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Music Production w/ Pro Tools Vol 1 - Pop

Kenny Gioia is a multi-platinum producer and engineer who has worked with countless name acts. In this exciting new series, he shows you his method for creating a professional, radio-ready Pop music production, out of nothing more than a rough guide vocal take.

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The Working Demo 3m:37s

Kenny plays the vocal that the track will be produced around, as well as lays down some guide tracks.


Song Setup 6m:41s

Kenny's shows you how to map out the song's arrangement using markers and setting up some key plug-ins.


Getting in the Groove 12m:33s

Kenny demonstrates how to create a groove using one-shot samples, loops and effects to build a beat that further inspires you to work on the track.


Adding Percussion 13m:02s

Kenny now builds on top of the drum beat with percussion elements that take the song's groove to the next level.


Keys Please 16m:49s

Kenny now lays down the keyboards and synths. See him utilize many Pro Tools virtual instruments and MIDI features while creating foot tapping keyboard and synth parts.


Acoustic Guitars 4m:30s

Kenny puts down some real acoustic guitars to add depth and dimension to the song. He then better sits them in the track using EQ.


Electric Guitars 6m:08s

Kenny plugs in and rocks the song proper. He also shares his methods for better fitting and effecting the electronic guitar in the track by utilizing numerous plug-ins.


Arrangement Tweaks 20m:28s

Kenny starts to remove different elements from the song to create better dynamics and movement for the song.


Give the Drummer Some 17m:06s

Kenny now overdubs real, live drums into the production which elevates the song to new heights. He then uses Elastic Audio to fine tune the live drum groove so it fits perfectly with the programmed drums.


Extra Samples 25m:49s

Kenny now goes back and adds extra samples such as crashes, reverse crashes and synth effects to create excitement and impact to the song. Cool automation tricks are also shown.


More Keys Please 14m:36s

Kenny Rewires in Propellerhead Reason to add some uplifting piano, string and synth parts to the song. An effected tremolo guitar is then added for even more depth.


Printing VIs 6m:48s

Kenny shows you how to print all of your virtual instruments to individual audio tracks in order to save computer power and not have Reason running in the background real-time. He also goes over how to duplicate the send effects on the original VI tracks onto the newly printed audio tracks preserving the effect sound.


Power Guitar 4m:30s

Kenny decides to add some heavy electric guitar to the song to make the chorus even more rock sounding, while still preserving the other chorus section elements.


Guitar Special FX 17m:52s

See how Kenny creates guitar swells and stuttering filter effects to add even more dynamics to the song.


Percussive Guitar 4m:59s

Kenny lays down the 'chick' guitar sound to make the song groove harder.


Live Bass 8m:45s

Kenny busts out the bass to give the song a harder edge and groove. He then explores different plug-ins and settings that make up a killer bass tone. He then arranges the live bass into the perfect bass track.


Octave Guitar 10m:29s

Kenny creates a thick octave guitar sound to complement the chorus lead vocal line and drive the melody home.


Track Grouping 7m:48s

Kenny explains and demonstrates how to manage all of your tracks so you can better navigate and produce your song.


Lead Vocals 7m:10s

Kenny is now ready to cut the 'keeper' vocal tracks. He has the singer in the vocal booth and records all the takes and comps the ultimate lead vocal. Auto-Tune is also featured to make the vocals pitch perfect.


Vocal Doubling 6m:19s

Kenny demonstrates how he likes to track doubled vocals to make specific parts fatter and more powerful sounding.


Harmonies 8m:13s

Kenny breaks down the main vocal harmonies going over their arrangement, panning and placement in the song.


Bridge Vocals 4m:46s

See how Kenny treats just the bridge vocals to give them more weight and forward motion as they move into the chorus section.


Vocal Special FX 16m:56s

Kenny now creates an interesting vocal break down effect to make the transition into the last chorus more powerful and exciting.


Reverse Vocal FX 9m:47s

Discover how Kenny adds a cool reverse vocal reverb effect during different parts of the song to create more forward motion.


Automating Vocals FX 17m:44s

Kenny fine tunes the vocal delay effect and dials in the perfect repeat amount and tone on select vocal phrases.


One Last Thing 6m:18s

Kenny adds the final percussive element, different hi-hats on the upbeat of the different parts of the song. This really makes an impact on the groove and results in a world-class production.


The End 4m:41s

Kenny says some final words and plays the final 'board mix' from beginning to end. This pro-production is now ready to be mixed and mastered!

Kenny Gioia

1. When did you start dabbling in music?

I've played an instrument since I was 10. Drums and Trumpet. I'm 40 now. I can play a little bit of any instrument. Master of none. Rock bands most of my life.

2. What training have you had?

I was taught trumpet classically from grade school up until I graduated high school. I went to Five Towns College for engineering and learned that you can't just learn this stuff from school. I did graduate though.

3. When did you get into recording?

I've been recording since I was 15. Two cassette players wired to a Radio Shack mixer. Eventually I got an 8 track reel to reel by Fostex. I've used just about every DAW and I started using them before they even recorded audio. Vision and Performer were just MIDI sequencers at the time. Before they became Studio Vision and Digital Performer. I got studio jobs because I knew computer MIDI and most studios didn't. I eventually moved up to Sound Tools which was two track. Then Pro Tools made a Audio Media III card which let you have 4 inputs. Gradually I moved up from there with Pro Tools D24, Pro Tools Mix to HD.

4. People you have worked with/for?

Marcy Playground
Mandy Moore
Willa Ford
Lee Ann Womack
Paulina Rubio
Hall & Oates
Head Automatica
Cute is What We Aim For
and many more...

5. Why are you so good at training people?

Hmmm. My Mom always said "Self Praise Stinks". I think it's because I have no ability to talk like a professional announcer, or plan out my teachings. So I teach as if you were sitting next to me. Pretty much off the cuff. I think that engages people more. We're so used to hearing everything done so properly and planned out with unnecessary explanations and proper wording that the brain will actually ignore most of it. Your brain tunes it out like you're back at your desk at school. But if the teacher grabbed you aside and just explained it to you, I believe you'd get more out of it. That is what I try to do.

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