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I'm adding myself playing this one! - Relaxing with Family
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iBud
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March 15, 2015 - 8:47 pm
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Aloha everyone,

I've written or completed quite a few more tunes, but decided to go ahead and increase sales for noise canceling headphones by including an audio track of myself playing this tune.  I've only been playing it for the past couple of days, so it need a bit of polish, but I've put it out.  I hope I don't annoy too many people violin-student

I sound a bit rushed, but didn't feel that way while I was recording it.  Thinking about the two submissions I posted today for the St. Patrick's Day thread, those sounded a bit rushed as well.  I remember those days, long ago, when I was taking piano lessons.  I had to learn to relax, breathe, and take it down a notch.  There's something else for me to work on.  

 https://soundcloud.com/kronosbaroque/relaxing-with-family

 

Here's the backing track:

Keep-Calm-and-Fiddle-On-small-2.jpg

 

 

 

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DanielB
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March 15, 2015 - 9:09 pm
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Bravo!

clap

"This young wine may have a lot of tannins now, but in 5 or 10 years it is going to be spectacular, despite the fact that right now it tastes like crude oil. You know this is how it is supposed to taste at this stage of development." ~ Itzhak Perlman

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iBud
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March 15, 2015 - 9:17 pm
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Aloha @DanielB,

It wasn't my best effort, but I'm fairly new to creating a backing track, then recording myself playing along to it.  Listening to it, i started out just a tad sharp, then overcompensated for it throughout the song.  I seemed to be just a tad flat, almost like the sax players in jazz band, but then it sounded good.  Anyway, that is kinda sorta the way I wanted it to sound.  I'll have to keep working on it.  I need to get a better mic, but considering it's the built-in mic on my iMac, it didn't sound that bad.  I'll wait until I have a better recording before I unleash my next excuse for noise-canceling headphones on y'all cool

Keep-Calm-and-Fiddle-On-small-2.jpg

 

 

 

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DanielB
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March 15, 2015 - 9:32 pm
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Does sound a bit like you recorded from somewhere below the violin, which gives a different sound than recording from above the top, where most of the sound comes out of the instrument.   But if you hadn't said anything about it, I would have assumed it was the sound you were going for.  It worked in that mix in it's own way.

thumbs-up

"This young wine may have a lot of tannins now, but in 5 or 10 years it is going to be spectacular, despite the fact that right now it tastes like crude oil. You know this is how it is supposed to taste at this stage of development." ~ Itzhak Perlman

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iBud
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March 16, 2015 - 2:41 am
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Aloha again @DanielB,

Say hello to my little friend!  Yes, I know my desk is currently pretty messy, but at least I know in which pile everything is.laugh

I was at the Navy Exchange tonight with my wife and I happened to see that they carry the Blue Snowball iCE USB mic.  It was only $50, so I picked one up to try it out here at the house.  I was amazed at the difference between the Blue mic and the built-in mic of my iMac.  I should have bought this little mic a long time ago.  You get to hear a lot more of the sound, more like what I hear when I play.  I'll have to record something else, maybe the same tune and replace the one I already have in SoundCloudcoolIMG_0291.jpgImage Enlarger

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Keep-Calm-and-Fiddle-On-small-2.jpg

 

 

 

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DanielB
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March 16, 2015 - 10:29 am
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@iBud: Yeah, that should definitely be a noticeable upgrade!  Some people who do broadcast or voicework like the Snowball, because they say it is one of the best mics in it's price range for getting a good natural sound for voice.  And violin is said to be the musical instrument that most closely resembles human voice, so it makes sense that it should also be excellent for violin.

Congrats on the new gear iBud!

thumbs-up

With the desk.. Anybody who sees it, just tell them:

"Creative minds are rarely tidy."

That's what I do.  LOL

"This young wine may have a lot of tannins now, but in 5 or 10 years it is going to be spectacular, despite the fact that right now it tastes like crude oil. You know this is how it is supposed to taste at this stage of development." ~ Itzhak Perlman

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Uzi
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March 16, 2015 - 11:41 am
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Nice work, especially considering it was from the built-in microphone.  I have a snowball as well.  For the money the Snowball is a really good microphone and should serve you well. Notice that there's a switch on the back for changing from cartioid to omnidirectional.

A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort. ~Herm Albright

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iBud
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March 16, 2015 - 2:20 pm
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Aloha @Uzi,

You have the original Snowball - I got the Snowball iCE.  The difference is in the material (mine is mainly plastic) and the fact that the iCE model is cardoid only.  I don't have the omnidirectional capability.  That being said, I'm not good enough to justify anything more expensive right now.  Also, the iCE model makes pretty good recordings, at least better than the built-in mics of either my MacBook Pro or iMac.  Now I just have to perfect my workflow and everything will be fine.

