Recording Drums? How many mics do you use?

Current Tape Reviews

Artist Name:
James Campbell
Date Posted:
March 2011
Equipment Used:

iMac 2.66 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo w/ 4GB RAM and PreSonus FireStudio Tube interface running Apple Logic Pro 9, Native Instruments Guitar Rig 4, Waves Bundle, Discrete Drums loops; 1984 USA Fender Stratocaster w/ Seymour Duncan Antiquity pick-ups, Fender Zone Bass, Behringer DI400P Ultra-DI, Carvin DCM 1000 Power Amp with 2 Carvin 1562 Loudspeakers, Sony MHC-MC1 Mini HiFi Component System, AKG M70 Headphones.

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Production Notes & Credits:

"Tread" is a blues instrumental. James wrote, programmed, played and recorded the track in classic one-man-band fashion.

Reviewed By: Marty Peters
Rating: 5
This month's Spotlight is a great one-man-band effort that features some killer tones and a creative arrangement. We should also point out that tracks like these just don't fall out of the sky, folks. As you will see, James' work ethic and attention to detail contributed mightily to the overall success of his submission. Let's follow the process as told to us by James in his cover letter:

"I started with five tracks of drums: kick, snare, stereo toms, stereo overheads, stereo room mic. These tracks were loops downloaded from the Discrete Drums Loop Library. I used no plug-ins on the individual drum tracks; however I bused all of the drum tracks to an auxiliary at -10.0 dB. I used a Logic drum group preset called "Vintage Kit". The inserts included were ClipDistortion, Channel EQ, and Space Designer reverb."

"The bass signal path was a DI into the tube SuperChannel of the PreSonus interface. Inside the DAW I copied the bass track and used a different set of plug-ins to separate low end and high end frequencies. The low-end bass track has a Channel EQ with the highpass filter set at 50 Hz, followed by the Waves MaxxBass plug-in set on the medium preset. After that is the Logic Compressor with the FET electric bass preset. The final insert on the track is Logic's Bass Amp with the Top Class DI Deep preset, slightly tailored for low end. The high-end bass track has the same Channel EQ and Logic Compressor, then the Logic Bass Amp with the New American Bright preset tailored for more high end."

"The guitar signal path was also a DI into the SuperChannel of the PreSonus. The main track is a custom made stereo Guitar Rig 4 preset made by me. That same track was then copied and panned hard to the right. I made a custom preset using Logic's Pedalboard and Amp Designer. The last insert is the Waves CLA-3A Compressor. I have it set to compression with 5.50 dB of gain and 4.00 dB of peak reduction."

"The last instrument is a Logic Classic Rock Organ loop. The organ is panned 50% left and has the Logic Compressor with the Type R Organ preset. On the output track I placed four of Logic's built-in plug-ins: the Linear Phase EQ in default mode; the Multipressor with the Fast Attack 4-Band preset and the highest band boosted 3.0 dB, the autogain turned on, and the output is set at -4.0 dB; the Adaptive Limiter set at default; and the MultiMeter."

See, we told ya! Seriously, though, the proof of the pudding is in the tasting, and this is one tasty track! The tone of James' electric guitar is superb, as is the bass, with its deep yet articulate growl -- all that work on the bass track pays off in a big way!

We also dig the "room" sound on the drum kit, and the programming is totally believable. Lastly, the entire track has a huge presence, aided in no small measure by the lack of clutter in the mix. Fine stuff indeed!

Summary: Blood, sweat, and tears, baby... but so worth it!

Contact: James Campbell,
About: Marty Peters

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Kef America

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