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Prince Drum Machine Knocking Sound
Old 14th April 2011
  #1
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DCMIX's Avatar
 

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Prince Drum Machine Knocking Sound

I have a super specific question i have wondered about for years now. We all know Prince used drum machines for most of his legendary albums (1999, Purple Rain). At 14 years old this was ALL i could listen to.

Now, specifically, how did he get that "Knock" sound he used on Doves Cry, Lets Go crazy and a zillion other hits.

What is the sound, from which machine, and what did he do to get it?

Is it a rim shot, pitched down? If so, what machine produces this sound.

I am aware he used some linn stuff, but exactly what machine makes THIS sound?

I would be forver grateful, as its a question that i have wondered about since..oh.....1984!

Dennis in Memphis
Old 14th April 2011
  #2
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Jeff16years's Avatar
 

i don't know for sure but i think they were electric drums that were actually performed.
What kind, i do not know.
Old 14th April 2011
  #3
Gear Addict
 

It's a Linn Drum. You can hear the samples here.
Old 14th April 2011
  #4
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chout's Avatar
 

He was on George Lopez playing a newer song and it had that sound...I was just talking with my friend about that sound...I love that sound...what is that sound?

I think that's how you pronounce his symbol.
Old 14th April 2011
  #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by exel View Post
It's a Linn Drum. You can hear the samples here.
yes, thanks!
Old 14th April 2011
  #6
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KngofNoiz's Avatar
I know the exact sound you are talking about, but I don't know the answer either!!! I always wondered the same thing, very cool sounding. Queen has a very similar sound on the track "Back to Humans" from the Works album. Maybe searching that would lead to an answer...
Old 14th April 2011
  #7
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chout's Avatar
 

Look above ^

(A decent linn drum video link)
Old 14th April 2011
  #8
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by exel View Post
It's a Linn Drum. You can hear the samples here.
BAM! There it is, its the 3rd fader that the dude pulls up.

What is that 'sound'?

Is it just me, or does that machine have a ceritan gruve thang going on that other drum machines just dont have? Maybe its too many years of listening to the purple one...but it seems to just be gruving to its own beat. Very cool machine. Now i want one!!!!!!

Thanks for the video link.

Any idea of the sound on fader 3?

Dennis
Old 14th April 2011
  #9
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Old 14th April 2011
  #10
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Muser's Avatar
yes I think it's a pitched down sidestick from that unit. with some modulated flange. The MPC60 stock soundset also had those samples and did a great job using re pitching.. alphabet street is the same stock MPC soundset.. you can recreate alphabet street right on the first 16 MPC pads with that set.
Old 14th April 2011
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muser View Post
it's a pitched down sidestick from that unit
thisthumbsup
Old 14th April 2011
  #12
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Prince Drum Machine Knocking Sound

There was an article in Modern Drummer last year saying that all those Doves Cry sounds were severely detuned Linn samples. Whatever he did, it was a whole new thing.
Old 14th April 2011
  #13
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Electric Sugar's Avatar
I've got close to it before with Linn samples. Play around with pitch and also blending a reversed sample with the original.
Old 14th April 2011
  #14
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BB Bill's Avatar
 

It's a pitched down rimshot from a Linn LM-1 (not LinnDrum or 9000). Nothing fancier than that.
Old 14th April 2011
  #15
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by BB Bill View Post
It's a pitched down rimshot from a Linn LM-1 (not LinnDrum or 9000). Nothing fancier than that.
Than YOU and all the other replies.

I am now looking into getting an HR 16 and doing the new Eprom switcheroo that gives me the LM1 sounds with pitch functions.
Old 14th April 2011
  #16
Gear interested
 

It is in fact the tuned down LinnDrum Sidestick....I had one. To add a little more to the method, if you opened up the Linn there were little trim pots for tuning the samples. These would work in tandem with the front panel sliders by lowering or raising their range.

That's how I remember it anyways, it was a long time ago.
Old 15th April 2011
  #17
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BB Bill's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by DCMIX View Post
Than YOU and all the other replies.

I am now looking into getting an HR 16 and doing the new Eprom switcheroo that gives me the LM1 sounds with pitch functions.
Be advised that a big part of the sound is the way the LM-1 pitched the sounds - it will NOT sound the same if you just take a sample at standard pitch, load it into PT/Logic/MPC or whatever and the pitch it there.

If you want that sound you gotta either get an exact sample of it at the pitch you're looking for, or you need to get an actual LM-1. Which you should, they are pretty cool although quite rare.

Used to have one. Instant Prince vibe.
Old 15th April 2011
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OnezNZeroz View Post
It is in fact the tuned down LinnDrum Sidestick....I had one.
It is not. See my post above, it is an LM-1. I know - I've owned and used an LM-1, a LinnDrum and a Linn 9000 side by side.

It is fairly well know that Prince used an LM-1 for pretty much all of his drum sounds in the early days.
Old 15th April 2011
  #19
Lives for food
 

It's not the LM1. I also have the Linndrum and the sound is the sidestick pitched down a bit with the big black knob in the upper middle of the drum. That knob also tunes the snare drum down to flab city or up to something resembling tapping on a cigarette box.

Anyone wanna buy mine. It also has the complete forat midi retrokit and a bunch of cool Phil collins sound eproms for alternate sounds. Never been out of the studio since the day I bought direct from Linn's place in the valley.
Old 15th April 2011
  #20
Gear interested
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by BB Bill View Post
It is not. See my post above, it is an LM-1. I know - I've owned and used an LM-1, a LinnDrum and a Linn 9000 side by side.

