Advanced Music Production Capstone

Currently I am in a class called advanced music production and as you may have guessed the class is about audio design and production.  This is the final class for music production offered at the University of Cincinnati so there is a great deal of information provided in this class.  One of the best things I have learned in this course is the levels of mixing.  There are four basic levels of mixing.

Level One:  The first level of mixing is mainly used to prepare yourself for a fast and well organized mix.  The first level of mixing should be the quickest.  The first thing you must do in level one is to just simply listen to the song.  You must make yourself familiar with the song.  Once you know the song well enough you need to drop markers.  This is very important to help locate parts of the song quickly.  You want to drop one in the beginning and of course mark each verse, chorus, middle 8, and so on.
The next step in the first level of mixing would be color-coding the tracks.  This is very important and is a great habit to form.  It is just good audio hygiene.  If all the tracks are all the same color, it will be difficult to tell one from the other.  If they are color-coded then it will be easy to tell which track is which.
Another thing you must do in level one is set some pans.  Most of the pans can be set without even listening to the music.  Pans help create a large stereo image.  Some basic pans you always need to set is on the toms of the drums as well as the over head mics.  Doing this will make the drum set feel more alive and it will make them move and give more dynamic.  You also want to pan the guitars far away from the center to give the mix a more stereo feel.  These are just some of the basic pans that need to be done.
The final crucial element of the first level mix is to set groups.  You want to group all the drum tracks together, all the guitar tracks in a section together, and so on so that you can mix the groups together to make the session go a lot smoother.

Image

An example of color-coded tracks.

Level Two:  This level of mixing is mainly to finish correcting all the audio tracks.  The first thing to do in the second level of mixing is corrective EQ.  This is to mainly cut out the frequencies that you will not be using.  You will boost some frequencies slightly to put them in a place and accentuate the crucial frequencies of the instrument.  After corrective EQ you must use corrective compression.  This will bring all the audio tracks up to the same level and overall fatten up the tracks.
Another part of second level mixing is creating subs for all the track groups.  Sub tracks will make the session easier and faster to mix after we have mixed the tracks individually.

Level Three:  This level is where the engineer starts to get really creative with the mix.  In the third level, you start to establish aux sends to create certain elements that you want to add to the song such as parallel compression for drums or some other track that you would like to punch through the mix.  You create sends on the track you want and route them to the auxiliary track where you add the effect that you want.  Then you slowly add the effect by pushing the fader up.  This is a the level where you can be really creative.
You also want to add creative EQ and compression if you want to define where your tracks should lie within the mix.  At this point you also want to put a limiter on the master fader so you can limit the audio level.  This is a soft limiting not for huge changes in the song.  Depending on which limiter plug in you use, it will also add a certain color to your mix.  I like to use the L2 limiter by Waves plugins.  It has a great vintage sound to it and really colors the tracks nicely.

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An L2 limiter plugin.

Level Four:  This is my favorite level of mixing because it is where you really get to put the final shine on the song.  This is where I create more aux sends to add delay and reverb and other effects to certain tracks.  Reverb and delay are very important.  They create a sense of depth and put your listener in a space and keep them their.
This is also the level where you need to feature, feature, FEATURE.  Featuring is where you will boost the level of volume in one instrument above the level of other tracks so it can be heard front and center.  An example of featuring would be when you boost a drum fill during a turn so it can be heard.  After the fill, the drums should go right back to the level they were at before.
At this level you will also want to start mastering the track.  This is where you look at the song as a whole and not just as individual tracks.  You want to really listen to your mix and see first of all what it doesn’t need and you cut those parts out (make sure you listen for unwanted distortion and fix it if need be).  Then you listen to what you really like and make sure you boost those features.  If available, you want to run the mix through a few nice pieces of hardware such as great sounding tube compressor/limiters as well as some EQ hardware.  These pieces add a certain shine and shimmer to your mix.  Finally make sure your mix is up to a level to compete with other music out there.  You also want to create several mixes for different mediums such as radio edits and bad speaker mixes.

