Avid Pro Audio Community

Avid Pro Audio Community

How to Join & Post  •  Community Terms of Use  •  Help Us Help You

Knowledge Base Search  •  Community Search  •  Learn & Support


Avid Home Page

Go Back   Avid Pro Audio Community > Legacy Products > 003, Mbox 2, Digi 002, original Mbox, Digi 001 (Mac)

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
  #1  
Old 11-17-2010, 12:14 PM
firsty33 firsty33 is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Eagle River, WI
Posts: 162
Default Vocal Tracking

Hey guys,

I need some pointers about tracking vocals for a project. Here are the specs:

Everything except the vocals is complete. Thanks to you all, I've become somewhat swift and efficient, and the audio, MIDI and drums sound awesome!!
Now for these vocals... The song is just shy of 3 minutes, and I'm layering vocals one over another. I have about 8 tracks (vox) and it's getting somewhat frustrating. With so many tracks, it gets complicated fast. There are certain parts, like the chorus, I want to double up, and have backup vocals panned hard left hard right. I'm trying to stay organized with all of this to avoid the sloppiness and forgetting which part is where.
There must be an easier way than how I'm approaching this... because it still becomes unorganized!

Any help would be awesome, Thanks!!

-Justin
__________________
Mac Mini OS X 10.8.5
2.3 GHz Intel Core i7
16 GB 1600 MHz DDR3
Pro Tools 10, 003 Rack, NI Maschine
www.youtube.com/firsty33
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 11-17-2010, 01:27 PM
allstaar's Avatar
allstaar allstaar is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 415
Default Re: Vocal Tracking

Not sure exactly where your problem lies by your description, but a couple of general pointers that can help in staying on top of things are naming the tracks before doing a take. This way the audio files and regions are automatically named. Also using playlists for alternate takes of the same track will help keep the session manageable as far as track count goes. If your initial playlist for a track is "Lead Vocal", add ".01" to the end of the name then when you create a new playlist it'll automatically name it "Lead Vocal.02" and so on.

Although keeping up with the vocalist and keeping the session moving is of utmost importance, if you're going to be comping it's good to do this as you go. You'll have the talent there to give input, the takes will be fresh in your mind and you'll have a much clearer idea of what you do or don't have.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 11-17-2010, 03:17 PM
O.G. Killa's Avatar
O.G. Killa O.G. Killa is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 2,152
Default Re: Vocal Tracking

8 tracks is nothing! LOL try working with 30 to 40!!!

Here's some things I do...

setup mono or stereo aux tracks for your different groups of vocal tracks.

For example, I have one mono aux for lead vocals. Any lead vocal tracks I create (Verse1 Vox, PreChorus 1Vox, Chorus 1Vox, etc) all get bussed to that Aux. All the effects I put on the lead, I put on the Aux, not the channel itself. The only things I put on the channels themselves is corrective effects. For example if we used a second verse from a take a couple weeks ago and it sounds different, I might put EQ on the track to make it more closely match the other tracks.

Same thing with doubles and backgrounds. For those I usually create stereo Auxes so I can pan the source tracks into the Stereo Aux. So I'll have this...

LeadVoxDbl 1
LeadVoxDbl 2
BGVox 1
BGVox 2
BGVox 3
etc...

For more complex songs I use numbers and letters. for example, if I am going to triple track EACH harmony part in a 5 part BG Vox harmony... then I'll have

BGVox 1A
BGVox 1B
BGVox 1C
BGVox 2A
BGVox 2B
BGVox 2C
etc...

You can group the tracks together. And if you want you can create a separate stereo aux for each (BGVox 1 Aux, BG Vox 2 Aux)

Color coding is also your friend.Color code the different sets of tracks so you can quickly see which is which.

A typical track list for vocals for me on a big mix will look something like this...

