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MD421 or SM7 for Jazz Bass Drum?
Old 21st February 2007
For reference, here's a sample from this same "free jazz" session that I mixed last night with the pianist.
Attached Files

TrioEx.mp3 (2.94 MB, 2874 views)

Old 22nd February 2007
Gear Maniac
pianoman's Avatar
Ross, what mics did you end up using in the first session and where did you place the piano mic? Sorry if it's obvious and I missed it? Beautiful recording; I'd like to learn a little here.

BTW, I've had the same problem as described if the drummer is in front of the piano. Sounds good to the audience, great communication, but the drum bleed into the piano is terrible.
Old 22nd February 2007
Lives for gear

I've been struggling to get clean jazz trio recordings myself, with everyone playing live in the same room, so I'd love to learn what others are doing to get good sounding results. It seems that drum bleed in the piano and bass mics is always the problem. Also, while I can get nice sounding drums in the drum mics, once I bring up the levels on piano and bass, the drum sound quickly turns to crap, losing clarity and spatial information.

If bleed is in fact unavoidable, how do you set up when recording to make the bleed at least usable when you get to the mixing stage?
Old 22nd February 2007
Originally Posted by pianoman View Post
Ross, what mics did you end up using in the first session and where did you place the piano mic? Sorry if it's obvious and I missed it? Beautiful recording; I'd like to learn a little here.
Thanks for your compliment! I don't think it's a beautiful recording, but the first one is better than the second one.

I used cardioid Neumann M149s on the small Yamaha in the first recording. Placement is the one described in Mixing with Your Mind, where there's a mic close to the stings at the end of the harp, and another slightly outside the lid in the curve of the piano. This is a great placement with those mics (I used the same placement with U87s on the 2nd recording). The bass mic was a TLM170 cardioid. C414s on OH, C451 on snare, MD421 on bass drum.

The first recording worked much better because the players weren't wearing headphones and created their own balances on stage.
Old 22nd February 2007
Lives for gear
jdier's Avatar
Originally Posted by JazzYoda View Post
My preference would be leave out the bass drum mic. I record lots of "live in the room" jazz and rarely have need for a bass drum mic. It only seems necessary when the room is too small and the bass drum booms around between the walls. It then comes over every mic (which is usually good) in a bad way. I then prefer to have a rather close mic on the bass drum just to make it appear to be coming from the same place as the rest of the set. I guess I'd go with the 421, but the SM7 would work too.

I kinda agree with that, but a little diffferent idea. I did a country combo thing and they wanted minimum micing and all in a room.

I tossed a 421 about 5 feet infront of the kit, about 2" off the ground and pointed it towards the kick.

Got a GREAT full kit sound that was just a little heavy on kick... add overheads, and I was there. (I did cheat a little with a 57 on the side of the snare)
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