Tracking Guitar Demo Part 2


Studio Pass with Steve Evetts and Ben Weinman


Lesson Info

Tracking Guitar Demo Part 2

We're double tracking rhythms you know it's like I've talked about it before that perfection is boring it's really sterile and it's not good you know to me it's like you know you have to get a perfect it's like perfect is such a loose term it's not really perfect at all it's never going to be perfect you know, most of the time the difference in the time even talked about before about time and delay and that like kind of like the thing's coming in slightly different times the imperfections is what makes it actually sounded way bigger if they're too tight it actually makes the sound sound a lot smaller so I never go for perfect I really again I don't look at the screen I go for I'm listening between the two speakers or even sometimes listening on headphones uh and just feeling the way I'm looking just just it's just an instinct and it's really just you have to do it to to really feel it and to know what works for you and you know how that feels right it's like you know everybody has a di...

fferent spot to me this wide might feel you know like them being this much off like however if you want to quantify it by a time like the guitar is being, you know, fifteen milliseconds off from each other it's like ok that to me note without knowing the time like saying that feels good to me that might be fifteen milliseconds, maybe ten milliseconds, whatever it is if you actually then zoom in on the screen and actually give it an actual time but to somebody else twenty milliseconds might sound better or tighter might sound better things that I'm not putting as much time into the process is maybe we would later when we're actually recording, I've definitely sat and tried to cut and paste things in order to just get through it or for writing purposes and so often more times than not when I just drop a hit a target right on a snare transient, it doesn't sound good to me, it's like, wow, that feels off and then he can attest to this a lot of the times that it does sound right if you zoomed really zoomed in, you'd see that it wasn't really perfect when it sounds perfect it's not necessarily perfect visually on the screen, so you really do have to develop that you and then going through that when I say I'm punching in, um, there'll be focused on the right spot and I say that say again, not looking at the screen when I'm actually for me when you're actually doing in approach was using the quick punch and just with a single button being able, like didn't think and pop in and out, you know, don't be focused on the right spot it's just kind of like you're you're playing an almost like an instrument you're feeling it and like you know I mean I've seen it before, you know so many times when I used to be like in my old studio tracks east and I didn't have that wasn't on this and I had just had my little tape remote and I would stand there and watch you and I would just be like this and like you're almost like a musician you're sitting there and you're feeling that you just go june it was like no, I mean but you're I mean I'm used to you how I used to do that is still leading into the button and just like push it's like it's almost a performance you just kind of like feeling and you just you're feeling and dropping in on the beat but if you if you're looking at the screen you're never going to get that that feel I feel like that intention of even as as the engineer producer and like almost like the punch and as a rhythmic thing and I'm feeling where to drop it and what's going to feel right and then sometimes the wrong punch can be the right one being more musical yeah so if you're self recording now that there's lots of people that are self recording and they can do a drop in a punch and rather and I'll show you how to do that really quick, in case you don't know. Um, so in pro tools you have here on the screen, you have pre and post role, so say you said for I don't know. Uh uh, yeah, for three bars or beats, even though we're not really going going that bars and beats here but three bars and beats and then maybe three out to three and three out, and then you know that here where you do have to look at the screen, you go, ok, I know this part, this one, dan and I know this one I needed toe redo, so just highlighted if you wanted to go on a measure it's, fine, but whatever just hear you highlight it, you make sure the pre imposed rolls enabled army track and literally press record that's how you're doing it when you're recording yourself if you were sitting there and you're working on guitars yourself, I mean, I've had to do it on records, but I'm playing, I've actually played based on some of the records of produced, um and I was punching in myself and I'd have to like, I got dropped in here and I have to. You know otherwise I'm standing there with the base and I'm trying to do this and that's not going to ever work so I feel like setting up the pre roll in postal with enough time for you if you're punching yourself it's that same thing where you're not focused so much on I'm recording now you're just you just put it there you give yourself in a pre real time you hit record and then you don't even look at the screen and you just kind of feel it and just play along and that's it so just give yourself enough time if you're doing it rather than like just focusing on this part it's just like let it flow like giving a lot