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Fixing the volatile : studio vocal performance techniques

Howlett, Mike (2007) Fixing the volatile : studio vocal performance techniques. In Journal of the Art of Record Production, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane.

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    Abstract

    The process of compiling a studio vocal performance from many takes can often result in the performer producing a new complete performance once this new "best of" assemblage is heard back. This paper investigates the ways that the physical process of recording can alter vocal performance techniques, and in particular, the establishing of a definitive melodic and rhythmic structure.

    Drawing on his many years of experience as a commercially successful producer, including the attainment of a Grammy award, the author will analyse the process of producing a “credible” vocal performance in depth, with specific case studies and examples. The question of authenticity in rock and pop will also be discussed and, in this context, the uniqueness of the producer’s role as critical arbiter – what gives the producer the authority to make such performance evaluations?

    Techniques for creating conditions in the studio that are conducive to vocal performances, in many ways a very unnatural performance environment, will be discussed, touching on areas such as the psycho-acoustic properties of headphone mixes, the avoidance of intimidatory practices, and a methodology for inducing the perception of a “familiar” acoustic environment.

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    215 since deposited on 16 Aug 2010
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    ID Code: 33275
    Item Type: Conference Paper
    Additional URLs:
    Keywords: record production, vocal performance, music
    Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING (190000) > PERFORMING ARTS AND CREATIVE WRITING (190400) > Music Performance (190407)
    Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING (190000) > PERFORMING ARTS AND CREATIVE WRITING (190400) > Musicology and Ethnomusicology (190409)
    Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING (190000) > PERFORMING ARTS AND CREATIVE WRITING (190400) > Performing Arts and Creative Writing not elsewhere classified (190499)
    Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
    Current > Schools > Music & Sound
    Copyright Owner: Copyright 2007 Mike Howlett
    Deposited On: 16 Aug 2010 12:41
    Last Modified: 16 Aug 2010 12:41

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