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Topic: "Casey at the Bat"

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  1. #1
    Senior Member sosmus's Avatar
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    "Casey at the Bat"

    http://www.box.net/shared/static/7vhron2kf6.mp3
    While still in Alabama, I was contracted by the Montgomery Symphony to set "Casey at the Bat" to music with narrator. Their plans were to get an Alabaman such as Hank Aaron or Willie Mays to narrate this. They were not available (duh) and the funds dried up but I had a 90% completed score in my computer, so I've been tinkering with it for some time and decided to go ahead and finish it. It is written to be playable by a good HS orchestra, most college orchestras and local symphonies.
    There are 13 verses or stanzas in the poem. There is a mood setting introduction and the narration would begin with the sustained strings (Eb Minor.) After verse 5, the little march is "Casey's Theme" and it is reprised at the end. The director and narrator would have to coordinate so the words and "effects" would be in sync. Oh, that I knew how to use my Cubase 5.
    sosmus
    Addendum: 9/4/09
    I tried to leave my original hard to hear,by comparison, my dry, no reverb version but I accidentally removed it. This is Randy Bowser's version after adding the reverb and volume. Many, many thanks to Randy for this assist.
    Steve
    sosmus

  2. #2

    Re: "Casey at the Bat"

    That's delightful, Mister Steve. I enjoyed it.

    You have some "Surprise Symphony" moments that tend to knock one out of one's chair. It is also "dry" and in need of some reverb.

    I always look forward to your music. Thanks for posting.

    My Best,
    Larry G. Alexander
    www.alexandermusic.com

  3. #3
    Senior Member Frank D's Avatar
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    Re: "Casey at the Bat"

    That was very nice!

    I especially liked "Casey's Theme" ... that theme along with the overall feel of the work had a nice turn-of-the-century (the 1900 one ) feel to it. The "Take me Out To The Ballgame" quotes added nicely to the mood as well.

    It would be nice to hear this performed w/ narration some day ... Thanks for sharing it with us!

    Regards,

    Frank

  4. #4

    Re: "Casey at the Bat"

    Steve:

    Really outstanding writing on this "Casey" project. Too bad it
    didn't materialize because your music would have been a tremendous
    hit.

    I would agree with Larry about the "space." Also, I had to crank
    up my volume to 100% for a good listen. Are you still having that
    kind of a problem?

    Bottom line: A great musical setting to a great ode.


    BRAVO
    ,

    Jack
    Jack Cannon--MacBook Pro (2015, 13") GPO4/5, JABB3, Auth. STEINWAY, YAMAHA CFX, Gofriller CELLO, Stradivari VIOLIN, COMB2, WORLD, HARPS, PIPE ORGANS, FINALE 2014.5, Mac Pro 2.66 GHz CPU, 8 GB RAM, DP 9.5, MOTU Traveler, MOTU Micro Express, MacBook Pro (2012, 13") 2.2 Ghz CPU, 8 GB RAM.

  5. #5
    Senior Member sosmus's Avatar
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    Re: "Casey at the Bat"

    Larry & Dan:
    It's always rewarding to receive positive feed back such as you two gave me. I truly appreciate your taking the time to listen and comment.
    Steve

  6. #6
    Senior Member sosmus's Avatar
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    Re: "Casey at the Bat"

    Jack:
    Thanks for your flattering remarks.


    I would agree with Larry about the "space." Also, I had to crank up my volume to 100% for a good listen. Are you still having that kind of a problem?

    I'm "at sea" about the volume. It sounds fine to me but that is evidently not the case for others.
    I still use Finale, Mac and now the Aria GPO4. I write my score, and then tell Finale to make an AIFF file, then have iTunes turn it into an mp3.
    I have two simple questions that I hope you, or anyone, can answer:
    !. When, where and how do I get more volume in my mp3's?
    2. When, where and how do I get more space ( or reverb) in my recordings?
    Any help or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

    Steve, Bewildered in Bellingham

  7. #7

    Re: "Casey at the Bat"

    Steve, I hope you don't mind -I have put together a "quick and dirty" copy of "Casey" with its volume up to where it should be, and with reverb added. I mean it as a tribute to your fabulous orchestration work on this - and because I share your frustration with how difficult it is to squeeze decent recordings out of Finale.

    I don't use Finale, so can't help you with how to do the basics of getting the volume up and adding reverb. There's some kind of rudimentary mixer in there where these things have to be possible, but I don't know the details. To me it's a miracle people get decent sounding recordings out of a notation program--Clearly it's possible, but what these people to do to wring those good recordings out of those apps---I'm clueless!

    Now - this is far from ideal. I copied your MP3, and in Sound Forge and Sonar I did a very quick job of boosting the volume, and strapping on a convolution reverb to the whole thing--which isn't the way to use a reverb, but the only choice in this situation.

    All in all, it doesn't sound as "quick and dirty" as I would afraid it might. I hope you'll enjoy hearing it a more robust volume and with more of the feeling that it's being played in concert.

    At the bottom of this post is a screen shot of the re-processed track with your original one below it. Graphic evidence of how incredibly low that signal is in your original project. One big advantage of getting the volume up is you get a more detailed recording - But of course all I could do was boost the weak signal already there. HOPEFULLY a Finale user here will help you out.

