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How often do you edit even really good drummers these days??
Old 27th February 2006
  #1
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How often do you edit even really good drummers these days??

Just wondering how often you find yourselves editing even seasoned session drummers when "tightening up" song parts?
Old 27th February 2006
  #2
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paterno's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by neve1073
Just wondering how often you find yourselves editing even seasoned session drummers when "tightening up" song parts?
If I hear something that bugs me, i just fix it. Hopefully, the take that's been chosen is a good one to start...

John
Old 27th February 2006
  #3
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andredb's Avatar
 

never had a single keeper take in like.. 6 years!
i's say 30% of the times is minor editing 60% medium to heavy editing and 10% is almost unethical editing!

I sometime use a pad for kik as most of the trubles come from there...
Old 27th February 2006
  #4
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When I started out recording in the mid-late'80s, the kind of editing power we have now was science fiction. Sometimes I wonder on the whole if music is actually better served or not by digital editing power.

It seems like even session players these days expect some gentle editing. Gone are the days when someone like Bernard Purdie would walk in and slam out a perfect take with maybe one punch.

I was explaining to a friend that when I'm engineering myself, i will play a part over and over again, if I need to, until I get as close to a perfect take because I'd rather do that than comp the parts. He thinks I'm crazy, but I guess I enjoy playing my instrument whereas editing is work.

DAWs have made musicians lazier.
Old 27th February 2006
  #5
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I just finished up my album. I hired a drummer I met on here (gearslutz). It was awesome. I'd say out of the whole 74min worth of stuff on the album I made 3 or 4 minor edits.
Old 27th February 2006
  #6
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if it's a really good drummer, punching a break or fill for arrangement purposes is no problem. if it's really bad drummer....
Old 27th February 2006
  #7
84K
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I am working with a great drummer right now... We are getting ready to start cutting... prepro right now. We are using a click, but I can guarantee there will be no edits. He plays to a click in the prepro and there will be no problem there. Best energy take will be the take. RNR
Old 27th February 2006
  #8
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once we were recording with mike baird on drums. he literally disappeared the click. i thought something was wrong with the click track. when i asked him if he could hear the click he started playing a teensy bit behind the beat... just enough so that we could hear it!

now that's a good drummer, and he had no problem with our punching him at all.
Old 27th February 2006
  #9
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paterno's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by neve1073
Sometimes I wonder on the whole if music is actually better served or not by digital editing power.

It seems like even session players these days expect some gentle editing. Gone are the days when someone like Bernard Purdie would walk in and slam out a perfect take with maybe one punch.

I was explaining to a friend that when I'm engineering myself, i will play a part over and over again, if I need to, until I get as close to a perfect take because I'd rather do that than comp the parts. He thinks I'm crazy, but I guess I enjoy playing my instrument whereas editing is work.
It completely depends on the user. What's the difference between punching in Bernard for a few bars or tweaking those few bars [or copying a better few bars] in the computer? Nothing. You're still fixing something you are not happy with. The biggest difference, for better or worse, is that Bernard now does not have to be there to fix it. Remember, there was plenty of analog tape editing going on before the digital age. There were some folks who would physically measure distance between every kick and cut out any discrepancies! And there was a lot more room for error with tape punch in's and out's -- punching in the wrong spot, or bad punches [ever do punches on an ATR-124 ??]. I definitely do not miss comping vocals on 2" !!

Quote:
Originally Posted by neve1073
DAWs have made musicians lazier.
Funny --that's the same thing they said when mulitrack recorders started being used in place of the 'live to 2 track' approach. In the end, it's not the arrow, it's the Indian...

Cheers,
John
Old 28th February 2006
  #10
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I remember cutting together 6 takes from Bernard Purdie into one great one.

And "these days" it's a bit easier to, for example, plug in an alternative drum fill here and there... but on the whole, I edit drums only SLIGHTLY more than I ever did.

the difference is that now it's easily undoable.

I DON'T correct time though. Unless it is absolutley necessary.
Old 28th February 2006
  #11
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Peter Morrison's Avatar
 

I just did a session where the only drum edits we did were to fix a bad hit

out of 4 songs recorded we only needed 3 edits, and they were only to fix an entrance after a long pause, an inconsistent hit on the snare, and a weird double kick thing

Everyone was very happy
Old 28th February 2006
  #12
Like neve1073 above I don't edit very much at all on drums..... Now I will do crazy punch in's an out's but not much editing.....

Back in my analog days I would get bands to play and punch the parts where needed, I got very good at drum punching on the fly. The nice thing was at the end of the day the band knew they were playing the parts, not me.

Moved on to ADATs and punching was way easier than flying parts with track offsets (it could be done with bounces between machines but I never did it).

