Join Paul Murphy for an in-depth discussion in this video Advanced music editing with Remix, part of Adobe Audition: Mixing Music and Dialog.
- [Instructor] Very rarely do you find a piece of music that perfectly fits the timeline of your edit. You usually need to do at least some editing, cutting out sections of music or repeating others. This used to be a manual process until an amazing feature came along called Remix. Remix will actually analyze your music track, identify its structure and where it repeats, and then automatically edit it so that it fits a specific duration. In this video, I'm not only going to show you how to use Remix, but also some advanced workflow tips including how to get the best music edit for your sequence.
So for this, I'm going to open up my Sequencing_01 sequence, Chapter02 and it's the first sequence here, 02_01_Remix. Now, music can have such a big influence on the timing of your edit, so I prefer to add it before I lock the picture and send it over to Audition for the final mix. The catch-22 is that Remix is only available in Audition at the moment, so rather than sending all of these clips over to Audition just to add music, and then having to do it all again for the final mix, I'm just going to create a quick reference to my sequence to help me time the music.
For this I'll jump over to Audition and I'm going to select File, and Open. I'll navigate to my Exercise Files, I'll go into 01_Premier where our Premier project file is, I'll select that and click Open, and now we're actually looking at the bins inside of our Premier project. I'll go into that sequence bin, into Chapter02, and there's our remix sequence that we're working on. I'll click OK on that, and now what it's done is it's created an audio file of all of the audio in my sequence, plus brought in the Premier project itself.
To show you what this looks like, I'll just select both of these by holding down Shift, and then I'll click this Insert Into Multitrack. For that, I'll need to create a new multitrack session, so I'll click this here, and I'll call this, RemixMusic. I'll choose a folder location, I'll just put it inside the Working_Files of the 01_Premier chapter, and the rest of these settings look good to me, so I'll click OK, and here is our session now. So we have the audio from our sequence, and this is actually not saved to any location at the moment and I can tell that because it has a little asterisk next to the name of the audio file.
On top of that, we have our video reference, and this is actually dynamically linked to our Premier project, so this is not an exported file. This is not a render. It's taking its video directly from my Premier project file and I can see that video down here in the lower left. I'll just increase this up a little bit so I can see it a bit clearer, and just resize it like that. So if I were to make a change to the video in my Premier project, it would be immediately updated here in Audition without me having to re-render any kind of files.
The next thing I'll do is import in my music so I'll just go over here and choose Import File and I'll go back to my Exercise Files and down at the very bottom we have a Media folder. I'll double-click this. Go into the Music folder, and the music we want is this Liberty 90 seconds, I'll click open on that. And then I'll drag this music into my session, just drag it into the track underneath the dialog up here, and the track is probably a bit loud for me to work with so I'm actually just going to turn it down so I can hear my dialog a bit clearer, so I'm going to go over to the track volume here, and just type in minus 20 decibels, so it's going to turn it down by 20 decibels.
Now, before I can start remixing this clip here, I actually need to enable Remix first, and I can do that just by selecting the clip, going up to the Clip menu up at the top here, and choosing Remix, Enable Remix, and it immediately starts to analyze the clip, and what it's looking for is the beats per minute and the structure of the song, so that it can very quickly and very easily reshape the song based on the duration that I need. And you'll know when it's done because you'll see this little staircase icon that is either side of the clip, and these are the handles that I can use to actually re-time the song.
So I'm just going to click this, and drag it down to the end of my sequence, and then when I let go, it's immediately recut the song to a new duration. If I look a bit closer at the clip now, I'll just zoom in down to the end here, pressing the plus key, you can see we have these gray jagged lines, and these are where Remix has made cuts to my music in order to get it to that new duration. So let's have a listen to how this sounds, I'm just going to solo this track here, and press play. (stirring orchestral music) Okay, that's actually a pretty good cut.
