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How do you think this video was recorded?
Old 25th January 2020
  #1
How do you think this video was recorded?

A friend of mine sent me this video asking for my thoughts on how they recorded the audio:



First off, what an awesome concept! Love the single-take, old-school choreography; no effects, just effort. As for the audio, my guess is that it was an MS pair (possibly an omni center) mounted on an overhead boom, with the (very skilled) boom op following Maggie through the set. Possibly a wireless mic on the guitar for safety.

That said, I don't do much boom work so I may be way off base here. Any location sound gurus here care to throw in a guess?
Old 25th January 2020
  #2
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PlayBack.
Old 25th January 2020
  #3
Gear Head
 

Read the comments from the engineer on the YouTube page, and this: https://www.soundonsound.com/techniq...-say-something
Old 26th January 2020
  #4
Quote:
Originally Posted by ithinknot View Post
Read the comments from the engineer on the YouTube page, and this: https://www.soundonsound.com/techniq...-say-something
Thanks for the link! Loved that video too. I had a feeling they were using lavs for that one, as you could see IEMs on Justin during the video. And I've got a pair of 4060s myself, they're incredible mics.

Just found the YouTube comment by the audio engineer explaining how it was done, I'll post that here when I get back home (can't copy text from YouTube on mobile).
Old 26th January 2020
  #5
Lives for gear
 

Lav on her. You can hear it particularly in the close up sound of her hands clapping at the end. The mic is in the collar of her white shirt--you can see a distortion in the fabric from the weight of the mic. Excellent mic used, prob DPA, and excellent wireless gear. Ditto for guitarist. Probably overhead stereo mic to get the singing of the crowd, if that isn't playback; it is pretty consistent. Very nicely done, as with all the work this group does, although this is far simpler than some of their projects (like that J Timberlake song they did). I applaud their insistence on capturing interesting live performances in real spaces.
Old 26th January 2020
  #6
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
Maggie Rogers is a fabulous singer and individual. I have worked with her on a few projects over the last two years.

My buddy, Bob Boyle is her FOH engineer. He has done some A2 and MON work with me a few years back. Coincidentally, another friend of mine, Dana LaMarca is the drummer in her band.

I didn't read the article yet, but my guess would be that they used lavaliere mics, with additional boom and room mics setup in strategic locations.

It looks like a single take, but there could have been a few long shots edited together. Well, I can see a few places where edit points could have been used.

Doubtful, yet there is a possibility they recorded the audio in motion at that location then used playback of that take along with the audio recorded during the takes. Of course, I'm only guessing.

I will reach out to Bob and ask him about it. I see he got a credit, so he could have been there when this capture was shot.

Fantastic music clip, by the way. I love this style of on location (live) music recording technique for video.
Old 26th January 2020
  #7
Super Moderator
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Remoteness View Post
Maggie Rogers is a fabulous singer and individual. I have worked with her on a few projects over the last two years.

My buddy, Bob Boyle is her FOH engineer. He has done some A2 and MON work with me a few years back. Coincidentally, another friend of mine, Dana LaMarca is the drummer in her band.

I didn't read the article yet, but my guess would be that they used lavaliere mics, with additional boom and room mics setup in strategic locations.

It looks like a single take, but there could have been a few long shots edited together. Well, I can see a few places where edit points could have been used.

Doubtful, yet there is a possibility they recorded the audio in motion at that location then used playback of that take along with the audio recorded during the takes. Of course, I'm only guessing.

I will reach out to Bob and ask him about it. I see he got a credit, so he could have been there when this capture was shot.

Fantastic music clip, by the way. I love this style of on location (live) music recording technique for video.

There you go...

I just read the comments on YouTube and found a response from video shoot's audio engineer:

Shoefiti

It's not the same setup at all, but you can already find some answers out there on the internet, starting with the Sound On Sound article about the Justin Timberlake - Say Something video we were honored to be part of.

For this shot, there are about 6/7 lav mics (Maggie, the guitar, the piano, some of the fans who sang really well), a stereo boom mic and a bunch of stereo ambient mics hidden in the different areas of the path Maggie follows. I don't know if this is of any help for you? Afterwards, we mix it all in the studio.