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A rack full of hardware for recording and mastering.

I have learned a great deal through this class and will continue to expand my knowledge in the audio engineering/design field.
To listen to how I applied the four levels of mixing to a few songs we used in class check out this website navigate through songs with the discography links to the right.

City Surrender Is Alive!!!

City Surrender playing with August Burns Red and Sky Eats Airplane @ the Attic

I have not posted in quite some time now.  I have been really busy this summer with my band City Surrender.  Yes I’m still playing drums and we are still making music!  In fact, we welcomed a new member into our group.  We now have a front man/wonderful singer Tommy George.  He has much experience singing and is very talented.

You can listen and download for free our first song with Tommy, “Standing on the Shoulders of Giants” and 2 new demos at our Bandcamp site

Just navigate through our songs page using the discography navigation on the right side of the page!

Let me know what you think!  I know there is still much work to be done:  photos, more music, etc… I’ll inform you more info becomes available.

New iPad

On March 2nd Apple unveiled their latest update of the iPad.  The second version of the slick, and very thin tablet  is scheduled to be released on March 11th and many people can’t wait for its release.  Steve Jobs himself showed up for the unveiling stating that he “didn’t want to miss today”

Steve Jobs presenting the new iPad

(Newser).  Because the surprise, Apple’s stock rose that day.  The device does come with a few new features despite this second version coming out less than a year after the release of the first iPad.

What The iPad Will Feature
The new tablet will pretty much be just like the old one.  The new one will cost as much as the first one:  $499 for a 16 GB, $599 for 32 GB and $699 for 64 GB.  The device still has a battery life of 10 hours so you can go all day without a charge.  If you went and bought the original iPad, I feel bad for you:  you already have to buy the latest version to stay on top.  It just doesn’t make sense to me that Apple decided to release the original iPad without all these features, we all know they were capable.  It just seems like such an obvious plan to make more money off Apple’s loyal followers.  Another great new feature of the new iPad is that the thing is 33% thinner than the original.  This makes the device about 15% lighter.  The new version now includes a rear and a front camera and supports FaceTime.  The new Pad should be much faster as well.  There is a new A5 chip which is 2 times faster than the original A4 dual processing chip.  The device even has a graphics chip that can be up to 9 times faster than the original version.  You can get the new iPad with either just Wi-Fi or with a 3G network:  either Verizon or AT&T.

iPad 2

Not For Me
I have never been a supporter of the iPad.  I always felt it was pointless, at least for me.  It seems like a device more for the traveling businessman with money to throw toward it.  I am a college student that just needs a great computer with boat-load of  processing power.  I need a device that is fast and has great connectivity for devices such as pre-amp interfaces and external hard drives.  I never thought of the iPad as that revolutionary either.  The thing just seems like an over-sized iPod Touch and doesn’t do much more than an iPhone (although it is thinner than the new iPhone).  The iPad is just a waste of money.  Overall, I feel the iPad is not for me, I’ll stick with my MacBook pro.

Newser

iPad

Apple

iPhone Trouble Again?

That’s right, Apple is still having trouble with their iPhone.  I personally do not have an iPhone or have ever had one but I have used them before.  I think the phone is really cool and has many interesting features.  There are also many cool apps for the iPhone.  I always thought the iPhone was one of the top smart phones and the one I wanted.  The phone is slick and shiny.  The only thing that was keeping me from buying the phone was the fact that the only network supporting the phone was AT&T which is one of the worst networks to have.

New Macbook Pro

Apple Products

I was never a big fan of Apple products in general.  Before I got my Macbook Pro, I used Windows and I never wanted to change.  Because of my major, I needed to purchase a Macbook Pro and I love it now.  The computer has never had computing problems except on a couple instances.  The Macbook is perfect for running the production programs I use like Pro Tools and Final Cut Pro.  Speaking of Macbooks, Apple just recently released a new version.  Apple products always seem to be very user-friendly.  Their products always are cool and futuristic looking and really do just seem to work better than a lot of other products I’ve used.  But the iPhone really appears to have problems that Apple has been ignoring.

