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In this course, producer and engineer Skye Lewin reveals the techniques that professional musicians and producers use to get the best-sounding results from Melodyne. The course covers digital audio workstation (DAW) and session preparation, and shows how to perform rhythm and pitch corrections on both lead and background vocals. It includes lessons on importing and exporting tracks between the DAW and the standalone version of Melodyne, as well as utilizing Melodyne as a plug-in, through ReWire, and through Melodyne Bridge. Skye also shows how to use a MIDI keyboard to edit the pitch of a recorded performance in Melodyne and how to trigger a MIDI instrument using an audio recording.
You may have already fixed most of your rhythmic issues as you went through on your first pass. But it's often helpful to do a separate pass just for checking rhythms and correcting rhythmic issues. Now you don't have to do it this way but I usually like to make sure that I can hear the instrumental in the background so that I have some sort of frame of reference for adjusting the rhythm of my vocals. And you can use this to actually make corrections if there were performance issues, you can use the rhythmic changing to actually change rhythms, and you can use it to just change the pocket of the performance if perhaps you want something to feel a little bit behind the beat or maybe something to sit a little bit more on top of the beat.
So you can do all of that stuff very easily within Melodyne. And just like we did in Automatic Pitch Correction, you can do Automatic Rhythmic Correction, although you have to make sure you have the tempo set properly in your session to do that. So let's go back in and pick up where we left off. We are going to open up our Lead 1a_COMP_01, and check the rhythm against our instrumental track. So we have opened our Lead 1a_COMP_01, and we are going to choose Play arrangement. And just for the sake of hearing those by themselves, I am going to mute 1b and 1c. I am just going to listen with the couple of bars or pre-rolls, so I can kind of feel the rhythm and make sure the rhythm of this vocal against that rhythm of the track is working.
(music playing) Cool. So just based on that, she is pretty much right on the pocket with this, but there are few things that I might want to adjust. So perhaps you want certain words to be more on top of the beat, maybe a little more robotic or perhaps you want the entire pocket to float a little more and be more behind the beat, depending on what it is you are looking for in your performance, there are different ways to address it.
So if, for example, we wanted an entire phrase or an entire section to be earlier or later, we can simply select it and using the Move Notes tool, we can hold the Option of Alt key and click and drag the performance just a little bit earlier or later. And you can see how it's moving it within the confines of the grid. So let's undo that and zoom in a little bit more so we have a little more fine control over that. So if we wanted the entire performance to sit even further back on the beat, we could use this and just slightly nudge it a little bit later, and you can hear the effect of that.
(music playing) So that is fairly subtle, we can make it a lot more exaggerated if we wanted. And likewise, if we wanted the entire thing to sit more on top of the beat, you can hold Option, slide it a little bit earlier and listen to that. (music playing) So that makes it sound a little bit more on top of the beat and a little bit more robotic, but perhaps we are happy with most of the performance, and we just want to change a few little sections. If that's the case, we can just do the same thing for those sections. (music playing) So maybe I want known and let it, to be a little bit earlier, but I want everything else to stay more or less where it is.
So I can just take those small sections and scoot them a little bit closer to where I want them without really affecting anything else. (music playing) Now it feels like she's attacking those beats a little bit more aggressively, because the timing is just a little bit closer to the beat. (music playing) So same thing here, I probably want cause and got to come a little bit earlier.
So I can select them both and just slide them just a hair earlier, make sure I am happy with the result. (music playing) Maybe I am want to shorten up cause just to make that a little more staccato, and that will also help with the energy. (music playing) We have got to make sure that that doesn't make the S of cause sound strange though, because we have now lengthened it. So I am going to make the next note, start a little earlier to shorten that S, or I can also just shorten the S by making another separation, but let's hear this first. (music playing) It's actually pretty good, let's listen it one more time, with a little more pre-roll.
(music playing) Here a little bit too early on what, the idea is just to dial it in until you're happy with it. So now we go through the rest of the performance. (music playing) Just catch any little things that we might want to bring earlier, we can even play around with making these automated rhythm corrections, I believe the key Command+Option or Ctrl+Alt+T. And we can now quantize the groove essentially using any different one of these templates, we can go to quarter notes, quarter note triplets, eighth notes, eighth note triplets, et cetera, or we can use a Reference Track, in this case we could choose to use our Instrumental Track as a reference if we wanted to.
You can set your Quantize Intensity, which is essentially how close to the original performance and how close to perfect you want to be. And just on the section that you have selected, it will operate. So you can see as you move the slider that those changes are taking place, they are not going to stick until you commit them. Now let's try like may be 75% and see what that sounds like. (music playing) Overall it's pretty good, but it did make a few changes that are not quite what I'm looking for, we will undo that and just do them manually.
(music playing) And usually when Melodyne makes those types of changes, it's because an anticipation may fall just a hair closer to the beat before, and therefore, appear as if it's trying to be on that beat. So fine-tuning how you're using Quantize can actually help you use it in a way that might actually make it more useful for you. But here I am just going to make certain notes just a hair earlier. (music playing) Just a few notes that probably should be little earlier. (music playing) And so, for example, the beginning of the Atti-Girl and Attitude, maybe it could be a hair earlier in this case just because we are going for a bit of that robotic thing until we hit the chorus.
(music playing) And then we can move on to looking at multiple tracks that need to be timed together. So now, if we select Lead 1b and unmute that-- we can also unmute it from the mixer if you want, whichever way is more convenient for you. We can now listen to the two together and make sure that they both play well in time. (music playing) So overall that's pretty good, now if you really want a very perfect pop sound, you can use other tools like vocal line to make sure that the vocals are literally doing the exact same thing rhythmically.
But a lot of times I prefer to do something with a little bit more natural character to it and Melodyne is great for that, because you can literally just fine-tune each little section of the melody and of the rhythm, until you get what you're looking for. So here, we can make certain sections a little earlier to match the other take, and just like you saw there, if you accidentally click on a section that's overhanging from a different track, it will actually select that track, so you have to be aware of that. In this case it actually moved us back to Lead 1a, so I have to go back up here and select Lead 1b.
And make sure I actually select the right piece, instead of accidentally switching tracks. And just see what we got here. (music playing) Feels like there is a little bit of difference between the timing of known on the two takes, so let's try that again. (music playing) It's better. (music playing) We probably bring got up a hair earlier just to match what we did on the other take. (music playing) Maybe cause as well, you know just kind of catching the little things that you think stick out.
(music playing) Let's just jump ahead and grab the same stuff on the next part. (music playing) Overall it's pretty good, and I am not trying to tighten it up too much, but if you want it to be really perfect with this, you really can get into a fine level of detail, you can use visual cues if you want to zoom in, you can also separate the notes on the different pitches, so that you can visually line up a start of each note.
So there are all kinds of different ways that you can use Melodyne to really dial in the rhythm. (music playing) So there is one other tool that's really useful for timing edits, and that is to Edit Time Handle tool. With the Time Handle tool you can actually change the way a note attacks, you can make the note start more quickly or more slowly. So if a note has a pitch bend naturally, you can make the pitch bend take longer or shorter amount of time. So let's take a listen to how that could be used. By clicking and dragging upward with the Time Handle tool we have shorten the attack.
(music playing) And therefore, the length of the note in this case, because we went pretty drastically, we can undo that, and we can drag it downwards to make the attack slower. And let's just listen to just this track, so we can really hear this. (music playing) You can hear it kind of eases into the note, versus attacking the note really hard. (music playing) So this is a really useful tool for making a different performance than what you actually recorded, because you have a lot of control over certain elements of the performance.
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