Easy-to-follow video tutorials help you learn software, creative, and business skills.Become a member
Now that we have got our double-tracked Fat Stack guitars here, let's make use of the fact that we have an entire stereo spectrum to play sounds within. Now if you think of wearing a set of headphones or listening to two speakers--a left speaker and a right speaker--GarageBand allows you to pan your sound from left to right around basically what's considered to be a stereo arc, and that positioning of sound can help give both differentiation between sounds, make something distinct, and create some room for sounds to stand on their own and have their own sonic space to live in.
So having all of our panning knobs right up center right now is part of what's making this sound like very one-dimensional mix. I will play a little bit of it right now and just listen to it. (music playing) Okay, and if you are not listening to this on stereo speakers or in headphones right now, you are probably not hearing it to that degree. You may want to come back and revisit this chapter when you do have a stereo set of headphones on, so you can really hear it. What we want to do with our stereo guitar tracks is pan one hard left and one hard right, allowing each of those tracks to independently live in the two speakers, and it will create a much wider degree of space between the two, making this guitar track essentially sound huge.
It's going to be much wider than this sort of narrow center-focused sound that it currently has. So I am going to play the guitar track and the whole mix right now and as we go, I am going to pan the first one to the left and the second one to the right and go ahead and listen for the difference once I have actually panned them out. (music playing) Bring them back to the middle now.
(music playing) So another thing you're probably noticing is that once they are panned, they actually end up feeling a little softer. Basically what you're getting is 50% of the overall sound that was coming out when it was in the middle, because when anything is panned to the center, you're having an equal amount of sound in the left that you do in the right. So if we go all the way to one side, you're getting a little bit of attenuation down on the overall volume.
So we might need to bring them up in the mix a little bit. I'm going to go back to the beginning of the chorus and work with their balance just a tiny bit. (music playing) Okay, that sounds pretty good. (music playing) Now the other thing we have to think about beyond placement in the stereo spectrum is what is our overall sound doing? So we're going to focus a lot more on this during the mixing chapter, but for now, I actually do kind of want to tweak the overall guitar sound and see if I can get them blending in with the acoustic guitar a little bit better because it's got more of a clear, almost brittle sound to it, whereas these guitars are very, very warm and very chorused, so I want to kind of brighten them up maybe a tiny bit as well.
So what I want to do is actually solo out the acoustic guitar and both of the stereo electric guitar tracks, so we can hear just guitar. Let me go back to the top again, and I am going to open up my Track Info panel so I can start to look at the sound of my Acoustic Guitar, my Fat Stack left, and Fat Stack right. In fact, now that I say that and these are named the same thing, let me take a quick moment to name them properly, now that we have split them up. So now we've got Fat Stack left and Fat Stack right.
Let's go ahead and listen to these three guitars. I will use the right-arrow to skip ahead and get to the place where they all come in. (music playing) Now my sense is that I want to kind of open up the tone of the distorted guitars just a little bit to make them sort of have a little more life and kind of breath and sort of high-end quality to them. Right now, they are very warm and mid, which is great for a Fat Stack, but I kind of want a little more presence.
So what I am going to do right now then is solo just one of these tracks so we can hear the guitar and then work on editing its sound. And for the moment, I am going to pan it center so we can actually hear it in both the ears. The first thing I am going to do while I am playing is look at, by clicking once on the guitar amp, what the settings are for the preset for a Fat Stack on the amp and make some adjustments to just see what I can do with this tone a little bit. (music playing) More presence will make it feel brighter and more open.
(music playing) You can hear as I am going up and down with that, it sort of sounds more like it's almost like it's going, sort of opening and then closing. So here is the opening and closing. (music playing) So what you are going to try to do is find the sweet spot. What sounds good? What's the tone you're going for? So I am going to try to adjust this right now to my taste. (music playing) That sounds a little bit better to me.
Let me hear it with the acoustic now, see what we think. (music playing) I kind of like the sound of that. Since we've been talking about stereo panning, the actual movement of positioning your pan fader to the left or the right of the center, there is a number of ways you can do it. If you click and hold and drag up then the fader will go to the right; if you click and hold and drag down, it will go to the left.
