Y Do I Make U Cry

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burgerproduction
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2018/11/30 15:45:39 (permalink)

Y Do I Make U Cry

I've finally put the finishing touches to a track. It's going to come out as a kind of double A-side.
https://soundcloud.com/53mph/y-do-i-make-u-cry
Appreciate any feedback.
Cheers
Phil/53mph

Cakewalk by Bandlab, Sonar Platinum Lifetimer, Windows 10, HP Laptop, CPU i5, RAM 8GB, Edirol FA-101 Firewire interface with moded drivers, Digital piano, more guitars than I should have:
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#1

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    Mannynyagain
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    Re: Y Do I Make U Cry 2018/11/30 19:40:17 (permalink)
    Solid track. Everything about it is good. Instrumentation is simple but effective - slick , very well played and not overly flashy. The only crit is that it’s a bit long but the lyrics, vocals and vibe are really, really nice. Great job. I repeat, the vocal is really excellent.

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    #2
    eph221
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    Re: Y Do I Make U Cry 2018/12/01 02:39:00 (permalink)
    Nice voice for this type of song.  Lyrics are well thought out.

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    Larry Jones
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    Re: Y Do I Make U Cry 2018/12/01 05:35:24 (permalink)
    Very nice playing and production, Phil. I'll second Manny - it feels too long. But then I come from the days when you had to keep it under three minutes...

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    emeraldsoul
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    Re: Y Do I Make U Cry 2018/12/01 05:59:14 (permalink)
    Kinda Lou Reed, only less annoying.   :)
     
    Vocal performance works great but I'd question what LANDR did to your mix. Every instrument feels kind of hard panned and squashed with compression. I think you have some sort of casaba shaker in there? I think LAndr made it sound like sandpaper rubbing on sandpaper. I like your song,m but rarely have I liked the LANDR processing that I've heard so far.
     
    I think you could drop the volume of piano and guitar so the vocals could pop a little more, let them rise above the mix and ride on it, not compete with it.
     
    The bass is doing something and maybe someone else can chime in on that. It's pretty low in the mix.
     
    Ok all that out of the way I think it's a good song, well-delivered vocally, and I didn't find it super long. Nice groove. 
     
    cheers,
    -Tom

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    #5
    burgerproduction
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    Re: Y Do I Make U Cry 2018/12/01 08:19:52 (permalink)
    Thanks guys!
    Manny - thanks, you're very supportive. I appreciate what you said about my voice as I don't consider myself much of a singer.
     
    Larry - I know 3 minutes is the accepted length...I've never respected that rule.  As a teenager, my favourite tracks were all radio un-friendly 5-7 minute songs (Swervedriver, Led Zep etc..), perhaps I feel you get more value for money that way...I dunno!  I remember as a kid, the most played song on our jukebox was Queen Bohemian Rhapsody because your 50p went further.. :)  My first single release was 5 minutes (got A-listed), so I don't pay much credence to the 3 minute rule...but I understand where you're coming from.
     
    Tom - I agree about Landr, indeed, the final single going out to Spotify and iTunes is not going to be mastered by Landr, but by myself using iZotope tools. I use Landr for uploading to Soundcloud and for getting a reference mix. They also have a great distribution platform that makes getting the songs out there soooo easy. I agree that they can be a bit harsh on the highs.  The shaker I use is a pair of maraca, but I don't think I used them in this track - it might be the Cajon drum I hand built (I'm big on DIY) that is making the scraping noise....or it might be the old acoustic strings (couldn't afford new ones when I did the recording) I tried dropping the piano and guitar but didn't like the sound - felt less intense, too pop - I like the wall-of-sound effect (but that's just me).  As I make music on the super cheap, my equipment is very low tech.  My vocal mic is (was) a 20 year old M-Audio Nova, an entry level mic, so the vocal clarity is not amazing and it can be a bit noisy.  I try to mask this with the mix, otherwise it's a massive editing job to keep the background noise down.  My sound is kind of born from necessity.
    As for the bass...I don't know what do do with the bass - I use Trilogy, play via keyboard, and mix it low to hide my inability. Give me a piano and guitar any day. ;)
     
    Thanks again!

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    #6
    emeraldsoul
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    Re: Y Do I Make U Cry 2018/12/01 13:38:09 (permalink)
    Burger, that was awesome! I like your song twice as much now. Full props for your description of your process and its obstacles. I think what you have sounds great, but even more so in light of your old mic and such. 
    Very well done.
     
    Is your bass panned dead center? Do you know about the "pultec trick" to give it a little more definition? Is it dry, without reverb? Is it low pass filtered above like say 500 - 600hz?  If so, I bet you just push it up 2db and things have a foundation. 
     
    Thanks for your honest assessment of LANDr and I look forward to hearing where this goes from here. Nice job!

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    thegaltieribrothers
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    Re: Y Do I Make U Cry 2018/12/02 18:04:04 (permalink)
    Lovely song, great hook.
     
    You could have lost the last minute and halved the intro + it still would have been a very enjoyable listen.
     
    Thanks for sharing.
     
    Good Job!
     
    paul
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    burgerproduction
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    Re: Y Do I Make U Cry 2018/12/03 14:37:25 (permalink)
    emeraldsoul
    Is your bass panned dead center? Do you know about the "pultec trick" to give it a little more definition? 