of time given me more than this give it you know, five six measures given ten whatever just enough so you could play along and you're really trying to capture, you know, the element of what you're you know you're playing and just trying to keep the organic as much as possible because you could just get with punching in the the trap is to falling into, you know, micro, we've got to do this because you know you're focusing and so much on this one part that you're doing so the pre roe postrel time, especially if you're if you're self recording I think is key because it really gives you enough time so like really feel the music and get into the music um okay, so what's continue on though and like record the next section and I'm going to show you a few things on just that same thing of like here let's you know let's zoom in first again now we're you know you know somewhat say going sailing into editing but not really but look at these guitars and you know you know what's really funny here's the new performance here's the old performance and looking even in this section the left and right guitars are basically on it the exact same amount which is amazing I didn't even notice that's really crazy this is left and right on the actual recording that you hear that's that you know if you bought the dillinger record that's what's on the record and that's the one we just did it without even thinking about it and that's where it fell in and look at that they pretty much line up exactly right but with each other in terms of where they were, he was feeling it in the space but in terms of a downbeat now if I zoom out we say something really quick let's move these guitars over to where this is always when you're dealing with large session trying to find where the tracks are in the session which is always crazy, but if I drag him over and now you look at in relation to the kick drum, okay, that was heading with the kick drum this one's way before we're not way before but it's before it, but does it matter? No don't focus so much on has to be on the b it's just like what they feel like I feel like in the track itself is the most important thing because everybody gets so focused on the minutia of recording and so focused on every day it has to be perfect. It has to be perfect through that. Throw it out the window. What does it feel like? And also, you know, think about making things to clean. We were talking about that before, like, you might want to clean up things and whatever, but I mean all those little beeps and squeaks, especially for the dillinger for this, especially for this part for this section, like what's, the part of this part's just supposed to be violent sounding and its and keep all those, like beep people all those old things I have at all that stuff to me. Yeah, all those little beeps and squeaks and that's well, that's, what I'm saying like the and they are completely when you hear that here's the original recording, you hear there's this cleanup in between, but it's also and buzz and you can actually hear the drum track very faintly playing from the speaker's through ben's guitar pick ups and going through the amp squeaks you want that to me I love those kind of things I love those kind imperfections if you want to clean him up we'll show you how to do that that's that's one thing but to me especially for the intent and what the section is that's exactly what the section needs and what it calls for and you know I try to stay true to that so moving forward let's get a few more a little bit more tracking on this part so okay yeah this one's about thievery slid so holder all I mean it's great and it's just got a vibe to it and so they're obviously we'd like to fix that because that's not quite right I left that lab let's uh just for showing demonstrations purposes about toning tone in your hands right there we're a little too a little too strident like a little too let's go for a broader now because it's a little too sharp right there on that towards the neck right theo for those who don't know our I mean most guitar players know this kind of thing but maybe some recording people don't and you know where ah getting going back to the tonys from your hands you know, if he wants maybe a brighter sound he's going to go towards more towards the bridge so show them like the difference but we're it's sounding I could maybe even recorded on its own the difference and everywhere it is and then the big thing is to me in palm muting this is a very very specific one for tone coming from your hands now palm mute in the normal way way generally in prominent you know your hand your your hands really pretty fixed out of position you're kind of over the bridge over the like say the tuna matic bridge here you're over your kind of pop the flesh your palm here your palm meeting here but where you're picking on that now watch just kind of do this and move around and show you also pic angle this is a very big thing so if you're say you're flat picking that that's kind of ah we like literally I'll tell people if you knowing what what these kind of tones on what these things have an identifying like it's like we need a flat picking it apart like I always think of like slayer and stuff like that in a lot of the slayer like they're more flat picking they're more like right and then like the metallica thing what they want of doing if you consume in closer if you will the pick is on an angle a little bit and you're literally getting that thing