Old 04-12-2007, 03:18 PM   #1
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Default First time recording

Hi, I've wanting to record some original music for a long time and finally have the tools to do it, but, im lost on the best technique to record all tracks myself. Should i start with drums and bass to get a rhythm track put guitar tracks down first? Ive tried both and keep running into timing issues. I am using a drum sequencer for the drums and playing everthing else live. any comments or advise is much appreciated
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Old 04-12-2007, 03:50 PM   #2
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I am in the middle of my first attempt at multitracking all original material too. I have a friend add the drums, but other than that our situation is similar. Let me share how I have been able to work effectivly. First, your right on the money about tempo. It is critical.

The very first thing that I do is lay down a couple of tracks that I know I will throw away but it is the essence of the song. It is usually just an acoustic guitar and sometimes a voice (humming if I do't have any lyrics yet). These can be separate tracks, or a mono sum of the guitar and voice. ALWAYS do this with a click-track or a metronome. This way as you move forward you can have points of reference to the grid if you need to correct anything. Sometimes I use the "drum loops" on my keyboard or out of a simple drum machine that I have. They sound cheezy, but I can at least do some simple fills and A/B patterns, that helps me know the chorus is coming up, etc. But I ALWAYS match the Tempo on the source, to the tempo of the project.

Now I have the basic framework of the song. Next I either lay down a "true" rhythm guitar or the Bass. NEXT in Reaper I add markers and regions for Intro/Verse/Chorus. If you have not messed with Regions, check them out. The reason I do this is it allows me to quickly rip the song apart and move things around. i.e. change the order of things, add a second verse or repeat a chorus....search the forum for more info on regions...you will dig them. More often than not the song will end up quite a bit different than the "rif" that I started with.

Next I will start to add in some keyboard, or additional guitars, and will have my buddy come play the drums too. I will usually mute the old drum loop if I had one at this point in his monitors, but play the clicks. Usually the last thing I do is add vocals, harmonies and leads, and any additional percussion items.

The two things that I have learned, in order of importance..

#1. Timing Figure out what works for you, but always have a sorce that you can use to keep things in time, and match it to the tempo for the project so you can reference it to the grid!

#2. Know up front that you will have some "scratch tracks" that will never make it to the mix. At first if felt weird to throw stuff away, but having the early tracks to reference and then learning how to use regions to change the structure of things has really helped me.

Hope this helps....and have fun, I am having a blast!
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Old 04-12-2007, 04:44 PM   #3
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keep an eye on this one


Im trying to dig up some old junk
REAPER Shirts are Back! - https://shop.spreadshirt.com/pipelineaudio/
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Old 04-12-2007, 10:33 PM   #4
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thanks wood and pipe, looks like im gonna have a long nite

if anyone else has any thought feel free to keep this thread goin. It could help alot of people
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Old 04-12-2007, 11:52 PM   #5
Bastiaan M
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I have used this to record a band that wasnt used of getting recorded:

record the band while they play the song alltogether (that way they can use the vibe they feel when playing together. Place them so that you get a good recording of the drums and record the baseguitar at the same time iwith a DI-box. Record the rest, but they are ment to be scratchtracks.

rerecord the electric guitar
rerecord vocals
record extra's like harmonies etc etc.

Along the way you will lose those first rough tracks, but they help keeping the performance up.

If you play it all alone this won't work.
Then i would start with the drums (or a sequencer if someone will play the drums for you) then the baseguitar, electric guitar and vocals.
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Old 04-18-2007, 07:01 AM   #6
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Welcome to the forum!

I got back into recording last month after a 2 year absence and my timing sucked. I prefer a percussion beat rather than a click track and thats what I have been practicing with for the last month. I made a real simple drum loop, and every now and then I vary the tempo and try to keep up. So far it's working out pretty good.

It's not a glamorous fix, but it's working for me.

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