The iPhone

Like I said, I have never owned an iPhone and have never made a call on one.  But my friends that had the smart phone always complained about a problem

iPhone with case that may protect from antenna problem

with the phone dropping calls.  I just always assumed this was because of the bad network that carried the iPhone.  Apparently, the problem lies within the phone’s antenna. When owners of the phone hold the phone in a certain position, similar to the natural way we hold a phone, the phone has been known to drop calls.  This seems like a very annoying problem with the phone that Apple should have fixed by now.  This problem is apparent in both the AT&T version and Verizon version of the phone.  This is unacceptable.  Why can’t Apple fix this problem?  And if they can’t, why do they continue to release new (and still broken) versions?  But if you have the phone, there is a way to fix this glitch:  put a protective case on the phone, for some reason this fixes the problem (may not work every time). After reading more about this problem, I am turned off to the whole iPhone thing.  I no longer want one and will not get one.  Apple needs to step up their game on the iPhone.

Read More

Local Hardcore Show

The Boys Front Man

On this last Wednesday February 16th, I attended a show at the Mad Hatter club in Covington, Kentucky to watch one of my favorite types of shows to see:  Hardcore metal shows.  The show began at 7:30 p.m. but I didn’t make it to the concert until about 8:15, since I was going to support one of my friend’s bands, The Boys.  I love going to these shows because they are always energetic, fun, and above all, the bands playing in these shows are always really talented.  I feel one of the best genres of music where artists really show their skill is metal.  Guitarists always have face-melting guitar riffs and incredible hard-driving drumbeats and fills.  I find metal music to be very technical and this was a great show to attend.

The Boys

The Boys is my friend’s band who I went to see on Wednesday.  This was The Boys first show ever and they only had three songs to play for the set.  The show began with a nice little build-up intro and quickly broke into an explosion of energy.  The guitars were wailing as the two front men, yes TWO front men commanded the crowd.  The two would bounce vocals off of each other as if to be finishing each other’s lines.  They would even have parts in their songs where they would harmonize with each other, creating a very powerful vocal when put together.  The band played with amazing stage presence and knew exactly what they wanted out of their audience.  The crowd was really moving during the set.  I was trying hard

The Boys Front Man

to get a good photo of the vocalists together on stage and right as I was about to snap the photo, I was pushed back and into the pit where I was tossed around for a while until I could finally escape.  I usually am the one in the pit enjoying the movement and energy of the hardcore set lists but this time I was trying to stay away from the roughness.  The Boys formed a great relationship with the audience and overall put on a great show, I will definitely go see them again.

Remainder of the Show

After The Boys finished their set, I decided to stick around for the rest of the show seeing as I had already paid 8 dollars just to see my friend perform 3 songs.  The next band was sort of a Slipknot cover band and I don’t particularly like Slipknot.  The singer was flat when he chose to sing and the band was not very talented.  I heard several flaws during the band’s set.  But what really turned me off of this band the most was the stage presence by the band, especially the front man.  When people weren’t gathering in front of the stage when the band was beginning to play, the front man began to yell at the audience.  He would taunt them in an attempt to get the crowd closer to the stage.  This is no way to win your audience over.  It was embarrassing watching this band move on stage.  For their final song they of course played a cover by Slipknot, and they made the song even worse which I didn’t think was possible.

Hardcore Front Man

The next band was definitely no stranger to the stage.  When the band was ready to start their show they asked that everyone gather around closely and sure enough, everyone did.  The front man treated his audience with respect and kindness all while showing them a hardcore show.  This band was really heavy.  I love heavy music and this band was just for me.  The front man could hit many high-pitched screams as well as the low notes that make your stomach tremble.  The front man was incredibly energetic, as was the rest of the band.  I especially liked the drummer, he was very talented and I enjoyed the part he played in the heavy band’s music.  This band played a great show.  I wish I could tell you the name because I wish I knew as well but when I searched on the site of the venue, I could not find it.  Overall, the show was powerful and fun.  I felt inspired as I usually do after seeing a show and the fact that they were all local bands made the experience even better.  I suggest if you want to go see some great local bands, the Mad Hatter is the place to go.