Now I am on a DAW and I have all the power in the world to edit and move parts... and I still go old school. Punch it until it is right. I will do a few little moves here and there if I find things are not grooving into a bridge or something, maybe one or two little edits (and I mean maybe like a 64th note or so) but for the most part I leave it alone.
Old 28th February 2006
  #13
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ImJohn's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheReal7
I just finished up my album. I hired a drummer I met on here (gearslutz). It was awesome. I'd say out of the whole 74min worth of stuff on the album I made 3 or 4 minor edits.

You should mention his name so others might hire him. thumbsup (no, it wasn't me!)
Old 28th February 2006
  #14
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On our last album the song "Door By The River" has drums that are an end to end take with no punches, no edits, no nothing. It was to the click, first take, and about ten minutes after I learned the new arrangement (brand new bridge). I am fairly proud of that. There is a spot where I speed up ever so slightly while crashing around, but nobody else could tell and vetoed doing an edit or punch to fix it.
I agree with a few sentiments. I, like neve1073, would rather play the part right rather than edit it together. Time constraints don't always allow it and if copy/pasting a bar fixes a take with good energy I am all for it. I also agree with John Paterno that the best thing about computer editing is that it is undoable. I like that William Wittman doesn't do much more editing digitally than he did analog, and that he doesn't correct timing. That he doesn't do much more editing digitally leads me to the conclusion musicians are still being held to the same standard (I like to listen to a performance and think "man, what a great guitar player" not "man, what a great sound editor").
My hope is that the next album we record is done Band style (as in Levon, Ricko, Richard, Robbie, and Garth recording in Sammy Davis' pool house- all live off the floor and when the tape stopped the song was done). I am hoping we do some songs without the click, but I am ready to accept using it if it becomes necessary. Might even be in the next two months.
I don't think of myself as the worlds greatest drummer in case people think I am blowing my own horn. I know lots of people on the scene who are better drummers than me. I don't do session work because I like to perfect the parts and really find something that works for the song, plus I am not yet at the level where I can walk in and play anything perfectly to click while reading or nail five different feels the first time perfectly (which I think is what a session drummer should be able to do).
I find it telling that some of our most experienced members, guys with impressive resumes, are weighing in on this topic. It's an important issue. I think that nudging and gridding and either accepting subpar performances or editing out the feel of performances is a main contributor to the decline of good music in the last ten years. Already I hear lay people derisively referring to stuff as "Pro Tools Rock". And it's not Pro Tools that is the problem, it's the application.
David
Old 28th February 2006
  #15
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daeve's Avatar
 

one thing i've found myself doing more and more is recording each part seperatley then peicing it together after. i find it easier to get a near perfct take but no feel at all

dave
Old 1st March 2006
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ImJohn
You should mention his name so others might hire him. thumbsup (no, it wasn't me!)
Hye John, I talked to the drummer and he said it was alright I mention who he is.

His name is Jean (Bigbone on here) and is from Montreal. Total class act and great guy to work with. We did everything over the net and it was a pleasure. He tracked drums to my already tracked guitars and bass and it turned out perfect. If fact, some people are convinced it is drum programming, it is that good. I will be hiring in the future no doubt.

Old 1st March 2006
  #17
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Quote:
If fact, some people are convinced it is drum programming
How do you know it wasn't

JUST KIDDING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Old 1st March 2006
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kats
How do you know it wasn't

JUST KIDDING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
oh, a little thing called groove heh
Old 1st March 2006
  #19
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C_F_H_13's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by andredb
i's say 30% of the times is minor editing 60% medium to heavy editing and 10% is almost unethical editing!
.
For me it's about 10% minor editing, 80% medium, and 10% "I want to quit music forever" style editing. Unfortunately, the insane level of editing seems to be happening more to me this year than all other years combined...dammit.
Old 1st March 2006
  #20
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bigbone's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheReal7
Hye John, I talked to the drummer and he said it was alright I mention who he is.

His name is Jean (Bigbone on here) and is from Montreal. Total class act and great guy to work with. We did everything over the net and it was a pleasure. He tracked drums to my already tracked guitars and bass and it turned out perfect. If fact, some people are convinced it is drum programming, it is that good. I will be hiring in the future no doubt.

Thank you Scott for your kind words,and it was cool to do your album,you did make my life a little easy by poviding me with clean and inspiring music to play on...thank's again for your trust......

And by the way you should check scott record , there is some pretty good music in it,,,,,
Old 1st March 2006
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kats
How do you know it wasn't

JUST KIDDING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
if you don't know the differance bettwen real drum and drum machine, go back to
the start............