Lead Vox SubMix(Aux)
Lead Vox V1
Lead Vox P1
Lead Vox C1
Lead Vox V2
Lead Vox P2
Lead Vox C2
Lead Vox Bridge
Lead Vox C3
Lead Vox Outro

Adlib(Or Riff) Vox Submix (Aux)
Adlib 1
Adlib 2
Adlib 3

VoxDbl Submix (Aux)
VoxDbl 1 (Or Center)
VoxDbl 2 (Or Left)
VoxDbl 3 (Or Right)

BG Vox 1 Submix (Aux)
BGVox 1A [1st harmony part]
BGVox 1B [1st harmony part]
BGVox 1C [1st harmony part]
BGVox 1D [1st harmony part]

BG Vox 2 Submix (Aux)
BGVox 2A [2nd harmony part]
BGVox 2B [2nd harmony part]
BGVox 2C [2nd harmony part]
BGVox 2D [2nd harmony part]

BG Vox 3 Submix (Aux)
BGVox 3A [3rd harmony part]
BGVox 3B [3rd harmony part]
BGVox 3C [3rd harmony part]
BGVox 3D [3rd harmony part]

BG Vox 4 Submix (Aux)
BGVox 4A [4th harmony part]
BGVox 4B [4th harmony part]
BGVox 4C [4th harmony part]
BGVox 4D [4th harmony part]

Now... when you start mixing... hide (but leave active) all the audio tracks and just leave the Aux tracks. Now all your vocals are on 7 Aux tracks that you can automate and blend as needed... if you need to tweak the blend within any group, show it, tweak/automate the audio tracks, hide and go back to mixing.

On HD systems I use VCA tracks as well for a similar purpose, but you can't put plugins on VCAs. So for things like the lead vocal, I'll usually use a VCA and an Aux. But for the BG Vox, I'll use 4 VCAs (one for each group) but have all of them sent to one Aux instead of 4 auxes.

And this also works for guitars as well. I normally use 3 or 4 mics on each guitar cabinet. And I'll usually end up doing at least 4 or 5 passes of guitar, which turns into 20 audio tracks for guitar. I use the GTR 1A, GTR 1B, etc system so I can see which set of tracks is which... and I usually will bus them to Aux channels or use VCAs to manage controling their overall levels.

And... obviously, this also works for recording live string sections, brass sections, etc... Frequently when recording orchestral music we have the section double and/or triple themselves and then also do "divisi" parts. Each pass will have between 6 and 16 tracks (depending on how I am mic'ing the section). Using the 1A, 1B, 2A, naming system on the tracks tells me instantly if this set of tracks is the same part as the one above/below it or if it is a new part.

And another little added benefit... it helps keep the track names short, which is really helpful if using a controller with scribble strips like a C24 or an ICON.

Hope that helps!
__________________
Derek Jones
Sound Engineer / Producer / Composer

Derek Jones Linkedin
Megatrax Recording Studios
Megatrax Studios Yelp Page
A-list Music Artist Page
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 11-17-2010, 05:57 PM
firsty33 firsty33 is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Eagle River, WI
Posts: 162
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by O.G. Killa View Post
8 tracks is nothing! LOL try working with 30 to 40!!!

Here's some things I do...

setup mono or stereo aux tracks for your different groups of vocal tracks.

For example, I have one mono aux for lead vocals. Any lead vocal tracks I create (Verse1 Vox, PreChorus 1Vox, Chorus 1Vox, etc) all get bussed to that Aux. All the effects I put on the lead, I put on the Aux, not the channel itself. The only things I put on the channels themselves is corrective effects. For example if we used a second verse from a take a couple weeks ago and it sounds different, I might put EQ on the track to make it more closely match the other tracks.

Same thing with doubles and backgrounds. For those I usually create stereo Auxes so I can pan the source tracks into the Stereo Aux. So I'll have this...

LeadVoxDbl 1
LeadVoxDbl 2
BGVox 1
BGVox 2
BGVox 3
etc...

For more complex songs I use numbers and letters. for example, if I am going to triple track EACH harmony part in a 5 part BG Vox harmony... then I'll have

BGVox 1A
BGVox 1B
BGVox 1C
BGVox 2A
BGVox 2B
BGVox 2C
etc...