    Meanwhile--Please accept this as the helpful thing it's meant to be--a better chance for us all to enjoy your wonderful project.

    CASEY AT THE BAT (re-visted)

    Randy

    P.S. One more tip--If you use the first link option at Box, not the "static" one which is a direct link to an MP3, but instead use the first one--then the visitor has the Box MP3 player right there with no need to download the file.


  8. #8

    Re: "Casey at the Bat"

    That was very nice of you to do that for Steve. I thank you and I'm sure that he will also when he hears it.

    You're a good man, Mister Randy.

    My Best,
    Larry G. Alexander
    www.alexandermusic.com

  9. #9
    Senior Member sosmus's Avatar
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    Re: "Casey at the Bat"

    Randy:
    To say that I am blown away would be a gross understatement. Thank you so much for adding your "touch!" I would like to post your version, if you don't mind. Please advise.
    [QUOTESteve, I hope you don't mind -I have put together a "quick and dirty" copy of "Casey" with its volume up to where it should be, and with reverb added. I mean it as a tribute to your fabulous orchestration work on this - and because I share your frustration with how difficult it is to squeeze decent recordings out of Finale.
    It is not the fault of Finale, instead it is my ineptness with "tweaking", "mixing, etc. You have certainly given me some goals to shoot for.

    To me it's a miracle people get decent sounding recordings out of a notation program--
    I have no other skills for writing other than the Notation programs. I am quite comfortable with that process so I just need to learn to do what you did. There were lots of parts that needed to be softer, louder, more legato, etc. That is the frustrating part for me.


    All in all, it doesn't sound as "quick and dirty" as I would afraid it might. I hope you'll enjoy hearing it a more robust volume and with more of the feeling that it's being played in concert.
    Be still my heart!

    At the bottom of this post is a screen shot of the re-processed track with your original one below it. Graphic evidence of how incredibly low that signal is in your original project.
    Wow. I had no idea.

    Meanwhile--Please accept this as the helpful thing it's meant to be--a better chance for us all to enjoy your wonderful project.
    A star for your crown!

    CASEY AT THE BAT (re-visted)

    Randy

    P.S. One more tip--If you use the first link option at Box, not the "static" one which is a direct link to an MP3, but instead use the first one--then the visitor has the Box MP3 player right there with no need to download the file.
    This is good to know. I will start taking advantage of this.

    [/QUOTE]

  10. #10

    Re: "Casey at the Bat"

    Hi, Steve - Good deal, I'm glad you like my little fixer-upper. Your top notch orchestrations are such an asset to the Garritan Forum, I got inspired to help present this one with a little more sparkle.

    If you want to edit your original post to include the link to what I did, that's just fine with me. I would suggest you keep your original link and add mine so the two versions can be handy for folks who'd be interested in doing a comparison.

    AND if you could just include the caveats that my louder track isn't the ideal recording, but was just a quick fix superimposed on what you posted. Hopefully it's an inspiration for you to get more instruction on how to get more satisfactory renderings out of Finale.

    A FORUM POSTING TECH TIP:

    If you like having text, like a piece's title, to be the link that opens up an MP3, instead of just posting the raw code - that's easily done:

    1) Highlight and copy/cut the Box link.
    2) Type the title or words you want to use for the link.
    3) Highlight those words.
    4) In the controls right above the text box where you write posts, click the one right in the middle that shows a globe and two links of a chain.
    5) In the pop-up you get from clicking the icon, paste in the Box code you earlier put on your clipboard.
    6) Click "OK" and you're done.

    You may want to make the linked title bold or a larger font.

    Here's the Box URL for my copy of "Casey"--

    http://www.box.net/shared/zrc80mq7vn

    If you want to get fancy with it, and with your original Box URL, you could try those steps out.

    For your info - It took about 5 minutes to do what I did with your MP3, and it's not quite what would normally be done, but it was a way of helping out the weak signal you got out of Finale. - Of course it would've been better to work with the original .wav file instead of the MP3:

    --In Sound Forge, I reduced the volume of a few really hot spots where the dynamic range seemed too extreme in the original.
    --Applied a Compressor to the entire track with a ratio of 3:1.
    --Applied an EQ curve which rolled off a bit of the bass, did a gentle cut around 500 Hz, and a slight boost to everything from 1 Hz on up until reaching 20, where there was again a cut to those super high frequencies. That's a fairly standard kind of global EQ to use for adding some clarity and sheen to a mix.
    --Applied a Convolution Reverb of a concert hall to the entire track, having to use just one setting which doesn't really serve the entire mix, but which at least gave it all a fairly wet, live performance sound.
    --Normalized the track, which brought the peaks up to "0" DB.
    --Exported the results as an MP3 in Sonar.

    Compression and Normalization isn't the best thing to do with music like this, but it was a "quick and dirty" fix for that impossibly low signal in the original.

    It was a pleasure to cook up this surprise for you, Steve- I'm just gad the results are satisfactory enough.

    NICE work on "Casey," Steve!

    Randy

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