Blue Cat Audio Tutorial

Vocal Production Masterclass

17 Tutorials (2hr 59min 13sec)
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    Tutorial 1

    Setting Up for the Vocal Tracking Session


    In this first video, Marcus goes through the writing/production session for the track being used in this series, and talks about the different approaches one can take when re-tracking new final vocals. He then goes on to set up a new session, and speaks about proper gain staging and track naming conventions before the recording session takes place.

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    Tutorial 2

    The Playback Session


    Having completed the new vocal tracking session, Marcus goes through all the raw tracks that were recorded. With critical listening, he identifies the key areas that will require specific attention, and makes some mental notes for potential workflows.

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    Tutorial 3

    Editing Tools & Concepts


    Marcus goes over some of his most commonly used editing tools, and shortcuts that he uses on a regular basis, when editing and working with vocal tracks in Studio One.

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    Tutorial 4

    Coming Up with a Game Plan


    In this video, Marcus speaks about the importance of coming up with a strategic game plan, that allows us to slowly notch away at finessing our vocal tracks into a polished production.

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    Tutorial 5

    Comping & Editing the Lead Vocals Pt. 1


    Marcus tackles comping together the 1st verse, and speaks about some workflows and concepts to keep in mind while comping.

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    Tutorial 6

    Comping & Editing the Lead Vocals Pt. 2


    Having already tackled verse 2, Marcus comps together the bridge, and offers some useful tips for correcting inconsistencies between takes

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    Tutorial 7

    Comping & Editing the Lead Vocals Pt. 3


    Learn how to manually edit harsh sibilant areas of the vocal, as well as how to tackle plosives in order to get raw vocal tracks sounding smoother prior to applying processing to them.

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    Tutorial 8

    Pitch Correcting the Lead Vocals Pt. 1


    In this video, Marcus begins to pitch correct the lead vocals using Melodyne and Waves Tune Real-Time. He also goes over some useful concepts and workflows that can be implemented during this stage, to streamline the process and stay organized.

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    Tutorial 9

    Pitch Correcting the Lead Vocals Pt. 2


    Marcus continues to work on the lead vocals using Melodyne, and demonstrates some useful tips that can be applied for more transparent results.

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    Tutorial 10

    Setting Up FX Returns


    Learn how to save time and effort in your mix, by saving and importing FX chains from a template or external session for commonly used effects processing chains.

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    Tutorial 11

    Comping & Editing the BG Vocals Pt. 1


    Marcus demonstrates how to use manual editing, clip gain, audio slipping, & time compression and expansion to pocket a set of back ground vocal tracks to the lead vocal, before applying pitch correction.

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    Tutorial 12

    Comping & Editing the BG Vocals Pt. 2


    Learn how to use Revoice Pro in your workflow to time and pitch align background Vocal unison tracks to the lead vocal - or to create incredibly realistic sounding Double's from a single mono lead vocal.

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    Tutorial 13

    Pitch Correcting & Time Aligning the BG Vocals Pt. 1


    In this video Marcus demonstrates how to tackle time aligning complex vocal stacks with ease, using a combination of Revoice Pro, manual editing, and the powerful Vocalign Pro.

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    Tutorial 14

    Pitch Correcting & Time Aligning the BG Vocals Pt. 2


    Marcus carries on with the vocal stacks, this time turning to Melodyne for fine tuning the pitch correction, and editing the pocket.

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    Tutorial 15

    Using Your DAW's Built-In Time Alignment Tools


    Learn how to harness the power of the built-in tools of your own DAW, for tackling time compression and expansion of vocal phrases on a budget.

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    Tutorial 16

    Final Edit Pass


    Massaging The Pocket & Adding Additional Vocal Enhancements - In this video, Marcus demonstrates some workflow tips for adding additional vocal production enhancements via Melodyne, and smoothing / finessing transitions with manual editing techniques

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    Tutorial 17

    The Final Mix Breakdown


    Marcus plays through his final mix, and speaks to his approach for a simple yet, impactful vibe. In addition, he offers some tips on how to streamline a mix for easy import into external sessions.

This is it! If you use vocals in your music, Marcus Huyskens Vocal Production Masterclass leaves no stone unturned, covering everything you need to know to produce world-class vocal tracks that will make your productions legit.

Marcus covers it all from setting up the vocal tracking session, the playback session, vocal editing tools and concepts, creating a game plan, comping vocals, pitch correcting, adding FX, background vocals, time-alignment, and much more!

See the individual tutorial descriptions below for more info. If you want the definitive guide for producing vocals in your DAW, stop what youre doing and experience Vocal Production Masterclass today!

1. When did you start dabbling in music?

I started playing piano at around 5 years old, after which point I switched to the Guitar at around age 10. I was pretty lucky, as my parents had quite a nice selection of records, spanning across multiple genres, that I could listen too. I would sit by the record player with headphones on, and close my eyes, and imagine myself playing along with them. I listened to much "older" music than the current music my age group was listening to. I continued to play the guitar and by 16, had developed some pretty decent chops, and was playing lots of local jazz clubs & restaurants with a couple friends. However after the birth of my first son, I took a break from gigging, and made the transition to the other side of the glass. However, I still rely on, and draw upon my abilities as a musician all the time, as I feel that an engineer, producer, or mixer, with a decent understanding of music, tempo, groove, theory, and genres, is a step ahead of the game.

2. What training have you had?

Pretty much 23 years of locking myself in a chair, and working diligently on my craft. Over the years, Ive also had had the great pleasure of working with other fantastic engineers, being able to pick their brains, observe and sponge in all the information that they offered. I still maintain, that you can learn more from a couple weeks, or even a couple days working with a seasoned pro, then you can in a year or 2 of school. Although I was set on going to audio engineering for school, my parents insisted on me going to school for business marketing, which didn't really work out, as I spent most of my time cutting class and going to my older sisters media arts classes, offering up myself as an actor, or voice over actor, (whatever they needed) for all of their student productions, so that I could learn more about audio/video production. It wasn't quite an audio engineering per se, but it was a close second!

