a quick and dirty guide to 'getting the bass right'
My biggest piece of advice is to use what you have, trust your ears. To get really great at mixing takes time and practice. Focus on geting the best sound you can from the tools and knowledge you've got. Trust that as you do more and more, your skillset will improve, and so will your mixes
let's say you're looking for a deep-warm tone. It sounds great on a good sound-system, but it doesn't show up on small speakers.
what do you do?
What do you do is not a question that can be directly answered yet; that is, unless you already know what your options are, and in that case, you probably already have your problem solved.
what are you trying to achieve?
let's start here instead. Okay, so lets say your genre is indie rock. It's a song that's driven by the guitars and the vocals.
great, now which instruments live in the low-end. commonly this will be drums and bass (kick, toms, Bassline, the bottom of the guitar, and the deepest part of the vocal. The bass doesn't cut through? ask yourself which instrument and why?
what is happening in the low-end?
The kick drum sounds good, the guitar/vocal sounds fine. the bassline doesn't cut. It doesn't always need to be front and center, It can act as the glue to hold the song together. When you move away from your good sound-system to your laptop/earbuds/car stereo/mobile. it seems to disappear completely.
how can you approach this
A few areas to consider.
Imagine your low-end in 3 bands. you've got sub-frequencies, Low-frequencies, and precieved low-frequencies (low-mids and above)
Check for trouble areas in the context of these three 'bands'
EQ is your most powerful tool! try to find the frequency range you're looking for using your solo function to listen for which tracks might be competing for 'space',
for example, the bass if it's most present at 80Hz, but the guitar is 'masking' the bass up between 160- 300Hz. You might also have low-frequency energy competing in tracks where it has no business being. here, a hi-pass filter would be your friend.
For example, The bass is warm and present between 60-160hz, but adds nothing above that. because it's being covered up by another instrument,
A small set of laptop/phone speakers may lack clarity at frequencies below (approximately) 200-300Hz. They have the most presence between 1-5kHz. if you can let the bass through within these ranges (again these numbers are guestimates, every mix is different) you can achieve a more consistant tone across sound-systems.
Welcome To the Blog. Today we're talking about songwriting and composition. I've been capturing ideas for an irish Jig.
banjo jigs and reels with Ol'brother Paul
We started off our run by approaching the plan with a song idea.
Three parts, we'll call them parts A B and C.
The main lick. the kind of lick that was meant for a Tenor banjo. We didn't have much else to go-on Except a sloppy old recording found in the Archives. So knowing only the root of the song was a big-ol' D chord, we set off to lay down some Banjo tracks.
An ascending lick with a change of tone-centre. It took me a minute to figure out what was happening, but if I could add an A-chord over top of this new riff, It could bring a much-needed change of energy to the song. I'll figure out the exact chord-progression during my practice session later. For now, It's a good idea, lets capture it...
This part came later. Paul got back to me with a new idea for an outro for the song. This one feels more like a slow-down after a late night celebration. He wrote the part for the mandolin... Sounds great! lets do it.
Same idea, new theme different instrument, but hear how it sounds on that banjo too. lay these down on separate tracks, to see if we can combine them in cool ways later.
challenge for Indie Rockers and songwriters
Good day, If you've found this page, welcome. My name is Cody Gene, welcome to the blog.
Today is an exciting day because it marks the launch of a brand new contest.
So what is it? who is it for? âwhat do i win? More details will be coming soon.
My hope is to start to build a community around the contest, a place where songwriters can meet like-minded creative folks (like you) and work together to become better as both artists and as humans, as creatives, entertainers, and entrepreneurs.
Sounds good, How can I Help?
At this moment, the contest is a massive undertaking, meaning that we're starting off right from square one. In order to make this contest Larger-than-life, we need to let the indie-world know that "HEY Cody is holding a Contest at www.genemediacreativestudio.com/contest."
Tag 3 songwriters on instagram who NEED TO SEE IT. Guarantee your song is featured in the first 100...
tag 3 musicians who you think would like to participate, over on my instagram page, and I'll guarantee your song is featured in the first 100 contestants.
Act fast, once we reach 100 contestants, this offer will expire.
Click below to visit Instagram
Have you ever felt stuck?
Have you ever felt hopeless?
Have you ever felt like Quitting?
How do you use reasoning to understand a problem in order to recognize your blind spots?
How do you take something that seems impossible and turn that into actionable things that can bring you closer to your goals?
I'm creating a downloadable guide that you can follow step-by-step to help you solve for your challenges.
If you think you might find this helpful and want it NOW, click over to the Contact page to ask for it.
