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Topic: Okay, here goes!

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  1. #1
    Senior Member
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    Okay, here goes!

    I really am hesitant to post my files here, especially after listening to so many of the pieces here. They are so well done that I am almost embarrased to have my arrangements in the same place. But, I also know I won't improve until I get constructive feedback from the excellent people on this forum.

    So, just remember, I'm something of a beginner. Mixing and mastering are not strengths of mine. But all help will be gratefully received.

    http://job.sonicpresence.com/music/Aberystwyth.mp3

    -Edit-
    Forgot to mention, everything is GPO except for the guitar which is Dimension Pro Acoustic 12 string.
    Jerry
    Dayton, Kentucky
    Personally, I'm waiting for caller IQ.

  2. #2

    Re: Okay, here goes!

    Quote Originally Posted by Jaybee
    ...hesitant to post...
    You shouldn't be! That was very nice. I have to leave it to orchestral people to comment on the orchestration and deep technique, but it sounded quite fine.

    Satisfying slow build in dynamics from beginning to end. Fx not the least bit overdone. All instruments clear where they need to be and pleasantly suppressed where subordinate.

    There were small jabs of expression in the fiddle that sounded odd for milliseconds. But I had to listen carefully for them, and it's actually realistic. Sounded perhaps like an imperfectly-schooled violinist attacking slightly harder than he meant to, and not unsuitable for a folk melody.

    I's probably a famous tune I don't know. Handsome melodly. Good job.


    Larry

  3. #3

    Re: Okay, here goes!

    I agree with Larry. You certainly shouldn't have any hesitation to post, especially pieces of this quality. I like the music and the scoring.

    Despite your protestations about mixing/mastering not being your strengths, I found them well done. I liked the pan, which allowed me to hear some lines more clearly than a too-centered mix might have.

    12 String is a beautiful instrument. It's great hearing it in a variety of settings, and in this one it's a delight.

    Thank you for sharing this.


    Joe

  4. #4

    Re: Okay, here goes!

    I like the song. It's all nice and medieval sounding. It's just your sample usage / production that needs help imo. For example, in the middle section there are a few unrealistic note cut-offs that could be smoothed out and the dynamics of the lead strings in that section are too static and could be mod-wheeled a bit more (strangely both of these "problems" seem to disappear toward the end so maybe you have an idea of how to do this already .) A tiny touch of higher-end reverb couldn't hurt either I think (but I suck at reverb so feel free to ignore that). Like I said I really do like it over all, it just needs a bit of tweaking to not sound "MIDI-ish".

    -Chris
    There is the music of Johann Sebastian Bach. Therefore there must be a God. You either get this one or you don't - Kreeft & Tacelli
    The will to achieve is not sufficient. Some things should not be achieved. - Rimsky-Korsakov
    Musicians are just these guys that want to make music. Okay, they want to have a wonderful lifestyle, but the majority just want to make really great music. - Jon Anderson


  5. #5

    Re: Okay, here goes!

    Hello, Jay--I just now posted a belated response to your thread in the General Discussion Forum.

    This is great that you've gotten your project up here in the Listening Room. I bet you're relieved to finally have us hearing something--and as you can see, worries about not be ready are being properly "pshawed" by the members here.

    It's a beautiful piece!-and realized with sensitivity. Nice work, Jay.

    Reverb has been touched on in this thread. I prefer things a bit more dry than most people, but this could be a rare time when I think a bit more air via reverb could be good.

    The guitar emulation is great--Really good instrument played well.

    I agree that the attack on the solo Violin is consistently over-stressed--More work with cc1 to ease into some notes would smooth that out.

    The section strings are a bit "keyboardish," sounding more like chords played with one hand, rather than individually recorded. Less perfection in their entrances and more cc1 on them for sure. I thought also it would be worth the experiment to try them an octave lower. The basses could be louder. This string section in particular seemed to need ambience/reverb.

    Now--in the previous thread where you were struggling with the mixing of this--you said you were having trouble keeping the solo Violin's volume up where you needed it. Did you really still have to play with the Trim pot to get it up?--Something seems strange there to me, because in proportion to the other instruments, the solo Violins all have strong, loud default volumes. I thought perhaps there was a problem with using enough cc1.

    Are you using Sonar? That program has something which needs to be turned off when working with GPO--In the MIDI settings for the Project, in that tab, you need to UN check "zero controllers"--That returns controllers like cc1 to zero every time you stop, and that of course doesn't work with GPO instruments. You need to change that setting each time you start a Sonar project in order for your current levels of cc1 to play when you start play back again after a pause or stop.

    This is sounding really good Ray, thanks for posting--Maybe some feedback on the thread here will be helpful.

    Randy B.
    (rbowser)

  6. #6
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    Re: Okay, here goes!

    Thanks for the feedback. My learning to use GPO is a journey which has only just begun.

    I, too, am not really happy with the middle section. The section strings are all on the same track rather than each voice on a different track, That probably keeps me from having a more realistic sound to the section, if I am understanding the comments correctly.

