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Topic: Welcome Christmas

  1. #1

    Welcome Christmas

    Hey guys. Looking for feedback on this. I just finished it up about 2 minutes ago and my ears are numb. Any advice on parts that could be better rendered or arranged would be super helpful.

    It's a piano backed by GPO version of Welcome Christmas from the Grinch.


    Updated Mix: http://www.bozrecords.com/mp3s/piano/grinchOrch5.mp3 Better?
    Boz Millar

  2. #2

    Re: Welcome Christmas

    Lovely, Boz. How about adding French horn to the section where you added winds? That might make a nice woodwind quintet effect. Also, in the louder portion toward the end, you could add, say, trumpet, violins, and flute playing the melody with more tutti orchestral accompaniment.

    Arthur J. Michaels

    Finale 2000 through 2014.5 (currently using 2014.5)
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    M-Audio Delta Audiophile 2496
    M-Audio AV-40 monitors

  3. #3
    Senior Member Frank D's Avatar
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    Apr 2006
    Suburban NYC

    Re: Welcome Christmas

    Hi Boz,

    Nice performance, but the piano is mixed way too hot during the orchestral portions; it's all but drowning out the strings. I heard some lovely bells around 2:20? but they too are lost in the mix. Somewhere between the opening/closing piano solo volumes and the current 'hot' piano volume is a volume that will allow the orchestra to come through.

    It sounds like it is primarily a string orchestra arrangement (w/ some percussion), but I can't really give my 2 cents on the orchestral aspect until I can better hear the lines.

    This is such a nice, contemplative piece ... I enjoyed it!


  4. #4

    Re: Welcome Christmas

    Hi, Boz - It's great to hear some Christmas music in The Listening Room - and such nicely played music as this is of course always welcome. Really nice piano work - it's your primary instrument, I take it?

    I realized as I listened that I don't know this song. It's from "The Grinch Who Stole Christmas"--?

    From the thread, Art has some good ideas for expanding the arrangement if you wanted to. And Frank has zeroed in on the very same thing that was my predominant reaction to the recording: You have the piano too loud in comparison with the rest. I know you're wanting to spotlight the piano, but with the levels re-done so the orchestra is much farther up won't spoil things as long as you experiment and find the right balance. Right now, everything accompanying the piano is far too subordinate and timid. Good feedback there from Frank.

    I looked around at your site - You have a "Plugins" tab, and I saw the information on Viper, but there was no link to it.--? In general, there isn't very much information there on the site- I think it would be good if you could add some text explaining a bit more of how you work in that home studio. The piano you use is an acoustic piano, or virtual?--what sound sources do you use, etc.

    Thanks for the music!--I hope you try a new mix with the piano lower. I do think you'll find a better balance that will still work for you.


  5. #5

    Re: Welcome Christmas

    Forum members are sure picking out some nice music to work with and this is one of them. The piano sounds good but it is a little hard to hear the background instruments thru out. I enjoyed the listen on this. Thanks. Jay

  6. #6

    Re: Welcome Christmas

    Thanks for the feedback guys. I think I go through the same issues every time I do a song like this. I make the piano much louder than it needs to be. Not sure why I do that. Maybe it's just because I know the arrangement so well after working on it that I can easily pick out each part so they sound loud enough to me. I probably need to give my ears a rest for a few days and then I'll recognize what you guys are talking about with the levels.

    I guess piano would probably be my main instrument. I kind of rotate through instruments I like to play every month or so.

    As for my website, yeah, it's kind of just a catch all for all my late night screwing around projects. I took of the link to the viper plugin because I had a bug to fix and hadn't gotten around to it. Once thanksgiving hit, my plugin play time pretty much disappeared. I should be able to get back to finishing it once christmas is over. Hopefully. I should probably just take that page down until it's done. This whole music making thing is just kind of a hobby for me and I can never seem to settle down on what I actually want to do with it. One day I'm writing songs like this one, the next day I'm working on a metal album, the next day I'm writing plugins, the next day I'm teaching music production classes.

    I'm pretty sure I have some form of musical ADD. oh well. I'm sure someday I'll figure out what I want to do with this music stuff.

    I'll give this song a rest for a few days and try a new mix in a few days. I'll post it here for feedback again.
    Boz Millar

  7. #7

    Re: Welcome Christmas

    ok, here's an updated version. I think the strings are quite a bit louder. Is it better? loud enough? Any feedback/critisizm is helpful.

    I just noticed a couple glitches in one spot. Must have happened at export. Not sure why that happens.

    Boz Millar

  8. #8

    Re: Welcome Christmas

    I truly enjoyable and very 'musical' piece. I like it a lot.

    But as Frank and Randy mentioned, the piano is absolutely too harsh and loud. It seems like it plays within the audience and the accompanying orchestra is 20 meters behind it... Your second version brought the orchestra a little closer, but still, the piano is too dominant and pushes the atmosphere brought by the strings away. Maybe you should try to bring the piano on the same volume (or velocity) level as the accompaniment and other voices. It is more than brilliant enough to play itself on the foreground.

    Thanks for sharing this nice Christmas tune with us.


  9. #9

    Re: Welcome Christmas

    Quote Originally Posted by Max Hamburg View Post
    Your second version brought the orchestra a little closer, but still, the piano is too dominant and pushes the atmosphere brought by the strings away.
    blast. ok. I'll take another pass at it. I started this song out as just a piano song and decided to add strings and stuff after the fact, so maybe that's why I'm hesitating bringing the strings up too loud. I did notice some pretty offensively loud notes on the piano this morning in the car.
    Boz Millar

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