You can group the tracks together. And if you want you can create a separate stereo aux for each (BGVox 1 Aux, BG Vox 2 Aux)

Color coding is also your friend.Color code the different sets of tracks so you can quickly see which is which.

A typical track list for vocals for me on a big mix will look something like this...

Lead Vox SubMix(Aux)
Lead Vox V1
Lead Vox P1
Lead Vox C1
Lead Vox V2
Lead Vox P2
Lead Vox C2
Lead Vox Bridge
Lead Vox C3
Lead Vox Outro

Adlib(Or Riff) Vox Submix (Aux)
Adlib 1
Adlib 2
Adlib 3

VoxDbl Submix (Aux)
VoxDbl 1 (Or Center)
VoxDbl 2 (Or Left)
VoxDbl 3 (Or Right)

BG Vox 1 Submix (Aux)
BGVox 1A [1st harmony part]
BGVox 1B [1st harmony part]
BGVox 1C [1st harmony part]
BGVox 1D [1st harmony part]

BG Vox 2 Submix (Aux)
BGVox 2A [2nd harmony part]
BGVox 2B [2nd harmony part]
BGVox 2C [2nd harmony part]
BGVox 2D [2nd harmony part]

BG Vox 3 Submix (Aux)
BGVox 3A [3rd harmony part]
BGVox 3B [3rd harmony part]
BGVox 3C [3rd harmony part]
BGVox 3D [3rd harmony part]

BG Vox 4 Submix (Aux)
BGVox 4A [4th harmony part]
BGVox 4B [4th harmony part]
BGVox 4C [4th harmony part]
BGVox 4D [4th harmony part]

Now... when you start mixing... hide (but leave active) all the audio tracks and just leave the Aux tracks. Now all your vocals are on 7 Aux tracks that you can automate and blend as needed... if you need to tweak the blend within any group, show it, tweak/automate the audio tracks, hide and go back to mixing.

On HD systems I use VCA tracks as well for a similar purpose, but you can't put plugins on VCAs. So for things like the lead vocal, I'll usually use a VCA and an Aux. But for the BG Vox, I'll use 4 VCAs (one for each group) but have all of them sent to one Aux instead of 4 auxes.

And this also works for guitars as well. I normally use 3 or 4 mics on each guitar cabinet. And I'll usually end up doing at least 4 or 5 passes of guitar, which turns into 20 audio tracks for guitar. I use the GTR 1A, GTR 1B, etc system so I can see which set of tracks is which... and I usually will bus them to Aux channels or use VCAs to manage controling their overall levels.

And... obviously, this also works for recording live string sections, brass sections, etc... Frequently when recording orchestral music we have the section double and/or triple themselves and then also do "divisi" parts. Each pass will have between 6 and 16 tracks (depending on how I am mic'ing the section). Using the 1A, 1B, 2A, naming system on the tracks tells me instantly if this set of tracks is the same part as the one above/below it or if it is a new part.

And another little added benefit... it helps keep the track names short, which is really helpful if using a controller with scribble strips like a C24 or an ICON.

Hope that helps!
It helps immensely, thanks much!! Wow 30 to 40 tracks sounds mind boggling. I'm using LE btw. I'm gonna give this a shot following your guidelines and see what happens!!

Sent from my Droid using Tapatalk
__________________
Mac Mini OS X 10.8.5
2.3 GHz Intel Core i7
16 GB 1600 MHz DDR3
Pro Tools 10, 003 Rack, NI Maschine
www.youtube.com/firsty33
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 11-17-2010, 07:42 PM
Craig F Craig F is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 12,591
Default Re: Vocal Tracking

There is a old story about a famous Producer/Engineer and an 80s power group were the lead guitarist walk into the pub after a day in the studio and complains about spending all day playing the same note to a Sony 3348 save reel.
__________________
...

