As the new trimester has a begun, I’ve realised that there is an abundance of talent around, and I want to try and capture more of it while I have the resources that SAE provides as I won’t have access to them forever! This song was written by a couple of very talented friends of mine and it was an awesome experience be able to have a project with my artist production and performance hat on, it allowed me to share my thoughts and serve the song in what I felt was the best possible way.
The song is called You Were There, it has a very mellow acoustic female singer song writer vibe to it. My aim was a to create this vibe and impression that she was alone in a big room playing the song, part of getting this vibe I feel was getting full takes that just flowed seamlessly. He is an unmixed version of the song.
For the recording, I pretty much launched myself to the most expensive condenser microphones that the brisbane campus has to offer. For the vocals I used a Neumann U87, mainly due to its extremely high level of quality and its cardioid polar pattern, I wanted a condenser microphone particularly because of their ability to pick up a lot of the little details and from the sound source. I’ve always felt that the little details and imperfections is what makes the performance “perfect”.
For the acoustic I wanted to try an XY stereo pattern with a pair of small diaphragm condensers, so I used a pair of DPA pencil mics. Again hoping to capture the finer detail in the strumming/plucking technique and a slightly more delicate sound. Since it’s pretty much a crime to have a U87 and not use it, I set it up as a room mic in the far corner of the live room, the Neve live room is very dead sounding, it is nearly entirely lined with carpet on every surface. Having a room mic help add a little life to the mix without having to go nuts with reverb just add some colour.
The percussion was recorded with a DPA pencil angled downward towards a snare, tom and ride cymbal. I wanted to leave the micing fairly sparse to make them sound distant. I tried using the Room U87 as well but this felt too distant.
The girls requested I bounce out a quick mix so they had something to listen to and gain further ideas. I quickly set levels and set up a couple of sends to a large hall reverb for extra colour and just so everything didn’t sound quite as dry. I’m currently continuing the mix, I hope to run the final mix through the Neve desk on campus, I hope this will give the final mix that warm and rich desk sound.