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Steel drum recording!!
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bgrotto
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#1
7th November 2006
Old 7th November 2006
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Steel drum recording!!

I thought I'd share a little trick I stumbled upon the past coupla weeks. I've been doing a freelance gig for a steel drum-fronted R&B band (cool stuff!!), and prior to these sessions, my pan recording experience was admittedly limited (I'd recorded the instrument only 2 or 3 times before, and had never been really happy with the results). So when I was making the input sheet, I sorta left the mic choice for the pans blank, cuz I wasn't really sure what to use. I was leaning towards ribbons, but the studio didn't have any ribbons, so I just sorta reached into the mic cabinet and grabbed stuff. I happened to pull out an old pair of EV RE-10s, and I'll be damned if they weren't the best friggin' steel drum mic in the locker!! I ran em into a pair of Hardy M-1s, gain cranked up high, no compression. The RE-10s tame the spikey transients well, keeping the instrument appropriately mellow, while the M-1s "cleanliness" keeps things from getting muddy. Plus the RE-10s have a nice grime to em that keeps the pans from sounding wussy. I loved it. The assistant (who is the studio's first engineer) loved it. And, best of all, the player loved it.

Kick-ass.
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#2
7th November 2006
Old 7th November 2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bgrotto View Post
I thought I'd share a little trick I stumbled upon the past coupla weeks. I've been doing a freelance gig for a steel drum-fronted R&B band (cool stuff!!), and prior to these sessions, my pan recording experience was admittedly limited (I'd recorded the instrument only 2 or 3 times before, and had never been really happy with the results). So when I was making the input sheet, I sorta left the mic choice for the pans blank, cuz I wasn't really sure what to use. I was leaning towards ribbons, but the studio didn't have any ribbons, so I just sorta reached into the mic cabinet and grabbed stuff. I happened to pull out an old pair of EV RE-10s, and I'll be damned if they weren't the best friggin' steel drum mic in the locker!! I ran em into a pair of Hardy M-1s, gain cranked up high, no compression. The RE-10s tame the spikey transients well, keeping the instrument appropriately mellow, while the M-1s "cleanliness" keeps things from getting muddy. Plus the RE-10s have a nice grime to em that keeps the pans from sounding wussy. I loved it. The assistant (who is the studio's first engineer) loved it. And, best of all, the player loved it.

Kick-ass.
Very cool! I record pans 2-3 times a year. They're a ton of fun. Just curious- what techniques have you tried?

I've done overhead, underneath, in front. All fun. And all with tradeoffs.

Steel drums rock!
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#3
8th November 2006
Old 8th November 2006
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Nice trick.

Just wanna say I roomed with two different Steel Drummers on a cruise ship gig for about 7 months. You know how they tune that thing? With a hammer......in a cabin.

I hate that instrument always.

Thread hijack over.
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#4
8th November 2006
Old 8th November 2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chadly View Post
Just curious- what techniques have you tried?
My first-ever attempt was an XY overhead with 4051s and then M149s.. Um...It totally sucked.

Pretty much from that point on it was mic from underneath...I tried 57s, 421s, Royer 121s (these were pretty cool, but lacked the aforementioned "grit"...), 414s, U87s, etc etc...the RE-10s just kill everything else.
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