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Ooh, Baby Baby by Smokey Robinson (One Year Later)

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Gsoul82
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Randomly got the idea to try to do the first cover I posted on here again. I posted it about one year ago, exactly. Wanted to see if anybody could see any improvements here and anything that needs work.

I did "Ooh Baby Baby" by Smokey Robinson and The Miracles.

 

 

Here's the original: http://picosong.com/Edtv/

 

Here's me giving it another shot.

Differences between the first one I posted and this one is that I held a mic closer to my mouth, as opposed to singing into my phone's mic, which was sitting a few feet away, on the counter. Also, I sang the entire thing here.

http://picosong.com/EdDj/

 

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Cool Gsoul, Your tone is more solid throughout, In the original there were times the your voice kind of cut out like there was not enough air to keep things moving. This sort of thing happens to everyone when singing that low. On the new recording both the lowest lows and Highest falsetto were clear and consistent.

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I didn't bother listening to the older recording. And I really liked this one. In some ways, better than Smoky's because you got some low overtones in there that add some great depth and you have this cry sound in your voice that is both demanding and soothing. If you ever decide to make an album and put a cover on there, you need to include this one.

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I'm digging this. I always knew I'd appreciate where your voice was gonna be going.

I got a question though, how close is the mic? If I were to EQ this track I'd roll off the section below 60 hz (possibly higher) and possibly lean a bit towards some treble frequencies. Your voice is really rich which is awesome, but there is a bit of a plosive quality to it and a little shimmer would do it nicely.

A lot of your heroes who use a windier phonation are EQed that way and a long with compression it can help this kind of vocal sit in a mix. A good step might be to toy with some production at some point here cause the singing is soulful and on a good path.

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I agree with ron's notes about the low overtones and the cry that's happening at the same time, as well as Killer's mixing suggestions. You seem slightly behind the beat in some parts of the song, but it doesn't really detract from the song for me, and I'm not sure if it was intentional or not.

I love the way you end the falsetto phrases with vibrato, and each note in the riffs  have their own weight and duration - they are done thoughtfully instead of haphazardly. There's also this subtle, almost not-even-there slide into the beginning of those higher notes that is really cool stylistically instead of hitting the note straight on, that I'm hearing. I didn't know I knew this song until the chorus, and the title "baby, baby" parts, so it was nice actually paying attention to the lyrics and what was being sung this time, which I think you captured really well, with the familiar old-timey feel.

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Really cool song choice man!  Definitely a favorite of mine. :) Smokey is the true master in the soulful light head voice field.

So I heard the original and the new one and here are the improvements I can hear musically speaking:

+ Improved pitch on your vocal runs, and in general.

+ Rhythm is more on beat, the first one had a lot of rushing particularly on the second line in the original.

+ Better sound quality

+ Nicer feel for the song.

Only negative criticism I have is that the last falsetto run at the end of the second one was a bit out of place.  Other than that, only other thing is the fact that most is an octave below the Smokey version, which isn't necessarily a negative but does kinda feel underwhelming at times. 

I'm sure if you keep up what you are doing in another year you will really be looking good. :) 

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I was talking with G about this and what he needs is a real mic and an interface with direct monitor. That will clean up the recordings, a lot, just doing that.

Gear does make a difference at some levels. He has been using a headset mic, which is extremely limited in dB width.

 

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Very nice timbre Gsoul! I agree with the sound engineering/recording/producing tips people gave you. I think it will make your vocals sit better in the mix. Also, if you recorded this with a headset mic, as ronws mentioned, you would benefit immensely from a condenser mic. Cheers

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     I have a general observation Gsoul, I have noticed that most of your singing is either between E2 and C3 or between E4 and C5 with falsetto. Do you hear your voice as being the same pitch with the songs you are singing or do you realise that you are singing an Octave lower in the Low parts of a song? Nothing wrong with singing an octave lower. It sounds pretty cool with your voice and you handle it well.

     On some songs you may want to change the key a little to see how your voice responds between C3 and D4.

 

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21 hours ago, ronws said:

I didn't bother listening to the older recording. And I really liked this one. In some ways, better than Smoky's because you got some low overtones in there that add some great depth and you have this cry sound in your voice that is both demanding and soothing. If you ever decide to make an album and put a cover on there, you need to include this one.