I think it's done a really good job of cutting that piece of music down. Although I will say this, if you've re-timed an entire track like this, and it magically syncs up with everything in your edit, it tells me one of two things. You're either an incredibly lucky individual, or your use of music is not actually enhancing your edit in any way other than just filling in the silence. A much better way to work with Remix is to actually cut your track up into different sections and remix those individual sections to match your edit.
So for example, I have part in my interview here. I'm just going to un-solo this and solo the interview. I have an interview here where the interview subject is talking about an emotional experience. Let's have a listen to this. - [Jim] When you have an experiential event, like Project RELO, and you get that emotional bond with people, and you really see this stuff firsthand... - [Instructor] Okay, so that's a very emotional part of my edit there, and as well as that, I have a very emotional part of my music. There's this section here, where the strings and the horns all start to swell and pick up, if we listen to this.
(stirring orchestral music) So it would be really good if we could time our music edit so that those strings are happening during that interview. So what I'll do is select my remix track here and I actually want to undo this remixing and I can do that just by going over to my Properties tab. If you can't see this, you can get to it just by going Window, and choosing Properties. And we just want to go down to the Remix section down here. I'm just scrolling down this actual panel, I might just expand it a bit so we can see it clearer.
And we've just got this little undo button. This will reset the Remix properties, and basically set the song back to the way it was. And I'll just find that sort of swell of music that we had over here. (stirring orchestra music) And it sounds like the drums are about here. I don't need to be quite accurate on this cut, but it is good to be in the right area, and to place an actual cut there, I'm going to press Command + K, so we've split this clip in half now, and now what I'm going to do is remix just this part of the clip to where that emotional interview just starts, so I'll select the Remix staircase, and just drag this down so it sort of lines up with that gap there, and it's actually timed it pretty well.
Now, of course, it's always worth checking that something sounds well before you sort of commit to it, so I'll just go down to those gray jagged lines, and let's just hear how this edit sounds. (unsettling orchestral music) Okay, I don't really like that. It sounds like those horns have come in at a kind of weird place, and I'm sure it's keeping time and matching the structure, but it just doesn't sound right to me. And this is where going into the advanced settings of Remix actually help you sort of play around with the edit a little bit more.
So with the clip selected, I'm going to go over to my Properties panel again. Here we have our advanced settings for Remix. I'll just expand this. And probably the place where you can have the most effect on how the song is cut, is with this first slider here which is Edit Length. I'll just zoom out a bit more in my session so you can see what's going on here. We have one edit in our clip in order to get this to our new duration, and the reason we only have one edit is because the slider is set all the way to 100. The way I prefer to think of this setting is how many edits do you want me to make? If you pull this all the way to the left, it means I want you to make a lot of edits.
If you pull it all the way to the right, it means I really don't want you to make many edits at all. Of course, the advantage of going further to the left is you start to hear more different parts of the music. So what I might do is just move this right in between, so somewhere about 50%, and you can see it's already made three cuts now instead of one. Let's have a listen to how these sound. (stirring orchestral music) Okay, that's actually a pretty good edit.
Sometimes what I really like about working with Remix is it shows me edits that I wouldn't have actually thought of when I was working on this as a manual process, so you have some nice discoveries working on it this way. I could of course play around with this a little bit more by playing around with some of the other advanced features here. Features is another one that's good to play with. If you push this further to the left, it focuses more on sort of beat-driven music. If you push it more to the right, it focuses more on sort of harmonic, melodic, sort of softer music.
But I'm actually pretty happy with the cut that it's come up with there. I'm now going to go to the second section and I'll just drag this so that it snaps to this new clip here, just like that, and this is still overshooting my edit a bit, so I'll just go over to my Remix control and just drag this so that it comes up to where the edit stops, and it doesn't actually get the duration exactly where I wanted it to, and you can see this by going over to your Properties panel. You can see, there's my target duration, and there's the remix duration, 28 seconds, so it's actually five seconds longer than what I asked for, and this is because music is based on tempo.
