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Question for Steve (Remoteness) re: drum mic
Old 7th October 2019
  #121
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Remoteness View Post
Check out how I mic'ed Joe Saylor's dual drum kit setup at the Village Vanguard for Jon Batiste's residency.

It was such a joy listening to Jon Batiste & Friends during sound check rehearsal...
Thanks so much for this - fantastic!
Old 7th October 2019
  #122
Super Moderator
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by studer58 View Post
Great sound Steve ! I like the dry vocal, very much like it would have sounded in the room I'm guessing, without any need to make it wetter with a plate or a room reverb ? What's the seating capacity of the Vanguard, I'm guessing below 100 ?

I'm not hearing much PA bleed into the recording, so presume the house sound was under good control too, just sufficient reinforcement above purely acoustic output from the players ?

With the right knee mic, that was purely for the recording, not contributing to the PA sound, as being an Omni it would likely add muddy lows to the house sound if amplified ?
Thanks!

If you check the input list I posted above, and attached to this reply, you will notice that there were only three mics split to the house. And, they were, Jon's vocal, Rachael's vocal on the fifth day and the MC mic.

I was extremely please with what I captured during Jon's residency. IMHO, one of my best live captures from that room for sure. Perhaps, even my best, and I have done about twenty or so recordings and/or broadcasts from that location.

You're just about right, the seating capacity of the Vanguard is a bit more; it's about 130 seat capacity; in bandstand-mode is more like 120.

The only bleed if any would have been from the vocal mics. All the mics that were on stage were for the recording. Like I mentioned above, only the three vocal mics were split to the club sound system.

As mentioned above, I recorded and engineered these performances. Mix engineers, Todd Whitlock and Russell Elevado split the mixing duties for the tracks I cut. From what I understand, Todd continued the mix session in 24B/96K, while Russell bounced it to analog for that smooth and gooey sound. I believe that they ran Todd's hi-res files through a two-track analog machine to get his mixes to match better. That said, only Todd, Russell and/or Mark Wilder the mastering engineer can confirm my understanding of their mixing and mastering workflow for sure.

In any event, I very pleased with the vinyl album release. I haven't heard the digital versions as of yet, except for what is posted online in lo-res.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ithinknot View Post
Thanks so much for this - fantastic!
No, thank you for taking the time to listen to this work.
Attached Thumbnails
Question for Steve (Remoteness) re: drum mic-05-anatomy-angels-input-list.jpg  
Old 7th October 2019
  #123
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by philper View Post
Steve R himself should answer, but way back when he first described the use of the knee mic I thought he was talking about a hail-Mary situation as an FOH mixer where he only had two console channels avail for a drum kit, he tried using one of them for the knee mic and The World Was Saved. So, live...I'd guess so. I'm not an FOH guy, but the knee mic has been mighty useful in the kit recordings I've done in recent years--esp in "crammy" stage setups on live gigs.
thats how i remember the story
Old 7th October 2019
  #124
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuzzy Logic View Post
thats how i remember the story
Always Omni...or cardioid ?
Old 7th October 2019
  #125
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by studer58 View Post
Always Omni...or cardioid ?
i believe it started as omni these days he as also been using cardioid in certain situations
Old 7th October 2019
  #126
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by studer58 View Post
Always Omni...or cardioid ?
It depends on the environment and what kind of sound I want to capture.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuzzy Logic View Post
i believe it started as omni these days he as also been using cardioid in certain situations
Yep!
Old 8th October 2019
  #127
Hi Steve, Sorry if this was already mentioned: What mic pres did you use?

Thank you!
Old 8th October 2019
  #128
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
I'm not sure if it has or it hasn't. We have discussed many different projects. Which particular one are you referring to?

If you're referring the the last discussion about that Jon Batiste Village Vanguard residency I captured, we used my Midas DL351 24B/96K remote controllable mic pres.


Quote:
Originally Posted by imaginaryday View Post
Hi Steve, Sorry if this was already mentioned: What mic pres did you use?

Thank you!
Old 8th October 2019
  #129
Yes, that is the recording I was referring to. It sounds great! Thank you for reply!
Old 9th October 2019
  #130
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Remoteness's Avatar
Cool beans!

Quote:
Originally Posted by imaginaryday View Post
Yes, that is the recording I was referring to. It sounds great! Thank you for reply!
Old 10th October 2019
  #131
Lives for gear
Realised that I didn't have any omni mics in the locker, so I've got an AT804 on the way to play with. Steve, I hold you personally responsible for that.



