Born This Day - Original Christmas song from my Christmas CD. Let me know what you think!

Mark Lee

One match Left

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Itunes Equalization - (or PA / DJ mixing for weddings or recording)

Equalization Frequencies

I just realized that itunes has its own equalization options. I don’t use itunes for playback in DJ or Party settings but it something that is good to get to know. Even for my home speakers it is good to know. On a side note I just put the music into crossfade mode between songs but that still doesn’t give you the options for real music playback in a real life situation where you are trying to read the crowd at a wedding, party or eventetc but I digress.

So I was reading an article about itunes and trying to figure out what the sound enhancing does and came across the equalization option. The article gave some information about the eq bands and where they lie which I thought was decent but I did not think it gave very good suggestions on base eq levels.

Here is a picture that includes their suggestions for eq on itunes (it is the smaller little box) and then I did a sample of what I think would make a lot more sense for itunes or a PA setup for a wedding dj or other event.

So here is the eq they suggested (in the small box) .

Notice that they do a lot of boosting of frequencies or should I say ALL boosting which I think is actually the worst thing you could do. You want to subtract and cut bad frequencies more than you want to boost.

If you take a look at the bigger chart it looks a bit different. This is the one that I played around with. I wouldn’t say this is perfect and it partially depends on what the style of music is, the song or what you are trying to accomplish. It is also dependent on what you are playing it through but here is a good start.

First thing is that I don’t suggest boosting more than a few frequencies.

Second thing is never boost above 6db which here on itunes is the 2nd little line above 0 db. On the example from the other website they boosted all of the frequencies and many were above the 6 db mark. Rather it is better to keep them all at zero and boost the few frequencies that were highest. In that case the 125 and 8k could be boosted and the rest kept the same or lowered.

Third thing, I realized in recording, mixing and just in general the mids are the area that adds up, makes things muddy and leads to loss of clarity. as you can see in my example I cut some of the mids like 250, 500 and 1k frequencies. I boosted a little at 4k and 8k but that can be played with by ear. Notice that they were only boosted like 1 or 2 db.

Fourth, adjust small and then click the on off (on itunes or a PA or amp or whatever, or hit bypass in some instances) and see if it actually sounds better or just different. If it doesn’t sound better then change it obviously.

Fifth you can raise each band independently to find bad frequencies. For instance raise up 500 and if you realize (which you probably will) that it makes it muddier, then drop it down. Do that for each frequeny and find the bad ones or the ones that you want more of but keep it under 6 db and even under 3 db. Cut rather than raise if you can.

Sixth you can use the itunes presets which look WAY better than the example of the other blog but try them out. Click them while a song is going, scroll through and see what you like. If you are looking at rock it will look different than dance, hip hop, or electronic. Remember also that bass frequencies might not sound that great if your speakers can’t handle it.

Mark Lee
Spokane Washington
One Match Left
OML Music and Sound
@onematchleft
www.facebook.com/onematchleftmusic
www.facebook.com/omlmusicandsound
www.youtube.com/onematchleft

(Source: onematchleft.com)

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Wedding DJ

Wedding Dj For Bonnie and Cody

I had a great time DJ ing music for a wedding this past saturday. It was in fact not in Spokane but rather Moscow , ID. It was a wonderful outdoor wedding with a perfect gazebo for easy setup of the music equipment and a nice dance floor. There were lots of people dancing after the food was finished being served and the old but good stuff seemed to be the favorites incluing Elvis and Jailhouse Rock , My Girl by the Temptations, Sweet Home Alabama by Lynard Skynard, Gloria Gaynor’s I Will Survive and some good old Frank Sinatra.

It was requested that there be no Father Daughter dance but it was great when it was all winding down the Bride grabbed her father and danced to Jason Mraz’s I Won’t Give Up and I had that flow into the IZ ukulele version of Somewhere Over the Rainbow where the Groom’s Mom and danced with him along with the father Daughter combination. It was an unplanned but awesome moment making a great near ending to the night.

