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How to Remix an Electronic Progressive XMAS Song

Thursday November 30, 2017. 07:00 PM , from Audiotuts+
What You'll Be CreatingBefore I begin the tutorial please note that for the lead part I intentionally changed the rhythm to fit the straight 4/4 rhythm signature. The original song was in 3/4 and I had to modify it to adapt into another system.VisionMy aims for the new version wasmake an extended version of about 6 minutes longgive a more modern progressive styleUnique Selling PointsI think these two parts makes this music specialthe modern and classic progressive stylethe epiano part in the intro and outroProject Basic SettingsWith Progressive House styles I usually stay between 120 - 125 BPM. So I did that. I chose 120 BPM for this project.tempo: 120 BPMrhythm signature: 4/4musical scale: C-majorThis is how the complete arrangement looksProduction WorkflowThis is a summary, how I made this project:I opened up the old projectI kept the lead, bass, pad and pianoI added new drum loops and samplesI made a longer intro and outroI automated then filteringI deleted some of the loops to have some breathing at sectionsMixing and Mastering WorkflowI mixed as I went along, then I added some volume on the Limiter.On PluginsI like to stay in Ableton with the tooling. So I only used Ableton plugins for instruments and effects.LeadI started with this lead synth. This is the classic Silent Night melody part. I wanted the main melody to cut through the mix and give it a strong sound. I was thinking about either a saw wave or a square wave. I decided to stay with square wave.Actually I shaped the Square wave further with the Saturator.I used a simple Square wave for the Lead synthSynth - Analog:Osc1 Square WaveAmp ADSR, 5 ms, 626 ms, 0.32, 626 msLFO1, 1/4 triplet timeOsc1 Pulse Width Modulation, width 50%, 1.0 LFO1 depthVolume, 3 dBFx:Saturator, 4 dB, Analog Clip, 16 base, 471 freq, 50% width, 12 depthPing Pong Delay, 70% feedback, 44% dry wetLimiter, default settingsEQ Eight, low cut 370 Hz (basic HP filter)BassA simple bass part for counterpointing the melody. Most of the time the motion of the bass follows the lead.The bass patch contains Square and Saw wave as wellSynth - Analog:Osc1 SawOsc2 Square, -3 dB, -1 octaveFilter1, LP12, 1.5 kHz, 0 resoAmp1, ADSR, 12 ms, 3.54 s, 1, 40 msFilter1, ADSR, 5 ms, 626 ms, 0, 626 msVolume, 4.5 dBFx:Compressor, sidechained to kick, 1.8:1 ratio, medium attack, auto releaseAuto Filter, used for automating HP filterPadThe pad is playing two-note and three-note chords, and also single root notes at places.I used an Analog synth for the pad using Squares tuned an octave apartSynth - Analog:Osc1 SquareOsc2 Square, -1 octaveFilter1, LP12, 1.5 kHz, 0 resoAmp1, ADSR, 126 ms, 11 s, 1, 919 msFilter1, LP12, 974 Hz, 0 resoFilter1, ADSR, 5 ms, 626 ms, 0, 626 msFilter2, LP12, 6 kHz, 0 resoFilter2, ADSR, 5 ms, 626 ms, 0, 626 msAmp1, panned leftAmp2, panned rightVolume, -14 dBLFO1, 1/4tLFO2, 1/8Unison detune 25Voices, 4Osc1, Pulse Width Modulation, 50% width, 1 depthOsc2, Pulse Width Modulation, 50% width, 1 depthFx:Ping Pong Delay, 39% feedback, 38% dry wetReverb, maximum size, 3.7 sec decay, 39% dry wetCompressor, sidechained to kick, 2:1 ratio, default attack, auto release, -19 dB thresholdEQ Eight, low cut at 285 HzUtility, +8 dB gainPianoThis is a very soft and relaxing sound, this is my favorite part of the song.The electric piano patch has a very soft tone with the help of FM synthesis in Ableton OperatorSynth - Operator:8th algorithmOp A, Sine 8Op A, coarse 1, fine 3, level -6 dBOp B, User waveformOp B, coarse 18, fine 25, level -14Op C, SineOp C, coarse 1, fine 0, level -6 dBOp D, User waveformOp D, coarse 18, fine 18, level -24 dBSpread 100%Tone 100%LFO Sine, Low, Retrigger, 99 rate, 77% amountVolume, -14 dBFx:Simple Delay, Left 4 Sync, Right 5 Sync, 41% feedback, 38% dry wetReverb, 100 size, 8 sec decay, 40% dry wetUtility, +5 db gainEQ Eight, low cut at 300 Hz, default HP filterDrumsI used hits and loops samples for the rhythm sections. For actually using the samples I used Simpler, Drum Rack and timeline placement.This is the second half of the song about the drum partsKickFx:EQ Eight, -2 dB low bell cut at 53 HzAuto Filter, HP filterClapFx:EQ Eight, low cut at 650 HzEQ Eight, same as previous, I doubled it for making an overall stronger cutLimiter, defaultRev ClapFx:Reverb, max size, 20 sec decay, 50% dry wetEQ Eight, low cut at 300 Hz, 6 dB shelving boost at 2 kHzCompressor, sidechained to kick, 2:1 ratio, default attack, auto release, -16 dB thresholdLoop1Fx: EQ Eight, low cut at 300 Hz, 3 dB shelving boost at 3.5 kHzBreakbeatFx:Utility, +4 dB gainEQ Eight, low cut at 300 HzShakerI used Utility with +5 dB gain.CongaEQ Three, +1 dB mids, +2 dB highsPercI made a cut with EQ Three -8 dB from the lows.FxEffects Chain:Reverb, 100 size, 4 s decay, 44% dry wetPing Pong Delay, 33% feedback, 33%, dry wet, default settingsUtility, +2 dB gainMasterWith the Utility tool I checked mono compatibility (width 0%), then used EQ low cuts to remove unnecessary information.This is the Master Effects chain: Utility, EQ and a LimiterI applied a default Limiter to catch peaks and amplified 2 dB gain to have a louder level.Fx:Utility, defaultEQ Eight, mid-side operation, low cut at 40 Hz - mids, low cut at 255 Hz - sidesLimiter, +2 dB gainExport settingsI used these export options. Usually this is my default for a master render file.I usually export to WAV with 24 bits bitdepthfiletype: WAVsample rate: 44.1 kHzbit depth: 24 bitsdither type: TriangularSummaryFinished versionIn this tutorial I explained my session of remixing my Christmas song made in progressive house style. First I remade the lead, bass, pad and epiano. Then I continued with drums then fx. I mixed and mastered as I went along.

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