All I Want for Christmas

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Nov 14, 2017, 01:15 PM

OK, one more time! Following Tony’s advice seems to have introduced just a tiny bit more sibilance. Does anyone notice and is it a problem?

 
     
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Gavin Sinclair Joined Dec 02, 2014
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Nov 14, 2017, 05:01 PM

LOL, now you’re really getting into the nitty-gritty of this! It’s all about your mic. You have to Eq
the S’s n T’s out from the start. My vox pre-set is very simple, I just create a real narrow valley
with the Eq somewhere around 14k-16k depending on what mic I’m using. That kills the sibilance
but makes the vox sound dull. So, then I create a high end shelf to brighten them back up again.
This is something you’re just going to have to experiment with. My setup makes it easy because
I’m running through 4 different layers of effects from my mixer to the DAW. I can tell you this for
certain, steer clear of small condenser mics! Does your interface have Eq options? Some of your
better mics will even have low/high kill switches on them :)

 
     
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JAPOV Joined Jul 02, 2006
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Nov 14, 2017, 07:42 PM

All good points, Tony, but is it noticeable. Nobody spotted it in all the to and fro yesterday and I’m not sure if I’m just being ridiculous and there’s not really a problem. If there is one, it’s very slight. I can’t really judge any more.

Most sources I found suggest that the sibilance frequencies are mostly a bit lower than what you mention.

 
     
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Gavin Sinclair Joined Dec 02, 2014
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Nov 15, 2017, 02:35 PM

Hey Gavin. I remember this one. Loved it last year and still do. I listened to both versions one and two. Version two has the better instrument mix to my ear, but I prefer the version one vocal. Had a scroll down the thread and checked out versions three and four. All up, I think four is the best.

I didn’t read the conversation too closely so forgive me if I’m just repeating what others have said. With the vocal in version 4 I think the vocal has slightly too much EQ. It’s noticeable when you’re singing up the register. It’s ever so slightly too much at the top end. The effect is to make your higher vocals to seem over processed. Also, somewhere along the line sibilance has entered the mix. If you listen to the first couple bars of the vocal in version 4 and then listen to the first couple bars in version 2 you’ll notice what I mean. Have you increased the reverb on the vocal between the two mixes? Sometimes too much reverb can amplify sibilance to the point where it becomes a problem. Or, have you increased the vocal volume above 0dB? That also can emphasize sibilance.

Oh, and the dog woof could use some bass.

When you post to Spotify, I suggest adding “(humourous)” or “is you…to be gone” or something like that to the title. I would hate for your song to be lumped in with that awful “All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth” song which is also called “All I want for Christmas.” Yours kicks that irritating kids @ss.  ;)

https://soundcloud.com/jennystokes-nz
http://www.evansandstokes.com

“One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain”
- Bob Marley

 
     
Jenny Stokes Joined Sep 24, 2015
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Nov 15, 2017, 02:45 PM

Well….. I would have to say, if YOU can hear it then….... YES it’s there lol. Keep messing with that
frequency until you find it. I got a laugh once when I suggested using a “Spectrum analyzer”. But
I’ve found that even a rudimentary plug-in will help you isolate bothersome frequencies, especially
after you’ve listened to the same darn track for the thousandth time lol. Plus it helps with sound
consistency across recordings. It’s nice to be able to SEE and pinpoint that bothersome spike
and know precisely how to kill it! Or, be able to see the difference between your recording and
someone elses. As I mentioned above, “It’s all about the mic”. Every mic has it’s own frequency
response, every amp or pre-amp has it’s own frequency response, every speaker has it’s own
frequency response, every human ear…....... get the point? You’re dealing with a lot of variables
here, and this is all excluding style and taste! Hammer it until YOU’RE happy with it :)

 
     
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JAPOV Joined Jul 02, 2006
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Nov 15, 2017, 03:30 PM

Funny you should mention a spectrum analyzer. Since you mentioned it (what six months ago), I’ve been keeping my eye out for one that is intuitive. When you first mentioned it, I got freaked (techno-idiot that I am) with this circular thing that made absolutely no sense unless you were 10 parts high on something. I recently found a linear one (visually shows it as a horizontal graph) and it was like…“duh…that makes so much sense.” So months late, Tony….thanks for that.  ;)

https://soundcloud.com/jennystokes-nz
http://www.evansandstokes.com

“One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain”
- Bob Marley

 
     
Jenny Stokes Joined Sep 24, 2015
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Nov 15, 2017, 04:05 PM

OK Jen and Tony. I didn’t really notice the sibilance when listening on my computer, but when I listened through my iPhone, which is kind of what most folks will do, it was more noticeable. Yet another variable! I didn’t change anything beyond Tony’s suggestion of upping the EQ at the top end.

I don’t have time to work all this out now, so I fell back on my primitive but reasonably effective method of zooming in on each individual “s” sound and the occasional “t” and tweaking down the volume. I also slightly lowered the amount of EQ at the top end of the vocal. And I added some bass to the dog bark, and a little volume too :)

Here it is
https://soundcloud.com/gavin-sinclair-5/all-i-want-for-christmas-mix-11-15-2017-b/s-kxIGn

And the uploaded track will have the full title.

All this might be academic, because I uploaded Version 4, sibilance and all, to the distributor and the status just changed to “delivered to stores.” There still might be time to fix it by deleting and uploading again, but I do kind of want it up there before Christmas!

 
     
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Gavin Sinclair Joined Dec 02, 2014
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Nov 15, 2017, 04:53 PM

Now we’re talking. This sounds great Gavin.

Delivered already? Gosh you move fast.

https://soundcloud.com/jennystokes-nz
http://www.evansandstokes.com

“One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain”
- Bob Marley

 
     
Jenny Stokes Joined Sep 24, 2015
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Nov 15, 2017, 08:24 PM

Loved it Gavin! Sounds great! And i totally laughed out loud during the spoken word section. Solid gold!

 
     
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Brad Jaggard Joined Jun 22, 2016
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Nov 15, 2017, 10:58 PM

Sounds fine in my doghouse :)

 
     
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JAPOV Joined Jul 02, 2006
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Nov 16, 2017, 08:25 PM

I didn’t think they were very annoying. There aren’t really very many of them, of course. Not like what I am dealing with. There’s two s-es in Christmas, for a start. I should have written a song about Hanukah.

 
     
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Gavin Sinclair Joined Dec 02, 2014
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Nov 17, 2017, 12:12 AM

LOL, a whole new level of anti-semitism there buddy :)

 
     
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JAPOV Joined Jul 02, 2006
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Nov 17, 2017, 09:21 AM

Well, I don’t think I’ve ever been accused of that before - although inflicting my songwriting “talent” on any faith or ethnicity is hardly calculated to boost its standing in the world. I know it’s a New Testament parable, but this particular talent, it could be argued, really should be buried :)

I suppose I could have chosen Halloween, since it has no s-es rither. Or Kwanzaa.

 
     
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Gavin Sinclair Joined Dec 02, 2014
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Nov 17, 2017, 12:07 PM

Actually, I was thinking you could make the whole song about that weird “throat clearing” sound :)

 
     
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JAPOV Joined Jul 02, 2006
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