It is fairly well know that Prince used an LM-1 for pretty much all of his drum sounds in the early days.
The machine in this picture is the machine I had. I guess it is an LM-2. I had a bunch of custom chips as well as an EPROM burner. I bought it used way back then and long since sold it so can't vouch for exactly what the factory sounds might have included, but I most definitely had the Prince Sidestick in this machine.
Attached Thumbnails
Prince Drum Machine Knocking Sound-linn_lm2.jpg  
Old 16th April 2011
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thenoodle View Post
It's not the LM1. I also have the Linndrum and the sound is the sidestick pitched down a bit with the big black knob in the upper middle of the drum. That knob also tunes the snare drum down to flab city or up to something resembling tapping on a cigarette box.

Anyone wanna buy mine. It also has the complete forat midi retrokit and a bunch of cool Phil collins sound eproms for alternate sounds. Never been out of the studio since the day I bought direct from Linn's place in the valley.
No. The sound we're talking about is not from a stock LinnDrum (although I understand you really wanna sell yours).

It is a Linn LM-1, along with most, if not all, of the drum machine sounds on the early Prince records. Do a google search. The info is all over the net.
And if you ever get the chance to use the LM-1 and the LinnDrum side by side you will know.
Old 16th April 2011
  #22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Muser View Post
yes I think it's a pitched down sidestick
That was my understanding. thumbsup
Old 17th April 2011
  #23
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Ignition Studios's Avatar
 

I made a video a couple of months ago when I was selling my Linndrum LM2:

YouTube - Kana
You can hear at about 1:40 when I start using the pitch control on the snare that the sidestick alters as well - both are linked to the same pot. I believe on the LM1 the pitch controls were separate or Prince had a mod done to make them separate.

I also did a Boys of Summer - Don Henley vid with the same machine which should be on there as well.
Old 17th April 2011
  #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ignition Studios View Post
I made a video a couple of months ago when I was selling my Linndrum LM2:

YouTube - Kana
You can hear at about 1:40 when I start using the pitch control on the snare that the sidestick alters as well - both are linked to the same pot. I believe on the LM1 the pitch controls were separate or Prince had a mod done to make them separate.

I also did a Boys of Summer - Don Henley vid with the same machine which should be on there as well.
I agree. It's the Linndrum. That's Linndrum .. as in the second model Roger had over there in the valley. Complete with Halloween orange printing. I stand by my earlier post (hey, let's fight about drum machines). There is no Lm2 ... in Roger history, there was LM1 and then Roger's second machine is simply "Linndrum". That's what is printed on the Linn.. that's the way it is in the black manual.

And in 1983-84, it was the rage for all of us (way better than the Oberheim and Emu drumulator ) and that's the Let's go crazy sound.

Those who know their Linndrums inside and out (That's Linndrum.. not lm1 or 9000 or any other flavor) know that the snare/hh/bd playing are also the stock Linndrum. In 1984 or whatever, this was also common knowledge cuz, hey ... the only game in town were three drum machines, only two with sequencers built in and all three sounded radically different from each other. By then, the earlier LM1 was way gonesville. that was so 1981.

Your video at 1:46 is the sound and when you use the built in Linn sequencer and set the quantize to 32nd note triplets, that speed is easy to do with the retuned sidestick. You can even recreate Prince's patterns pretty easily. Remember storing to cassette and sync to the 24 track !!! Ha ha ha.. .good riddance to those days.

In fact, the sidestick/snare tuning extremes made for some of the most obnoxious sounds of the 80s. I hate that sound in Prince's stuff and it's further abused with the cowbell at rapidfire 32nd note triplets in stuff like Michael Sembello's Maniac. What were we all thinking !!!! Linndrums and those hairstyles . ugggg..

Anyway, I'll sell mine and its' great capability to create knocking cowbell/sidestick vintage 80s sounds for one meeeeeeellllion dollars .
Old 18th April 2011
  #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thenoodle View Post
I agree. It's the Linndrum. That's Linndrum .. as in the second model Roger had over there in the valley. Complete with Halloween orange printing. I stand by my earlier post (hey, let's fight about drum machines).
Wow. OK. We all get that you really want to sell your LinnDrum. And it's a fine machine. But it does not have the sound the OP specifically asked for.

Quote:
Originally Posted by thenoodle View Post
Your video at 1:46 is the sound
If you actually listen to it it's pretty clear that you're wrong. THIS is the sidestick sound from the early Prince records. Not a LinnDrum, but its predecessor, the Linn LM-1. You can hear it at around 1:20.

(Btw - I have no LM-1 for sale. Just trying to dial down the misinformation on this site.)
Old 18th April 2011
  #26
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Trailmix's Avatar
 

It was the LM-1 end of story. Prince stuck very close to the LM -1. I use to play in Brownmark's band and always thought those sounds came fron the Linn Drum. He corrected me.

KK

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Old 18th April 2011
  #27
outofphase
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It sounds like a Linndrum to me (I'm not selling anything).
Old 18th April 2011
  #28
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I give up. When prince comes over for his guitar lesson, I'll just ask him.
Old 18th April 2011
  #29
Registered User
 

Purple Rain was Linndrum. Can't speak for the rest. I rented one for a weekend once to sample all those sounds and variables and patterns - into a W30!
Old 18th April 2011
  #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thenoodle View Post
I give up. When prince comes over for his guitar lesson, I'll just ask him.
GOOD...then you will finally get it!
LM-1
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