Thanks for checking it out, Ron. You were actually one of the people that responded to the original cover. I'm starting to lean towards looking at the rest of Smokey's catalog. Cruisin' is one of my favorite songs, and I just recently found out it was his song.

 

19 hours ago, KillerKu said:

I'm digging this. I always knew I'd appreciate where your voice was gonna be going.

I got a question though, how close is the mic? If I were to EQ this track I'd roll off the section below 60 hz (possibly higher) and possibly lean a bit towards some treble frequencies. Your voice is really rich which is awesome, but there is a bit of a plosive quality to it and a little shimmer would do it nicely.

A lot of your heroes who use a windier phonation are EQed that way and a long with compression it can help this kind of vocal sit in a mix. A good step might be to toy with some production at some point here cause the singing is soulful and on a good path.

It was like 1-2 inches from my mouth. Actually ended up with an issue, because some of it was too loud, so I decreased the vocal volume, but that made the lower notes sound a bit quieter. I did this all on an iPhone app.

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2 minutes ago, Gsoul82 said:

 

It was like 1-2 inches from my mouth. Actually ended up with an issue, because some of it was too loud, so I decreased the vocal volume, but that made the lower notes sound a bit quieter. I did this all on an iPhone app.

That will do it, for a good condenser, 4 to 6 inches is considered close miking and you need a good pop shield for plosives. A lot of vocals are recorded further away. The closer you are to the mic, the larger the dynamic range of volumes too. For the dynamic range in general you'll want to use some kind of compressor. We've been long due for an explanation of how compressors work so I'll drop this here:

Overall Goal For a Compressor: Reduce the dynamic range between high volume and low volumes so the overall volume levels are closer

Features of a Compressor:

Threshold: At what volume/decibel should it begin compressing the sound. 

Ratio: How much to compress/divide the signal by. A ratio of 2 would divide the volume by 2, a ratio of 3 would divide by 3 and so forth. 

Attack: How many milliseconds the compressor should wait before it begins compressing the volume (this can be useful for drums or allowing louder consonants through)

Release: How many milliseconds it takes for the compressor to release the compression and begin the attack again 

Knee: How immediate the compressor will reach peak compression. (A softer number will ramp up to the max ratio slower, a harder number will instantly compress)

At some point I think you should get your recording stuff setup cause in my mind you owe it to yourself. For your singing and your studying. It will help you hear better what you're doing and what others are doing which can help progress, but it will also improve the quality of the recordings.

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21 hours ago, Javastorm said:

I agree with ron's notes about the low overtones and the cry that's happening at the same time, as well as Killer's mixing suggestions. You seem slightly behind the beat in some parts of the song, but it doesn't really detract from the song for me, and I'm not sure if it was intentional or not.

I love the way you end the falsetto phrases with vibrato, and each note in the riffs  have their own weight and duration - they are done thoughtfully instead of haphazardly. There's also this subtle, almost not-even-there slide into the beginning of those higher notes that is really cool stylistically instead of hitting the note straight on, that I'm hearing. I didn't know I knew this song until the chorus, and the title "baby, baby" parts, so it was nice actually paying attention to the lyrics and what was being sung this time, which I think you captured really well, with the familiar old-timey feel.


Thanks for all that, Java. It's funny we were talking about your falsetto getting a little quiet sometimes. Here, my falsetto had too much punch, for how close to my face the mic was. Ended up too loud, so I tried to lower things, but it lowered the lows a bit too.

 

18 hours ago, Jeremy Mohler said:

Really cool song choice man!  Definitely a favorite of mine. :) Smokey is the true master in the soulful light head voice field.

So I heard the original and the new one and here are the improvements I can hear musically speaking:

+ Improved pitch on your vocal runs, and in general.

+ Rhythm is more on beat, the first one had a lot of rushing particularly on the second line in the original.

+ Better sound quality

+ Nicer feel for the song.

Only negative criticism I have is that the last falsetto run at the end of the second one was a bit out of place.  Other than that, only other thing is the fact that most is an octave below the Smokey version, which isn't necessarily a negative but does kinda feel underwhelming at times. 

I'm sure if you keep up what you are doing in another year you will really be looking good. :) 

Thanks for listening to both, man. I know this is more involved than a regular review.

I understand what you're saying about the last run. I did the one before it a certain way, and for the last one, I ended up just deciding to run until the end of the song. Also noted what you're saying about octaves.

