Country/Gospel sesion Drum questions

Discussion in 'Drums' started by McPhaul, Aug 11, 2005.

  1. McPhaul

    McPhaul Guest

    OK so I am completely lost with this gig. They are a gospel group :shock: and the music is very much 80's country. I am a blues guy and these sounds are not what I am used to getting. The durms are big everything. Big toms, Big kick, Big snare and what I do normally is just 4-5 mics. I know to use my ears and work with what I have but I'd like some input to help point me in the right direction. I'd like to look like I have a clue when they get here.

    The drummer uses a single kick and only 2 toms (1 mounted 1 floor)

    What I have

    Large room - U shaped
    1/2 is 12 x 19 w/ 8' drop ceiling
    1/2 is 14 x 25 w/ 9' sheet rock ceiling
    all hardwood floor

    Aardvark Q10 (8 xlr + spdif)
    API 3124
    M-Audio Tampa (mono spdif out)

    ART Pro VLA

    3 SM57's
    2 AT 4050's
    2 GT44's
    2 MXL603's
    1 GT66
    1 e609 silver
    1 D112
    3 pc CAD drum pack cheese (although the kick mic works well on bass amps)

    The API is new to me and I'm not sure if I should send the 2 toms, kick and snare through it or the OH's Kick and snare, or a room mic or you see my problem. I have 4 channels of good pre and want to make the best of them. The drummer is coming over 2-3 days before we start tracking to work with me on sounds but any help on where to start would be great.

  2. skinsincyn

    skinsincyn Guest

    First, I think you need to decide if you want to end up with a "room" sound or a "close-miked" sound - very different directions!

    Close-miked = kick (GT66 outside head), snare (sm57), hi tom (GT44, AT 4050 or sm57), lo tom (GT44, AT 4050 or sm57) through the APIs

    Room sound = GT44s as x/y config AND AT 4040s as spaced omnis through the APIs (make sure that no matter how close/far you space the mics, the snare hits them all simultaneously!!!)
  3. McPhaul

    McPhaul Guest

    Thanks for the input. I think close miking is more in order on this one. I guess if I had thought about it a little bit more I knew the answer to my own question. Not alot of room sounds on the referance CD they gave me.

    I think I'll try close mic'd under the drop ceiling first and see how that comes out.

  4. Midlandmorgan

    Midlandmorgan Active Member

    Jul 21, 2002
    FWIW: Most of our work is country, jazz, and gospel, and I haven't close mic'd anything for months....

    I use the modified Glynn Johns approach (one LDC straight up from the top of the snare 3 sticks length; one LDC on the tom side, just above the floor top skin, exactly the same distance from the snare center as mic one; and a front of kit LDC or SM7, again, exactly the same distance....) When mixing, hard pan the overheads left and right, and the snare is dead center, with a HUGE stereo spread. Add a touch of overall compression and possibly reverb rolled off as to not get into the kick/floor frequencies, and there ya go.

    If needed, I'll put a SDC or dynamic on the snare, and blend in just a touch for any 'special effects' the artist/producer thinks are required....
  5. McPhaul

    McPhaul Guest

    That's more my norm. I generally go either 4050 or GT44 about 40" above and away from the snare and D112 inside or GT66 outside the kick and maybe a SM57 on snare.

    I have not tried that with his kit but I have not gotten sounds like the referance CD from this setup. That very well may just be my lack of experiance but I think the sounds I'm hearing from the CD are close mic'd. (yea I know you have not heard the CD and can't know)

    I'll try my normal setup and see if he likes it. If you are doing country and gospel and use this setup at least I know that it is acceptable in that style.

  6. Midlandmorgan

    Midlandmorgan Active Member

    Jul 21, 2002

    Since you are already on DAW of some sort, you could try using closeup micing, with your existing setup, and a bit of tweaking.

    For example, D112 on kick, 4050 as either an ORTF or XY pair OH, the 57s on toms, and the 609 on snare.

    If you are really careful with gains, you can almost eliminate the need for gates on the toms...use the APIs on kick, snare, and OHs, as you will likely keep those tracks as is...the rest you can use Drumagog (cannot recommend this tool enough!), then blend in the amount of differing drum sounds you wish...

    This method should give you a really tight close mic'd sound - just be real careful with phase issues (check in mono...often).

    Tip I learned some time ago: traditional micing methods are becoming a thing of the past...try micing toms, etc, from the underside instead of the top. This can REALLY add to the separation, and gives some bueno sounds to boot.... if you have the room put a kick mic on the beater side of the drum as well...

    Another thing to try: find out who engineered the CD you are using as a reference, as ask him/her how they did it...I've discovered that many people LOVE to share just how they did things - if they won't respond directly, there are enough folks out there who may have first hand knowledge of the event and will reply.

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