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Doug Lauber's Blog (77)

Nearing Completion!

Yesterday I made some last minute additions- I manipulated some clips so that the tune actually has an 'ending'. It's similar to the Intro. The final touches on the ending involved adding reverb and adjusting gain envelopes for a 'smooth' ending.


A large part of yesterday's work involved making a sub-mix of the drums, minus the kick drum.

I exported the drum tracks to Audition…


Added by Doug Lauber on March 9, 2011 at 4:56pm — 1 Comment

Adding Reverb?

I'm just beginning the process of adding reverb to individual tracks in this complex mix. It's a fun, but daunting task. I use the reverb processors that came with Adobe Audition and Sonar X1. There are at least 6 to choose from. Add to that a number of delay processors. It's been time consuming to try all of these. For one instrument, I used an 8th note delay followed by a medium-sized room reverb. I use two different approaches to…


Added by Doug Lauber on March 6, 2011 at 12:00pm — 2 Comments

Tracking Electric Guitar

I'm nearing the final stages of mixing 'Ostinato Trip'. I needed to track some foreground lead guitar parts. I was reluctant to begin this task because these guitar parts are meant to complement Alpiar's amazing sax tracks, which are tasteful, rhythmically tight, and often blazingly fast. How would my guitar tracks stand up next to such an obvious talent? Rather than try to match or compete with his style, I went with a safer route of providing a contrast. I usually…


Added by Doug Lauber on March 3, 2011 at 12:42pm — No Comments

Mixing Drums - a major challenge

Mixing drums is not easy. Most of the tracks require some EQ. For example, your typical bass drum has that tubby backetball tone. I found the dominant frequency at 55hz and boosted it. I also boosted the beater click sound a little bit. I'd like more of a deeper 'thud', so I might experiment with adding or replacing the recorded kick with a deeper sample that shakes the house. ...Or not. The snare was mic'd from both top and bottom. I reversed the phase of the…


Added by Doug Lauber on February 26, 2011 at 12:18pm — No Comments

Mixing Bass, the details

OK. After a long day at the DAW, I am pretty much finished with the bass track. I might duplicate the track and add effects and then blend the two, with the goal of adding some overtones to the fundamentals. I spent a lot of time today, manually moving along the timeline and zooming in on 'problem' sections. There were unwanted noises in between the notes, so I compulsively eliminated them. For example, in one section there was a droning E string. Another section had a… Continue

Added by Doug Lauber on February 24, 2011 at 1:30am — 3 Comments

Bass- recording with flat wounds

Yesterday, I replaced most of the bass track for a tune called, 'Ostinato Trip'. This replacement track uses my jazz bass with the new flat wound strings. :)  I now use Thomastic-Infeld Jazz Flats. I like them a lot. In a few minutes, I'll get to work finishing the bass tracking for this tune. Then I'll go on to compress and EQ the track. I might duplicate the track and process one of them with a 15" or 30" tape… Continue

Added by Doug Lauber on February 21, 2011 at 1:59pm — No Comments

Comp'ing Sax

I spent a few hours today, choosing the best sax takes, performed by the Forum's Chris Alpiar. Excellent tracks- a lot of great material to choose from. It was a Remote Session(s). Me in Phoenix. He's in Atlanta. We exchanged files through Dropbox. His reference files were my MP3 versions of my arrangements. It was great fun trying different takes and placing his various solos/riffs in front of the backdrop of pre-recorded material. There were even sections of his… Continue

Added by Doug Lauber on February 15, 2011 at 11:42pm — 3 Comments

a Forum for Bass Players, elec Bass Strings

I just joind an interesting forum for bass players.

I was having problems with my playing technique- I record bass directly and I'm getting a lot of annoying string squeal as my fingers slide along the strings. I researched various types of strings. I'm hoping switching to flatwounds will help with the problem. At that website, I found LOTS of opinions about bass strings. I'll be changing from my roundwounds to…


Added by Doug Lauber on February 15, 2011 at 12:51pm — No Comments

Tracking Bass, Again...

Not much sleep last night. After a lunchtime nap, I got to work writing/recording a bass part for a tune intended for a female singer. It went well. It's amazing what a bass part can do for a recording. I'm taking a dinner break, and then back to editing and choosing takes.