Chris

PS - If I like it, I'll probably try something nicer. The 804 was £30, couldn't pass it up.
Old 10th October 2019
  #132
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hbphotoav's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chris661 View Post
Realised that I didn't have any omni mics in the locker, so I've got an AT804 on the way to play with. Steve, I hold you personally responsible for that.



Chris

PS - If I like it, I'll probably try something nicer. The 804 was £30, couldn't pass it up.
FWIW... If you regularly mic guitar cabinets, the 804 is a decent, prox-effect-free "what you hear is what you get" mic. I have a pair, and find my E906 pair get most use, with the 804s second, then SM57s...

Also FWIW... when I do a "right knee" setup, I usually use a DPA4061. Easy to place (gaff it to a boom) and zero proximity... with a high SPL tolerance

HB
Old 10th October 2019
  #133
Lives for gear
Cool, sounds like the 804 won't just get used once and then put in the box o' mics that I'm sure we all have.

I have 4x e906 - picked them up during Sennheiser's big sale.

Thanks,
Chris
Old 12th October 2019
  #134
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
e906 mics are very useful. Have you tried the original MD409 or MD509? They are a killer sounding microphone!

Quote:
Originally Posted by chris661 View Post
Cool, sounds like the 804 won't just get used once and then put in the box o' mics that I'm sure we all have.

I have 4x e906 - picked them up during Sennheiser's big sale.

Thanks,
Chris
Old 12th October 2019
  #135
Lives for gear
I haven't yet, but I do keep a look out for those. IIRC, Sennheiser was aiming at the MD409 with the e906. I do like the form-factor.

I did have a D25 through here recently, which was interesting to play with. If you've seen the inside of a D12, imagine that sort of engineering taken up another level. Cool stuff.

Chris
Old 12th October 2019
  #136
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
Yes, D25 is the broadcast version.


Quote:
Originally Posted by chris661 View Post
I haven't yet, but I do keep a look out for those. IIRC, Sennheiser was aiming at the MD409 with the e906. I do like the form-factor.

I did have a D25 through here recently, which was interesting to play with. If you've seen the inside of a D12, imagine that sort of engineering taken up another level. Cool stuff.

Chris
Old 17th October 2019
  #137
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hbphotoav's Avatar
 

Just did a choral concert, with keys, bass, acoustic/elec gtr and drums, (in a high school "cafetorium", no less) and, because of the extremely limited space in the stage left wing, had to go with my MKH8060 overhead, straight stand in front of the kick drum, mic 1.5m up, aimed at the drummer's lap (to avoid the cymbals and windchimes over the toms). Fortunately, the drummer was "tasty" and I was boosting more than cutting him in the mix.

When I solo'd it up to check it, I was quite pleased with the overall kit sound, and the rejection of the piano (7' Kawai with the lid on short stick, angled a bit toward the band) which was 1.5m from the mic, and the choir shell which was also about 1.5m away, was impressive. It also mitigated the QSC K8 wedges feeding DI'd guitars and piano to the G/B/D players.

The entire stage, from lip to shell, was maybe 6m deep.

I SOooo love working in rooms like this...

HB

Last edited by hbphotoav; 23rd October 2019 at 07:47 PM..
Old 27th October 2019
  #138
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andychamp's Avatar
I did the „center of kit“ thing in a live setting tonight, with an RE50 omni and lots of EQ and compression. Still, feedback from the mains was not an issue.
Had there not been a need for a beefy, subby kick, I could very well have done without a dedicated kick mic, as there was plenty of punch on the RE50.
Old 27th October 2019
  #139
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
Been doing my Drummer Right Knee Mic Technique since the early '80s and it never failed me once!

Quote:
Originally Posted by andychamp View Post
I did the „center of kit“ thing in a live setting tonight, with an RE50 omni and lots of EQ and compression. Still, feedback from the mains was not an issue.
Had there not been a need for a beefy, subby kick, I could very well have done without a dedicated kick mic, as there was plenty of punch on the RE50.
Old 27th October 2019
  #140
Lives for gear
Steve... would I be right in thinking that you'd aim either the maximum pickup area of the knee mic at the part of the kit that you want the most detail to be extracted from...or conversely point the null or off-axis part of the mic at a kit zone that you wanted to darken or minimize...so you're effectively "eq-ing via mic aiming " ?

For example, if the nearby (non-kit) mics are already pulling in lots of cymbal spill, then you might angle/aim your right knee mic to minimize that HF pickup...but perhaps discriminate more towards tom or snare or kick reinforcement instead ?

