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Remixing a Song in Logic Pro
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Creating vocal samples and transitional sounds


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Remixing a Song in Logic Pro

with Josh Harris

Video: Creating vocal samples and transitional sounds

Now it's time to glue the different sections of the remix together with some vocal samples and transitional sounds. I'll begin with choosing a vocal sample and what I mean by vocal sample is maybe a word, the title of the song something along those lines, something just a couple of words that I can play with delay, effect and pepper through out the remix once I've made my decision to help fill in the holes and add a little bit of flavor. We'll go up here to where the lead vocal is and we will go to the area where the first chorus ends, right before the post-chorus.
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  1. 16m 14s
    1. Welcome
      1m 8s
    2. Using Logic Pro as a remixing environment
      4m 45s
    3. Optimizing Logic's performance and monitoring system usage
      4m 29s
    4. Working with software synths
      3m 15s
    5. Using the exercise files
      58s
    6. Relinking audio files
      1m 39s
  2. 22m 51s
    1. Setting up your session
      2m 34s
    2. Determining and verifying source BPM
      1m 30s
    3. Lining up vocals over a kick drum
      5m 36s
    4. Choosing destination BPM and time-stretching in Flex mode
      4m 30s
    5. Exporting time-stretched vocals and importing into a session
      4m 23s
    6. Thinking about your direction
      4m 18s
  3. 22m 50s
    1. Using Apple Loops
      6m 8s
    2. Auditioning drum loops
      5m 46s
    3. Layering drum loops
      4m 45s
    4. Drum loops and drum programming
      6m 11s
  4. 19m 56s
    1. Chord changes and harmonic structure
      4m 18s
    2. Getting bass sounds and programming bass lines
      8m 50s
    3. Layering bass sounds and side chaining
      6m 48s
  5. 34m 20s
    1. Choosing foundational synth parts and sounds
      11m 46s
    2. Layering synth parts
      10m 21s
    3. Lead line hooks
      5m 37s
    4. Synth candy
      6m 36s
  6. 12m 19s
    1. The importance of arranging
      2m 26s
    2. Arranging your track
      9m 53s
  7. 23m 3s
    1. Creating vocal samples and transitional sounds
      11m 57s
    2. Advanced vocal editing techniques
      5m 44s
    3. Filling holes in the arrangement
      5m 22s
  8. 47m 30s
    1. Mixing philosophies
      6m 30s
    2. Mixing drums and bass
      5m 40s
    3. Mixing synths and transitional sounds
      12m 14s
    4. Mixing vocals
      10m 36s
    5. Final touches, referencing, and mastering your final mix
      5m 17s
    6. Listening to the final mix
      7m 13s
  9. 47s
    1. Final thoughts
      47s

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Remixing a Song in Logic Pro
3h 19m Intermediate Dec 01, 2011

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In this course, author Josh Harris demonstrates constructing a remix using only a pre-existing vocal track as a starting point. The course shows how to time-stretch vocals, offers suggestions for establishing a musical direction, and explains how to audition and layer Apple loops. The course also covers programming beats using synths, generating vocal samples, arranging the remix, and creating master-quality final mixes.

Topics include:
  • Using Logic Pro as a remixing environment
  • Setting up a session
  • Lining up vocals over a kick drum
  • Analyzing chord changes and harmonic structure
  • Programming synth parts
  • Arranging a track
  • Demonstrating advanced vocal editing techniques
  • Mixing the drums, bass, synths, and vocals
  • Mastering the final mix
Subjects:
Audio + Music Audio Plug-Ins Music Composition Remixing
Software:
Logic Pro
Author:
Josh Harris

Creating vocal samples and transitional sounds

Now it's time to glue the different sections of the remix together with some vocal samples and transitional sounds. I'll begin with choosing a vocal sample and what I mean by vocal sample is maybe a word, the title of the song something along those lines, something just a couple of words that I can play with delay, effect and pepper through out the remix once I've made my decision to help fill in the holes and add a little bit of flavor. We'll go up here to where the lead vocal is and we will go to the area where the first chorus ends, right before the post-chorus.

(Music playing) I'm going to use the Ctrl, Option, and arrow keys to zoom in and make my edit on this vocal. So here we are, right here, just a couple of beats before the part. (Music playing) Right there, right on simply falling, that's the title of the song. I'm going to use that vocal bit. I hold down Command and my scissors. My secondary tool becomes available to me, and I will also hold down Ctrl so that I can get right in here, a fine edit point.

And you can see as I click and hold that the location, measures 63 beat 4 3 173, is exactly where I'm making my edit, and I'll explain why I'm telling you this in a minute as I copy and paste it. Let's solo this out. And we will solo it out by just highlighting the audio region and hitting S. (Music playing) Okay, that's our edit and we will shrink the screen back down. And it's very important when you are making edits that are not actually on beat 1 beat 2 on the grid per say you click and hold and you'll see where I made my edit point and measures 63 beat 4 3 173.

When I actually go to paste this, you'll notice that all that's happening is I'm just moving back complete measures and when I go to drop this, it will be locked in time. For example if I were to -- and I don't want to move the automation data -- if I was to not pay attention to that I could accidentally paste my vocal this way and it won't be in beat. Let's take a listen. (Music playing) That could work but I'd like the vocals to actually sit the way it sits in the chorus.

So I will move it back to beat 4 of the measure before. We'll shut this off so it doesn't keep asking us. This is a nice vocal sample to segway into the next 8 bar section. I'm going to apply an echo on this and when I say echo Tape Delay is the plug-in I'm going to use. I've already setup a delay on Bus 7. In other words as I crank up the nobe here on Bus 7 it will send the vocal to this Tape Delay, which is on Bus 7.

