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ifta2004
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This Forum helped me release my first album

Thu May 27, 2021 10:45 pm

5 years ago I was sitting on mixes, frankly terrified to share them with anyone. It was major paralysis. I shared a track on here, Mike Robinson took the time to give a massively helpful critique and that fear of exposing all my flaws vanished (by like 90%). That moment where I hit "submit" was super scary and I'm so darn glad I did it...I ended up releasing the album in Nov of 2019 and it felt so good just to release it...something I had written and re-written so many times. I'm trying to improve my work flow and I've accepted I am not an engineer but can get the songs to a good demo point of mixing to show the engineer what I am shooting for.

I would love any feedback on this track. Specifically, I feel it's about a minute too long. This is a song that came to me in a dream (at least the first descending chord progression) and I just went for it and figured I would chop it down later.

My current thoughts are to cut the bridge in half and completely remove the backwards guitar solo.

I realized i go right back into my old habits and don't offer any dynamics, just pound through the whole song with no breaks. I've tried to create some subtle stops for variety.

The bridge starts at 2:52 and goes to 3:28.

The guitar solo goes from 3:29-3:59. I grew up listening to 5 minute songs by Def Leppard and wanted the guy who was playing lead to really have some space to spread out. I ended up really liking the part I wrote and found myself back in that territory of "I'll just keep it for me" all the while feeling it's way too long.

My plan is to chop the bridge in half, 86 the guitar solo and just go straight to a bare bones pass of the chorus, then rest and bring it home for the full chorus at the end.

The female bgvs on the second chorus I'm thinking of moving to the last chorus because of the emotion/vibe she delivers.

So those are my plans...would love to hear your thoughts.https://soundcloud.com/themusicofjeff/the-only-way-53121/s-tNN9tbdNkUR

Thank you for your time and for being a part of this forum. It's gotten me through basically everything.

Best,
Jeff
Last edited by ifta2004 on Mon May 31, 2021 12:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Logic 10.6.0, OS Catalina 10.15.7, MacBook Pro 15-inch, Mid 2012, 2.3 ghz intel core i7, 16GB Memory, Universal Audio Apollo Twin
 
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fuzzfilth
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Re: This Forum helped me release my first album

Fri May 28, 2021 12:23 am

Why would you need to decide on one single, definitive version ? There's folks who will skip to the next song after five seconds, others who love the song will have it in repeat anyway, so why not just go there ?

The version you have is a good candidate for an 'album version', it's 4:30 and has a good flow, there's no awkward transitions or parts jammed in sticking out sideways.

The edits you think of will help transforming that into another, separate 'radio edit'. If you draw the separate parts on a piece of paper, you can easily see the steps you can try to cut this down and still make sense.

Use this to first edit a final stereo mix of the track, which actually may work out just fine, as this is how it's been done for ages. If you found a good flowing edit but you can't get the actual edits of the stereo master to blend in, go back into a copy of the original project and edit that.
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loopsinner
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Re: This Forum helped me release my first album

Fri May 28, 2021 10:33 am

Love your track, the moment i clicked on play, i instantly loved it already.

But then, after the first chorus ended on 1:42, you went straight to the second verse and i thought it's a bit too tiring to my ears. Like i'm not yet ready for more singing.

But i kept on playing the track. Love the rest before the second chorus comes in.

After the second chorus, comes the first singing bridge at 2:52 almost immediately and i thought "wow, this song is so wordy and how is it possible the singer keeps on singing non stop?" No rest?

Finally at 3:28, you took your first break as a singer.

I love the break, and at 3:58 when the outro singing comes in i feel like the intention of the mixer is to put the vocals behind but it lacked convincing reverbs and the top end of the vocals is still too bright for that. I thought this outro vocals could also work by bringing it upfront and just end the song with a bang instead of putting the vocals behind.

Just my 2 cents, you did a better job as a singer/songwriter than me and i felt sometimes, i should just shut up and appreciate a good song like this. :(
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ifta2004
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Re: This Forum helped me release my first album

Sat May 29, 2021 1:11 pm

fuzzfilth wrote:
Why would you need to decide on one single, definitive version ? There's folks who will skip to the next song after five seconds, others who love the song will have it in repeat anyway, so why not just go there ?

-That's an excellent question and I'm glad you asked me because it made me think deeper about it. My answer would be that I'm always trying to see if I can edit something in a way that will make it better...can I still achieve my message of the song I wrote, maintain my artistic vision and have it not bore the listener. Sure, most people will skip after a few seconds, but for those who stay, I want it to be a good experience. I feel that it's so easy for me when I'm listening to someone else's track to figure out solid edit points, but with my own music I tend to get lost in the woods.