You can put it back in the center by Option+Clicking on the Pan Fader, and the other way you can do it is by positioning your mouse in the middle and using your scroll wheel down, you can go to the left and scroll wheel up, you can go to the right. And that same actually effect works on the volume slider as well, so you can use your scroll bar if you want to, but it sort of jumps in pretty big increments, which is why I prefer to kind of get in here and drag it. They don't give you a whole lot of room here with the Volume fader so you sort of have to work with it in whatever way is best for you. So in addition to adjusting the amp settings-- let me go back to just hearing my Fat Stack Left-- I am going to look at our stompbox pedal here right now.
The preset for a Fat Stack comes with an overdrive pedal, but maybe we can add a little bit to that, sort of have some additional fun with our sound here. I am going to play again. Clicking once on Overdrive will bring up the settings for that particular pedal, so you can adjust them. We also have a sort of overall drive control on this pedal, a tone control, and Level. Level will just make it louder or softer, and the Drive kind of increases the grip of the distortion sound, and the Tone is almost like another presence we had on the amp itself.
So we were adjusting the amp's presence. This could adjust sort of overall tone to the right is this sort of higher tone, and to the left is sort of a lower warmer tone if we wanted to. I am going to leave that how it is there because that pedal's sounding fine to me right now. But that's how you can get in here and adjust this. If you'd like to see your entire library of stompbox effects, just double-click on any one that happens to be sitting in front of your amp, and you can see all 15 of them. There is a whole bunch of different ones here. There's a couple of choruses, some additional distortion pedals, the Grinder, the Fuzz machine.
There is a lot of tremolo effects and vibrato effects in some of these. The Vibe and the Squash Compressor can give you some additional compression. I encourage you to play with all of these. They all have a wide variety of sounds to them. For now let's just add the Phase Tripper phaser effect to our pedal by clicking and dragging and dropping it on the floor. Now, we've got Overdrive and Phaser. If I double-click, I will leave the sort of well editing mode and look at my pedalboard as it currently is. So here is the phaser. It's on. I can tell it's on because the light is on.
If I click the big button, I can turn it off. It goes gray up here and this light goes off, so you can bypass any stompbox effect easily by doing that. I am going to play the track back, and then I am going to turn the phaser on and show you want it sounds like to add that sound. (music playing) So the phaser is kind of a moving filter effect that sort of sweeps and swoops from highs to lows, and you can adjust the speed at which that swoop occurs with the Rate knob.
You can adjust how deep the swoop is at that rate with the Depth knob, and the Feedback sort of controls how much of these sort of other qualities of harmonics and sort of overtones that come in are involved in the sound. So as I play, I am going to sort of monkey with these knobs a bit, and you can see how fun it is to sort of mess around with this. (music playing) Even though the Phase Tripper is sort of this very obvious sort of almost obnoxious sound when you get it really cranked up, if you pull back on some of these and you can get the Rate kind of low, make it be a slow sweep, bring the Feedback down a little bit, you can kind of get a neat effect.
So what we'll do is I will keep this phaser stompbox in line here, and we will bypass it for now. And later when we're in the mixing chapter, what I'd actually like to do now that I've sort of heard this on the sound is when we get to a certain point in the song, maybe the chorus or maybe the pre-chorus--we can experiment-- we will use Automation in the mixing phase to kick the phaser on at that perfect spot that we want it on and then pull it back out where we don't want it to be there anymore. So I have one other thing to do, which is bringing this setting that I just made and the adjustments I made here over to my other track.
So I could just go into that track and do it manually, but of course, we have our friendly Save Setting down here. So what I am going to do is click it and call this Fat Stack II and hit Save, and now you'll notice it's actually been added to our presets. So I can go over to the other guitar track, which is still set to Fat Stack, and change it to our new setting, Fat Stack II, and it brings in that new presence adjustment and the phaser as is. I can un-solo that track, bring these back to their proper panning position, and now we can go ahead and listen to it in the song. And just so you can hear how it's going to be, I can manually throw the Phaser in as we run through here.
(music playing) So that's how easy it is and how much fun it is to experiment with all the different parameters you can adjust on your guitar amps, on your stompbox pedals, and also working with the stereo spectrum to really modify the sound of the instruments that you've recorded to bring your mix to the place that you're really trying to hit with it.
Get unlimited access to all courses for just $25/month.Become a member
73 Video lessons · 15457 Viewers
130 Video lessons · 17571 Viewers
110 Video lessons · 9067 Viewers
71 Video lessons · 12533 Viewers
Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.
Search within course videos and transcripts, and jump right to the results.
Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.
Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.
Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.
Your file was successfully uploaded.