Hi Family …………..I know it has been a while since the last blog ……my bad 🙂
I just finished working on song for a Rap Artist (click here for a sample of the song) and was checking how it sounds in the usual places .
You know the car the boom box the neighbors home stereo etc.
Just when I thought that I had achieved what I was going for i put in a old c.d. from ll cool j his first album .
Then it hit me this sounded really good ….. but it was lower in volume to what I had done.
This got me thinking and then I put in a Michael Jackson CD I love the engineering on this album.
Interestingly enough that Cd was lower as well but the music felt good and punchy.
I went back to my old books and course material on mastering and realized I had fallen prey to a methodology called” Loudness Wars”.
Trust Me there are lost of resources out there on this topic so …the short of the long story is this;
A great deal of artists, labels,unaware and uneducated listeners assume that Loud =Good
But what of the cd Like Michael Jackson compared to music that is put out today no real music lover can deny the visionary music, engineering , and mastering of Thriller .
However if you crank up the volume on thriller and once your system can handle the pressure you enjoy the nice lows and smooth vocals and milky high frequencies .
Put in a Pop Cd today it is 1 automatically loud 2 you may have to turn down your volume sparing blowing something and 3 your start to notice sooner or later that it is almost wearing your ears out to listen to just 1 song in is entirety .
That is what is called ear fatigue , I always tell persons at training seminars our ears are organs …
The prolonged exposure to music with no dynamic range i.e. the range between low passages and high passages takes a toll on your ears and eventually your hearing is damaged … a casualty of the loudness wars.
And a sad reality is that research has shown that there is not proportional relationship to sales,
Realizing the cries of those who enjoy and listen to music faithfully , modern music and media players actually remove the excess volume crushing.
So why do people still try to make loud recordings?
1. Fear……..of not seeming competitive and as a result worthy to catch the listeners attention
2.or criticism that their baby their dream their musical representation will not be received by the rest of the world.
These are just the main ones here but the reality is this , If your melody and your music work together in such a way that once anyone who hears it for the first time can enjoy, relate, escape and repeat what you said then your mission has been accomplished.
So applying this to my situation I tossed what I done repented and went back at the single from an aspect of what feels and sounded good given that type of genre,
It took me only a few hours and when I was done I achieved the warm sounding clean sound .
I sat in my Jeep and cranked it up to 1000″ just kidding” and it sounded glorious :)))))))
I sent the song off to the client and they loved it I just heard it for the first time on the radio and it sounded just as I sent it .
Realize that your music needs to have the sonic character of you words and your melody.
Now way A singer/songwriter’s song should be loud as or louder that Death Metal.
Its like making sheep roar………IMHO.