A new piece: Lament

Here is a new piece I've been slaving over for the past few months.  I think  I've taken the Garritan Gagli violin solo sound about as far as I can get it, tho I'm thinking I need to learn about portamento on Logic, which might improve the line.  But I did find that a giant reverb seemed to deepen the tone a bit. Best would be a real violinist (next step).

Also used Garritan cello, Jam Pack Clarinet, and piano with pad.  Let me know what you think/feel upon listening to it.



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  • looking forward to listen to the mix ...


    Livio Guerra 

  • Thank you, Robert!  I will tell you my adventures since composing this piece:  I hired a violinist from the Colorado Symphony Orchestra to record it.  She did a fabulous job, but there were some parts I wanted to change after she left.  Then I worked with this Logic guy to mix it. I paid the violinist $200, and was kind of unsure of myself, never having done this before... Anyway, I'm discovering I have very strong opinions about how pieces should be mixed.  I worked a long time on it with the mixer and paid him $400.  So here I am, $600 later, but still not liking the way it sounds.  I've decided I could mix it better myself, even though I don't know everything there is to know on Logic about mixing.  I'm waiting to get another bit of money to get a what-do-you-call-it, a unit to back it up, and then I'm going to work on it myself, and MAYBE rehire the violinist to fix up parts I want to change.  I like her playing, but it just doesn't have the depth of sound I got on the original midi recording.

  • Hi Emily:

    I just revisited "Lament",on decent speakers, and have to admit it's a beautiful, if haunting piece. You have a wonderful way with piano - the opening is lustrous. I agree with Livio about solo violin - VSTs can't match a real one, but I think your piece would benefit greatly by upgrading the violin to a better sample. The GPO Gagli doesn't do justice to your music. The more I listen to the piece the more I enjoy how the piano provides such a great central backbone to it.

  • I like the piece a lot ...

    but ... the violin ...

    solo violin one of the worst instruments to simulate with VST ( perhaps second only to the trombone ... )

    I can see you've done your best, but I am afraid nobody's best is enough in this kind of context ...

    of course if you ever use the ( expensive ) EAST-WEST your strings might improve ( EW is a few level upper than Garritan ) ...

    personally I've given up ...

    I stick to strings SECTIONS ...

    solo flute ( with a fine compressor usage ) or oboe are usually acceptable ...

    of course, if you are prepared to invest MONEY, by all means hire a human violinist ...

    the worst HUMAN violinist is better than the best VST !!!

    ( well, every rule has its exceptions ... I tried to do some work with a trombonist and ... but again the trombone if one of the most difficult instruments )

  • Doug,

    I appreciate your getting back to me about the issue of live recording, which is still bugging me, and which I really need to address.  There are a number of very good violinists in town, and I need to go fishing to see what it might cost.  I just wonder if it'll be worth it to invest so much money in equipment for making a recording that may or may not be heard by many people.  Of course, if I get some friends who are happy to learn & play all my pieces, it would be totally worth it.  However, I will check out Semple and Alpiar - do they have good solo instrument samples?  (I write more for small groups than orchestra).   As far as live recording, I know I can do that on Logic.  

    I have a lot of drainpipes for my bank account these days, the biggest is taking rehabilitative piano technique from a certified Taubman Technique instructor.  I'm learning a lot but it's GOBS of money.  

    Thanks for your encouraging words!


  • I think you should move in the direction of recording audio and real players, for example, a composition with you on piano, plus a real violinist. You'd need a couple of good mics for around $800, a 2 channel mic preamp for $700, and basic monitoring. Need a violinist? Go to your local symphonic orchestra, or local chamber group.

    I liked Lament. I really enjoyed your Weird Waltz! You have a lot of talent and that's why I recommend recording live musicians. If you'd rather work with samples, check with Semple for samples, or Alpiar, or... any member who impresses you with a high degree of realism via sample libraries.

  • I like it a lot! :)
  • I know of a real violinist that I intend to hire in the near future. Message me for more info.
  • Ooh. That's beautiful....but you already knew that, didn't you? :)

    The samples sound quite good too. The mood is filled with mystery and a feeling of discovery. Tasty. I would try various panning scenarios with the violin in the center or near the center. I like your choice of chords and we are easily carried along the journey via the violin.

  • A very nice piece! I'll write you a more detailed message. Thanks for sharing! Rudi
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