Structuring a Re-Edit
I'm gonna look at Mawr, the re editing side of things. So let's say you have a track and you really like it. Um, but you want to do your own version of it. Maybe Teoh play as a deejay or, you know, you want to do a remix, A za producer, but you don't have the stems of it. You know, maybe it's just a song that you like, Um, and not something that you're being commissioned to remix that falls ITM or into the category of re edits which have a pretty long history going back to, you know, like disco DJs in the seventies, taking tracks and doing their own edit on reel to reel tape so that they could have something that was more playable in the club. Um, so, yeah, it's basically just a remix that you built from parts that are available to you as like an outsider. It does require more creativity, um, and finding kind of as much as you can. The example we're gonna use today is like a classic Chicago house record from, uh, really important Chicago label called Dance Mania is called Brighter Day ...
by Irving and Romeo. Um Victor Paris Mitchell, a k a. Victor Romeo, who covered the song, was kind enough toe. Let us use it for this. So thanks to him, he's a really nice guy. And so basically like, let's say I really wanted to, you know, like, Oh, this track. I love this track. I want to do my own remix of it. What you can do is first off research. Are there parts available? You know, maybe somebody like leaked the stems for this record on the Internet and you can go find it or I use discards a lot. Um, the website disc og for, you know, like researching music, researching releases, buying records, Yeah, the idea. And you can look up this release and you see that on the 12 inch for Brighter Day by Irving and Romeo. Um, the 12 inch single hasn't a cappella. It has a club mix, it has a radio at it. And so when you get this club mix and this ah, capella, you don't have the full set of tools that the stems would give you. But you have mawr toe work with, um so I'll play you a little bit of like what this song sounds like, you know, uplifting, traditional Chicago vocal house with piano and happy, soulful lyrics in it on radio, and it is pretty much just this. This is like the meat of the track. Um, the club mix starts out with just the beat, which isn't as good as having drum stems. But it's better than you have just the beat here from the original record, and you can do stuff. You do other stuff with that. Build your own parts over it, and then they have this part. That's just the drums with the base over it, right, And you can see how I've gone through this track and kind of mark these out, right? So here's the first beat. Here's the same drum pattern with an alternate fill right here, drums and the bass. The vocal comes in here, and then here's your like song. You can see a little breakdown here. Here in the song is kind of, ah, like a piano solo that let's say, maybe you are a person who doesn't want the piano solo in the song because you wanna mix out before then and you want the breakdown to just go straight into something you can mix out of. Then, you know, like, OK, I'm gonna cut that out and put this drum brake here and, you know, restructure the song to be exactly what I want it as a deejay or exactly what I wanted to be to do my remix of it. And then the 12 inch also has the are capella. So you have the whole vocal here with nothing else over it. So basically, you do have the stem of one thing, and that's that's the guy's vocal, which is the most important. Um, you know, that's the component of the song. That is what people are really going to remember the most. And so if that exists on the CD single or the a cappella are the 12 inch or something that gives you a lot to go with, um, again, putting. Getting this stuff into your computer is the same is with break beats we were talking about. If you're gonna record it from your turntable, have a good enough set up to get a high quality recording. Look for a CD single if if you'd rather just rip it, um and then you know you can look online and see if it's available. The A cappella and special mixes air. Probably not going to be on your ITunes or Amazon or whatever, but, um So, yeah, we've listened kind of through this and picked out different parts that might be useful to, uh So I'm gonna, um, kind of show you in the dog what we can do with this. Open up. Let me find. Here's the track. As you can see, I've noted here the original track is 1 23.488 beats per minute, which is? Yeah, before Dawes and perfectly on a tempo Drum machines. Um, someone, uh, pluck this whole thing out here. So let's say that we we like this piece here and listening to that. By the way, those Congas that, like Latin percussion kind of conga is from a Roland tr 7 to 7 and the kick drum and the crash symbol and the snare are from a roll into tr 909 So you, if you wanted to, could rebuild that drum pattern from scratch just by listening to it and then drawing it in on the grid with those same instruments from those drum machines. And you could get a pretty close simulation of it on Lee with better sound quality cause you're going from the actual samples of the instruments as opposed to a thing he recorded from a record. And then, you know, you'd fiddle around with maybe compression and reverb in things to try and simulate the sound of that. But for now, well, just loop this drum right here and I'll move the rest of the track over to the side for later, and we'll get the a cappella Sync up to that. Let's see. That's so those two parts of the a cappella were on the beat there, but then seems like there's like a little bit of tempo, like there's a drop in the, ah capella that we can fix by Just spacing this out. Come together. So what I'm doing there is I'm scrubbing back and forth with the track to get