It's based on beats per minute, so you can only have certain lengths based on the tempo of the music. If you wanted to fit a specific length of time, then you need to speed up or slow down the tempo and that's where this checkbox comes in handy. If you check this Stretch to exact duration, it will speed up or slow down that tempo to get it right on that specified time. But because this isn't a locked edit and I don't need this to be a specific time, it's not going to be a commercial on TV or anything, I'm kind of happy having that five second slack there and what I'll probably do when I get this back into my edit is start to move these interviews around a bit to work with the music, rather than try and force the music to work with my edits so well.
So let's have a listen to how these other two edits sound here. (stirring orchestral music) Okay, so that edit actually sounds good to me. This one sounds a little weird. Let's just see if we can sort of push this down a little bit further, and see if we can get something sounding a little bit better, okay. So now we only have one edit, and we're actually a little bit closer to where our sequence was ending anyway.
I'll have a playback on this edit here. (stirring orchestral music) Okay, that actually sounds kind of good to me. The problem is, I feel as though the entrance of the strings there is just a little too obvious. Even if you play this with the interview over the top of it, you'll probably still notice those strings suddenly come in. - [Jim] When you have an experiential event like Project RELO, and you- - [Instructor] So what I would do, I'm just going to solo this again, is I'd like to actually edit the fade between these two sections a little bit better, but I can't actually do that in this Remix mode, so what I'm going to do is make a duplicate of this clip, just as a backup, so I'm going to hold down the Option key and Shift, that's the Alt key and Shift on Windows.
I'm just going to drag this down, so I've now made a copy of it, and I'll just mute this track because I don't actually need to hear it. I'll go back up to my original clip and what I'm going to do is go over to the Clip menu, down to Remix, and I'm going to say, Split Remixed Clip into Segments, so I actually want to replace what was remixed with actual cuts now, and there it is, and now I can actually see that fade that I was hearing before. I'll just zoom in on this a little bit more so I can see it, and I just want to expand this out a bit more either side, so I'm going to hold down the Shift key and click and drag over these fade controls, and do the same thing in the other direction.
Now let's just have a listen to how that fade sounds. (stirring orchestral music) Okay, I think that sounds more subtle and it doesn't bring your attention to the cut as much. Okay, so now that I'm happy with my music edit, I need to get this back into Premier, so I need to do a few things first. One thing I need to make sure that my music track is on solo and I'll get rid of this volume adjustment that I made earlier because I want this to be in its full volume. I'm also going to go back to Premier for a second and just make sure that the sequence that I want to send that music to is open and is the focus so I don't have any other sequence open.
It's the one that I'm working on at the moment, and then over in Audition, I'm going to go up to my Multitrack menu, so Multitrack, and I'm going to choose Export to Adobe Premier Pro. I'll just make sure that I choose a good location for these files, so if I go back into my Exercise Files, into Chapter01 Working_Files, I'll just save them in there, so I'll click Save. And I don't want to export each track as a stem. I think I'll actually do a mixdown, so a mixdown to a stereo file, and open this over in Adobe Premier Pro.
I'll click Export. And now it's asking me where do I want to copy this audio file to? I don't want to copy it to a new audio track. I'm going to copy it to my music track which is this empty track down here. Click OK. And there you go, it's automatically added my Remix music into my session. Beyond this point, I will go in and just sort of tweak my edit in different places to make sure it lines up and syncs with my music a bit better, before I send this off to Audition for the final mix.
So that's Remix, an incredibly powerful and intelligent feature that can quickly reedit your music to any length. But remember, don't just leave something as important as the use of music in your edit, up to a software algorithm. While Remix can save you a lot of time, you should still make the important creative choices yourself.
- Fixing recording issues such as clipped audio and background noise
- Enhancing dialog with compression and EQ
- Automating music levels
- Setting the right levels for venue
- Exporting your mix back to your editing project