I'm going to zoom into the automation window, and we will spend more time in the automation window when we are in the mixing stages of the course, but I'm going to show you how to apply a delay to this vocal sample. I hit the H? Which blows up the track and down here, I'll shrink this so we can see it, automation data. All we need to do draw on the automation data is single click on the line here and it creates a bullet point and we create a second one so that we can move this up and down without moving the whole line up and down.

I'm going to undo that. I'm slowly bringing up Bus 7 which will send this vocal to that echo and I'm actually going to solo this out while I do this just so I can hear how much delay it's throwing. (Music playing) It's pretty cool. That's sort of a high pass filter. We can look at the delay plug-in for a moment. It's set to half notes and I've set it up so that there's a little bit of a high pass filter, so everything below 360 Hertz is rolled off, so it has a little bit of an AM radio effect.

But I don't want the whole phrase. I just want the "for you" part. So let's listen and I'll actually set this up so that only the "for you" of the 'simply falling for you' phrase echoes. (Music playing) And I'll just move this bullet point over here. Don't want to do that. You can see as I'm editing I'm using the Command+Z key to undo some edits. When you're this close in on the screen it's very easy to accidentally grab a region a track below, a track above and move something that you didn't want to move resulting in misplaced audio regions, and if you're not paying attention you can actually cause yourself a lot more work.

So let's take a listen to this. Now I'll just loop this here in the Cycle points. (Music playing) And there we go. Let's unsolo this and we'll hit A to take ourselves out of the automation window. I'll just take a moment to point out if you actually heard some delay prior to me applying this Tape Delay, it's because I had taken the time to set up the vocals with a reverb and delay on Bus 1 and 2. Bus 1 has a reverb, Bus 2 also has a delay but it's a different delay than the Tape Delay.

This is actually a quarter note on the left side and an eighth note on the right side. You do have to make sure that your delays don't fight with each other, but one is a 1/4 note, one is an 8th note, one is a 1/2 note they all work together okay as long as one of them doesn't dominate the other. So let's take a listen to this vocal sample right here. (Music playing) As you can hear that's a nice segway into that new part coming in and we haven't even added the transitional sounds.

So this is an example of how to take a vocal sample out of the lead vocal, cut it with the scissors, pay attention to where it sits in the bars beat, so that when you copy and move it you're able to place it in time, and, I went ahead and set up a new track and called it vox sample. Now let's move on to transitional sounds. The first thing I like to add with transitional sounds is a crash cymbal. I just pulled up the EXS909 and the C# key is a crash cymbal. Let me zoom-in and I will go ahead and record the crash cymbal.

(Music playing) We'll quantize that up here to a quarter note, and I will trim back the MIDI region that is silence. I will copy and paste this crash cymbal almost every 8 bars. I might leave it out in the verses, but in the intros and the choruses and definitely the post choruses I will use it.

Now I'll move on to add what I call transitional sounds. We can consider the crush cymbal the transitional sound but it's really more of an accent piece to highlight the downbeat of a new phrase. Right here I've pulled up the Cavern Kit which is a-- (Music playing) A drum kit in the EXS and I'm actually going to use the drum fill as a transitional tool. That's something I like to do is program a drum fill, almost feels like it was sampled or lifted from another record.

That's one thing that I like to do in the remixes is create these parts that sound like they were sampled from other records but actually were not, I played them in. It gives a remix of flavor. Let's go ahead and record this part in. I know I want to do a fill that's probably something like, Or something along those lines. (Music playing) And I will quantize that. Let's take a listen. (Music playing) So that fill acts as a transitional sound of sorts.

Now let's move on and layer the crash cymbal with another crash cymbal. I'm going to go and play this in. The reason that I'm doing this is I like to have a splash of high frequencies in on the downbeats of the choruses or the post courses. So it really feels like you've arrived at the section. Let's record this in. (Music playing) That's a nice splash. So I will quantize that, trim back the unneeded MIDI region.

(Music playing) And now let's move on to another transitional sound. (Music playing) This is a pitch transitional sound. Let's move onto another transitional sound and I'll actually use this transitional sound one bar before as a lead up to the downbeat, so it will work in conjunction with the drum fill. (Music playing) I like this note.

This is a nice low note. It will complement the drum fill. (Music playing) And let's quantize that. So what we're really doing here is setting up moments in the mix, a one bar moment that than is part of the tension and release process. Let's trim back the unneeded MIDI region and let's go ahead and add another transitional sound. (Music playing) These are all part of the EXS 24 standard library and you can find them under Textures.

These are different presets in Cinematic Textures. And I'm actually going to increase the release a little bit and I'd like this sound to echo a little bit. So I went ahead and set up another Tape Delay that has a quarter note as its duration and like the other Tape Delay I applied a high pass filter and in this case I rolled off all the frequencies below 490 Hertz. So let's go ahead and record this in and you'll hear, as I bring the Bus up, there's a little bit of an echo.

Creates a nice slight bit of white noise to go underneath the rest of the track, it adds a little bit of edge, a little bit of dimension. (Music playing) And let's quantize, trim back the unneeded MIDI region. So you see what we've done here is we've created what I like to call the third dimension of the remix, the front to back. We think of listening in stereo left to right.

These moments, these sounds, these sweeps and effects and transitional sounds really give the mix some depth, the front to back part and I will, as we move on in the next movie copy and paste them throughout the mix as I begin to build up the rest of the arrangement and actually finish the arrangement and move on to the mixing process.

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