it to where it's perfectly on the beat. Um, fortunately, you know this Ah, Capella is the same tempo as this drum track. Since they're the same song, it might take some kind of work and experimentation to get the A cappella. Exactly the right beat maps and exactly the correct tempo of what it is to get. It's a match up perfectly. But for this one, Yeah, we're in luck because they just pulled it exactly from the track. So right now, this drum pattern that I've looped has a fill at the end of every four bars that will snare Phil. Um, maybe I don't want that every four bars. Maybe I want that every eight bars. So I'll take the first two bars and Luke that and then let the thing play out on the second pass around. So I'll play that because you don't want that. Fill the wear out its welcome. You know, the reason the Phil is there is to be punctuation and to heighten the drama of the record. And if you do it every four bars, it just becomes annoying. Frankly, so you wanna you know, you looked I looked it like that kind of for convenience is sick, but then we're gonna build it out to be a little mawr, um, to actually use the fillets of Phil on DNA. Not just you know where it out. So here we have this Ah Capello over it and right now all we have is just the beat on the vocal booth real now. So what if I wanted the baseline to come in there? I remember that Baseline comes in there is that part of the track. But we identified earlier where the baseline comes in with just the beat so I can use that, basically, as if I were adding the baseline in on another channel but using the original track. So right when the verse ends and it drops in the vocal, we can have the baseline come in as well. Luke that baseline. So let's say we keep this going on then for the next verse way. So let's say we want, like, a big epic like everything that drop out and just be the vocal. That's really easy to do. We're right here. No way could just cut out this part here. And then now right at the end of this versatile have this drop that's like this big dramatic thing. I met a pop speck in. But then we're thinking OK, so we're bored with just having like the baseline in the drum, the bass line, the drum there's the part will go to the original. Let's listen through the original track right here. So here we have vocal with the baseline on then here 16 bars later we have the chorus come in and along with the chorus comes in keyboards. It fills out the track a little more So maybe we want to do that. Have this this breakdown here drop into the chorus with Mawr instrument. So all we would do it's just pull that full track over here and then cut out this Ah, capella And it just transitions right into that. That wasn't like a perfect transition. You can hear that The vocal in the a cappella is a lot louder than the vocal in the original Remittance. So just turned that down until, like, you get something that kind of sounds right, maybe a little quieter Well, and so you can use kind of like editing tricks like that just to build your own structure to this remix, um, and and basically take the song and give it your own kind of spin structurally, without really doing all that much to the actual track. Now, if you wanted to do something more to the track, you could say, OK, we've got this drum right here. I'm gonna put that back to snap on. Let's, like at a synth in here, just something simple. Um, I will go back to that V station since we're a little familiar with it and kind of just build a real basic square wave synth noise and, well, just draw in like a real simple one Note bass melody. There we go. That's where this is like the simple list baseline you could do. It's just dotted eighth notes in one note. Um, just example of how you could layer your own elements over what exists in this song and, you know, do something else with it and just kind of get creative and not let yourself be limited by the fact that you don't have the full stems. You know, um I mean, I'm sure if I were to ask Victor, he probably doesn't have the full stems of this, you know? I mean, it was made 25 years ago and probably recorded the tape. And so sometimes, like you're just not going to get to remix your favorite song from 1990 or whatever so, um, you shouldn't let that stop you. He should, you know, be created with it. Um, now, another thing you can work with. Let's say that we're back in doing it in this mode. I mentioned that piano solo. So here's the breakdown that exists in the original track. Here it goes into the piano solo. Panis alot ends right here. Some of plump that over here. Um, yeah. Let's say I want to get rid of that piano solo. Oh, just cut it right out on Pull this over. I think going straight from that breakdown in the justice plane empty be. Sounds pretty abrupt. So what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna go back to this part where the chorus kicks in and put that there. You can see how that edit is not very good at it. Um, just because the tempo, the record isn't perfect. And then also because the vocal improvisation there and the so that main line of the chorus it starts a little bit before the one of the beat, he says, soon before the beat drops. And then also, there's like, some vocal improvisation there, and you can totally hear that's place because of that. So maybe let's see if there's a point where we can pull this back. Not really. So we're gonna look for somewhere else in the track because we know the truck. I mean, it's got three different choruses, so Weaken, check out the next course. There is one the second time that the vocal comes around in the second chorus. It's just those background singers, and Kevin Irving is not in it, So we'll plop that there and pull that back to kind of blend together. I think that's a better way. More subtle of a