in your sound the picking so show them that you could show them the difference like now angling huge difference typically for me is angular you wanted to be right, but those stones were really cool and they have their point that they have their sound again identifying that knowing those techniques, how to get that out there and applying that you know well, we need this parts of really kind of like simple low flat in part especially with like a fast like you like doing like like a more, uh like a death male or female or then like you going like slayer style not commuting so the pressure you put right, the pressure you put on the bridge more you're digging in you're digging in harder you're getting that kind of thing, but the one thing obviously to watch out for when you're pushing too hard you're unless you're using than ever tune you're you're actually pulling the guitar probably a quarter step maybe even, you know, a half step sharp sometimes I'm sometimes some of those jin jin containment and you really hear if you put a tune around it's like, wow that's shot it's very sharp when your trouble shooting things like understanding these things consecutive time because most guys will end up going to the amp and trying to fix anything for hours and just like you'll move your hand over your hand I have it so many times to get guys in the studio and I watched them and they're like, how come they can't get that? Jin jin t sound and it's like watching playing and they're playing really soft and they're flat picking everything in like the year of a dividend with vivid and like, do no look, move your hand moving around, and I would tell them, like moving because every guitar is different based on the scale and the position of the pickups, because a lot of that is relative to where it's hitting in relationship to the pickup so it's like just adjusted, just like anything else, like adjusting the knob. Still, it sounds good moving the mic till it sounds good. Move your hand well, your hand move your hand told sounds good, I mean, obviously there's that there's a limit and there's a range because, you know you can't like all of a sudden you're making the guitar player play in this awkward position he's never played before in his life, it's like that's not going to do it do good, so then you have to kind of like, readjust your parameters and go ok he's playing like this, he plays really soft and he can't really play any harder what do I do, tio still get the sound that he's got in his head and he wants to hear I mean, you have to be he hasn't done that he's made me play better and I've become a better player because of it so right, I think a lot of it is definitely is so focused on you know, like I said, what I do is focused on the player but then there are things there are times where it's like you know, you just know you can't get blood out of a stone and it's like, you know it's like ok, this guy is never going to play this hard what if he's like the only guitar player in the band and he just doesn't play that hard you go what am I gonna you know you can't like you know it's like when it's raining outside you sit there and get mad at the rain or do you put out you know, you get an umbrella like you have one or two choices you could sit there and be mad about something that you have no control over what I'm only five ninety nine called that now well, we could call that he's uh you know, just get on a plane and from where he is in the world come in on the session now but you know it's so you have to obviously be realistic about to limit I mean you have to define your prime minister if I know the guitar players never gonna pick that hard it's like ok, what do we do? How do we do it? Do we maybe put a tube scream in front of him like add a little extra attack or use a compressor pedal coming out of the guitar because that's a one way to do it? I don't have a competitive pill here think about that one, but that's definitely one of the guitar player doesn't pick the hard you can use the compressor pedal to add just like I'm using it and sharpening the attack with the compressor on the mikes, but you could do that before the amp and actually give a little more attack to the guitar players sound or like a trouble booster and we just make you like a graphic you the boss grafted q is a perfect example you want to give a little more magic, you do with all this all comes down to ae q everything that I'm doing to create tone or he's doing over there it's all frequency it's all about frequency, so yeah, absolutely and like I said, like the graphic you is a perfect one because that's you're trying to get that same feeling that same okay? We knew or attacking you were brightness going into the amp the guitar player just naturally isn't that type of player and you can't get a bright sound coming out of his hands so I'll need toe like somehow supplemented so use a graphic you you dropped boost the travel coming off the guitar so it's close to coming from the sources possible and then push that into the amps then the ants going to react differently to how he the guitars played so it's simple stuff like that um let's see all right let's double track that that section same time same for here yeah track so just as an instance say here's one for you so so let's let's tell on that end section right and ring it but maybe we want to fade due a little like just let it sustain let it fade out and so and karen example what I'll do in here sometimes