Overall it was a great time with a small interlude in the middle to hear Jeff play his Didgeridoo and a nice gal from the wedding party was a talented Fire Dancer! Was a cool offshoot of entertainment! I had a great time and I enjoyed the many compliments as people were leaving of the choices of music that were played. Thanks letting me be a part of your special day Bonnie and Cody!

Mark Lee
Spokane Washington
OML Music and Sound
One Match Left
@onematchleft

(Source: onematchleft.com)

lyric from One Match Left song currently being recorded!

lyric from One Match Left song currently being recorded!

More Recording Software - Komplete Elements and T Racks

Native Instruments Komplete Elements

I have gotten to try out some new recording software. One is the Native Instruments Komplete 8 Elements

here is the link

It has limited features obviously since it is a small bundle of what you get for the full price. It has guitar rig, great string sounds and some nice vintage drum software.

Overall pretty nice and I was lucky enough to get it during the christmas sale at Guitar Center

It is normally 40 or 50 bucks and I found it for 9.99. So that was a great deal!


T - Racks - Ik Multimedia

Picture


The other program I was able to get was the IK Multimedia T-Racks editing software

you can check it out here


It has some awesome functions including compressor , limiter , clipper and eq

you can even purchase additional plug ins once you have the basic program.

you can check out a tutorial of the program here

it is the more complete program though but gives you an idea of the possibilities. You can fad in and out to the tracks. use Presets for the plugins, mess with the phasing , get a great graphic analysis of the eq in real time , see the loudness and perceived loudness and the list goes on. You can even mess with stereo widener and so forth.

overall pretty cool program.

I am going to use these some more and post about them.

here is a raw recording from a live performance you can stream here. this is unedited. decent live recording. nothing fancy and not through the board

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then you can compare to these recordings linked to here

I ran these through the T Racks Ik Multimedia software just on presets and it made it sound more full and evened out a few things. I might mess with it more and try some other presets but you can see what you think and compare for yourself.

Hope these are helpful!

Mark Lee

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Recording Software

 

Smartscore - music scanning software

along with the T Racks , Ik Multimedia mastering program and the Native Instruments package I was able to get and try out smartscore. I just got the demo esque version if you will. but man that is super cool!

Check out Smartscore Here

basically you convert a pdf to there format and it can read it. I think the upper version you can do more like adjust key signatures, transpose etc. But it is pretty darn cool. I teach music so the ability to take a song and have an accompanist is amazing!

I will say there is some errors in the reading. In reading reviews I also read that the upper versions are more accurate. Not sure how true that is but the errors are fixable with the version I have. It does take time but it is much less time than drawing in an entire song into Finale . I will say that!

Antares - Vocal Harmony efx


another program I have purchased but have not played around with a Ton is Antares Vocal harmony efx

you can check it out on their Antares website here

The program basically takes your vocals and adds harmony to it. You can have it be a preset interval like major third above etc. Or you can add harmony above and below and four voices I think.

I have not had the chance to mess with midi. I had a midi controller plugged in but couldn’t get it to work in the brief time that I tried it. That is what I need really. I want the ability to play specific harmony parts on demand as well as not harmonizing the entire song straight through.

the sounds themselves seem pretty good in my brief use. You can change the length of the throat to be a male or female voice and change the tone more or less. I just need to get in there and get into the midi specifics but overall seems like a pretty cool program.

Native Instruments - Guitar Rig

I will say I am liking the Native Instruments guitar rig. I do no not have the full version but man you can come up with some cool combos! I love it!

If you take a listen to this song the electric parts and lead parts are run through guitar rig. some tone and compression changes. it was actually recorded on an acoustic (since my stinking electric is wonky and wont hold its tune when I am jamming out)
none the less these are all cool programs that have many upgrades and upper level versions that I cannot afford …yet
thanks
Mark Lee
One Match Left
Spokane Washington
acoustic, alternative and awesome

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