Tips, Techniques, Examples about my favorite musical instrument, the Twelve-String Guitar.

If you play guitar check out Playing Technique, or Strings / Setup. There are also some interesting posts about guitars at, you guessed it, Guitars.

If you want to spread your musical talents around, you will find some good info at Recording.

Marketing - meh - I'm probably the world's best bad example. Although you could find funny stuff there.

I've made some music videos through the years, and you can find them and other interesting music at Music I Like, Music I Play.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Mastering a Song

I like to post songs to Soundclick once in a while, but can't afford to hire Jon at Naiant Studio for every little song, so I'm trying fix it up myself. I know it's not going to be the same quality, but what can you do.

I just posted a 12-String Tremolo Study; the working title was Tremblin' Whomp. I've learned enough about the recording studio to know that there are resonance issues at 58 hertz and the response below about 200 hertz is a few db too high. So, I put a sharp notch at 58 hertz in the jamin EQ graph, and added light compression under 200 hertz. I also added a couple of db to the EQ graph over 10 k.hz; my hearing is seriously deficient in this range, but Jon has mentioned a couple of times in the past this adds some nice sparke to my 12-string recording.

Adding reverb is hard to judge. Most home recordists, me included, add too much. Listening a day or two later to tunes with added reverb usually make me wonder what I was thinking of. With that in mind, I added a couple of different reverbs, and different strengths, and waited a day to compare them to the original. To add the reverbs, I used ecasound to pipe the tune through ladspa plugins. You can do it during the jamin session, like this:

ecasound -i jack_auto,jamin -el:tap_reverb,1200,0,-20,1,1,1,1,4 -o OUT.wav

This is using the TAP reverberator number 4 set to 1200 milliseconds delay, 20 db wetness.

Or you can do it after the jamin session on the result file (here it is called IN.wav):

ecasound -i IN.wav -el:tap_reverb,800,0,-15,1,1,1,1,23 \ -el:tap_reverb,5100,0,-30,1,1,1,1,42 -o OUT2.wav

This one pipes the IN.wav file through two reverberator plugins, number 23 and number 42.

For the tremolo study, after listening through a couple of systems, I settled on the 42 (Warehouse) effect with a 5 second delay, and it is 30 db down. It is barely noticeable, but adds a little fullness compared to the dry version.

You can hear the piece here.

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