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"How did they get that sound?" Welcome to spe

Discussion in 'Recording' started by detlof, Jul 2, 2003.

  1. detlof

    detlof Guest

    First of all, I hope this post is appropriate here and not in the producer or the newbie forum. If not so, please move it there!

    Second I don´t know If there is a thread like this already running. At least I couldn´t find one.

    Since there are so many well experienced professionals here and also a lot of people in the process of learning (well, hopefully all of us are), I thought it would be a good idea to bring up the production of specific songs to discussion.

    It would be really cool if people could bring up a song, or some aspect of that song, and ask: How did they get that sound?

    Of course, given that anyone involved in, or with knowledge of that specific production doesn´t respond themselves, this will be involving a lot of qualified guesses, but that would be a great quality of such a discussion; "this and that sound might have been achieved in this and that way, using this kind of gear and that kind of processing....", "Well it might also have been done this way: (......)"

    The songs could be classic ones with classic sounds or maybe lesser well known ones of interest, preferrably from all kinds of genres. As long as some people presumably have heard it or have it available it should be OK.

    I will try to start this thing up with the first thing that comes to my mind. The song is "The things that I used to do" by G Love and Special Sauce , from their self-titled album (O´Keh 1994). It is since long one of my favorites, and I think the drum sound on that record makes it one of their most enjoyable albums.

    The drummer obviously plays on a huge kickdrum and a high pitched (metal?) snare, and there seems to be some compression involved as well. So now I pass it over to you guys: How did they get that sound? How would you have done it?

    As a reference for those who haven´t heard the song, Amazon.com offers a preview here: G Love and Special Sauce

    I am hoping this could be an ongoing thread as new songs or sounds come up to discussion.

    Lastly, sorry if I express myself strangely, but my mom only taught me swedish. :D

    :h: Jonas

    (I edited this posts title and symbol, "Welcome to speculate!" was added and the symbol changed from a question mark to a lightbulb.)
     
  2. falkon2

    falkon2 Well-Known Member

    Excellent idea! I've been toying around with some similiar ideas for some time, but hosting the tracks and/or finding them online put me off. Hope this takes off.

    A picture is worth a thousand words - let's see how many words a few minutes of audio is worth.
     
  3. detlof

    detlof Guest

    Actually i only posted the link to Amazon as a reference for someone who did not hear the song, but still wanted to follow the discussion. The quality of the preview isn´t good enough to listen critically and discuss sound, I think. To be able to comment you should have the record or be recall the sound of the song.

    Maybe I should stick to pieces that I know everyone have heard. I´ll wait and see..... -Jonas
     
  4. falkon2

    falkon2 Well-Known Member

    But hey, you never know. Even streaming audio quality (at crappily encoded 128kbps mp3 or ogg) would be enough for discussion's sake... If we're talking about the finer points of micro-mastering, that would be a different case, but meh.

    If anyone really ever needs to upload music somewhere for dissection/discussion, please do read up on formats other than mp3 - APE, being lossless but quite filesize-heavy, would be an audiophile's dream, but more practical solutions exist in the form of the MPC format.

    Then again, without space to host... meh.
     
  5. lessthandmb

    lessthandmb Guest

    G-Love and Special Sauces'albums all have a great drum sound but they always mess with garrets vocals and make it sound like its coming through a telephone. Ive heard it done on other songs, but its not the whole song like G-loves' albums.
    Jeremy
     
  6. detlof

    detlof Guest

    Falkon, I was talking about discussing commercially available music. Please consider that up/downloading in this situation will not be looked well upon in these forums.

    I really don´t want this thread to end up in a discussion about the rights and wrongs in downloading copyrighted music, (there is one thread going on about that already), so please stick to songs that you think at least some people may have heard.
     
  7. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    Jeremy and Jonas,
    I bet you guys are both drummers... Drummers usually seem to go for that type of snare sound...
     
  8. detlof

    detlof Guest

    Nice guess Kurt but i´m actually a singer and guitar player. But I loooove that drum sound (I actually like the vocal sound as well...)

    So Kurt, how would you do it?
    Jonas
     
  9. detlof

    detlof Guest

    Aah you said snare sound.... Yes that type of ringing sound kind of requires this sparse instrumentation.
     
  10. falkon2

    falkon2 Well-Known Member

    Good point... bringing up "online piracy" was never my intention (ironically disproved by this very post. ;) )

    What's wrong with a 30-second clip that sounds indifferentiable to the original, though? I mean, if there was this audio effect in this obscure piece of music no one else has ever heard about...

    Again, never was my intention to bring up pirating issues. I agree we've seen too much of that lately.
     
  11. 960054

    960054 Guest

    I can't belive it, 5 posts and none could answer jonas' question for how they got that sound. My educated guess for the snare drum sound is that the drummer used a piccolo snare, also using a technique in which the tip and body of the stick hit the drum and rim at the same time. I could also hear alot of room sound, so maybe to re-create the sound try using more distant miking techniques. So give that a try.