The version you have is a good candidate for an 'album version', it's 4:30 and has a good flow, there's no awkward transitions or parts jammed in sticking out sideways.
-I appreciate that. As I started to listen to it I got self-conscious that it was too long. I grew up listening to long bridges and choruses. I also want to make my music as good as possible.

The edits you think of will help transforming that into another, separate 'radio edit'. If you draw the separate parts on a piece of paper, you can easily see the steps you can try to cut this down and still make sense.
-I'm literally going to have to do that to get a better idea.

Use this to first edit a final stereo mix of the track, which actually may work out just fine, as this is how it's been done for ages. If you found a good flowing edit but you can't get the actual edits of the stereo master to blend in, go back into a copy of the original project and edit that.

-I love that idea as well...I'm going to try chopping it up that way with the super rough mix I have. Thanks for your response!
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ifta2004
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Re: This Forum helped me release my first album

Sat May 29, 2021 1:18 pm

loopsinner wrote:
Love your track, the moment i clicked on play, i instantly loved it already.
-Thanks very much!

But then, after the first chorus ended on 1:42, you went straight to the second verse and i thought it's a bit too tiring to my ears. Like i'm not yet ready for more singing.
-That is really helpful to hear, I've edited the song down so much already but it's hard for me to get a perspective on when the ear needs a proper break.

But i kept on playing the track. Love the rest before the second chorus comes in.
-That is good to hear as well.

After the second chorus, comes the first singing bridge at 2:52 almost immediately and i thought "wow, this song is so wordy and how is it possible the singer keeps on singing non stop?" No rest?
-This made me laugh because when I am very loquacious. If you think it's wordy now, you should have seen it before! Very fair points you make!

Finally at 3:28, you took your first break as a singer.

I love the break, and at 3:58 when the outro singing comes in i feel like the intention of the mixer is to put the vocals behind but it lacked convincing reverbs and the top end of the vocals is still too bright for that. I thought this outro vocals could also work by bringing it upfront and just end the song with a bang instead of putting the vocals behind.
-So I'm just playing around with rough mixes...I am not a mixing engineer...I just bring it to a point where I can print something with fx, panning etc to show the engineer the direction I am going. I am self-conscious about going into my upper register and so brought them way down in the mix before I uploaded to Soundcloud. I think you're right, the song needs to end on a bang.

Just my 2 cents, you did a better job as a singer/songwriter than me and i felt sometimes, i should just shut up and appreciate a good song like this. :(

-Your comments were all very spot on and made me laugh because they help me realize I don't need to pack in so many lyrics without rest. I'm trying to be less wordy but having moderate success at that.

I listen to so many podcasts, read so many interviews and I find myself wondering if a proper edit/production x-factor is what is keeping me from finding success with my songs (success meaning making a living from licensing placements, etc). I hear so many tales of "Well when that song came to me it was rubbish but I put in some strings here, moved the bridge here, did x y zed with the solo and badda bing badda boom we had ourselves 30 grammies and a global smash!" I'm honestly trying to push myself to write as good a song as I can. It's a bumpy road but I love it.
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loopsinner
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Re: This Forum helped me release my first album

Sun May 30, 2021 10:12 am

ifta2004 wrote:
...I hear so many tales of "Well when that song came to me it was rubbish but I put in some strings here, moved the bridge here, did x y zed with the solo and badda bing badda boom we had ourselves 30 grammies and a global smash!" I'm honestly trying to push myself to write as good a song as I can. It's a bumpy road but I love it.


Well, i haven't won a single grammy, but i can tell that you are a good singer/songwriter who may find his success one day, if you work hard enough on it.

To add a thing or two about song arrangement, imagine this song is stripped down to just an acoustic guitar and you as a vocalist, how would you perform this song?

What's the arrangement that works before you or the audience get tired?

Thats the arrangement you should shoot for, in my opinion.
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ifta2004
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Re: This Forum helped me release my first album

Mon May 31, 2021 12:26 pm

Thanks very much I appreciate that very much! I'm always loving the journey and trying to surf the ups and downs.

That is interesting that you said that in re: to the song arrangement. Precisely this weekend that is exactly what I've been doing! I got so disconnected from the song during production (how did that happen) that I forgot to ask myself: "How would I perform this at an open mic?"

Thanks for your very valuable 2 cents!
Logic 10.6.0, OS Catalina 10.15.7, MacBook Pro 15-inch, Mid 2012, 2.3 ghz intel core i7, 16GB Memory, Universal Audio Apollo Twin