Rated Blue - Joy


I’ve been away for a while and have a lot of catching up to do with many of the new music postings here… :wink:

This will be the title track for our next album, I had posted some early solo demos of this song a few years ago but it is now finished and much better represented as a full band recording. For the time being I’m posting it as a tagged MP3 on my webspace but will post the finished album here when (and if) it gets finished. For this project we’ve welcomed a new contributor Dave Williams doing keyboard work and this song features some great work by him on our studio Hammond organ, in general everybody gets a chance to let loose a bit on this one… :twisted:

Recorded with Ardour 5.12 on AV Linux 2019.

Comments, questions and critiques welcomed!
http://bandshed.net/music/RATED_BLUE/CR … ession.mp3


That’s pretty rockin. I had to turn it up and listen again.

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This was a really enjoyable listen. That’s not surprising, because I always enjoy Rated Blue, but I think that the addition of Dave on the Hammond makes this one even better. I’m curious what tech (mics, amps, plugins, etc) you used to record, mix, and master this?

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Thanks @ccaudle!

Glad it was worth one listen and grateful for the second one! :slight_smile:

Hi @Michael_Willis!

Thanks for the kind words, I agree the Hammond is a beautiful combination of glue and mortar, my dream band has always been a guitar trio + hammond and rhodes but until now I haven’t known any keyboard players that were into what we were doing, Dave is a godsend and a great person to work with.

Hmmm tech stuff:

Drums were the ‘Red Zeppelin’ kit miked with an AKG D-112 on the kick, Sennheiser e609’s on all the shells and a now discontinued ART large diaphragm tube mic hung overhead… Guitars were done with a custom baritone telecaster tuned B-B through a Fender Vibrolux Reverb tube amp, A bit of extra overdrive and some harmonized riffs were provided with a MOD Duo, the guitar solo was tracked through a Vox wah pedal with just the amp cranked to let the tubes do their thing and lastly the choppy tremolo on the verse lead ins is a TC electronics pipeline pedal with the DISTRHO ping pong pan plugin on the channel. The organ is a Hammond L-100 (little bro of the B3 but essentially the same guts) it was run through a 710 Leslie speaker with separate mics on the rotor and drum. The bass is a Fender jazz 5 string of 1980’s vintage run through a Traynor Monobloc head into a gargantuan Cerwin Vega 18" cabinet. Vocals were tracked with a Blue ‘Baby bottle’ large diaphragm condenser mic.

As far as plugins there are not many EQ’s and no Reverbs, the kick drum has a combo of the Calf Bass enhancer and the linuxDSP PEQ-1A, the snare uses a uhe Presswerk setting called ‘Snare excited’ the toms have Ardour’s a-compressor with the ‘poppy snare’ preset. The hand percussion (congas, shakers, cowbell, clave and tambourine) all have the amazing Barry’s Satan Maximizer plugin employed with various amounts of squeezin’. The guitars and bass have some compression from the linuxDSP DYN-500, the lead vocals have some TAP Tubewarmth and also the DYN-500 and the harmony vocals have the same processing plus use of the TAP fractal doubler to fatten them up. All of the room delay sounds are done super old school by duplicating the tracks and hand dragging the duplicate tracks until the delay sounds good and then panning them. The master bus has the linuxDSP Black EQ2 pre fader giving a 3db cut @ 250hz and a 2db boost at 1khz, post fader there is the Airwindows ‘StereoFX’ plugin for some subtle widening and then the uhe Presswork Limiter with it’s ‘punchy’ preset…

Prolly TMI, hope I haven’t bored you to death…:thinking:

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super old school

Ha! There’s nothing wrong with super old school. You have a great combination of sounds, I love how phat and warm the electric bass comes through without muddying things up, and everything else of course has its own place and chance to shine.

I keep thinking that I want to try a large diaphragm condenser mic, but they can get expensive really quickly; I should probably get some more mileage out of my small diaphragm condensers first.

When I saw ‘Red Zeppelin’ I thought, “Wow, I was sure that the percussion was live,” but then I remembered that you’re the owner of the real Red Zeppelin kit :rofl:

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Haha, yeah I guess that’s kinda confusing about the drumkit, I always feel like I’m talking to the same 10 people and we know each others projects…

I think with mics obviously value is important but many of the low end and entry level ART, Blue, Apex, etc. LD Condensers are pretty good spec-wise, its just as important to have the right ‘type’ of mic for the job and the brand and cost are the next most important factor. I had an Apex 415 I bought on sale that sounded great but unfortunately something died in the circuitry after about 6 years so that is a concern as well, often the freqquency response and signal to noise ratio etc are surprisingly good in the lower end mics but the build quality can be risky…

I have been remastering some older stuff and I had a live track I blended with a studio recording and your Dragonfly Room Reverb was phenomenal at getting the ambience to sound natural and balanced, great work on those plugins!! :clap:

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yo that was something! thanks for sharing.

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Hi @GMaq,

Sounds great! I really like the mix, especially the background vocals, really brings it together. Guitar had some nice punch to it too… :slight_smile:

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Thanks! Appreciate the listen…:grinning:

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Hi @cchoowee!

Thanks a lot, considering the guitar is a baritone I was pleased that the low tuning sat out well in the mix…


Interesting sound. I thing it’s hard to mix bass guitar in the left channel. and b.drum with long decay. I really like the sound of drums, guitars, organs and many other things. Thanks

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Thanks for the comments and listening, I like panning the bass and guitars separately, It’s an old 1960’s thing and is rarely done in modern commercial production but this isn’t really commercially appealing music. You make a good point about the long decay in the kick drum, it does muddy things up a little bit.