In addition, this same sort of selective pickup intention would inform your mic choice for the right knee....whether for omni, hyper/wide/regular cardioid, fig 8 etc ?
Old 27th October 2019
  #141
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
Exactly!

All of the above can be implemented depending on what's going on in the room or during the (drummer's) musician's performance.

I have found, especially when using an omni mic, you can get a very good representation of the entire kit, including the cymbals.

If all else fails, just move that mic a bit until it is focused on what you're going after.


Quote:
Originally Posted by studer58 View Post
Steve... would I be right in thinking that you'd aim either the maximum pickup area of the knee mic at the part of the kit that you want the most detail to be extracted from...or conversely point the null or off-axis part of the mic at a kit zone that you wanted to darken or minimize...so you're effectively "eq-ing via mic aiming " ?

For example, if the nearby (non-kit) mics are already pulling in lots of cymbal spill, then you might angle/aim your right knee mic to minimize that HF pickup...but perhaps discriminate more towards tom or snare or kick reinforcement instead ?

In addition, this same sort of selective pickup intention would inform your mic choice for the right knee....whether for omni, hyper/wide/regular cardioid, fig 8 etc ?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #142
Here for the gear
 

Hey Steve,

thanks for all the valuable information. I have been playing with the knee mic a couple of years ago after watching "the" Gregg Wells tracking video. I didn't really succeed though, because at that time my idea of the technique was to catch a fair amount of kick beater, thus placing the mic over the rim. With my set up (snare rather high, rack tom very low) I couldn't find a spot where the mic didn't either get in the way of playing toms or caught to much snare wire.
I'll experiment with some over the shell positions as I get back to the studio.

Another problem I encounter when trying to capture a "full kit sound" with one or two main mics is what to do with the second snare. It doesn't get enough "attention" by a knee or shoulder mic, also I want it to sit near the middle of the kit's stereo field (at least if it's the low-fat-backbeat-snare that's put to the left). Only solution I've found so far is to rotate the center line so that it crosses the kick and continues between the snares (putting the ride up front rather than far left and the hat in the back rather than far right), but that doesn't put the OVHs in the most favorable places.
Steve, you had a guy playing a side snare on one of the converse set's, but that was mainly electronic, wasn't it? Any suggestions?

Cheers, Peer
Old 4 weeks ago
  #143
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
Hey Peer,

I appreciate your appreciation. Greg Wells has a killer scene going on, yet I have never seen his drum tracking video, but as you may already know, I have been using my 'Drummer's Right Knee Mic Technique' since the early '80s with great results. It works best on two to five piece drum kits. If there are modifications from that kit count, you will need to experiment.

The idea is to first figure out exactly what you want to achieve, then go for it with the right mic and polar pattern.

In the early days, I actually just placed a EV 635A on a bar towel that sat on top of the bass drum. It worked smashingly well for me when using up to a five piece drum kit. When more drums (and such) are added, additional mics also need to be added.

I get a sneaking suspicion you were not using an omni microphone. Do I have that right? When using a cardioid mic, you have to decide what exactly you want to accomplish and capture.

When it comes to capturing that "full drum kit sound" with a minimal mic count, I usually use one to five mics. They are as follows...

One mic setup:
  • Drummer's Knee ^

Two mic setup:
  • Drummer's Knee ^
  • Additional mic where needed

Three mic setup:
  • Drummer's Knee ^
  • Overhead <
  • Overhead >

Four mic setup:
  • Drummer's Knee ^
  • Overhead <
  • Overhead >
  • Additional mic where needed

Five mic setup:
  • Drummer's Knee ^
  • Overhead <
  • Overhead >
  • Additional mic where needed perhaps in front of the kit near the bass drum
  • Additional mic where needed perhaps near the snare drum

I worked with James Blunt and his band when they first came to America a bunch of years ago, and I only used five mics (on the drum kit) which I setup much like what I stated above.

IMHO, the simple answer is to add another mic for the second snare, but don't place it too close to the drum, then you can pan it exactly where you want it to be.

Believe it or not, I never place the bass and snare drums in the middle of the stereo field. They are always a little bit to the left and right.

I believe you are referring to the Citizens! music video that was captured in a (garage) photography studio in Brooklyn. His second (side snare) is indeed a (pad) electronic.

Let me know if you have any additional questions or thoughts.


Quote:
Originally Posted by PeerSoe View Post
Hey Steve,

thanks for all the valuable information. I have been playing with the knee mic a couple of years ago after watching "the" Gregg Wells tracking video. I didn't really succeed though, because at that time my idea of the technique was to catch a fair amount of kick beater, thus placing the mic over the rim. With my set up (snare rather high, rack tom very low) I couldn't find a spot where the mic didn't either get in the way of playing toms or caught to much snare wire.
I'll experiment with some over the shell positions as I get back to the studio.