 

The Mad Hatter

Parents: Your Teen’s Phone Will Save Your Teen’s Life…Yeah, Right!

Parents, your worries are over because thanks to the nice people at Android, there is a new nanny app that will watch over your kids while they drive.  The

iGuardianTeen Android App

app is called iGuardianTeen.  The app will provide a detailed report of the drive when activated on the teen’s Android.

iGuardianTeen

The app will log speed, GPS, acceleration, location, and distance traveled then will send the information via email to the parents of the young driver so they can keep a watchful eye on their children.  According to Fast Company,

Drivers mount the app on their dashboard, where it continuously logs video (the last five minutes of each session are saved to the SD card), reports any phone use during the drive, monitors for hard turns, acceleration and braking, provides a warning sound when teens are engaging in unsafe driving behavior, and even gives parents the option to receive constant text message updates during the drive.

This is a souped-up app that will log a great deal of information.  The app costs $19.99, which is a little steep for me.  The app could be a useful tool to parents possibly, but that’s if the teens aren’t acting like teens.  What teenager is going to allow their privacy to be invaded like this?  Nothing is to stop the teen from simply deactivating the app or simply just turning it off.

Try Again

A Teen Driving Like A Teen

This app is a waste of money in my opinion.  I don’t know what parent expects their teen to keep their app on and running every time they are behind the wheel; these are teens we’re talking about.  Don’t get me wrong, the app is really cool:  it’s amazing that they can design an app to monitor and log all this information and even warn a teen when they are speeding; I mean it’s a phone.  But the fact that the app costs $19.99 is a huge turn off.  I feel it is not efficient enough, a teen would definitely hold the power to determine when they want to be monitored by their parents.  I know I would take advantage of the app if my parents were monitoring me.  I feel it is an astounding app but no real need for it, at least until they find a way to stop teens from simply turning off the digital nanny.

Super Bowl Super Event

This year on February 6th 2011, Super Bowl 45 took place.  As we all know, the game was played between the Green Bay Packers and the Pittsburg Steelers.  The event is always a much-anticipated occasion, watched by millions of people.  It is a day where pizza joints make record profits due to deliveries.  People throw parties for this sort of happening.  The game is a spectacle jam packed with stars and famous acts.  This year, Christina Aguilera sang the national anthem.  There was also the big halftime show, which no one wants to miss.  But what are probably more anticipated than the game itself, are the Super Bowl commercials.  With so many people tuned to the same channel, commercial slots can cost up to 3 million for a 30 seconds.  With so many eyes watching, the advertisers need to get it right and because of this, Super Bowl commercials are usually the best commercials of the year.  This year was no exception.

Aguilera’s National Anthem

Christina is a big-time singer/songwriter that has performed many times all over the world but tonight was her biggest show of all.  The singer was to

Aguilera performing at the Super Bowl 2011

perform in front of most of the nation for the pregame singing of the national anthem.  In my opinion, the star should’ve rehearsed more because she messed up our countries anthem.  Nothing major:  the star just sang a line incorrectly.  Now this is major considering the song is sang before every sporting event and Aguilera has sang the song before:  during Game 7 of last year’s NBA finals.  So it seems she should know what she was singing.  I say it wasn’t too major because when I first watched it, I didn’t notice exactly what she screwed up, I knew something didn’t sound right but I couldn’t put my finger on it until later.  Christina sang, “What so proudly we watched at the twilight’s last reaming” when she was supposed to sing, “O’er the ramparts we watch’d, were so gallantly streaming.”  Close Christina but not close enough, back to rehearsal for you.

