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  #1  
Old 11-20-2010, 10:41 AM
cjs102460 cjs102460 is offline
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Default Help with fixing singer's timing problems

Pro Tools 8 M-Powered question.

I recently recorded a vocalist who was unable to work with a click track, and who does not have the best internal rhythm. He has turned the vocal track over to me for arranging/producing. As I'm new to Pro Tools, I need help fixing his performance in order to build the instrumentation around it. I suspect this is a case for elastic time, or perhaps Beat Detective. I've never used either, so I'm open to suggestions. Thanks in advance.

Pro Tools 8 M-Powered, Windows Vista Home
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  #2  
Old 11-20-2010, 11:05 AM
cjs102460 cjs102460 is offline
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Default Re: Help with fixing singer's timing problems

And I should make my question more specific by the way. Should I use elastic audio or Beat Detective to fix a performance with tempo issues? Thanks again.
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  #3  
Old 11-20-2010, 11:51 AM
Julia B Julia B is offline
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Default Re: Help with fixing singer's timing problems

Beat detective? depends upon his phrasing. Is there any instrumentation at all? If so use the beat detective.

Personally I detest click tracks. I'll do a run through to see where the music is going to ebb and flow, and I've noticed that I'll fluctuate about 2 to 6 bpm in either direction depending upon mood of the song at a given moment. I'll build the instrumentation around the slight tempo changes in that interpretation. If it's too rigid to a click IMO it will sound artificial.

But if this guy is all over the map, as in really cutting rests short (very common in people who don't have good timing or just see a rest as a waste of time), I'd use EA on his track, build the instrumentation around it, then have him re-record the vox.
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  #4  
Old 11-20-2010, 01:14 PM
cjs102460 cjs102460 is offline
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Default Re: Help with fixing singer's timing problems

I agree that click tracks are not the best choice. The accompaniment should conform to and support the vocal interpretation. In this case, I am the accompaniment in that I'm writing/performing all of the instrument parts. His timing is all over the map, from increased/decreased bpm's to inconsistent beats between verses. His vocal timbre was particularly good on this session, a rarity, and I hate to lose that performance. I suspect that the fix will be some combination of elastic time and edits here and there. The real issue here is that I need to ramp up my Pro Tools education and get comfortable with elastic audio and such. As I said I'm new to Pro Tools, or any DAW for that matter. These forums are a great resource, and you appear to be well informed Julia. Other than a lot of hands on, YouTube looks like a good source for tutoring.
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  #5  
Old 11-20-2010, 01:18 PM
cjs102460 cjs102460 is offline
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Default Re: Help with fixing singer's timing problems

Quote:
Originally Posted by Julia B View Post
Beat detective? depends upon his phrasing. Is there any instrumentation at all? If so use the beat detective.

Personally I detest click tracks. I'll do a run through to see where the music is going to ebb and flow, and I've noticed that I'll fluctuate about 2 to 6 bpm in either direction depending upon mood of the song at a given moment. I'll build the instrumentation around the slight tempo changes in that interpretation. If it's too rigid to a click IMO it will sound artificial.

But if this guy is all over the map, as in really cutting rests short (very common in people who don't have good timing or just see a rest as a waste of time), I'd use EA on his track, build the instrumentation around it, then have him re-record the vox.
Oh and I forgot to ask - if it is safe to assume that using EA on his track is the fix, what then is the idea behind re-recording vox?
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  #6  
Old 11-20-2010, 01:21 PM
Dism Dism is offline
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Default Re: Help with fixing singer's timing problems

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Originally Posted by cjs102460 View Post
Oh and I forgot to ask - if it is safe to assume that using EA on his track is the fix, what then is the idea behind re-recording vox?
Because... like anything else... there's a huge difference in the sound of a fixed performance, and a good performance.
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Old 11-20-2010, 02:26 PM
albee1952 albee1952 is offline
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Default Re: Help with fixing singer's timing problems

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Originally Posted by Dism View Post
Because... like anything else... there's a huge difference in the sound of a fixed performance, and a good performance.
Can't argue with that. In any case, yes EA should do the trick, but do your self a favor and duplicate the track and mess with a duplicate region. Sometimes EA can screw up the audio, so having the original intact is a good idea. Also, sometimes, you can paste original audio in place of the EA audio and use the EA track for placement guidance. Its going to be a great learning experience for you. I use EA on a lot of stuff now(especially when I play parts on client projects as my timing is far from perfect)
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  #8  
Old 11-20-2010, 04:08 PM
cjs102460 cjs102460 is offline
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Default Re: Help with fixing singer's timing problems

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Originally Posted by albee1952 View Post
Can't argue with that. In any case, yes EA should do the trick, but do your self a favor and duplicate the track and mess with a duplicate region. Sometimes EA can screw up the audio, so having the original intact is a good idea. Also, sometimes, you can paste original audio in place of the EA audio and use the EA track for placement guidance. Its going to be a great learning experience for you. I use EA on a lot of stuff now(especially when I play parts on client projects as my timing is far from perfect)
Glad to hear you say that because losing the original performance is a concern. So yes, I plan to mess with the dupe track while steeped in the learning curve. Thanks.
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  #9  
Old 11-20-2010, 04:11 PM
cjs102460 cjs102460 is offline
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Default Re: Help with fixing singer's timing problems

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Originally Posted by Dism View Post
Because... like anything else... there's a huge difference in the sound of a fixed performance, and a good performance.
Agreed and thank you for helping me negotiate the jungle that is Pro Tools.
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  #10  
Old 11-21-2010, 12:29 PM
Julia B Julia B is offline
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Default Re: Help with fixing singer's timing problems

The reason I said EA was that for example if I'm singing a jazz vocal, I play a lot with the phrasing and the timing. You'd never get a beat detective to work with it. Sometimes I drive my voice coach crazy, but when we get it all done it works. She's a rocker. I'm not. I'm using the pocket set by the bass player to whom I'm paying particular attention (bass player always on my left -- good ear) and singing my phrase all around it but we'll always end up the same.

I'd recently recorded some piano and bass using midi on instrument tracks which I send to audio tracks. After working with it a couple weeks I felt the tempo was a little too fast, so I stretched out parts of the song I wanted to make slightly slower and left the bridge at the previous tempo. Well since I had to do it twice to get it to where I wanted the sound got distorted. Maybe no one else would have noticed but I did. But fortunately all I had to do was remake the audio tracks with the instrument tracks again. Done. So be a little careful with EA.

the toughest thing for me is to shift gears from musician to engineering tech (engineer to me is for those who are pros at it) where I have to be critical of my own performance.
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