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How to achieve good brass sounds?
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sr2000
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#1
1st April 2007
Old 1st April 2007
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How to achieve good brass sounds?

I'm listening to some of the brass sounds in many mainstream tracks and am not able to re-create these with what I have in my arsenal: Triton Rack, Virus TI, Atmosphere, Logic.

What am I missing here - am I just supposed to further edit the sounds I do have until I can find what I'm looking for? Is it a matter of layering? Do I need to go out and get something new? Maybe a nice analog synth - maybe a new plug-in I've never heard - maybe the Fantom, Motif ?

What is everyone else here using to get great brass sounds?
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1st April 2007
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name some reference tracks.....
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Sometimes, depending on the brass synth you are using, a healthy amount of reverb and maybe some slight delay on it will really bring it to life. This works wonders for me in Reason.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sr2000 View Post
I'm listening to some of the brass sounds in many mainstream tracks and am not able to re-create these with what I have in my arsenal: Triton Rack, Virus TI, Atmosphere, Logic.

What am I missing here - am I just supposed to further edit the sounds I do have until I can find what I'm looking for? Is it a matter of layering? Do I need to go out and get something new? Maybe a nice analog synth - maybe a new plug-in I've never heard - maybe the Fantom, Motif ?

What is everyone else here using to get great brass sounds?
Have you played around with the CS-80 brass patch in Atmosphere?

Pretty nice brass sound, mess about with the envelopes and filters, or layer it with another brassy patch or even a sawtooth with a slight resonance bite.

FWIW i enjoy the brass patches from my Andromeda and Motif ES, and the Triton has a few good ones in combi mode. They are not the cheesy type either.
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taking a different viewpoint... are you sure it's the patch??? personally ifeel the biggest mistake guys make is they either use "piano technique" or play things that the instrument would never be able to do naturally... so try to think like a trumpet player and enter them one at a time... the little differences in timing etc is what gives you the natural section sound.... good luck...
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[QUOTE=i personally ifeel the biggest mistake guys make is they either use "piano technique" or play things that the instrument would never be able to do naturally... so try to think like a trumpet player and enter them one at a time... [/QUOTE]

Co-sign. Same thing with strings.

I've used quantum leap brass with a degree of success. The trick is to load a bunch of different articulations. This is much more involved process than dialing up say the motif brass patch.
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1st April 2007
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Nothing beats the real thing!

Why not work out what notes you want your brass section to play, and get it recorded at a site like this: www.trumpetracks.com
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What do you mean by "many mainstream tracks"? Be more specific, because not every brass sound is the same.

I can tell you though, that I spent forever trying to get my software stuff to sound like some of the things I was hearing in Dre/Runners/whatever songs, and then one day I dusted off my Yamaha s80 and layered 2 patches and I had *exactly* what I was looking for in about 35 seconds. Now that I'm used to the sound, I hear Motif horns a lot, they just have a certain character to the sound and the way they are programmed that makes them useful for "fat" brass sounds.

Besides that, you can then layer those with whatever more 'realstic' horns you choose... Garritan Jazz and Big Band, Reason's Orkester, etc.
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As far as brass is concerned, I haven't heard a better natural brass section then from the motifs. Outkast has some great brass in their music...but I think they use the real thing. But if you are using a keyboard, soft synth, etc...motif is the way to go.

Also, reverb and delay is your best friend in these situations. Just a hint of both can do wonders. Make sure you bring out the bite and the brightness when you eq. Other than that, you should be good.

But if you start out with a weak brass...there is very little you can do to doctor it to a natural sound.

Oh and I second the motion on playing the brass as a trumpet or a sax player would play it. No crazy riffs that would be impossible for the real deal.
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sr2000
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2nd April 2007
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Quote:
name some reference tracks.....
Sure - the tracks I was thinking of when I started this thread were Nelly - Grillz, Dem Franchize Boyz - Ridin' Rims, Paul Wall - They Don't Know

I tried adding some reverb as some of you have suggested to some of the patches in Atmosphere - definitely helped to smooth things out - but still not quite getting what I'm looking for.

At this point, I'm debating whether I need to just tweak some of these patches more or just go out and buy a good analog synth
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3rd April 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sr2000 View Post
Dem Franchize Boyz - Ridin' Rims
Stock fantom-x patch lol.