Christina’s flop

Halftime Show

The Black Eyed Peas performing at Super Bowl 2011

For Super Bowl 45 The Black Eyed Peas performed the halftime show with special appearances from Slash and Usher.  All the members of The Black Eyed Peas lowered onto the stage in the middle of the field for the beginning of the show.  The group sang a few of their songs that all transitioned together.  The performance by the band and guest musicians wasn’t all too impressive to me.  What really caught my eye during the halftime show was the performance by the dancers that made formations on the field.  The dancers were covered in bright lights that created a crazy lightshow.  Overall, I felt the performance by The Black Eyed Peas and Usher were not up to par but I did feel Fergie performed well and Slash had a very small role but played well.  The main spectacle to watch during the halftime show was dancers running around in formation to produce a great light show.

The Main Reason I Watch the Super Bowl (Unless the Bengals Play)

Yes, the reason I watch the Super Bowl is not for the love of the game or the roaring of the crowd as the big brutes thunder down the field and slam into each other.  I watch for the commercials, the game is just a bonus.  Ever since the event has been televised, the Super Bowl commercials have always been the most expensive commercials of the year.  The ads have been a valuable part of the experience.  This years commercials were great and many were funny.  The most notable commercials for me were the commercials featuring Eminem.  Eminem was featured in two ads this year:  one was for Lipton Brisk iced tea where the rapper was a clay puppet figure the second was for Chrysler where Eminem appeared in person.  Other memorable ads this year includes:  the new Go Daddy girl for GoDaddy.co, the Volkswagen force commercial where a child uses the “force” on a the new Volkswagen, and the new Doritos ad contest winner which wasn’t as good as last year’s in my opinion.

The game was not what I expected considering I thought the Steelers were going to win, although I was hoping they wouldn’t.  The national anthem was not up to par, the halftime show wasn’t as impressive as it has been in past years, and the commercials weren’t as funny as past ads but they were still probably the best part along with the dancers during the halftime show.  Overall I enjoyed watching.

Best Ads

Circa Survive Show

Last Monday, January 24th I attended the Circa Survive, Anberlin, and Foxy Shazam show.  The concert took place at Bogarts, a small venue in Cincinnati.  Anberlin was the headlining band but with Circa Survive and Foxy Shazam as supporting bands.  I of course, went to see Circa.  The last time I have been to the venue was a year ago to see Thrice.  That was a very memorable show and overall energetic performance.  But I feel this most recent show with Circa Survive was even more of an experience.

Foxy Shazam

Now I have never seen or heard of this band before this show, but what a show.  When I finally entered the venue, Foxy had already been well into their second song in their set.  Waiting for a friend, I stood in the back listening to their songs and watching their performance.  I needed to watch for my friend but I kept turning my head to watch the front man jump around like a maniac while hitting some very high notes.  At first, I thought the singer was a woman.  When I finally met my friend, we decided to push our way to the front.  After pushing through much of the crowd, we settled in a nice spot in plain view of the entire band and a place to get a great sound from the speakers.  The band sounded good and I enjoyed the show they put on.  The entire band was wild.  All the members were jumping around and getting into the music they were creating.  The front man was especially crazy when he asked for a bunch of cigarettes:  the crowd of course willingly threw a large amount of cigarettes up to the singer.  He began to shove them in his mouth one by one and lit around 6 cigarettes at a time and began to puff away at them.  He then blew them out and began to chew and swallow some of them.  It was a weird act that the crowd loved.  The pianist/synthesizer player also put on a wild performance when he jumped on top of his keys and began to pound down on then with his feet.  In my opinion, Foxy Shazam was a great performing band and I will look more into them based on what I saw.  It was a great show.