    Ray - yes, I am using Sonar 6 and I was unaware of the "Zero controllers" that should be done. I'll try to remember that in the future. Also, I'm not quite sure what you mean with easing into the attacks with cc1. I think, IIRC, that I just set the controller all the way up (127) before recording the violin track. I have a very noisy mod wheel and find it quite difficult to "ride it" as I play. Can I correct this in post?

    Larry, Chris, and Joe - thanks for the kind comments. I've been a musician for many years but am just recently converting to the technology side of music. I think I have the feeling for what I want to do. It's just learning how to manipulate the technology to accomplish that which makes me feel inadaquate.

    -Edit -
    The tune is an old Welsh hymn tune, named for the village of the same name, and is often used as a setting for John Wesley's text, "Jesus, Lover Of My Soul."
    Jerry
    Dayton, Kentucky
    Personally, I'm waiting for caller IQ.

  7. #7

    Re: Okay, here goes!

    Hello, Jay

    I listened again, and it really is a great start on things. The song itself is so nice, and much of your recording is successful--Here, going through your reply, let's see if I can help any more:

    "...The section strings are all on the same track rather than each voice on a different track, That probably keeps me from having a more realistic sound to the section, if I am understanding the comments correctly..."

    Yes, I thought perhaps they were just one track. It really doesn't work to just use one group string patch and expect it to work as more than a "pad"--to use a term often used.

    Break the strings up into their natural divisions--1st Strings, 2nd Strings, Violas, Cellos, Basses--using a different patch and track for each section. Best, is then to add one solo instrument of each kind with its family. Using the default panning in the Kontact player, you'll have a natural sounding full string orchestra.

    More time consuming, certainly, but the only way to avoid the less natural "organ" sound.

    "...I am using Sonar 6 and I was unaware of the "Zero controllers" that should be done..."

    It's essential to do that. You could make a template for starting projects, and having that unchecked could be part of that template. If you don't change that setting, as I said earlier, your volume will constantly drop to zero every time you pause your project while working on it. Very annoying.

    "...I'm not quite sure what you mean with easing into the attacks with cc1. I think, IIRC, that I just set the controller all the way up (127) before recording the violin track. I have a very noisy mod wheel and find it quite difficult to "ride it" as I play. Can I correct this in post?.."

    OK, well you seem to know that controller 1 is how you work with volume. But what you described is exactly what Not to do with cc1. It's not a set-and-forget volume setting--it needs to be a continuously varying wave of volume which is one of the most crucial parts of your MIDI tracks.

    Setting the controller at full 127 combined with strong velocities is what caused all those super strong attacks on the violin. Begin a track around mid-way with the modulation wheel, and then swoop it up, down as you record. You'll soon get the feel for how you're creating the natural rise and fall of volume you hear when listening to live musicians.

    Can you correct this post-recording? Well but YEs, the MAJority of work on MIDI tracks is done post-recording. You can't rely on having all the performance data in a track just from a live recording.

    You go into Piano View--Look at the velocities. Are they too consistantly the same values? You can change them easily with the pencil. Look at cc1, and that's where you can hone the volume sweeps, also with the pencil.

    So when I was talking about tweaking the attacks of the violin, I was meaning that a start on getting it more natural would be to start the cc1 value at mid way and then swooping UP after the onset of the note. That's just the beginning of an idea of the kind of editing you should be doing.

    There--Got your assignments? Now--have fun getting in there and sculpting the raw material of your tracks. Dividing those strings into sections is a must--much more cc1, editing velocities--To recap, those are the basics you can now dig in to.

    EDIT---I didn't mention cc64, sustain. You Do understand how crucial that is also--The only way to get Legato, instead of unnaturally repeated attacks.--As per all of this, the GPO manual has a great outline of info.

    Randy B.
    (rbowser)
    Last edited by rbowser-; 05-06-2007 at 01:34 PM. Reason: forgot something

  8. #8
    Senior Member
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    Re: Okay, here goes!

    Randy,

    Thanks!! This is just the kind of help I was hoping for. I've already printed it out and have it sitting right next to my DAW. Time to get to work. Again, thanks.
    Jerry
    Dayton, Kentucky
    Personally, I'm waiting for caller IQ.

  9. #9

    Re: Okay, here goes!

    Randy has given you some great advice that can help improve what you have, but I just wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed what I heard! Best of luck with this, you're off to a good start!
    Sean Patrick Hannifin
    My MP3s | My Melody Generator | my album
    "serious music" ... as if the rest of us are just kidding

  10. #10

    Re: Okay, here goes!

    Hi Jaybee,

    Liked your song. I am pretty new as well and also using Sonar 6. One thing that will help you is to download some of the Sonar 6 examples submitted at Garritan - there is a Beethoven's 5th Symphony there that will help you learn a lot more for example.

    Thanks for posting. You have encouraged/inspired me to post as well!

    Alan

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