Hello everyone, hope you are all well and enjoying playing guitar. I’ve had a recording session today after trying to improve the set-up from previous. This entailed moving the mic closer to my face to balance the vocals and guitar better. Also I bought a webcam and tripod to I could switch up the camera angle and improve picture quality. I managed to do a few songs at what I regard as a shareable standard (not perfect of course but hopefully good solid efforts).
This is from the Tab of Blackberry Smoke’s acoustic cover of ‘You Got Lucky’ by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. It also briefly features me vs F Chord. It definitely features the lovely GS Mini. Thank you for watching and comments welcome. I already know I’ve got a wonky D-Chord though.
Thank You so much @garghhh . If you want to check out Blackberry Smoke I can recommend Holding All The Roses and the Whippoorwill for starters. The Southern Ground Sessions is an acoustic EP which includes their cover of You Got Lucky which @TheMadman_tobyjenner has kindly posted below.
It’s just class isn’t it? @TheMadman_tobyjenner Amanda Shires brings so much to this too (as she does with Jason Isbell’s work) the whole band are spot on and there’s a Hummingbird in it. What’s not to like? Thanks so much for your kind words and the mention in the other section of the forum, I will check that track out.
Good job on the playing, Bob. Clean, steady rhythm throughout, even when hitting the F chord.
On the F chord, I suggest your next stretch is to try land the barre ahead of the fingers. This ensures that if you hit the E string on the first down strum of a bar of F you get the F bass note, rather than open E.
Hard to really hear the vocal but what I picked up sounded good. Keep at the playing and singing and as your comfort and confidence grows, you can sing out with more confidence, get more volume.
Video quality was good, perhaps raise up the camera a wee bit more or push it back to avoid chopping off the top of your head.
Thanks David that’s very kind and helpful. I will try what you said with the F.
The whole audio/ visual set up is still a work in progress and I’m trying to balance mic position, camera and having my tab somewhere nearby plus I can’t be too far from the laptop. All in a limited space!
The vocal is quiet, I think that is just a confidence thing as you say. I feel if I really go louder it’ll detract from the playing. I tried increasing the gain on the mic but I picked up a buzzing/distortion from the guitar.
I guess there’s a balance to be found that comes with experience. Thank you so much for your constructive feedback
What kind of mic are you using, Bob, and how do you connect it to the PC?
Does your guitar have built in pickup/electronics?
With a single mic it is difficult to get a good balance. You could see what happens if you try and play softer. Concentrate on how tightly you are holding the pick. If you can loosen that while maintaining control it may help.
Nicely played Bob, great tune and you seemed to really hit a flow from about half way through. Solid F changes and clarity too so alot to be happy about imo!
The video was nice and clear, as David says maybe mess around with positioning but that’s pretty minor really, you’re well on the way and upping your game each time , bravo!
Hi David. I am using a Blue Yeti USB mic. The guitar I was using for that song does not have electronics but I have others which do. I’m not using any software, just the camera mode on the laptop which runs Windows 10.
The USB mic seemed a good way to get started that wasn’t too complicated. There are still a couple of things I could try and settings on the mic. I suspect if I try to play softer I will end up forgetting and revert to a normal strum.
If the set up is too limited what would you suggest if you were me and it was a blank sheet of paper?
Hey Bob, that was great
Thanks for covering this song; I used to listen to it regularly way back and found myself strumming along with you, then looking up the chords and playing with the B’berry Smoke crew. Great fun.
In fact, it made me look up the chords for Refugee and have a go at that as well (That’s about as far as my Tom Petty goes )
Keep on practising: the strumming will flow more smoothly and when you’re on complete autopilot you’ll be able to increase the volume in your singing and it will be a thing of beauty!
Oh yeah, only get hung up on recording techniques if it floats your boat and you enjoy it.
Many thanks Brian. I can see the sense in what you’re saying. Tried a few things with mic positions and settings today and vocal still quiet. It’s the same on all the recordings I made yesterday across a few songs other than that aspect I’m fairly happy with them.
In truth it’s probably just me needing more confidence and experience. I guess the voice is another instrument that needs to be mastered. As you say practice is just so important. All the best, may have to check out refugee and see how doable it is.
Bob, the Blue Yeti is a condensor mic which means it is quite sensitive and will have quite a wide pickup patter ie from where it will pickup sound. The best you can do is to lift the mic as much as possible, get it as close to your mouth as possible, ideally about 6-8in/15-20cm.
A next step could be an Audio Interface and a dynamic vocal mic. But that is a big step into the world of audio recording and music production.
For now, I’d suggest keep doing what you are doing. As you continue your singing will grow in confidence and become more balanced in the recordings. For now it really is fine as the primary purpose of the recordings is to aid in the learning of guitar.
Thank you @DavidP for your suggestions there. I am going to take your advice and keep doing what I’m doing. I don’t feel ready to dive down the rabbit hole of audio recording techniques/equipment. At this point it would probably just distract from practising which is what I should be focused on.
I think I just need to sing with a bit more power but without overdoing it (I have just watched Justin’s “How not to suck at singing” video) and I guess it’s about getting the balance right. I experimented quite a lot with the mic but in the end made another recording on my phone which I will put on here. I didn’t feel like there was a major drop in audio-visual quality.
Finally, big thanks again to you and everyone who has commented. It really helps. This genuinely is a kind and supportive community.