Foxy Shazam

 

Circa Survive

This was the band I came to see. I have seen Circa Survive once before a few years ago at Warped Tour and the experience was very memorable.  I remember just staring at the band in complete awe during their set.  This time, Circa put on a performance unlike any other I have seen.  The way Anthony Green commanded the crowd was amazing.  Everyone was so into the concert.  The band began the show with “Glass Arrows” off their new album “Blue Sky Noise” that you can read my personal review of below.  The band then played songs mostly from their first album “Juturna” and newest album.  The set list in no particular order:  Glass Arrows, Act Appalled, In Fear and Faith, Strange Terrain, Imaginary Enemy, I Felt Free, Through the Desert Alone, The Longest Mile, Stop the Fucking Car, Wish Resign, In The Morning And Amazing, Stare Like You’ll Stay (from their new E.P.), and they closed with Get Out. It was a great set although; I wished they played a little off their middle album “On Letting go.”  For Circa’s set, I moved more toward the front barrier to get the best view I could of the band.  The band played with such energy and they felt the energy that the crowd radiated back.  In-between two of the songs in the set, he mentioned that he could feel the power of the crowd tonight and he knew we all were feeling the music with him, which only drove him to perform a more energetic show.  In the review I had written about the album, I mentioned that I had a very emotional tie to the album so to see a show where Circa was promoting the album was a very incredible experience.  I felt a very spiritual connection with the music especially when they played Through the Desert Alone, the song that I felt the most powerful connection with.  The concert was executed perfectly, which I expect out of musicians like Circa Survive.  Overall, the show was breathtaking.  I wish they played last so there would be a chance of an encore.

Circa Survive

Anberlin

I have listened to Anberlin before and I enjoyed many songs from the band.  After seeing Circa, I was quite exhausted so I decided to fall back from the rough, shoving wave of people and watch Anberlin from afar.  I had never seen the band before and haven’t listened to any new music from the group in a while.  The band played about 5 songs before I felt too tired to continue and left.  I recognized only one song the band played, Paper Thin Hymn.  It was a good performance from what I saw but I was just not interested enough to stay for the whole show; like I said, I was there for Circa Survive.

While I was standing back watching Anberlin, I saw a man run by with his head buried in his shirt.  It was Circa Survives front man Anthony Green!  I couldn’t believe it.  No one else had seen him run by so I decided to follow him to talk.  I followed him a few feet to sound board in the back.  I approached him and began to talk to the man.  I congratulated him on the amazing show I had witnessed and told him how I felt about his music.  He was very grateful and I was satisfied with meeting one of my idols.  After such an amazing show, I decided to purchase a Circa shirt since I do not have one.  After purchasing the shirt, I returned home.  I will remember the show forever.

Anberlin

Bogarts

Circa Survive

Foxy Shazam

Anberlin

Google Offers Groupons

That’s right, the search engine superpower Google is preparing to launch a Groupon competitor.  They are calling it Google Offers and with the company’s already sterling reputation, it is sure to be tough competition for Groupon.

Google Offers

The new product of Google will act much like its competitor.  Google Offers will be a daily email sent out to potential customers and clientele that

Google Checkout logo

will provide them with a daily deal in their area.  The customers then will most likely have 24 hours to take advantage of the deal.  “They then have the opportunity to buy that deal within a specific time limit (we assume 24 hours). Once enough people have made the purchase, the Google Offer is triggered and users get that all-too-familiar $10 for $20 deal for that Indian restaurant they’ve never tried” (Parr).  According to the same source, Google Offers will probably be powered by Google Checkout and of course, you will also be able to share through Facebook, Twitter, Google Reader, Google Buzz and e-mail.

Groupon

Google had tried to buy out Groupon for 6 billion dollars a few months ago.  The company refused the offer and with good reason:  this is a great market and they are pretty much the leaders in it.  Another source says Groupon “is talking with bankers about an initial public offering (IPO) that would put the startup at a valuation somewhere between $15 billion and $20 billion” (O’Dell).  If Google is after it, it’s a good idea and is worth a great deal of money.