"Fly High Freeee click psst tic tic tic click Bird Yeah!" - dave911

PT11 System Requirements link http://avid.force.com/pkb/articles/C...m-Requirements


Thank you,

Craig
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 11-17-2010, 10:01 PM
Chickenhawked Chickenhawked is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Posts: 60
Default Re: Vocal Tracking

You can also change he colour of the traxk and fader. Go to the "Colour pallet" under windows. You can all your vox, guitars etc all one colour.
__________________
data is not data unless it's backed up in three places!
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 11-18-2010, 10:18 AM
O.G. Killa's Avatar
O.G. Killa O.G. Killa is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 2,152
Default Re: Vocal Tracking

Quote:
Originally Posted by firsty33 View Post
It helps immensely, thanks much!! Wow 30 to 40 tracks sounds mind boggling. I'm using LE btw. I'm gonna give this a shot following your guidelines and see what happens!!

Sent from my Droid using Tapatalk
No problem. One other little thing I do, which I forgot to mention. Most of the time, audio tracks themselves have lowercase letters in the name. Aux tracks for Submixes has all Caps letters.

This way when looking across the control surface with all the tracks being shown, I can easily spot the Aux tracks from the Audio tracks...

So it would be like

LEADVOX Sub
leadvox V1
leadvox P1
etc...

As you play around and work on more sessions you'll start to come up with your own system that will probably be a combination of a bunch of other people's systems.

Like for example, a chief engineer at a studio I used to work out of would solo safe the Aux tracks but leave the audio tracks normal. For me, since I use the Aux tracks for mixing moreso than the audio tracks. I flipped his way of doing it for my own workflow. so I solo safe ALL the audio tracks in a group, but I don't solo safe the Aux. That way I can solo the Aux and hear all the tracks that belong to it.

Now with VCA tracks this is less of an issue...but I came up with this workflow long before PT added VCA tracks to HD... and since LE doesn't have VCA tracks, this workflow might work for you (or some variation of it).

Once you get a system going, 30 to 40 tracks isn't so bad. I think the biggest music mix I've done was somewhere between 130 to 150 tracks. For films, forget about it... I've mixed films before where I had over 100 tracks in each protools system and I'm controlling/mixing from 2 or 3 protools systems simultaneously. And there was a second guy there with me also mixing using a couple more protools systems!

Being organized and coming up with your own "method" or workflow is important. You always want to put the same tracks in the same spot for every project. It makes finding things quicker which in turn helps make mixing faster.

For me drumset is always the topmost/leftmost tracks in the session or on the console/control surface. After that percussion. After that any sound effects or music design. after that Bass guitar. After that any regular guitars... after that any keyboards and synths... after that any strings... then brass... then woodwinds... then lead vocal, then adlibs, then doubles, then background vocals. And within each section I usually try to arrange the tracks from low freq/pitch to high freq/pitch. so for example, with guitars, low "chug" guitars would come first, and then to the right would be higher pitched or shimmering guitars. For drumset, it's always kick, snare, OH, HH, Toms, Room. For Strings it's always Contrabass, then Cellos, then Violas, then Violin, then room mics... but if there are multiple passes I keep each set together following this layout. I don't put contrabass 1st pass next to contrabass 2nd pass. For me it just makes more sense to keep each pass together instead of putting all the different passes of each instrument together... and so on...

As you keep doing this you'll start to find your own way of doing things. For example I know some guys that always like to have the bass guitar track right next to the kick drum track. I don't like doing that, but for some guys it works really well... everybody has their own system of organization that makes sense to them. Over time you'll find yours.
__________________
Derek Jones
Sound Engineer / Producer / Composer

Derek Jones Linkedin
Megatrax Recording Studios
Megatrax Studios Yelp Page
A-list Music Artist Page
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 11-18-2010, 11:21 AM
firsty33 firsty33 is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Eagle River, WI
Posts: 162
Smile Re: Vocal Tracking

Quote:
Originally Posted by O.G. Killa View Post
No problem. One other little thing I do, which I forgot to mention. Most of the time, audio tracks themselves have lowercase letters in the name. Aux tracks for Submixes has all Caps letters.