splice that doesn't say like, Hey, that guy just took a razor blade and cut this record into, um, Now you'll remember. That was the second go round of that phrase in the chorus. So if we just drew that out, it would be missing four bars. You know, instead of being a 16 bar course, it would be a 12 bar chorus and would sound funny. So we're gonna paste that first chorus that we were gonna use right here and on Lee. Use that bit here as a bridge to kind of make that transition work. Okay, so you hear his improvisation stops by. The words will be in the backup singers, I guess, by the words be by that third beat so we can go here, which, coincidentally, I edited off the third beat anyway. And that, just like that, works that that's an edit that sounds way more convincing. Now you'll notice so on a record, it's the short version without getting into too much nursery about physics and the way needles act on plastic and Yanni. Yanni IATA. The front end of the record sounds better and has more trouble than the end of your record. The end of the record gradually gets a little fuzzier and has less high end, and you can hear that here. You can hear where we took this chunk from the beginning, This chunk from the beginning and this middle part that we spliced it is from later in the track, you can hear how there's a dip in the high end right here. If you listen for it, Listen, how much when this crash comes in right here. Listen, how much brighter the symbols get now, if you wanted to me like really smooth and make that sound flawless. You could go in to your EQ You right here. And I'm gonna try in an automation window for, ah, high shelf. So I've got this little high shelf right here and I and we'll just experiment with it. I'm gonna guess that that high shelf I'm sorry. I'm gonna guess that the the high end of the song maybe rolls off by three decibels towards the end of the record. So I'm gonna boost it up by three decibels, just everything over hertz. And see if that makes this transition sound mawr natural. Yeah, I think that fixed it. So you can always do stuff like that to try and, um, compensate for some minor quality issues in the original recording. Just from it being an older recording or being, you know, maybe the record you have is a little beat up again. Like I said, um, that will only fix, like, tiny things if it's a big problem than, like, get a better copy of the record. Um, so let's see, where were we? So we can also we've got this big go back and give us based Dad. Okay, I'm gonna give us that face back. Oh, let's see. Give us those beats right there in this breakdown and I'm gonna add a resident filter to this whole track. There we go. Boop A doop, doop, doop and, uh, put the resonance. And again, that's like, how much of that, like harsh filtering sound you get? I'm gonna put that at, like, five. I think somewhere between three and 10 is probably all you'll ever need. And I'm gonna put, um, automation on the frequency of it. So an alternative to just cut in the whole thing out having everything drop except for the vocal, is to do some sort of like filter, you know, faded, uh, like, filter sweep effect. So I've just made something where it sweeps down to almost nothing right here and then sweeps right back up when that baseline comes back in. So we'll see what this sounds like. And then we confined to net e want to be a little more of like a muddy thing like sound more like outside of a warehouse before you get into the party, you know, so that it's not very good right here. Oh, there's a big gap in the spice that's why so So that's doing it with a low pass filter. So you're just cutting all the high end out Gradually, you can also do it with a high pass filter. If I just select this button over here, high pass and then this is like a thing. You here in a lot of drum and bass records. You hear it in a lot of like, You hear it in every pendulum record that was ever made, Um, and it's the opposite. It's where you gradually cut out the lower until you just have high end me so you can draw a curve and that I mean, this is in effect where a little goes a long way. You can hear how, even at this point in the curve, there's almost nothing left. But then you're all the way up here on you. You hardly hear anything. So, um, we'll just show that as a riel way breaking down low today is trapped in the sweet, doing me big, you know, reverse that loop or that, uh, curve. So it's exactly the opposite of what we did with low pass. So it just rolls back in from the top down, I'll make it a little last drastic. So that's a good way to connect. Show a couple of things you can do toe build your own, um, transitions and breakdowns in something where you really maybe don't have all of the parts. Um, another one. Let's talk about maybe you want to have a breakdown where you have I'm gonna turn this filter off solo. So that's a pretty like standard since based noise from the eighties, let's say you wanted to try. You know, another thing you could do would be Let's see if we turned down the residence on the so you could make a similar annoys as you can in your sent to that baseline and then just play that baseline on record. That and then you have kind of It's like you're replicating another one of those stems from the original, so you have mawr leeway to kind of then you're not be bound to always having the drumming program there. When the bases there, you can drop out the drums and just have the base in the vocal. You can try and re play the piano part from the original and just have the piano in the vocal or the piano in the drums. And the better you get with kind of synthesis and replicating sounds, the more you can do that kind of stuff, although the drum machines and being able to replay those drum tracks or really, the fundamentals of that.