Of course, even though Groupon rejected the offer doesn’t mean Google will stay away from grabbing a piece of that market share.  In a statement from

Groupon logo

Google to Mashable “Google is communicating with small businesses to enlist their support and participation in a test of a pre-paid offers/vouchers program. This initiative is part of an ongoing effort at Google to make new products, such as the recent Offer Ads beta, that connect businesses with customers in new ways.”  Google appears to be a strong competitor for Groupon.  I have never used such a product although after reading more, I feel I should.  It could be worth it to receive coupons for local places where I live.  I am interested in seeing what happens as Google launches Google Offers and I wonder who will end up on top.

Miking the Drum Kit

Recently, I have become very interested in miking.  And being a drummer, I have been focused mostly on drum kit miking. I even purchased a new preamp, a drum miking kit, and new condenser mic so I can start recording quality drum tracks on my own.  Coincidentally, in my new Electronic Media class Multitrack Music Production; we started with miking for drums kits.  During the first two weeks of class, we worked on setting up microphones around a drum kit finding the best sound we could get just by mic placement.  I learned that the position of the microphone is crucial to receiving the right drum tone.  Professionals will take an extended period of time positioning and repositioning microphones so they get the perfect tone that they are looking for in a recording.

Drum Preparation:

First, we must make sure the drums are in tune.  For the most part, I believe that the drum kit is in tune when the drummer has reached the sound he or she wants of out of the drums.  This is of course after they make sure one side of the drum isn’t working against the other i.e. both sides of the drum are tuned in the same key.  Once the drums are fully in tune and desired tone is acquired, we may move on to miking the kit.

Basic Drum Kit Miking Technique:

Basic Drum Miking

Diagram showing importance of miking individual drum elements.

When beginning miking the drums you want to make sure you realize which mic is which.  What I like to do is make sure my first mic is snare or bass then from there on I plan on matching the remaining mics to toms and you want to make sure your overhead mics are lined up left mic to an odd numbered track then the right mic on a even numbered track.  This will help when editing and mixing later.  When miking drums, we want to use two different types of techniques:  close miking and overhead miking.  We will put one mic close up to every individual drum so that we are able to isolate any drum that we wish and tweak to our specifications.  We will also have a pair of overhead mics that will capture more tone and overall ambience of the kit.

Close Miking:

When close-miking drums, I like to position a mic offset about 30 to 90 degrees pointing away from the hi-hat so not to pick up bleeding.  By setting the mics offset, we create a sort of EQ before we even begin recording.  Because the mic is offset, it will roll off many high frequency tones that can cause a lot of unwanted noise.  When miking, if you wish to pick up more tone, you must point the mic more toward the middle, where tone is generated.  If trying to pick up less tone and more high frequency, you will turn the mic more toward the edge of the drumhead.

When Miking the Bass Drum:

When miking the bass drum, there are a few factors to take into consideration.  If there is a hole in the bass drum, then we must determine if we want to place the mic inside the hole or out.  I usually choose to place the mic inside.  Once inside, I experiment with the position of the mic.  If I feel I need more tone, I will place the drum more toward the batter head of the drum.  If I choose to get more of the full bodied sound of the drum, I will place it more toward the openness of the drum or possibly move the mic more to the outside of the hole.  If the drum does not have a hole in it you may move the mic around the outside of the drum to find the right sound.  To pick up more tone, you would want to position the mic more toward the middle of the head.  To pick up more of the HF you would want to position the mic more toward the edge of the drum.

Bass Drum Miking

Bass drum miking technique

Overhead Miking:

When overhead miking, I usually like to set two mics above and in front of the kit.  I like to set the left mic pointing toward the right side of the kit and the right mic pointing toward the left side of the kit, this is to gain a greater range of tones over the kit.

These are basic drum miking techniques and of course need to be adjusted as you see fit.  This is merely a place for you to get started.  Miking is a technique that must be experimented with and must be a trial and error process that will take time.  Practice makes perfect!

For more information of miking drum kits check out these links:

Practical Drum Kit Miking

Miking for Recording