This way when looking across the control surface with all the tracks being shown, I can easily spot the Aux tracks from the Audio tracks...

So it would be like

LEADVOX Sub
leadvox V1
leadvox P1
etc...

As you play around and work on more sessions you'll start to come up with your own system that will probably be a combination of a bunch of other people's systems.

Like for example, a chief engineer at a studio I used to work out of would solo safe the Aux tracks but leave the audio tracks normal. For me, since I use the Aux tracks for mixing moreso than the audio tracks. I flipped his way of doing it for my own workflow. so I solo safe ALL the audio tracks in a group, but I don't solo safe the Aux. That way I can solo the Aux and hear all the tracks that belong to it.

Now with VCA tracks this is less of an issue...but I came up with this workflow long before PT added VCA tracks to HD... and since LE doesn't have VCA tracks, this workflow might work for you (or some variation of it).

Once you get a system going, 30 to 40 tracks isn't so bad. I think the biggest music mix I've done was somewhere between 130 to 150 tracks. For films, forget about it... I've mixed films before where I had over 100 tracks in each protools system and I'm controlling/mixing from 2 or 3 protools systems simultaneously. And there was a second guy there with me also mixing using a couple more protools systems!

Being organized and coming up with your own "method" or workflow is important. You always want to put the same tracks in the same spot for every project. It makes finding things quicker which in turn helps make mixing faster.

For me drumset is always the topmost/leftmost tracks in the session or on the console/control surface. After that percussion. After that any sound effects or music design. after that Bass guitar. After that any regular guitars... after that any keyboards and synths... after that any strings... then brass... then woodwinds... then lead vocal, then adlibs, then doubles, then background vocals. And within each section I usually try to arrange the tracks from low freq/pitch to high freq/pitch. so for example, with guitars, low "chug" guitars would come first, and then to the right would be higher pitched or shimmering guitars. For drumset, it's always kick, snare, OH, HH, Toms, Room. For Strings it's always Contrabass, then Cellos, then Violas, then Violin, then room mics... but if there are multiple passes I keep each set together following this layout. I don't put contrabass 1st pass next to contrabass 2nd pass. For me it just makes more sense to keep each pass together instead of putting all the different passes of each instrument together... and so on...

As you keep doing this you'll start to find your own way of doing things. For example I know some guys that always like to have the bass guitar track right next to the kick drum track. I don't like doing that, but for some guys it works really well... everybody has their own system of organization that makes sense to them. Over time you'll find yours.
This information you're so freely giving to me is priceless! I really really appreciate this.
Thus far, my work-flow consists from top to bottom:
Vox
Guitars
Bass
MIDI
Drums

For some weird reason I like to stack Aux tracks on the top of the source tracks from which they're sucking the juice from. I view this "order of tracks" as a foundation, drums and bass "carrying" the load. It seems to work for me as of now.

I started following your guidelines and made individual tracks, then I started overwhelming my self because I was making tracks like... PreChorusBG1, PreChorusBG2, VerseVox1, VerseVox2, ChorusVox1, ChorusVox2... following with stereo auxes for backgrounds, and mono auxes for Leads and Verses. Then I said, "hold on, hold on", I need to simplify this. I don't need more tracks than necessary, right? The simpler the better.

Again, I'm going to follow your guidelines and keep it simple at first. I like the idea of sending background vox to stereos, and leads to mono, I might not have ever thought of that!

I'm going to get back at it, and do my best! Thanks again man!!

I wish I had a job like yours, (assuming that is your job) working in a recording studio like that. One day I would absolutely love that! I work road construction, but my passion lies heavily in drumming, singing, and now guitars and tracking!! I spend about 4 hours a day in my little home studio, and I only become more captivated each session!
__________________
Mac Mini OS X 10.8.5
2.3 GHz Intel Core i7
16 GB 1600 MHz DDR3
Pro Tools 10, 003 Rack, NI Maschine
www.youtube.com/firsty33
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 11-18-2010, 11:35 AM
ddwhitney ddwhitney is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 268
Default Re: Vocal Tracking

Fuuuuuuudge!