I'll literally and it's just I mean I know it's it might seem really simple but I will fade it out at the end so that mike is still there and we're still getting that kind of like space and the feel of the cabinet but instead of like people do like you know we'll take it and like this approaches and they'll put a big fate on it no faith at the amp get it still capturing the mike still wide open and then you get the amps loan you know coming down is well maybe I'll just pull the gain off for or fade out the master on the I would much rather do that and faded out at the source of like you know sometimes they could face down on the guitar but them some he'll be sustaining the guitar so I might have to grab it and do that and I'll just grab the knob and do it or did grab the knob on the amp because that way you're getting the actual like distortion falling off rather than like doing a fade and fading out to digital black I think is never a good thing we like doing it like I showed you just with you know with that I just feel like that's never because that it is terrible to me is terrible it's not it's also ones and zeros as opposed to you fading in reaction to the music exactly that's my point and that's like a preset like you just put it and it just does its thing and that's it and it's like that's no that's not what it's not musical and it's not fun to be honest with you it's more fun for me to grab the nomination but we you know but um and the same thing between like like again going back to the original section and I leave well that's the that's the old that's the new guitars we just track but going back to the old one which again don't come from the hands sounds the early similar buzz and all that you know I feel like you leave it even if you say honestly I do stuff where uh we'll clean it up, but if I want it clean, I will leave the like take the guitar off, leave the amp on and punch in just the natural hiss of the amp just like that like just that air it's just because to me that just feels just on my preference in my taste I feel like that feels way better than digital black like chopping out of a section to complete zero silence that feels like a vacuum doesn't feel natural it doesn't feel real to me so sometimes if we really want to clean up I literally will turn the guitar off but just still have the amp and you can you can hear it if I turned up pretty loud it well there's a buzz but yeah, we're also because the mikes live over there but I will punch in campus as opposed to punching in black or just cutting out the sections so now also dealing with puncheon's punching in for a particular sound for like a little especially relating it into dillinger's music punching and say it's sound you know, like the little but that jab that you did in that section so you hear that well go quiet and in that section that don't done today again focusing on what accent that drugs out now perfect example for that kind of thing and I know we did this on the recording we're going now pop in say a pedal really quick normally we go on standby but I'll do it you can't play wait so I got this really dirties this the pro keret this is an old classic from like the seventies like I said you could hear the difference like just play just intent and it's really kind of just gross dirty just kind of it's kind of disgusting gross dirty sound so way we're gonna add that into the signal and then also maybe it's pretty basic so we want to make that that little thing pop out more that bennett so that little percussive thing so let's play just like crazy it's oscillating like crazy but maybe not let me see let's go back off on this yeah so we're just going for this like weird little odd kind of angular javy kind of sound and again you could bring it in with that you might want to you know uh ree a gesture mike blend you know I mean I do stuff on the fly all the time and obviously as an engineer um if you need to get back to this position it goes without saying you know used tape you know if you need to tape up all your gear and markoff you're setting so you need to jump back to that I know it's simple stuff, but you know, I had a lot of stuff I do is so as you can see it's so kind of stream of consciousness we're in there and I'll be just like, hey, let's, we need to pop in that section we need to, like make those jabs happened and again sticking to committing I will punch in we're gonna punch him with just that one little sound for that one little spot in that thing so it jumps out at you so and I will literally switch to it just because I don't want to forget it later let's just do it right now and so obviously hopefully charnel your sex you know your sounds and your blend between the mikes and everything like that so you khun jump back to it and then keep going back with the original tone that you worked with um so but for this case let's say even on this now remember when I was talking about going the mic preempts going into the mixer and you had the option for q we do here so right here I'm going to roll off a little bit of low and I'm gonna just give it some extra highs just for I mean, I know it's not the proper thing but it's I don't know whatever feeling playing second way have this really kind of high pitched angular kind of sound and now we're going to have him play along and we're going to pop in that part and that kind of stuff even if you know it's one of those things when you dissect what we do with the band you know you might