Added by Doug Lauber on February 12, 2011 at 8:55pm — 1 Comment

Recording Bass Directly

For the last two hours, I've been recording my Fender Jazz bass, directly into my Pacifica preamp. I'm really impressed with the results so far. When it comes to playing bass, I am basically out of practice. I need to record the same part over and over just to get something acceptable. Well, this preamp is making it easier, because everything is sounding 'tight' and 'punchy' as though the preamp was specifically designed just for recording bass. It's sounding good and… Continue

Added by Doug Lauber on February 10, 2011 at 7:30pm — No Comments

A 250 page post by 'Yep'

Who is this "Yep'?  I don't know, but he has posted over at the Reaper forum. I'm almost finished reading the entire 'article'. It's about mixing and based on his familiarity with the various techniques. This article is way up there with the great books by Katz and others. I really recommend it. It's an easy read and will encourage you to consider the beginning of the signal chain, such as your guitar and guitar amplifier settings. He shows us how to prioritize during the recording and mixing… Continue

Added by Doug Lauber on February 7, 2011 at 9:58pm — 3 Comments

at the DAW

I'm making excellent progress with two compositions I'm working on. I'm sort of recording tracks AND composing as I go. I re-did a rhythm guitar part, playing the part twice with two different guitars, to get a nice stereo effect. I recorded my Fender amp with two different mics- each going into a different channel of the Pacifica. I ended up merging the stereo tracks into mono tracks, one performance LEFT and…


Added by Doug Lauber on December 14, 2010 at 10:39am — No Comments

Recording: Tracking and Testing

Today I setup my new dual-channel mic preamp, an A-Designs' Pacifica. Wow- sounds like perfection to me! I'm about to track guitar with it, after tracking some B3 samples in my DAW and working on a tune's structure.

Added by Doug Lauber on December 8, 2010 at 6:48pm — No Comments

Recording- Loudness Wars

I've got a dilemma- how loud to make my Fusion CD? Should I create a final mix that approximates the loudness and dynamics of my favorite albums from the 70's, or go with something more contemporary? I have a huge problem with modern mixes. I recently listened to Santana's new album. He's a great musician and this album has fantastic solos, excellent guitar tracks!

There's one BIG problem- dynamics. I have not measured the levels, but it feels like a barrage of sound,…

Added by Doug Lauber on December 3, 2010 at 11:30am — 2 Comments

Bossa Nova, anyone?

Antonio Carlos Jobim. I just stumbled upon this guy from Brazil. I'd like to get two of his albums on CD-

'Wave' and 'Elis and Tom' -highly rated. The bossa nova rhythm is just SO soothing. I think it would be great to do my take on it, my own twist on the genre. Fun rhythms!

contemporary take on bossa nova- beautiful recording, voice:…


Added by Doug Lauber on November 23, 2010 at 11:00am — No Comments

Random Thought about a Professional Artist (actor)

Frances Conroy (born November 13, 1953) is an American actress. She is most widely known for playing the matriarch Ruth O'Connor Fisher Sibley on the HBO funeral drama series Six Feet Under, which earned her a… Continue

Added by Doug Lauber on November 13, 2010 at 9:59pm — No Comments

Computer Issues

I question my ability to setup a new computer with new

software! OK, things went well installing Sonar 8.5 and as I'm learning its tricks, I'm aware of December's debut of Sonar X1. Last night I spent about 45 minutes typing in my custom list of patch names for an instrument definition- my Korg Z1. A little over 100 names. It's necessary for calling up a particular patch quickly in a Sonar track.

Other technical diversions included setting up Kontakt 4 and a…

Added by Doug Lauber on November 13, 2010 at 4:30pm — 1 Comment

Acousticsamples' 'Old Black Grand' sample collection

Anyone using this group of samples? The demos sound great- not too 'sharp' -very natural sounding to my ears.

Added by Doug Lauber on November 8, 2010 at 3:45pm — 2 Comments

the Windows 7 Experience

I was about to phone Cakewalk about the whereabouts of my new Sonar 8.5, when Fedex knocked on my door with Sonar in hand. Immediately I got to work setting up my new PC with Windows 7. I had a little bit of trouble installing the driver for the monitor, but suddenly it installed after many 'driver installation aborted' messages. Go figure. Next task, was to download the basics- Firefox and Thunderbird. Then I went to MOTU and downloaded a driver/software package for my old… Continue

Added by Doug Lauber on November 2, 2010 at 12:54am — No Comments

Rock with Swing?

Yesterday I listened again to Jethro Tull's 2nd album- 'Stand Up'.
What I find interesting, is the way some of the tunes SWING. I love the rhythm of a song like 'Nothing's Easy' (anyone remember?) I really enjoy rock tunes that lean in the direction of swing. Another tune with great rhythm is Led Zeppelin's 'Good Times, Bad Times'. I'd like to compose music that explores interesting rhythms like these. It's an area that needs to be explored further.

Added by Doug Lauber on October 11, 2010 at 12:00pm — 6 Comments

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