JUST KIDDING ALSO........
Old 1st March 2006
  #22
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toolskid's Avatar
 

totally depends on the project! Some people want that hard quantized 'feel' and others prefer it to groove and move! Sometimes I'll re-groove a performance to a break if I want it totally locked, other times I may have to regroove the drummers part if arrangement changes are made. I've had plenty of sessions with no edits or maybe two or three slight adjustments to singles hits. I've had several with total rescue jobs, but I think the thread was about great drummers so sorry for going OT! I've been a situation where I've seen one of my hero's being tightened - could'nt believe it, he was rocking SO HARD. Ah well... we all know what goes on.
Old 1st March 2006
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toolskid
I've had several with total rescue jobs, but I think the thread was about great drummers so sorry for going OT!
I've seen the pictures from one of your chop shop sessions!



I was tracking myself w/ a click last night, and had 2 punches. (and possibly a nice big edit)

I was listening back, first verse is groovin, but the second is killin. I haven't moved it yet, but I want to, because I can. The first verse is very good, and should be left alone. I feel so dirty.

The 2 punches were specific fills where I played a bit sterile, but really needed to come off the click a bit. In, out, no biggie..

Andrew
Old 1st March 2006
  #24
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Like 1073 said, if I'm recoring myself, I'd like to play it right and not edit, however, if you end up doing a bunch of takes, it can get very old and you can loose the vibe and excitement. Lately, I've been using the first take as much as I can and editing that if I have to, just to keep the vibe fresh. I guess there's always a trade off.

But maybe it's not that wierd to have music that's so rigid. If you think about classical composers, they wrote everything out in a very quantitized way, and that's still what were referencing today... so is the trade-off to editing with digital that we focus on the composition? I think editing like painting with sounds.
Old 2nd March 2006
  #25
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No one's mentioned that if you punch that rough spot or two with a great drummer, you're done with the track - once you start editing, you can spend hours...
Old 2nd March 2006
  #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Martin
No one's mentioned that if you punch that rough spot or two with a great drummer, you're done with the track - once you start editing, you can spend hours...

God.. isn't that the truth!!!

There are all kinds of drummers.

1. The guy who plays GREAT live... but kind of freaks out in the studio and is all over the place.
2. The guys who plays great... but hits like a girl (no offense to the occasional girl drummer that can smack the hell out of the skins).
3. The guys who plays great... but hit's too hard and brass/drums are all out of whack dynamically...
4. The guy who is pretty good but just can't seem to get a whole take.
5. The guy who who hits the drums well, but has NO groove.
6. The guy who hits well... but can't play to a click... or keep tempo.
7. The guy who just sucks and is all over the place.
8. The guy who can pretty much give you whatever you want... and usually in a take or two.

Probably more too...

I think I have worked with just about all of them. Drums are tough to get right... there are so many factors:

1. The dudes personality. You have to figure out how to communicate early... cuz you get his "head space" out of whack.. .and you may not get anything good.
2. Getting the drums SOUNDING good. It's art of engineering that is really tough to get right... and don't forget... the drums have to sound good, be tuned... and even the perfect kit, with the perfect tuning... can sound horrible with the wrong player.
3. Working out what should/should not be played.
4. Deciding, based on time, ability of the player, money, personalities/emotions, what you can continue to pound away at until you get it right... or edit later.
5. Then there is sheer fatigue. If it's a long session... and you are doing a lot of takes... your drummer will just get tired. Then it's hell, sheer hell.

All that said... I find I do at least a couple of edits on most projects, but have been overjoyed occasionally to have to do none at all. Believe me... I get the number of those drummers!!
Old 2nd March 2006
  #27
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mixer's Avatar
 

the better the drummer the less i touch it...not interested in perfect just right for the music..
Old 2nd March 2006
  #28
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macr0w's Avatar
 

I think the drummer should do the editing. I allways say "Is this my project or yours?" If it's something simple then yeah. But if the performance sucks then I'll tell them it sucks and play it for them and say listen to this. Their going to pay for studio time whether I'm editing or their playing. I say this from a drummers point of view. Back in the day, my drum instructor was a real MF'er he studied under Joe Morello and was conservatory trained taught music at college level and played with the symphony orchestra. There was no room for drums that need editing. and I appreciate all that I learned from him.
Old 3rd March 2006
  #29
When I'm fortunate enough to be recording a real pro, no edits are usually necessary, but occasionally we may change something for creative reasons. You can spot a real pro a mile away. The session practically runs itself. It's such a joy to work with great players. It's quicker, easier to get sounds, and easier to mix later. Unfortunately, most of the time you're not blessed with such fine musicians. In the average session, even the supposedly "good" drummers benefit from a little pro tools massage, but I do try to do as little as possible in favor of getting the best possible take in the first palce. They can still be loads of fun to work with, however, and the music can still be very good, but it takes a little more work.
Old 3rd March 2006
  #30
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RKrizman's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by neve1073
Just wondering how often you find yourselves editing even seasoned session drummers when "tightening up" song parts?
Absolutely never.

There are so many great drummers out there who can blow away any edit job you can do that there's really no point. I mean, who are you going to let decide where the beats fall, a great drummer or a Protools editor?

-R
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