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On 1/20/2016 at 11:24 AM, Gneetapp said:

Very nice timbre Gsoul! I agree with the sound engineering/recording/producing tips people gave you. I think it will make your vocals sit better in the mix. Also, if you recorded this with a headset mic, as ronws mentioned, you would benefit immensely from a condenser mic. Cheers

Thanks for listening, Gnee.

 

On 1/20/2016 at 0:09 PM, MDEW said:

     I have a general observation Gsoul, I have noticed that most of your singing is either between E2 and C3 or between E4 and C5 with falsetto. Do you hear your voice as being the same pitch with the songs you are singing or do you realise that you are singing an Octave lower in the Low parts of a song? Nothing wrong with singing an octave lower. It sounds pretty cool with your voice and you handle it well.

     On some songs you may want to change the key a little to see how your voice responds between C3 and D4.

 

As a personal thing, I don't try to sing the covers like the original, so I'll end up doing things like that. I do that all the time, so it's not something I think about often, but I do know when I'm not singing note-for-note.

I had done the first one this way and Jens thought it sounded cool, so I kept doing things like that. Before that, I didn't really like using the lower parts of my range.

 

 

17 hours ago, KillerKu said:

That will do it, for a good condenser, 4 to 6 inches is considered close miking and you need a good pop shield for plosives. A lot of vocals are recorded further away. The closer you are to the mic, the larger the dynamic range of volumes too. For the dynamic range in general you'll want to use some kind of compressor. We've been long due for an explanation of how compressors work so I'll drop this here:

Overall Goal For a Compressor: Reduce the dynamic range between high volume and low volumes so the overall volume levels are closer

Features of a Compressor:

Threshold: At what volume/decibel should it begin compressing the sound. 

Ratio: How much to compress/divide the signal by. A ratio of 2 would divide the volume by 2, a ratio of 3 would divide by 3 and so forth. 

Attack: How many milliseconds the compressor should wait before it begins compressing the volume (this can be useful for drums or allowing louder consonants through)

Release: How many milliseconds it takes for the compressor to release the compression and begin the attack again 

Knee: How immediate the compressor will reach peak compression. (A softer number will ramp up to the max ratio slower, a harder number will instantly compress)

At some point I think you should get your recording stuff setup cause in my mind you owe it to yourself. For your singing and your studying. It will help you hear better what you're doing and what others are doing which can help progress, but it will also improve the quality of the recordings.

Don't know anything about anything recorded related, so I guess I'll keep a note of this. Thank you for sharing.

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I like that you do things your way. Dio did it.

Led Zep did covers so different you almost didn't recognize the song.

And there was quite a sonic difference between Joan Baez's original of "Diamonds And Rust" the fast metal cover by Judas Priest, who later, revamped it to be an acoustic ballad, closer to what Joan had originally done, but still different.

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1 hour ago, ronws said:

I like that you do things your way. Dio did it.

Led Zep did covers so different you almost didn't recognize the song.

And there was quite a sonic difference between Joan Baez's original of "Diamonds And Rust" the fast metal cover by Judas Priest, who later, revamped it to be an acoustic ballad, closer to what Joan had originally done, but still different.

Thank you. I don't consider myself an artist, in the least, but I believe in artistry. You should insert some of yourself in each song.

Who's this Dio guy? He's mentioned in like 75% of the threads.

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2 hours ago, Gsoul82 said:

Thank you. I don't consider myself an artist, in the least, but I believe in artistry. You should insert some of yourself in each song.

Who's this Dio guy? He's mentioned in like 75% of the threads.

I only knew of him from 1960s American Bandstand where he was one of the original Teen Idols singing love songs.

Eventually he sang for Black Sabbath. He went on to become the Ultimate Metal Rock God.

 

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18 hours ago, MDEW said:

I only knew of him from 1960s American Bandstand where he was one of the original Teen Idols singing love songs.

Eventually he sang for Black Sabbath. He went on to become the Ultimate Metal Rock God.

 

 

14 hours ago, ronws said:

All hail the late, great saint, Ronnie James Dio.

 

 

 

14 hours ago, ronws said:

And here is, among the peasants, offering sage advice.

 

 

 

14 hours ago, ronws said:

And when he was with Black Sabbath, this was a big hit for them.

 

 

 

Watched all of these videos. I can't believe I never heard of this guy.

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