Another problem I encounter when trying to capture a "full kit sound" with one or two main mics is what to do with the second snare. It doesn't get enough "attention" by a knee or shoulder mic, also I want it to sit near the middle of the kit's stereo field (at least if it's the low-fat-backbeat-snare that's put to the left). Only solution I've found so far is to rotate the center line so that it crosses the kick and continues between the snares (putting the ride up front rather than far left and the hat in the back rather than far right), but that doesn't put the OVHs in the most favorable places.
Steve, you had a guy playing a side snare on one of the converse set's, but that was mainly electronic, wasn't it? Any suggestions?

Cheers, Peer
Old 4 weeks ago
  #144
Here for the gear
 

Hey Steve,

thanks for taking the time to answer.

Yes, you are right about the omni -> didn't try that yet, but will do. I still have the feeling that for me the even more important hint is to skip the idea of the knee mic seeing the beater...

As for the second snare - I probably should have guessed your answer. I was a bit worried about consistency of sound if one drum has a much higher level from a traditional close mic than the others. On the other hand, I'm basicly fine with my quick and dirty rehearsal room sound coming from shoulder, foot and side-snare mics. I try moving the side snares mic further away and maybe replacing it with a LDC though.

My general idea of sound is "natural", i.e. (older?) jazz recordings, I play a round badge kit with mostly old Ks... I never liked the "traditional" closed miced sound from a mic that's stuck into the head of the drum. I actually drove all sound guys nuts at age 20 when I insisted on having my C3000 on the side of the snare... For jazzy recordings I often went with recorderman plus foot and snare (from the side).
I might be able to dig out a session I did at RBB's huge recording room ten years ago when they needed a drummer to test their new Duality on - on that session I ran my own mics (Recorderman and snare sides) against there "traditional" 12+ mic setup...

However, over the last years I've gotten into electronics as well. When I play my electronic stuff, I want as much isolation as I can possibly get because my signals run through ableton live for looping and FX (i.e. delay on JUST one snare) yet on the other hand I still want the basic sound to be as "natural" as possible. I play a second HiHat on the right as well, so placing the knee mic might still be tricky, but if I can make it work, it could be a great option for the stuff I'm doing.

Cheers, Peer
Old 4 weeks ago
  #145
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
On that note, check out this mic setup for Dana LaMarca drummer for Maggie Rogers...

I attached images of my first mic setup and the second version which I ended up staying with for this session...

The wide shot shows version two. (As you can see in the close up photo,) I started off with LD Neumanns on the toms, but I couldn't get the isolation I was looking for. So, the only changes that were made on the drums were swapping out the U89s on the toms with MD421s and adding a (U89) snare mic to the kit.

Besides the "Right Knee" mic we had three mics (MD441, KM56 & U89) on the snare at various positions. I had a Beyer M88 on the front head of the bass drum and something else, (which I don't recall at the moment) in the hole.

The combination of a great room tone, drummer's technique and mic placement captured an outstanding drum sound for this project! I'm so happy with what we achieved!





Quote:
Originally Posted by PeerSoe View Post
Hey Steve,

thanks for taking the time to answer.

Yes, you are right about the omni -> didn't try that yet, but will do. I still have the feeling that for me the even more important hint is to skip the idea of the knee mic seeing the beater...

As for the second snare - I probably should have guessed your answer. I was a bit worried about consistency of sound if one drum has a much higher level from a traditional close mic than the others. On the other hand, I'm basicly fine with my quick and dirty rehearsal room sound coming from shoulder, foot and side-snare mics. I try moving the side snares mic further away and maybe replacing it with a LDC though.

My general idea of sound is "natural", i.e. (older?) jazz recordings, I play a round badge kit with mostly old Ks... I never liked the "traditional" closed miced sound from a mic that's stuck into the head of the drum. I actually drove all sound guys nuts at age 20 when I insisted on having my C3000 on the side of the snare... For jazzy recordings I often went with recorderman plus foot and snare (from the side).
I might be able to dig out a session I did at RBB's huge recording room ten years ago when they needed a drummer to test their new Duality on - on that session I ran my own mics (Recorderman and snare sides) against there "traditional" 12+ mic setup...

