how do you mix your superstar vocal?

by caro on June 8, 2010 · 2 comments

I feel like sharing a few tips and tricks regarding getting that superstar, it sounds like a record, vocal production.

A recent conversation with Chris at Blacklisted Mastering – who is currently doing a very pleasing mid-side job on my new album – resulted in a resolution to try mono reverb on a lead vocal. To keep the focus and poignancy of the focal fulcrum of the track/song. Interesting idea I will try on a current track I am preparing for a Mexican compilation…

cat singing

And then there’s the trick that I came across after investing in Stav’s rather indulgent tutorial book Mixing with your Mind. He dedicates a chapter to capturing and sculpting that magic vocal track with his perhaps unorthodox but always intuitive approach to recording and mixing. Bit I liked most and use quite often is to have a stereo pair (say AKG c451’s or budget equivalent) equilaterally triangled behind your main vocal mic and don’t compress this signal. This leads to a “bigger” sound when singer volume is increased making the vocal more epic in my opinion.

Oh, and I like to play with what was apparently a Police/Sting Trevor Horn trick shared to me by guest producer on my album and SSR studio engineering tutor Steve-Boyce Buckley: a short stereo delay (approx. 8 secs on one side, 12 on the other) on the vocal perhaps even instead of reverb gives it more body and weight…

untapped tuning fork

well, I’ve shown you mine as an experimental music maker and intuitive sound engineer, are you confident enough to divulge yours?
What’s your favourite tricks and blasted myths?

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

admin June 29, 2010 at 9:04 am

glad u receivin – enjoying visiting yr space too lady. 3 high end mics not necessary – the stereo ones can be small diaphragm (i have found the Rode Nt5’s acceptable). equilateral means equal distance from the stereo mic – to avoid phasing issues :> everyday a schule day!

JustineElectra June 29, 2010 at 8:57 am

Wow Caro I didn’t realise how seriously you were blogging!!?? This is just SO AMAZING!!! I am going to read it every day, and leave comments so you believe me ;-) That stuff about vocal production is AWESOME. I was just thinking about that point myself – unfortunately i don’t have 3 high end vocal mics, and don’t even know what equilateral means, but the 8 and 12 second delay i can maybe get to work :-) Keep in touch!

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