Work in Progress

While I was at home David, Danny, and myself decided to try our hand at recording something a bit more involved than “Our Song” that we had recorded at Christmas. We have started recording a piece that David wrote. You can download a rough mp3 of the song here. We plan on adding lyrics when I get back here after my retreat, and David would like to re-record some of his guitar solo stuff. If it fits, we may add some piano as well, though with the high electric guitars it may not be necessary.

The drums were the most challenging part to record (for me, anyway). I had to play around a lot with the positioning of the microphones. I ended up doing what Saskatoon’s High Voltage Recording suggested and put two mics at either end of the drum set, and then one more inside the kick drum. The SM57 went on the side of the hihat/cymbal/snare, and my homebrew, phantom-powered electret condenser (see the Easter post) went on the other side. I used my homemade self-powered mic inside the kick drum. Danny was playing the drums. I do wish I could have had a more distinct snare drum sound, but with three microphones I’m reasonably happy at how it turned out.

David played the guitars and I used the SM57 on all of those tracks. The airhole on the acoustic guitar was placed a couple of inches from the microphone for that track. The mic was placed slightly off-center and a couple of inches from the speaker for the electric guitar tracks, as is recommended on Shure’s web site. The bass track was played by me on my keyboard. Since it doesn’t really have a bass sound, I used a couple of other sounds together and then did some heavy bass-boosting in Audacity afterward.

The recording itself was done with the Creative Labs recording tool that came with the external sound module (it works pretty well!). Mixing was done with the Audacity beta on my older laptop – which meant for some extended wait times while the computer rendered the final mix!

The first few bars are pretty repetitive, but there will be lyrics there when we get to it… So anyway, enjoy – and check back here in a couple of weeks for (hopefully) the full version of the song.