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mark styles

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mark styles last won the day on May 23

mark styles had the most liked content!

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About mark styles

  • Rank
    Advanced Member
  • Birthday 11/24/1948

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    New York, NY
  • Occupation
    musician
  • Interests
    music
  • Favorite Composers
    beatles
  • My Compositional Styles
    pop, lite jazz, ensemble
  • Notation Software/Sequencers
    Logic Pro, Synfire Pro
  • Instruments Played
    keyboards and computers

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  1. I just plug mine into the mix output in Logic. You could just as easily use your method, (into a sound editor app). If you're putting each instrument in your DAW on it's own separate track, - kick, snare, hats, toms, etc. you might want to send those to a bus, and apply a limiter to drums alone. Some mixers, group instruments and send to separate busses, (stems). then each buss, can get a separate limiter, compressor, EQ etc. It depends on your songs, how complex are they, how many plug-ins you have, and how intricate you want to get. Read magazines, like Electronic Musician, Mix Magazine, Keyboard etc. (there are a bunch). Keep reading them, at first it may seem confusing, but gradually you glean a tidbit of info here or there. Better yet, check out Youtube videos.. There are quite a few on different music subjects. You soon learn which ones are put out by intelligent guys/girls. and which are not so informative.. The internet and Google (or your search engine of choice) is one of the most amazing learning tools ever available. (of course a lot if mis-information is there too).. There are also Facebook forums on almost any subject, theory, synths, music. A lot there to go over too.
  2. The Bass is good, it holds it's ground and is not overpowering. Personally I'd lower the volume and Eq a bit of high. But it's a minor point.. Other's might find it totally perfect the way it is. You have a bit of low mid's going on, It get's a little cloudy. I use Genelec 8040's and Grady 1000 headphones. The nature of Headphones is that they will always be 'colored' somewhat.. Listen to a lot of commercial stuff, and then your's, so you can begin to understand the response of your phones. Another producing trick, is to add a professional song from an artist you like, or the material is in a similar vein to your production, Solo them on/off with your mix. Even with individual instruments. It's a bit hard to ignore the key and tempo will be different, but you are only listening to the quality of the sound. Back in the 70's it was still the 'Wild West' of recording. A lot of multi track studios were popping up. I worked at a decent studio in Boston, Dimension Sound. Deal was I could do my own music whenever the studio wasn't booked. I always played David Bowie's "Young Americans" song when mixing down one of my songs. . I would solo his song, and go thru all my tracks, kick, bass, kids, etc. Play with EQ, volume, so that my instrument would 'fit' in. When I was finished, I would fade my mix up and into Bowies, and try to get as close to the colors and EQ he had in this particular song. Sometimes a final 'mixing plug-in smooths things. You can use ones that come with your DAW. I use Slate Digital FG-X or IZone 8.. with this you can add a little 'sheen' to the top, maybe, 'tuck in' the low miss with a tight notch. And sometimes you don't need any of that.
  3. This is quite an epic piece. very good.. perhaps some gentle EQ'ing on some tracks to clarify what the different instruments are doing. The low mids are quite dense ( bordering on getting muddy). Perhaps some of the strings play an octave higher, or voices. The movement and orchestration are QUITE GOOD..
  4. This is quite a lovely piece.. It has a great flavor.. One thing you might consider (it took me a LONG time to figure out). In my observations, the brain can discern about 4 - 6 different strands of audio data in music (think of instruments) When too many instruments are playing out at full force it becomes a WALL of sound (Phil Spector generally considered to have created this technique in rock music). You can start by 'opening up' each instrument. By this I mean - not every instrument plays the full chord. Let one instrument play (on a C7 chord) C and E an octave above, let another instrument play the 5th (G) and 7th (Bb) an octave above. Let some instruments play a 2note riff, in between what the main instruments are doing. At some point rock bands with 2 guitars, started developing the technique of not always playing the full chord. One would play a rhythm and certain notes, the 2nd guitarist would play (sometimes in syncopated rhythm) the other notes. Another way of looking at it, is you want the different instruments to ebb and flow in what they play. Some instruments may only come in on the chorus. If you make the other instruments play fewer notes, there will be room for the picking guitar to shine thru. I think of music as a 'guided tour', As the museum moderator walks thru the building spot light come up on the particular point she is trying to make. Also think of it as a conversation, if everyone is talking at the same time it gets muddy. Now of course you can take this to whatever degree you want, everybody playing flat out, to each being more moderate, to each playing very sparse. I used work for a disco record company and the 1st rule was 'something changes every 4 bars'. You can do this by looking looking at your track page in your DAW. I color each track. When I first start a piece, everybody (all me playing different virtual instruments) are playing too much, sometimes the notes are too fast, to dense) I listen and decide what is important, I focus on that, sometimes re-recording it, then CUTTING out