Comment below, what is the biggest challenge you face as an idependent artist?
I'm turning 33 tomorrow :) My dream has always been to be a 'professional' as a record producer. I'm from a small town called 100 mile house in rural British Columbia. I've been trying to wrap my mind around the whole business side of music production for the better part of 4 years, finally starting to get a grasp on how it all fits together. Right now, i'm going through the motions to make it happen for real. I've been finding that more i learn about running a studio professionally, the more I realize that still have a long way to go to get to where I need to be.
I love big picture thinking, i love systems, and I love turning ideas into reality, but my mind lives in the future and I often find myself disappointed with the results i get; whether thats from poor planning on my part, lack of attention to detail, or being out of touch with reality. I love exploring all aspects of 'potential' though. I'm confident in my ears/ my skill as a producer, but I need to find an effective way to bring folks in. I'm hoping that I can get on the right track.
So I'm here to:
-Soak up as much knowledge as I can and achieve mastery.
-Meet creative and like minded people
-impliment what I learn to accelerate the process
-to use the internet to reach beyond my local area.
-to really solidify my niche as a producer
-to work with high quality artists.
Day Job? I'm a silviculture surveyor during the spring. In other words... a tree planting hippie. It's a rewarding project though. My (I should say our) company is about to hold it's founding assembly to become the first worker owned Co-op in our sector. The work itself lasts for about 3 months out of the year, which gives me the rest of the year to focus on my passion which is Audio. Right now, I'm only finding the odd side gig doing mastering to touch up low-end and stuff. I'm helping my best pal figure his launch out as a composer, experimenting with social media, video, audio, photography, blogging. Trying to feel out what works best for me. what resonates with people online, but i'm having trouble building up the engagement and beginning to realize 'cody, it's not just some formula you can just plug in and expect it to work, it has to be you. it has to be honest. it has to be real, and it has to help someone else.'
The good news on the studio side, is that while I was challenging myself mentally, I happened to randomly reach out to a grant writer on a whim. This lit a fire under my ass to put my ideas down onto paper. Wrote out my budget, crunched some numbers and found that landing 4 quality clients per month is enough to sustain me and my business into the future.
Everybody in my area seems to just want to drink beer, to Jam. to play CCR covers, to play music for fun. They say 'cody I thought you wanted to do it as friends' or 'I thought we were on a collaboration level.' That's not what i want. realized it was partly through mixed messaging (hopefully i've already corrected this because it was a serious problem.) I want to work with the artists who treat music as seriously as I do. Some people are absolutely trying to waste my time. Hopefully they can respect the fact that I have to have boundaries.
Thanks for taking the time to read.
I'm happy to talk about creative ideas any time.
So Last week, I was working with Ol'Brother Paul on the 'Paulcast' 2nd season. We're switching up the format, which will follow the progression of a song through the recording process, while talking about tips/strategies for how to record a song with less frustration.
We've picked an old idea Paul had for an Irish Jig back in 2016-2017 using tenor banjo (or in this case a banjo with the drone string removed.)
Until this point we've been kind of using the term 'Jig' and 'Reel' interchangably, but this got me thinking what's the difference? They are two separate words, so they probably mean two different things. okay google what's the difference between a jig and a reel?
So 'reel' short answer... The main difference is in the timing. Jigs being in a 6/8 time and a Reel being in a 4/4 time. So to answer my own question, the song we are going to produce is actually an Irish Reel.
you know that old saying right?
I've never been a purist when it comes to audio. My philosophy has been to use what you have and make it work the best you can with the skills you have. sounds easy right? but I still feel like sometimes it's not good enough.
So to FIGHT this nagging feeling of imposter syndrome, the feeling that the content isn't good enough to share, I've decided to make the things (in this case it's filming live-practice sessions) and hit publish no matter what.
But I can't figure out if this course of action is either pure genius or incredibly foolish.
on one hand, I'm hoping you who discover these videos can understand that not everything can be 100% perfect 100% of the time. In order to master the craft that is A/V production, paired with content marketing on social media, it's going to take an INCREDIBLE ammount of practice, patience, Guts, and resolve.
have a wonderful day and enjoy the videos.
Trying new things. It's a nice feeling to take my time with a mix. No stress. I can slow down because there's no pressure or time-constraints. It allows me to experiment, systematise and learn new tricks. Today It's Automation across several tracks. followed by some Equalization.
This 30 minute session has lots of starting and stopping, because that's how i chose to roll, while making minor adjustments along the way, and slowly - slowly creating magic in the mix.
What artist has ever said they are 100% finished with a piece that they were 100% happy with. It's an on-going process.