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Topic: DPDAN, I'm pickin' your brain again...;)

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  1. #1

    DPDAN, I'm pickin' your brain again...;)

    So, in your stuff that you record, how are you configuring the strings section?

    Are you using them right out of the box? Are you ensemble building? Or are you mixing in solo strings with sections? Are you using the same articulation samples or are you switching to different ones? For some reason I can't make the Lush strings samples sound as good as you can. What are you doing? lol.
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  2. #2
    Senior Member Styxx's Avatar
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    Re: DPDAN, I'm pickin' your brain again...;)

    YEAH DAN ... WHAT THE HECK ARE YOU DOING?

  3. #3
    Senior Member Styxx's Avatar
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    Re: DPDAN, I'm pickin' your brain again...;)

    You know, I was razzing in my first reply but seriously this is a darn good question from Craig! Maybe we could persuade DAN to give an online Master Class or something on that line? Let's face it Dan, your work IS awesome!

  4. #4

    Re: DPDAN, I'm pickin' your brain again...;)

    You guys are a hoot! especially you Styxx

    awe yea babe, simple,
    as Emeril would say...
    let's kick it up a notch!

    Somethig I feel is so important and it takes a little time, but not that long... USE KEYSWITCHES!

    turn on the gas

    First after the notes are entered, and their timing is just right, then the mod wheel needs to be played in, (much more preferable to drawing), and all the velocity data needs to be correctly verified. I make sure that the cc64 legato data is precisely in the right place. So many people that use GPO don't really understand how the cc64 sustain pedal works, and how it controls the various instruments that benefit from this data. By depressing the sustain pedal, it only eliminates the attack sound of any notes while the pedal is depressed. This does not connect the notes. Generally speaking, for a natural legato sound,... notes need to overlap slightly. It is so important to keep the known "sucking" sound out of our violins.
    I also draw in pitch bend data between some of the notes.

    keyswitches

    So once this is all done, I listen to just the 1st violins by themselves.
    Whenever they play softly, I enter a "C#" keyswitch, when they start to play more aggresively, I enter a "C" keyswitch, when they play pizz of course that keyswitch is entered, same with trills and tremelo. Using just one patch and expecting mod wheel to fix everything is just wishful thinking. After all the keyswitches are entered and the correct timing is verified, I then record that stereo sound to a stereo audio track.

    panning and EQ

    Most of the time, I set the Kontakt player's pan to center for all string sections, and then pan them slightly in DP's mixer to my desired stage position, keeping in mind that when we add reverb, it is going to spread out the sound of that track on the stage. I always EQ first vlns and sometimes second vlns EQ. Simple setting, cut approximately 2-3 db @ 2.5khz with a medium setting for bandwidth. Not the solo violins, let them hurt

    solo violins

    OK, now I have the entire 1st violins KS patch recorded to audio, I now add to that, the sound of the Guarn solo violin and the Gagli solo violin. To do this, I create a new separate midi track in DP for these two violins. I simply copy all the midi data from the 1st vlns midi track to both of these new solo vln tracks. I humanize both of these tracks with various degrees of onset, duration and velocity. In DP, this is accomplished in less than a 1/4 second with two keystrokes, (H and enter) BAMB! That is my own modified keyboard shortcut that I made in DP for the humanize feature. You can make your own custom shortcuts in DP's "commands" window. This will cause both violins to NOT play perfectly together with the 1st vlns section track. The keyswitches from the 1st vlns section are not compatible so I just correct them. I then record each of these two solo vlns to their own mono audio track. I set the pan in DP to place the solo violins as close to the sound that a first violinist would be heard from.

    nitty gritty

    I have a group fader for all strings including the solo strings, this will allow the reverb to be consistant in the violins since they have their own "AUX" channel for reverb. Here's another tip.... do not insert a reverb plugin in the group master, if you do, the reverb tail will be effected by the fader automation of that group, and that aint good. You want the reverb to be inserted in a separate dedicated "AUX" channel so that it can breath and be left alone at one level. The individual orchestra section "group masters" have a stereo aux send knob that feeds the dry sound to a dedicated reverb channel. Automate everything!!! I have a bad habit, I do all this for first violins and not for the second or violas, although I do add a solo cello the same way. During the mixing (fader automation) is when I swoop in and out the sound of these solo instruments, usually at critical moments like when the section is winding down real quiet. I let the listener hear the first violinist and at other times, I crank the solo vlns during runs going up. Another thing I just discovered recently, was that when you have a "run", use the half, or whole trill sound for those little notes, it's awesome!
    I know this will sound insane, but sometimes these little trill notes for these runs will have to be in a separate midi track and audio track so that the exact volume and sound can be achieved.

    I know this all sounds like too much work, but hey, we are trying to duplicate an entire orchestra, and that is not something for the faint of heart!

    As usual I'm rambling.
    Craig, what DAW do you use?
    I will be working on your competition piece next week.
    If you would send me the midi file I can get started on it.
    Until next time, goodbye everybody! Doc Gibbs!!!
    Dan

  5. #5

    Re: DPDAN, I'm pickin' your brain again...;)

    That's a great little article you put together Dan. I'm keeping a copy of that right next to "Garritan Personal Orchestra - Reference" card that one great and kind person put on the forum a few weeks ago. Maybe you should put this response in the GPO Academy Board.

    GREAT REFERENCE

    Thanks for the article!

    Rich
    [Music is the Rhythm, Harmony and Breath of Life]
    "Music is music, and a note's a note" - Louis 'Satchmo' Armstrong

    Rich

  6. #6

    Re: DPDAN, I'm pickin' your brain again...;)

    Dan, thanks for the info. I've just learnt something.

    Regards,

    Alex.

  7. #7
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    Re: DPDAN, I'm pickin' your brain again...;)

    I echo RichR Dan.....brilliant article. Thank you so much for taking the time to help others.

    This will help as I should be up and running soon and will finally show you just how good you are!!

    Frank

  8. #8

    Re: DPDAN, I'm pickin' your brain again...;)

    Excellent points Dan, and lots of great detail that might be easily overlooked. Thank you for sharing.

    Oh, btw, one question for you... (if I can pick your brains too! )

    Much of what I've heard from you is synced to a real live conductor. This seems to add an important component to the music. So, I'd be interested to hear how you go about creating the conductor track without a conductor to sync to as I'm sure you've also done.

    As for myself, I always find I can get a much more natural feeling tempo track by playing a guide track live. However, free-tempo is a bit tricker to align with bars and beats in a sequencer (although you're certainly the expert!). So instead, I usually find myself struggling to create a conductor track that has the same type of "live" feel. However, it always requires a lot of finessing to get it to feel just right (inspite of all of the great tools in DP).

    So I'd be curious to hear how you approach creating your conductor tracks. And do you settle on this from the beginning or adjust it as you go (because that determines whether you can bounce tracks or not)?

    Thanks as always,

    Greg

  9. #9
    Senior Member Styxx's Avatar
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    Re: DPDAN, I'm pickin' your brain again...;)

    Watt Did He Say?

  10. #10

    Re: DPDAN, I'm pickin' your brain again...;)

    Quote Originally Posted by Hardy Heern
    This will help as I should be up and running soon and will finally show you just how good you are!!

    Frank
    Frank, I can't wait I know you have been wanting to get all of your goodies going for quite a long time.
    Happy to help if needed.

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