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Arranging the rest of the song

From: Remixing Techniques: Arranging and Song Form

Video: Arranging the rest of the song

Now it's time to fill in the holes of the arrangement, as well as creating an intro and an outro. A club mix is generally 5-7 minutes in length and should take the listener on a journey. So now I'll work through each instrument section--drums, bass, keyboards--as well as add some vocal samples to create some ear candy and special moments in the arrangement. You won't be able to follow along with me step by step, but you will get an overview of how to complete this part of the process. (music playing) Now that we have a completely finished arrangement, I'll spend a few minutes taking you on a tour of what I added.

Arranging the rest of the song

Now it's time to fill in the holes of the arrangement, as well as creating an intro and an outro. A club mix is generally 5-7 minutes in length and should take the listener on a journey. So now I'll work through each instrument section--drums, bass, keyboards--as well as add some vocal samples to create some ear candy and special moments in the arrangement. You won't be able to follow along with me step by step, but you will get an overview of how to complete this part of the process. (music playing) Now that we have a completely finished arrangement, I'll spend a few minutes taking you on a tour of what I added.

We will start at the vocal. I cut out a word, just a syllable actually of the word waiting, and I created what I call a vocal sample or vox chop--that is my nickname for it--and I will solo this out so you can take a listen to what it sounds like. I cut out just the wait of the word waiting and I placed it on the and of the beat. And then I consolidated 8 bars of it into one audio file. And here it is, from the beginning. (music playing) And you can see, the delay has a rhythm and then I filtered the delay, so the echo has a darkness to it. (audio playing) And that runs underneath the lead vocal and we listen to the lead vocal and the vox chop together in the chorus and it is a pretty cool combination.

(music playing) It's a nice bit of ear candy that just sits underneath the vocal. It has some rhythm to it so it does help pulse the track along. Unsolo those.

Next up are crash symbols and drum fills and what I call sfx, sound effects, sweeps, things of that nature. So you will notice that when the track starts as a crash symbol at the very beginning, and I continue it for almost every 8 bars throughout the whole arrangement. This is nice. It's a splash of frequencies on the downbeat of a new section. (music playing) And I also created an intro and an outro, and the first verse of song begins at measure 33.

So let's take a listen to the buildup to what I would call the drop, right before verse 1 begins. (music playing) So what I did is I created an 8-bar moment, a hype section if you will, using the hype sound that I programmed in a couple of movies back.

So no new keyboard parts have been added. Things have just been redistributed, and I've added higher-end frequencies like crash cymbals and white-noise-type sweeps to help build tension and release in different sections of the song. I also cut up some of the kick drum file to create these kick fills, along with a clap here at what I would consider to be apex of the song. (music playing) And you can hear that I added a ride cymbal in the last chorus, just to add another set of frequencies on top.

(music playing) So the idea behind working in this arrangement was to create seamless sections. In other words, one section seamlessly leads into the next, into the next, into the next, from start to finish. There is no moments that feel choppy or no sections that don't feel like they belong next one another. So I hope this gives you some insight into how to work your way through a club mix from the shell--the sketch, the blueprint-- add parts, begin to feel in the holes, and then finesse it until the arrangement makes sense from start to finish.

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Remixing Techniques: Arranging and Song Form

31 video lessons · 5571 viewers

Josh Harris
Author

 
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  1. 2m 59s
    1. Welcome
      1m 17s
    2. What you should know before watching this course
      23s
    3. Why did we record this course in four different DAWs?
      49s
    4. Using the exercise files
      30s
  2. 4m 58s
    1. A general overview of musical arranging
      2m 4s
    2. An overview of remix arranging
      1m 34s
    3. An overview of radio and club arranging
      1m 20s
  3. 51m 30s
    1. Referencing the original or demo version of the song
      3m 2s
    2. Listening to stems and deciding on the musical direction
      4m 36s
    3. Creating a sketch arrangement
      8m 36s
    4. Developing the drums and bass
      13m 31s
    5. Adding synths
      8m 43s
    6. Adding guitars
      7m 49s
    7. Arranging the rest of the song
      5m 13s
  4. 51m 54s
    1. Referencing the original or demo version of the song
      5m 7s
    2. Listening to stems and deciding on the musical direction
      3m 42s
    3. Time stretching stems and creating a sketch arrangement
      11m 18s
    4. Developing the drums and bass
      11m 10s
    5. Adding synths
      10m 30s
    6. Working from the hype backwards
      4m 27s
    7. Arranging the rest of the song
      5m 40s
  5. 18m 31s
    1. Trimming down the club version
      3m 32s
    2. Identifying arrangement changes within the body of the song
      9m 44s
    3. Listening through the final arrangement
      5m 15s
  6. 19m 38s
    1. Adding a vocoder
      5m 36s
    2. Adding filtered delays to vocals
      7m 42s
    3. Adding drum fills
      6m 20s
  7. 14m 48s
    1. Listening through the final radio mix
      4m 12s
    2. Listening through the final club mix
      6m 47s
    3. Listening through the final radio edit
      3m 49s
  8. 38s
    1. Final thoughts and next steps
      38s

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