not even notice it but just because it feels right and it's here and it's not because like, oh, we need this part to poke out it's just what's the focus and it's like that part in the track now just you know, it's just giving that that you know, I'm just going for that looking for that feel just like what's that what's that little that little purpose and just serving what the part is and you know, this is kind of, you know, not mislead that exact home but that's what we did on the thing and then you notice how he created a texture when he was doing the actives and then he created a harmony with the that little little try telling a little flat five harm they're right, where did you do that one it's a little loud but again, but when you hear it in the track with the two playing together it's just like just gives that for that part so the question is are you only doing that on one side on the one side but you know sometimes we'll do it on too, but then let's see what happens when we do it to usually I think we did only on one last time because two might get too much. But again, it's just how it feels but let's try with two let's see what happens? I don't well direct tone to I don't know. Uh, so no, no, no, we didn't. Now, that was literally the two right there. That section is on ly the two guitars. Yeah, yeah might be a little too much again. What's the focus so it's it's, old it's all to your personal taste into what the artist is now here. Okay, going into the punching in and he stopped little early. So that's that's your it's sticking out to itself because it's ends a little early. So what if we just then in terms of ruling into a little bit of editing with quick punch like I said, what's going on is it's recording in the background the whole time? So if again, if I drag it out wherever I actually started playback that's where that's where we actually were recording from the whole time he's playing along the whole time. But we only uncovered this tiny little piece, so if you don't want to stick out as much obviously bring over this region and just trying I feel like it's almost but again I'm pretty sure we only did on one track on the original because I feel like that draws too much right there now that draws too much attention but that's only the art you know my taste or his taste that feels like that's too much but to your taste it might be amazing to have both of gold all right, you know but so yeah again it's no rules it's not you know it's not ever something that doesn't go we think about it so much it's just what's feeling and hopefully everybody can you develop that muscle of just going you know, just going just really it's it's all a flowing kind of thing and just you know, let's do this all right now let's switch back and now let's switch back, go back and just zero q and again I didn't mark are setting so I don't really know exactly where we had everything but I'm pretty close but placing another perfect example I'm talking about dialing in the tone and uh, having the head in the control room this is a very perfect sample and you obviously saw me fade out the gain all you want let's pop that in there? Yeah good um but again listening to the player and reacting to the player and now hearing it through the speakers I'm gonna ever I'm going to again show like if you do again you're basically using just upon meeting kind of thing you plant now I figure into tooting mode oh no it's on yeah just tuning in and dialing it in with the player and listening to how he's playing and just adjusting again the so money total variations in so many possibilities you know it's not working uh don't know oh you're backwards that's why that's why I thought that's what you said right? Ok, but here let's show you like even the total variations while we're tracking here. Um yeah, so aa lot of times I'll be adjusting for a section you know he's just diving in or if I if I'm even feeling and I could be riding the game like just how I faded out that it's hard I could be riding the gain up I could be right in the game down in terms of what going on responding to what he's playing but here now just pop it on real quick now playing and I'm hearing always hidden in attacking the strings so don't want thailand more low in now I feel like we really dialed in a little better you know it's hearing it through the speakers too because that's what ultimately everybody's gonna here so it's like okay, we got it is going to be kind of the and but then you're still going to hear it a little differently. And then hand sitting in control of me, watching him attack and adjusting to his attack.

Class Description

Learn how to get perfect guitar tones in the studio during this 10-hour class on tracking guitars. In this course, Steve Evetts (Saves The Day, Suicide Silence) and special guest Ben Weinman (Dillinger Escape Plan) dive deep on everything you need to know about creating and capturing perfect guitar tones.

Getting great guitar tones is all about the details. Steve and Ben cover how to select the right guitar, strings and picks, how to choose the right head and cabinet combo, and how to get a great tone. From there, they go through the process of selecting and placing mics. Finally, they show you how to track guitars the professional way (no cutting corners— ever!) and edit the tracks so you’ve got everything you need for a flawless mix.


Joshua Rathbun

Good basic knowledge, which delves into more detailed stuff later on in the course.