    Thanks for the nice comments Tom.
    In answer to your questions - the bass is usually dead-centre, I occasionally pan it a little to the side to allow space for the vocals. On occasion I have hard right or left panned for a classic mix, like Motown or old Dylan.
    My tracks contain next to no reverb. I'm not a big fan. I find it muddies the mix and feels too smooth (I like rough and ready). I try to keep my bass free of additional reverb. I might put some reverb at the recording stage, but not post production.
    I haven't heard of the Pultrec trick.  What is it? I'm intrigued.
    I've heard of sculpting out a frequency range in the mix by removing certain bass frequencies from the guitars and piano to allow the bass to have its own space. I've also heard about taking out the deep bass frequencies and accentuating the mid frequencies for more presence. I used this trick on Girlfriend on the Train.  On that track the bass feels more bassy than it really is.  I also used the trick of not having any kick drum on the track - it's nearly all Cajon and cymbals. This allows the bass to play the role of kick, without having to gate the bass or kick so that they're not competing. It's got that Portishead feel to it.
    I'm not a pro engineer, so a lot of the things I've picked up over the years have come about from play and experimentation. I love the non conventional approach, but understand that it also has its downside, such as songs that would never be picked up for radio.  I remember reading that Massive Attack would use detuned banjos to get unique basslines...I love that idea.  In some of my other tracks, the bass is played on a detuned flamenco guitar and supported with a VST bass.
    Anyhow - thanks to all of you for your feedback and tips. Here's hoping that single release goes well. :)

    Cakewalk by Bandlab, Sonar Platinum Lifetimer, Windows 10, HP Laptop, CPU i5, RAM 8GB, Edirol FA-101 Firewire interface with moded drivers, Digital piano, more guitars than I should have:
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    #9
    daryl1968
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    Re: Y Do I Make U Cry 2018/12/03 15:16:44 (permalink)
    good song Phil - catchy and I like your voice. I also agree that 6 mins is too long for a pop song.
    #10
    burgerproduction
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    Re: Y Do I Make U Cry 2018/12/03 16:01:04 (permalink)
    daryl1968
    good song Phil - catchy and I like your voice. I also agree that 6 mins is too long for a pop song.

    Cheers Daryl - How about 6 minutes for a B-side? ;)

    Cakewalk by Bandlab, Sonar Platinum Lifetimer, Windows 10, HP Laptop, CPU i5, RAM 8GB, Edirol FA-101 Firewire interface with moded drivers, Digital piano, more guitars than I should have:
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    daryl1968
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    Re: Y Do I Make U Cry 2018/12/03 16:18:42 (permalink)
    burgerproduction
    daryl1968
    good song Phil - catchy and I like your voice. I also agree that 6 mins is too long for a pop song.

    Cheers Daryl - How about 6 minutes for a B-side? ;)


    maybe - 12" remix?
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    bjornpdx
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    Re: Y Do I Make U Cry 2018/12/03 21:45:02 (permalink)
    Good song and very good vocal. Ditto on what others have said about the length. I don't mind a longer song, but it seemed like the instrumental parts got repetitive.
    I like reading how people mix the music. Always educational so thanks for that.

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    Johnbee58
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    Re: Y Do I Make U Cry 2018/12/03 23:38:16 (permalink)
    Nice 70s pop quality.  Acoustic guitar sounds great as do all the instruments really.  Nice mix, lyrics and production.
     
    John B

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    Wayfarer
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    Re: Y Do I Make U Cry 2018/12/07 02:04:54 (permalink)
    Boy, that's a really good song. I agree with most of what Tom said in regards to the mix. I would take that chorusing or whatever effect it is off the vocals, bring up the lower mids a bit, and maybe back off the compression here and there. A lot of finger squeaks on the guitar at the end, but only us guitar players will notice. 
     
    Bill
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    emeraldsoul
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    Re: Y Do I Make U Cry 2018/12/07 02:11:25 (permalink)
    Yeah, it's impressive. I was not suggesting, for the record, adding reverb to the bass - I meant, if there was reverb on it, it could be removed. Sorry for the confusion, my comment was far from clear!
     
    Happy to know you think your way along, and experiment, too! I think I got a couple of tips from reading your post!
     
    -Tom

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    Bob Oister
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    Re: Y Do I Make U Cry 2018/12/07 08:36:00 (permalink)
    Hi, Phil,
     
    This is a really cool, very catchy pop rocker, with excellent vocals and harmonies, and great playing on all the instruments!
     
    The composition and arrangement is really well done, and the mix has a nice vintage quality with good separation.
     
    The song length seems okay to me because I always believed that the ”story" behind the song should always dictate what the songwriter's intent is.
     
    The only thing that distracted me just a little bit, were the string squeaks on the right side acoustic guitar that started near the very end, at around the 5:20 mark.  It's no big deal, and I usually leave string squeaks in on most electric guitar parts, but I think it seems much more noticeable because the acoustic is playing by itself at that point, and the reverb on the acoustic guitar is exaggerating it and making them really stick out.  It might be worthwhile just editing out the squeaks with a few cuts, or even a simple volume automation envelope. Of course, it's all subjective to personal taste, and I really love the song as it is, but those few squeaks right near the end kind of took me out of "the moment".
     
    Anyway, fantastic job, Phil, you've got a really nice song here!
     
    Have a great weekend!
    Bob
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