other parts or go back and thin them out, just hitting beat 1 skipping a measure or more. All the time changing the patterns. If you listen to and look at the score or one of pieces I've done (shameless self-promotion). You'll see, I juggle a large number of instruments, yet each is very sparse, it's very easy to ascertain what is going on. Now this is a certain type of music, which is not what you are doing, but you can get the point. If you listen to and analyze Beatle songs, you see how cleverly they changed parts, even their singing, sometimes solo, unison, 3rds harmony 5th harmonies. They kept changing things actually pretty quickly. Listen to the artists your inspire you, and figure out what they are doing.. I first did this with graph paper and different colored felt tip pens, Each instrument was a different color, each square on the graph paper was a bar. Finally I ended up with a nice piece of artwork. I even used techniques to show volume rises and falls, marks to indicate intensity, It's some work but you begin to get a better idea of what works. I would look for MIDI files, import into my DAW (Logic) and look at the activity. to see what was happening in what I considered a great song. Pardon my verbosity. I really like your postings, everything has been quite good. Keep at it. cheers
  5. A striking piece. More than meets the eye/ear. I liked the effective use of volume/dynamics. It creates a psychological impact.
  6. The Morning Mist The music covers a fair amount of territory, i was trying to portray the varied musical landscape one encounters, especially as the mist lifts, and more becomes apparent. I used a lot of tracks, many of them very sparse. Again using traditional sounds with ‘organic and non-organic synthetic sounds. I worked with the idea of some tracks, being ‘washes’ that is they are very faint, almost not discernible, but they help add color, flavor. Of course there had to be some birds too.
  7. Empty for me too. Mac OSX 10.14.4 Safari =12.1 Latest OSX and browser.. safa
  8. Great piece.. Don't get the title.. Sometimes I start with a title, but as song progresses (especially instrumental).. I conjure up images, which reflect the piece. People will also take a chance to listen to, by the title alone. I'd expect some heavy death metal. or LSD freak out stuff. But, the piece is excellent and excellently constructed.. l GREAT
  9. Thanx Emanuel - those are wind chimes. Yes they could be more subtle. I'll try to tweak it down in a remix in a day or two. There are a few spots, where some volume adjustments on individual instruments would benefit.
  10. A Point Of View An incident/mis-understanding with a friend, caused me to rethink what and how a relationship worked, and also how I viewed the world in general. The piece was originally sadder, but i lightened the tone somewhat, and as the different motifs came to me, and the instruments used. I realized it represented how I viewed myself, and how I perceived life in general and how it has drastically changed over the years. While not excited to have turned 70, I realized my mother set an example of how to age gracefully. Without getting worked up over losses, both physical in my health, friendships, shrinking finances, the state of society and the world. So my mom was like the branch that bend with the wind and survived longer. My Dad was more rigid in his thinking, and did not deal well with the changes and losses that were happening to me.. No judgement on my Dad, we are each as emotionally different as we are physical. It’s just that one can’t immediately judge the emotional makeup of a person. where as its very easy to see physical makeup. I hope that point comes across in the music. I wasn’t directly thinking about that, but as the piece matured, and I worked on and refined certain sections. I realized this was what I was subconsciously doing,
  11. Hi... Good work.. Yes I agree with Arthur and Monarcheon.. Percussion gets overwhelming, actually distorted. .. You might consider letting it cut in/out more i.e. with low male voices. But as your first post here. It is impressive.
  12. Nice work.. Melody line sounds a bit loud (and a bit mushy) towards the end. Although I understand the Blues is not about 'clean' sounds. Like the bass part. A technique I've been employing for a while now is that as the song matures, and arrangement, becomes complex. I sometimes 're-voice' an instrument or part'. A slightly drier, darker snare, will let the listener pay attention more to the desired instrument. I might find another patch for the bass to stand out more, or make it more muted, or even switch sounds for different sections. I tend to think of a song, as a 'guided walk thru the musical landscape'.. So when the lead guitar does a solo. the other instruments, might get a bit softer, of with a few less notes. This way you subtly guide the listener what to pay attention to. So in the piece the different instruments ebb and flow in the complexity and tone of the instruments. Once in a while, you might want 2 or more instruments playing more 'frenzied' for an effect.
  13. ambitious.. good. You might focus more on the technical quality of the music, to get your point across better. The voice often is lost and too awash with reverb. (for my taste anyways)..
  14. This is a more aggressive song than your others. In that I mean several of the instruments, 'demand' your attention. In one way a bit overwhelming. Still considering the song, and your attnention I get what you are trying to do... Maybe subdue a part or two, or a section of it. As evidenced by your previous uploads, you do have quite a knack for embedding hooks into every instrument.. and wow, I'm still very impressed with your voice. A perfect rock voice. Clarity, phrasing, tonality, and your control (did you study vocals or just your own learning from doing). High quality.. thanx
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