I haven't heard the Paul Wall song in a while, but I think I got a similar result by applying a large hall reverb to a brass patch, and then throwing a compressor on it. I think in "Grillz" it's actually a low octave string, not brass.


Anywho, I have a song I'm working on myself I need help with...I uploaded it.

I made a custom combi patch in Reason:
FatBrass NN-XT Patch @ 100% volume,

NN-19 Wurlitzer pitched down an octave @ 64%

Subtractor muted horns @ 75% volume

It sounds perfectly fine win I use it for quick hits/stabs, but when I hold it down and use it for a melody like in this song, it doesn't sound so good. Does anyone have any tips I could use?

edit: Khameln, what orkester patches are you reffering to? I just layered in one of the trombone section patches @ 87%, and a violin section pitched down 2 octaves @ 100%.

It sounds a little better, but still weak IMO.
Attached Files
File Type: mp3 sittintalllikewoah.mp3 (1.68 MB, 149 views)
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3rd April 2007
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Quantum Leap Brass still sounds better than all of my modules.
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most are played in chords, try learning those
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3rd April 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by petermedland View Post
Nothing beats the real thing!

Why not work out what notes you want your brass section to play, and get it recorded at a site like this: trumpetracks - record brass by internet
Why not let us know it's YOUR site when you advertise it. (Some of us would give you work faster for being one of the slutz).

How about:
"Guys If you need an affordable solution for brass parts, check out my site. Here is the link"


(But I agree it's better to get someone to play the stuff.)
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3rd April 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sr2000 View Post
What is everyone else here using to get great brass sounds?
Korg Z1.

it is not so much the sound itself, more the expressive playing.
most of these stacks or melodies being played by "sections", it is important that you play with filters and velocity curves of the single "voices".

with a Korg Z1, it is easy to get great brass sounds - physical modelling sounds convincing.

most of the brass stacks that you hear in those "mainstream" tracks are accompanied by low string hits or a synth bass sound (to give them more substance). some pizzicato strings, pitched down an octave or two will work - in many tracks, these "stacks" replace the whole bassline.

there is really a lot you can do with both, synths AND/OR samples.

@ J-Traxx the Don

listen to Hollaback Girl by Gwen Stefani - the brass sounds are "live".
very "real" and natural sounding, but you can get these kinda sounds with a decent synth and some tweaking trickery.

the trombone in your track sounds more like a sax with LPF on it, especially when you play that little melody in the verse. (when you play the bassline melody with it, it kinda fights for it´s place in the mix with the organ sound - has literally not enough shine, upper harmonics to come through).

I never used Reason (and probably never will) so I don´t know how you would do it in Reason, but a "flying" loop should be a good start. you make a sample´s part loop and set either controllers or LFOs to change it´s loop start, length and maybe even the length of the loop crossfades.

this works with strings too and sounds more natural than a simple sustained loop.
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3rd April 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by no ssl yet View Post
Why not let us know it's YOUR site when you advertise it. (Some of us would give you work faster for being one of the slutz).

How about:
"Guys If you need an affordable solution for brass parts, check out my site. Here is the link"


(But I agree it's better to get someone to play the stuff.)
It is my site. I just don't want to get kicked off for "advertising", but what the h*$^ !

I've attached a little loop I recorded for some producer somewhere so you hear the sound I can get recording trumpet & sax. It's cheesier than a 12 month old forgotten chunk of stilton, but that's what the guy wanted! You can get a completely different sound with different instrumentation. Hip hop producers seem to like the sound of bass trombones layered with other brass for instance...
Attached Files
File Type: m4a Joey Silvero Horn riff demo.m4a (124.8 KB, 90 views)
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3rd April 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by petermedland View Post
It is my site. I just don't want to get kicked off for "advertising", but what the h*$^ !

I've attached a little loop I recorded for some producer somewhere so you hear the sound I can get recording trumpet & sax. It's cheesier than a 12 month old forgotten chunk of stilton, but that's what the guy wanted! You can get a completely different sound with different instrumentation. Hip hop producers seem to like the sound of bass trombones layered with other brass for instance...
I understand, but you would be specifically within the context of helping to solve a problem brought about by someone else on the board, It's not like you started your own thread to push a service. I say you should be able to provide a solutionthumbsup (That's what we are all here for. BUT NOTE: It's not my forum so what I say doesn't mean squat ).
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