Keep-Calm-and-Fiddle-On-small-2.jpg

 

 

 

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
March 16, 2015 - 4:11 pm
Member Since: September 26, 2010
Forum Posts: 11694

Great stuff iBud. I'm impressed by your creativity. :)
You've come a long way on your performances too.
Thanks for the post!!!

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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iBud
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March 17, 2015 - 12:46 am
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Aloha everyone,

I took the opportunity tonight to record this tune again, but using the Blue Snowball iCE USB mic.  I still need work on intonation and pitch, but it doesn't sound too bad.  Let me know if you can tell the difference in the sound from the original.  

EDIT: For those of you in Macs, I was able to use Garageband to create an Audio track, import the backing track, then record myself over the backing track.  I think the same can be done with Audacity, but I haven't looked at that option yet.  The good thing about Audacity is that you can add effects.  Maybe I should do that, in an attempt to cover up the "bad" spots in my playinglaugh

Keep-Calm-and-Fiddle-On-small-2.jpg

 

 

 

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DanielB
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March 17, 2015 - 4:39 am
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LOL effects don't really cover bad spots.  They can only enhance what is there.  A mistake with reverb still sounds like a mistake, just a mistake in a big empty room or something.

 

Anyway, the first version of your song/piece seems to be no longer available, but from what I recall, I think the newer version is a bit warmer and has maybe a bit more personality to the violin sound.  Not as thin.

I did notice both times that you sound more sure of yourself after the first 20 seconds or so.  Have you warmed up by running through the piece at least once before you record?  Or is it something like looking at the meters to check levels in those first few seconds to make sure everything is running ok? 

Sounds good.

"This young wine may have a lot of tannins now, but in 5 or 10 years it is going to be spectacular, despite the fact that right now it tastes like crude oil. You know this is how it is supposed to taste at this stage of development." ~ Itzhak Perlman

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Fiddlerman
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March 17, 2015 - 7:33 am
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Great job iBud. :)

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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iBud
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March 17, 2015 - 12:35 pm
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Aloha @DanielB,

You are correct that I play better once I'm into the tune for the first few seconds.  I was somewhat the same on the piano, at first.  I think this is something I'll just have to work through.  I don't have much of a lead-in, so I have to get ready by getting my bow ready and pushing the record button with my left hand, giving me only a few beats to get my left hand ready to play.  I'm using Garageband, so I could just slide the tracks over a bit to give me more time.  I'll try that next time.

I must apologize for the accidental deletion of my first take of "Relaxing with Family."  I thought I was only deleting it from my own playlist, but it actually deleted it from SoundCloud.  I misunderstood how that part of SoundCloud works.  After I read your post I checked, and the only ones that have the Edit or Delete icons are my own tracks.  D'oh!  I'm fairly technical, and have a job in IT, but there are times I feel that I don't deserve my BSCS and MIS degrees.facepalm

Keep-Calm-and-Fiddle-On-small-2.jpg

 

 

 

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DanielB
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March 17, 2015 - 4:28 pm
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Well, iBud.. If it was just fate that one of them was going to end up getting deleted, we can be glad it was the kinda thin sounding one. LOL

 

It is good to give yourself a bit of time at the beginning of a recording.  I usually give myself at least 10 seconds to be able to get into place and etc.  A bit more than that doesn't hurt either.

If a piece is being a real.. bear... Then you might want to also give yourself a few drum beats or metronome clicks so you can "internalize the beat/tempo" before the backing track or your playing actually start.  A starting note before that can also help, so you can check your tuning and be sure your fingers can find the right place to begin. 

And you can just highlight all that and edit it off your track before you let anyone hear it.  But it can help with getting a recording off to a stronger and more comfortable start.

 

Now, if you want to go for the extra point.. Leave silence also at the end of the recording.  There's a few reasons. 

First, it avoids the track ending with the sound of you scrambling for the "off" button when the last note of the music has barely been played.  People doing home recording often rush that last note and don't let it die out or end that same as they would a note in the middle of the piece.  There's a tendency to cut that last note a bit short.

Secondly, if you eventually end up using noise reduction to reduce or eliminate background sounds, most noise reduction software needs a sample of the background noise it is supposed to be taking out.

So give yourself at least several seconds at the end of the take where you just sit or stand as quiet as you can before reaching to turn the recording off. 

Same as any click/metronome beats or reference notes at the beginning of the track, you can just edit them out.. Remember, any "sins" that don't make it through the final edit are automatically "forgiven".. LOL

"This young wine may have a lot of tannins now, but in 5 or 10 years it is going to be spectacular, despite the fact that right now it tastes like crude oil. You know this is how it is supposed to taste at this stage of development." ~ Itzhak Perlman

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