However, over the last years I've gotten into electronics as well. When I play my electronic stuff, I want as much isolation as I can possibly get because my signals run through ableton live for looping and FX (i.e. delay on JUST one snare) yet on the other hand I still want the basic sound to be as "natural" as possible. I play a second HiHat on the right as well, so placing the knee mic might still be tricky, but if I can make it work, it could be a great option for the stuff I'm doing.

Cheers, Peer
Attached Thumbnails
Question for Steve (Remoteness) re: drum mic-09-dana-lamarca-maggie-rogers-rev1.jpg   Question for Steve (Remoteness) re: drum mic-09-dana-lamarca-maggie-rogers-rev2.jpg  
Old 4 weeks ago
  #146
Here for the gear
 

Hey Steve,

thanks again. Now I did have some time to mess around, the omni does help a lot (I'll probabbly have to buy at least one nicer one, right now my only omnis are two C4000B...

When I remove the small hihat, I need a gobo for the right if I place the mic for the snare to sound nice. Pried cardoid, too, but the ride sounds way to boomy then. Just holding some foam in is much better.

Other than I thought, I can even make it work with the small hihat. So far I'm just listening on headphones while I'm playing, but'll take some clips to listen to at home.

Without the hihat I had the mic a bit further back from the snare to get less wires, but the way it's put now still sounds fine, especially with one M160 as OVH.

One more question, though: Steve, on a lot of pics you have a TLM103 as over knee. Did you pick this for a nice off axis response? Any other cardoids you would recommend?

Cheers, Peer
Attached Thumbnails
Question for Steve (Remoteness) re: drum mic-img_20191115_115932.jpg   Question for Steve (Remoteness) re: drum mic-img_20191115_115943.jpg  

Last edited by PeerSoe; 4 weeks ago at 12:13 PM.. Reason: Addition
Old 3 weeks ago
  #147
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
Lightbulb

Hey Peer,

Yep, in many cases, an omni mic will do a better job in capturing the entire drum kit.

Not sure if you have to buy a nicer one to get the capture done right. Remember, when I first came up with the idea, I used an old EV 635A. Back then, they were a $65.00 USD microphone. Today their about $100.00 to $139.00 USD.

When my "Right Knee" mic gets too close to any cymbals, I try to place one of my "Micro Gobos" in between the mic and the cymbal I want to deflect.

Just EQ the mic if it sounds too boomy or too tinny.

When you get a chance, take off your headphones and take a listen to what you recorded on speakers at home. You may want to consider adding a pair of reference speakers where you record your drums, this way you can instantly know exactly were you are at. This will improve your experimentation and help you evaluate what you are doing on the spot.

First off, I read somewhere a while back, that TLM103 sucked, so I figured I'd by 14 of them (over time) and figure out why they don't suck. It's an excellent utility condenser mic. They are rugged and hard to blow up, so I love them on my live performance dates. I have used them on toms, as rear audience mics, I even used them on snare (or should I say, near the snare since they have a lot of output,) and of course, on the Drummer's "Knee" or over their shoulder with great success. I forget the session, but I also used them on a piano with good results.

In any event, the off axis response is pleasant. You know what, (IMHO) the placement of the mic is much more important that which brand cardioid you use. Experiment with a few of them and listen to which one pleases you more and for what reasons.


Quote:
Originally Posted by PeerSoe View Post
Hey Steve,

thanks again. Now I did have some time to mess around, the omni does help a lot (I'll probabbly have to buy at least one nicer one, right now my only omnis are two C4000B...

When I remove the small hihat, I need a gobo for the right if I place the mic for the snare to sound nice. Pried cardoid, too, but the ride sounds way to boomy then. Just holding some foam in is much better.

Other than I thought, I can even make it work with the small hihat. So far I'm just listening on headphones while I'm playing, but'll take some clips to listen to at home.

Without the hihat I had the mic a bit further back from the snare to get less wires, but the way it's put now still sounds fine, especially with one M160 as OVH.

One more question, though: Steve, on a lot of pics you have a TLM103 as over knee. Did you pick this for a nice off axis response? Any other cardoids you would recommend?

Cheers, Peer
Old 1 week ago
  #148
Here for the gear
 

Just a quick update: I played around with a CM4 a bit, which works pretty well. Off axis sound is nice as long the right HiHat doesn't get all too close to the mic, placement is great due to the tiny size.
Old 1 week ago
  #149
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
Outstanding news!

Quote:
Originally Posted by PeerSoe View Post
Just a quick update: I played around with a CM4 a bit, which works pretty well. Off axis sound is nice as long the right HiHat doesn't get all too close to the mic, placement is great due to the tiny size.
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