library out there.
Pat Metheny and Tony Bennett have both used strings in quite different ways and achieved excellent results. Tony\'s \'Here\'s to the ladies\' album is nothing short of sublime. Hats off to 70+ year old - he\'s the last of the great saloon singers and deserves respect accordingly. I saw Pat Metheny\'s Secret Story Live and loved it. Shame the strings were pre-recorded here in the UK [img]images/icons/frown.gif[/img]
I kind of agree with Sharmy. Krall\'s earlier work sans strings was far more to the point. The \'Look of Love\' album has strayed considerably from her original jazz roots into commercialism - a shame, as she\'s a fine pianist above all things with an impeccable sense of timing. (Reminds me of Nat King Cole\'s predicament.) However, I also believe that careful use of strings shouldn\'t be disregarded categorically. What really matters is the reaction in the listener. I run a complete 2 hr set of standards arranged for piano, bass, drums, voice and guitar. The other night I ended the set with a sampled orchestral backing (actual performance) to one of our numbers. The audience response was overwhelming. I don\'t see that as selling out - more as an open mind to arranging. In music there should be no rules [img]images/icons/wink.gif[/img]
PS For the record, New Yorker, Stacey Kent is actually more my cup of tea.
Isn\'t her stuff more jazzy arrangements of pop/standard tunes? That sounds great with strings. Sinatra and Jobim with Claus Ogerman-a beautiful album. BTW I don\'t know which album she sings \'S\'wonderful\' on, but it\'s arranged by Claus Ogerman, and she uses a couple of unusual melody notes and chords/reharmonizations. My dad played it to me, then played the same tune on an album by (I think) Joao Gilberto from around 1966-and it was PRECISELY the same, down to the different notes and the string arrangement/reharmonization -also done by Claus Ogerman. I guess he thought he couldn\'t do any better...?