You should make some "Killa" templates...

I just had a flashback of the guy I interned under who had a "master" piece of "masking) tape that we laid down and transferred the info to the new sessions. Most of my experience to where instruments were tracked was relative to the physical location on the recording tape. No kicks on edge tracks or something like that if my memory even works at this point.

I like the capital letters idea since my earliest DAW experiences were void of color choices.
__________________
Digidesign 003R+PTLE 8.0.4 DV Toolkit 2, ASUS P5Q Pro P45, CPU INTEL Q6600 2.40G, CORSAIR DOMINATOR 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DR2 1066 (PC2 8500) ATI Radeon™ X1550 DIAMOND Stealth PCIe 1 Seagate Barracuda 320GB SATA Hard Drive (Root/Sys) 1 Seagate Barracuda 500GB SATA Hard Drive (Audio/Video) 1 PPA 80GB 1394 Firewire Oxford 911 PYRO PCI64R2 3 Port Firewire Card (PCIe) Antec 300 case. PSU ROSEWILL RP600V2-S-SL 600W,
Windows 7 64 bit.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 11-18-2010, 11:59 AM
Stig Eliassen's Avatar
Stig Eliassen Stig Eliassen is offline
Moderator
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Norway @ Studio Varmt & Trangt
Posts: 7,455
Default Re: Vocal Tracking

Derek is da man! Nice!

Start to use labelling conventions that you like, and keep them consistent. I do it like this:

lv is lead vocal
sLV is the mono aux that lv is routed to
vLV is the VCA that controls all the lv's

2MIX is my stereo aux master mix buss that all tracks are routed to

MAINS is my master fader

**MELO** is the name of the bus I use to print Melodyne to a new audio track

**PRINT** is the name of the bus I use to print my mixes to a stereo audio track

**1 - M** is the name of the bus I use to print miscellaneous tracks to a mono audio track (I have 4 of these **2 - M**, **3 - M** and so on)

**1 - S** is the name of the bus I use to print miscellaneous tracks to a stereo audio track (I have 2 of these)

Stuff like that. Once you get used to it, you'll be flying around the session.

EDIT: I forgot to mention something I've just started using. All instrument tracks are named with an "i" in front, which won't give me an error when I name the audio track I print it to. So, iPiano would be the track with the VI on it, and Piano would be the printed audio track.
__________________
Studio rig - Pro Tools|HDX 2018.7 | Logic Pro X.4.2 | Avid HD I/O (8x8x8) | 6-core 3.33 Westmere w/24GB RAM | OS 10.12.3 | D-Command ES | Eleven Rack | Vienna Ensemble Pro 5
Mobile rig - Macbook Pro i7 w/16GB RAM | UA Apollo 8p | Pro Tools|HD 2018.3 | Logic Pro X.4.2 | OS 10.12.6
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Vocal Tracking firsty33 003, Mbox 2, Digi 002, original Mbox, Digi 001 (Mac) 1 06-11-2010 05:41 PM
Vocal Tracking? Bluetide 003, Mbox 2, Digi 002, original Mbox, Digi 001 (Mac) 6 11-30-2003 07:30 AM
vocal tracking with art mpa pro jdavis74 003, Mbox 2, Digi 002, original Mbox, Digi 001 (Mac) 1 04-30-2003 02:21 PM
chorus n vocal tracking phanatik Tips & Tricks 6 03-06-2003 09:39 PM
vocal tracking SNAPPER 003, Mbox 2, Digi 002, original Mbox, Digi 001 (Mac) 2 10-16-2000 09:52 AM


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 12:55 PM.


Powered by: vBulletin, Copyright ©2000 - 2008, Jelsoft Enterprises Limited. Forum Hosted By: URLJet.com