Here’s the second of my “live acoustic” attempts: “Celebrity Chef” from “Meandersaur”
I’m not certain if I’ve heard this song before, but by the end of the song I seemed to have a faint recollection that I had heard it at some point in the past. I think it’s the chorus that I remember.
Your guitar seems to have a nice sounding lower end to it. It’s very balanced. I don’t really know how to describe it. It’s tight, smooth and … “warm”.
I can hear a slight room sound in the guitar but it doesn’t seem to detract from the sound. I don’t think I can hear any “room sound” in your vocal. Is that a dynamic mic you’re using? It looks like you’re singing very close to the mic. Is that what’s keeping the room out of the vocal soundscape? Do you have any sound absorption or treatment in any places of that room? I’m curious about this because at some point I’m going to attempt to do a recording like yours, but I don’t know if I can get the kind of definition and separation that you and Dave get in your live recordings. I have a bunch of square shaped foam absorbers that I’ll probably tape to the walls in my basement where I have my recording set-up.
I’m just realizing that you have the condenser mic placed somewhere around the 12th fret of your guitar. Do you have another mic on your guitar that we can’t see in the video?
I like the guitar embellishments in this. I bet this would be really cool with a bass and another acoustic just playing a basic rhythm along with it, but as others on IRD have said, this bare bones approach has a unique appeal.
Cool stuff! Let’s hear more!
Past my bedtime so… I might like this track better. No squeaks with the slides. Hard to do. Nice guitar.
Might be a clip when you say “no” with all that power. Would be fun to have someone with you doing some crazy manual percussion? Some of those runs are downright scary.
You and Dave could do one kinda crazy live gig. Yawl should be “out there” makin folks feel good.
I ain’t gotta enough words to describe that performance. big congrats…love the song
There’s a new way of doing concerts. You can do virtual concerts/ gigs/ performances from anywhere in the world. One musician can be in the USA, another in the UK, another in Australia and another in Japan. Together they can do a livestream performance or a virtual live audio-video recording. I don’t know how it works but it’s not uncommon. Didn’t the Rolling Stones do something like that in 2020?
This is one of my favourites… oh yay… Great vibe/take
I would normally take more low end out an acoustic if it was in a full mix situation, but here I felt it might work better not to thin it out so much. The mic was reasonably close to the guitar, so the proximity effect helps a bit. The guitar is a Martin OMC-15ME (all mahogany) with a fairly small body, and doesn’t have an overly boomy low end like some acoustics.
I decided to experiment with a slightly more complex mic setup after my last one (which was basically one mic).
In addition to the condenser mic on the acoustic (Audio Technica AT2020), I have two more of the same mics set as a spaced stereo pair about 18 inches either side of the guitar mic, set a little further back. That captured a bit of space and room sound from both the guitar and vocal. I high passed those mics and took a bit of low mid out of them, but apart from that they are unprocessed. I experimented with a bit of artificial reverb on things, but I liked it better without.
I’m also recording through my UA Apollo interface, which allows me to record through preamps and plugins and “print” them as I go. I think I had a “Unison” UA preamp emulation of the UA 510 on the guitar mic, with some compression from the UA Fairchild emulation. So that was all “baked in” to the signal.
Yes, that is just a Sure SM57 with a foam wind sock/pop filter. Singing close definitely helps, but the vocal is still going into my stereo room mics… The reductive eq I put on those probably helps reduce any obvious bad room boxiness or resonance.
There is no “deliberate” treatment, it’s just a normal lounge room with carpet, curtains and furnishings. As such, it is not without reflections, but its size and high ceilings mean that it sounds pretty good in general.
Yeah, that would definitely sound cool. My approach with these is to have “guitar is my band”, so I’m trying to cover as much ground as I can with it, and develop these songs as solo performances, so when a friend says “play us one of the songs you’ve written”, I can confidently just play one of these on the spot, and still retain all the recognisable instrumental hooks etc.
This song started as a verse bass line, and the bass line is complex, both harmonically and rhythmically. Incorporating all that into one performance and singing at the same time was super-challenging for me. I’m really glad I got that one under my belt, as there are a couple more that are equally challenging to orchestrate and play/sing.
Thanks mate - stay tuned!
Thanks Paul - Do you mean you like this better than “Damage”? Cool!
I’ve never really paid attention to squeaks much, but I think playing electric a lot trains you to really control any extraneous noises, because an amp is like a huge compressor that emphasises all the low level noise. I’m also playing pretty loudly and heavily, so maybe that helps with the signal to noise ratio.
Yeah, I think that is the preamp emulation on the vocal mic. I’ve got the input running pretty hot, because I like the thickness it adds to the vocal tone, but I probably should have backed away bit for those powerful notes… had too many other things to think about! haha… In fact I think I went a bit overboard with the preamp emulation in general… new toys!
As far as I’m aware, this is pretty much impossible to pull off in real time for the average person with a computer and an internet connection. Internet latency is still the biggest enemy. I may be wrong, but I think most of these online collaborations involve sending pre-recorded tracks and overdubbing them.
That said, last year during Covid-19 lockdown we did have Powderfinger, one of the biggest Aussie bands of the 90s and early 2000s (and incidentally from my hometown here in Brisbane) reform and do an internet concert where they were all playing in different parts of the country. It was pretty cool, but I also think no expense was spared:
… or to put it another way, I don’t think they did it with just a Zoom account!
Yup, definitely within Mick an’ Keefs budget, but maybe not ours!
Great job all around, very smooth delivery in spite of that bass line, you make it look easy but we know better
I would have been tempted to add more verb but I think you made the right choice, we don’t want to miss any of this!
Thanks Ingo. Co-ordinating the playing and singing is a funny thing… With some parts, it all comes really naturally, but with others, you really have to rehearse intensively to get to a point where it all flows without any deliberate thought… almost like you have to go into a zone where everything happens unconsciously. That takes a while to achieve, but I learned that it’s really just a matter of practice.
Yeah, as I said, I tried some fairly subtle verb, but even that seemed to take away the intimacy, immediacy, and rawness. Glad it came out ok.