The guitar is recorded with one of the lav mics hidden inside so it remains almost invisible. It has a much more natural sound than a pickup. You can see how we put it in the SoS/JT article too.
Old 26th January 2020
  #8
Quote:
Originally Posted by Remoteness View Post
There you go...

I just read the comments on YouTube and found a response from video shoot's audio engineer
Beat me to it! Thanks for copying that over. Man, you guys totally nailed it; between you and philper you basically described the process exactly. And yes, they're most likely using DPA 4060s as the lavs. Hats off to Henri D'Armancourt (shoefiti) for putting that together; it's not clean sparking hi-fi, but a real test of ingenuity in the face of circumstances that would have most AE's throwing up their hands. And most importantly, it powerfully engages the viewer on an emotional level.
Old 26th January 2020
  #9
Lives for gear
 

I imagine the steadicam operator must have been wearing socks or something to minimize noise, and had someone spotting him or her in those shots where the camera is moving backward. Not only is it challenging to capture live audio in pieces like this, but it's also challenging to film it all without the operators or their equipment making noise that gets picked up in the recording. So a shout-out to the video crew as well.
Old 26th January 2020
  #10
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
I'm a solutions based individual, so I looked at this wonderful music clip while thinking, how would I approach this capture?

IMHO, I feel it could have sounded a bit more direct sounding if there weren't as many stereo mics used. I would have had at least three boom ops added to the audio department too.

Now, I'm saying this without knowing anything about the actual production itself. In any case, it's brilliantly executed and quite entertaining. I really enjoyed watching how much fun Maggie was having during this shot.





Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
Beat me to it! Thanks
for copying that over. Man, you guys totally nailed it; between you and philper you basically described the process exactly. And yes, they're most likely using DPA 4060s as the lavs. Hats off to Henri D'Armancourt (shoefiti) for putting that together; it's not clean sparking hi-fi, but a real test of ingenuity in the face of circumstances that would have most AE's throwing up their hands. And most importantly, it powerfully engages the viewer on an emotional level.
Old 26th January 2020
  #11
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Just because this was a live one-take recording doesn't mean these guys didn't bring the full platter of post production tools to bear on the mix. In their J Timberlake song interview they describe doing lots of RX clean up, as well as some very interesting comp and reverb things to make the mix really pop.
Old 26th January 2020
  #12
Can I ask, how do you mic a singer in the way described here, with a lav under the shirt fabric, and not just get constant scratching against the fabric? And also get a useable vocal sound that isn’t dulled from being behind the mouth?

I really would like to work on this part of my technique and would love and tips or resources you can offer. Thanks!
Old 27th January 2020
  #13
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Processing.
Old 27th January 2020
  #14
Lives for gear
Lav mics are amazingly amenable to taking eq well, to extract robust vocals even when located in wigs, under the hairline, under clothing, in glasses frames and so on.

Check out some of the Met Opera videos for working examples, and develop some links with your local pro theatre groups to discover their tricks of the trade
Old 27th January 2020
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by king2070lplaya View Post
Can I ask, how do you mic a singer in the way described here, with a lav under the shirt fabric, and not just get constant scratching against the fabric? And also get a useable vocal sound that isn’t dulled from being behind the mouth?

I really would like to work on this part of my technique and would love and tips or resources you can offer. Thanks!
It's done every day on every TV show and movie you see. Wiring talent is a skill that takes many years to learn, and often requires to the cooperation of the wardrobe department or the talent themselves if they are wearing their own clothes. These guys understand this world very well, so they got the singer to wear a soft natural fibre shirt and mounted the mic in such a way that rubbing and clothes noise was minimised. People usually sing louder than they talk, less mic gain means hearing less clothes noise. After that lotsa post clean up-this is something we do in video audio post all day every day. Lav mics, esp very high end ones, are designed on purpose to sit on a speaker's chest, in the shadow of the chin, and still sound open and natural. The really good ones (like DPA) are quite expensive but very worth it.
Old 27th January 2020
  #16
Quote:
Originally Posted by philper View Post
It's done every day on every TV show and movie you see.
Yup, I’m aware, that’s why I was asking for resources or advice, so I might learn to better accomplish it.