Although Ive never had any formal education, I can recall my early "lessons" from my father, of cutting tape, and working with analogue gear. Being given tasks, like recording music from a record to tape, then cutting the tape, to make edits. The process of gain staging, EQ, fader riding, compression, adding reverb, etc etc. Also most importantly, my lessons in understanding the psychology behind getting the best performance from your artist/talent, which I was able to comprehend, and which I still keep with me, and use to this day.

3. When did you get into recording?

By about 11 years old, after listening to countless records in awe, I became interested, (or maybe even obsessed) with the whole recording process. When I badgered my father enough, he eventually dusted off his old TEAC 3340 reel to reel, an old mixer, and a spring reverb for me, that had been meticulously stored and well taken care of. Needless to say, It was pretty much game over from that point on. I fell in love with the notion of being able to capture a moment in time, a performance of art, and preserving it. In the very beginning, I spent most of my time re-recording old records, and singing and playing over top while tracking them, playing around with different microphones, then began a crash course in the basics.

In a sense I was very fortunate, as in addition to being a producer/camera man, my father was a pretty savvy audio engineer, who used to record/mix the music for all his documentaries / productions he worked on back in the day. So, at a very young age, & before the times of the “Mbox" and portable interfaces, little did I know, that I was receiving some very thorough training that became the foundation of my craft. As i grew more comfortable with the gear, I started inviting other children over to my "studio" (parents living room-LoL) who were in bands, so that I could record them. My parents were pretty supportive, often allowing me to use this area, and make noise to do something I enjoyed.

Fast forward a couple years to high school, As my band was looking to get some gigs, I was able to record our own demo's to hand out to clients, and continued to work on my craft, eventually opening up my first studio in 2002. From there, everything else is pretty much history.

4. People you have worked with/for?

The majority of my work has been on the Indi scene music wise, working with local talent, and also internationally as a mixer for various clients in different genres. In 2010/2011 I shifted my efforts, and began working on ad spots, both writing, and recording/mixing with different composers, which eventually brought me down the path of actually developing my own set of sample libraries for composers to use in music production, and television/film/games. This has really opened up some doors for me and expanded my cliental into areas I would have never imagined. I continue to work with talented artists, and composers on various projects, in addition, I also do some voice over work for different audio brands.

5. Why are you so good at training people?

Tough one to answer, but, i'd like to think that I teach people the way that I prefer to be taught. Which is building a foundation of knowledge, then adding to it in stages, with clear steps. I try to stay on point, and simplify a process down to its core level. I find that in general, there are a lot of tutorials that leave you scratching your head sometimes. I try to avoid that. Ive often had friends say to me, that I simplify things, so if thats the case, then I hope I can continue to do so.

Products by Marcus

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    tutorial video

    Exponential Audio NIMBUS Explained

    Exponential Audio, makers of the highly acclaimed PhoenixVerb, have done it again, with NIMBUS, their next generation world-class DAW Reverb plug-in. Follow along with studio guru Marcus Huyskens and learn all of its features as well as how to use it on your tracks!

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    tutorial video

    Revoice Pro 3 Explained

    Synchro Arts Revoice Pro 3 is truly in a class of its own as a “time and effort saver” in audio production, quickly and easily fixing the "unfixable", tuning and syncing vocals, and even creating special effects.

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    tutorial video

    Slate Digital VCC 2 Explained

    Slate Digital puts 6 classic analog consoles in your DAW, and studio guru Marcus Huyskens shows you how to use them! This series explores the significant difference between VCC 2.0 and the previous version, and how to make the most of the new plug-in version.

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    tutorial video

    Studio One 3 Advanced

    Studio One 3 includes tons of advanced features, and this series by Studio One guru Marcus Huyskens digs into them. In this in-depth video series, you’ll learn how to use some of the less obvious and most powerful features that Studio One 3 offers.

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    tutorial video

    Studio One 3.3 Update Explained

    Presonus has done it again, with a new update to Studio One! Take a ride along with Studio One master Marcus Huyskens, and see all the new features and functions, as well as how to use them, in this in-depth video tutorial series.

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The All-Access Pass gives you just that, instant online access to every single video tutorial currently on the site and any ones that get added during your membership.

Want to get professional sounding results when recording vocals? This collection of video tutorials by multi-platinum engineer and producer Kenny Gioia takes you through his process for setting up and recording, editing, tuning, EQ'ing, compressing and mixing vocals. Watch as Kenny takes you step by step, from mic selection and placement, all the way through mixing, and get a truly professional result.

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Vocal Production Masterclass is rated 5.0 out of 5 by 6.
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent guide to Pop Vocal production A great walkthrough showing the details of creating professional, commercial-grade pop vocals. Very clear and easy to follow with excellent narration.
Date published: 2017-01-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Content I thought the series was well produced and informational. I picked up several tips that will help in my current and future production.
Date published: 2016-12-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Explains everything so well This Topic has given me some great information that can be used with any DAW...thank you!
Date published: 2016-12-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Good insight to vocal production Marcus is a great teacher and he does a thorough job explaining and teaching modern vocal production. It would have been very helpful for Marcus to include the Studio One Macos and how to setup his shortcuts. Besides that, great job Marcus.
Date published: 2016-12-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awesome. Learned alot Wow. I feel I have improved just by watching. Love to see all little tweeks that make a huge difference
Date published: 2016-12-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Start to finish, excellent If you're a newbie to vocal editing this is an excellent series.
Date published: 2016-11-29
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