    I too have a song that i'm interested in knowing "how they got that sound?". It's the snare drum sound from the song "my own way to rock" by Burton Cummings. It's a really crisp snare sound, it sounds like there was something placed on the drum. I remember when i was younger putting a record on a snare and having a similar sound, but that was before I had any knowledge of critical listening. I actually think its a type of drum but I still don't have a clue. So now i ask all of you -"Howdid they get that sound?".

    Extreme
     
  12. 960054

    960054 Guest

  13. jjg

    jjg Guest

    sounds like a metal snare with the snare lever lowered to reduce the snare sound and a tight pair of skins. Lots of reverb could be a natural live room (i.e. stairway) with a distant mic. Cool sound!
     
  14. RecorderMan

    RecorderMan Distinguished Member

    The reason no one (like myself for instance) answers these types of threads is becuase for the most part it's specutlation. With all the variables of any session, from tracking to mix, it can be many things, and so just speculation. I mean there are literakky countless ways to achieve sounds...jsut when you think it was done one way you find out it was done another.
    Yet, for those that dig this have fun...I'm just giving my guess as to why there are so few responses, as you say.
     
  15. Rod Gervais

    Rod Gervais Active Member

    RecorderMan is absolutely right......... trying to figure out how a certain sound or effect was done is pure speculation at best - pure bulls**t at worse.

    Everybody old enough (like me) remembers the drum sound that Motown put out in the 60's........ damn - everyone in the industry tried to figure out how they did that - only one person that i know of did figure it out, and they hired him so he wouldn't spread it around.

    We can 2nd guess all day long.

    Now what I would consider more interesting - why doesn't someone figure out how they would try do it - and then put that onto some tracks - let us see how sucessful you were........

    For the record - don't know how they did it - but it sounds like a deep dish chrome snare to me. No way it sounds like my Picolo - and if anything the heads sound loose to me rather than tight.

    By the way - i am a drummer......... anyone hear a good drummer joke lately?

    Happy Hunting

    Rod
     
  16. chrisperra

    chrisperra Active Member

    extreme coffe...


    this is just speculation, but if i were going to try to duplicate the sound...

    i would find a dead room with very little ambiance, find a wood snare, 5 to 8 inches deep, crank it up, fairly tight, "a couple notches under table top"

    make sure the bottom skin is fairly tight as well, the snares are pretty quick ,so you need a decent response from the bottom skin. the snares themselves aren't too tight though.

    then get out a small to medium sized wallet and tape it to the top skin.


    large amounts of duct tape would work well also. you could do the "x" or the "square" patterns. the standard stuidio duct tape "fins" would probably let it ring a bit too much.


    like the previous responses pointed out no one really knows except those who were there. i'm just fostering a guess.

    chris perra
     
  17. chrisperra

    chrisperra Active Member

    johnas....

    to me it sounds like a larger 6 to 8 inch metal snare, maybe steel shell, maybe copper, that has been tuned wonky.

    it sounds like the top skin is fairly old,theres little attack. also the snares themselves sound like there are very few strands left.

    you can also get smaller strand strainers mostly for piccalos, but if you put it on a big honkin snare and tune the bottom skin so it doesn't resonate too much, most of the tone will come from the top skin. thus the ring.

    i used to wind up with that type of sound when i was trying to not have my snares resonate out of control when i hit my first tom.

    i got them not to freak out on me, but then i had little crispness from the drum.

    once again i'm stating my earlier disclaimer that i'm just guessing here.


    chris perra
     
  18. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Rod...heres two myths I've heard.Only one sounds plausible and only because I've seen some pictures that allude to it.

    1.Motown snare....standard size...all the snares cut off except 4 or 5....gut head on top and orchestral batter(REALLY thin)under.
    2.There are a few pictures of the kit.In the corner you can see a B15 ampeg cabinet ained right at the snare behind the floor tom...Bass activated but in the groove so its in time????hmmmmm.....

    We should ask Bob Ohlson....he would know...he probably cant say though.He's over at the slutz mostly.

    joke:How many drummers does it take to screw in a light bulb?















    A: One...no, three...no, six....no,. five .....uhhh.....four,. :c:
     
  19. falkon2

    falkon2 Well-Known Member

    Recorderman: I'd agree, there's no way you'd be able to reverse engineer any and/or every sound that crops up unless you were Audio God or something. However, coming up with something close would be an interesting exercise in it's own right. ;)

    And us n00b1s could easily benefit from the experience alone - Heading off in the right general direction is better than not knowing where to start at all.
     
  20. Treena Foster

    Treena Foster Active Member

    Who might this person be?


    Treena :h:
     

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