I do fair bit of of lav’ing for masterclasses and whatnot, and find it very difficult, even with good equipment. It’s not something I’ve been taught the basics of, and I would like to learn more.
Old 27th January 2020
  #17
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There's a Facebook group called "Lavalier Mic Hiding Techniques" that has some good posts and photos sometimes. I usually stick the head of the lavalier in the middle of a Rycote Stickie, or maybe a little towards the top, then stick either a Rycote Undercover (thin felt) or Overcover (little furry) on top of that. Then peel off the sticker on the other side of the stickie and stick that somewhere between the sternum and collar depending on clothes, mic, voice, etc., either on the skin or a layer of clothes. That usually keeps the rustle out, and even wind, but some fabrics are terrible and there isn't much you can do but change clothes. There are other types of concealers as well, like a plastic disc from DPA that holds one of their lavs with a little metal riser that's supposed to keep fabric away from the capsule, 'bubblebee' concealers, etc. If you pause the video at :48, you can see the wire running up to her collar, and I'd bet it's one of the bubblebee type concealers.

Also, the DPA lavs are more 'hi-fi' sounding than any other I've heard, and if you have a high-end wireless rig from Lectrosonics, Zaxcom, etc., that helps a lot too on the overall sound. Zaxcom even has very small transmitters that record internally on a Micro SD card.

Last edited by over-man; 27th January 2020 at 08:08 AM.. Reason: forgot something
Old 27th January 2020
  #18
Engagement Manager
 
Sniperschool's Avatar
Either way it's very impressive
Old 17th February 2020
  #19
Quote:
Originally Posted by over-man View Post
There's a Facebook group called "Lavalier Mic Hiding Techniques" that has some good posts and photos sometimes. I usually stick the head of the lavalier in the middle of a Rycote Stickie, or maybe a little towards the top, then stick either a Rycote Undercover (thin felt) or Overcover (little furry) on top of that. Then peel off the sticker on the other side of the stickie and stick that somewhere between the sternum and collar depending on clothes, mic, voice, etc., either on the skin or a layer of clothes. That usually keeps the rustle out, and even wind, but some fabrics are terrible and there isn't much you can do but change clothes. There are other types of concealers as well, like a plastic disc from DPA that holds one of their lavs with a little metal riser that's supposed to keep fabric away from the capsule, 'bubblebee' concealers, etc. If you pause the video at :48, you can see the wire running up to her collar, and I'd bet it's one of the bubblebee type concealers.

Also, the DPA lavs are more 'hi-fi' sounding than any other I've heard, and if you have a high-end wireless rig from Lectrosonics, Zaxcom, etc., that helps a lot too on the overall sound. Zaxcom even has very small transmitters that record internally on a Micro SD card.
Thank you for those tips! Never heard of the Bubblebee concealers before, I'm going to pick up a pair now as I'm doing a little more interview work these days.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #20
Here for the gear
Wow

That is impressive and it sounds great, first time seeing/hearing this vid but hearing it they did a great job, makes sense it was precisely mixed and processed later. There is a lot going on here as far as lighting, timing, sound, and video, over all very cool. Thanks for posting!
Old 3 weeks ago
  #21
Gear Addict
 

Gosh, she reminds me of Joni Mitchell!

Cool video. Thanks for posting.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #22
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
She's quite a success story and a lovely individual to boot!

Quote:
Originally Posted by shosty View Post
Gosh, she reminds me of Joni Mitchell!

Cool video. Thanks for posting.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SFXDude View Post
That is impressive and it sounds great, first time seeing/hearing this vid but hearing it they did a great job, makes sense it was precisely mixed and processed later. There is a lot going on here as far as lighting, timing, sound, and video, over all very cool. Thanks for posting!
These cats are heroes of mine, and I try to emulate them the best I can (or am allowed to) in every gig I do now.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #24
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Remoteness View Post
She's quite a success story and a lovely individual to boot!
So nice to hear! She's a very creative performer.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #25
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
Indeed she is!

Quote:
Originally Posted by shosty View Post
So nice to hear! She's a very creative performer.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #26
Excellent DOP, steadicam, lighting, scene arts, audio... Excellent team!
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