• The Way Love Is - Paul Motter
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The Way Love Is - Paul Motter
on: June 09, 2020, 01:15:29
« Last Edit: June 09, 2020, 19:10:57 by MotterPaul »
That's the way Love Is - this is a song I wrote 13 years ago but I could never get the mix right until now.  I composed, performed, recorded, and mixed everything in my home ProTools mancave.

https://soundcloud.com/paulmotter/twli-2020-final

I am trying a new streaming service that is free, it makes everything a little muted but not too bad - just turn it up.
I work on Protools, was a pro recording engineer for 10 years in analog. I play compose, perform record and mix everything in my recordings.


Re: The Way Love Is - Paul Motter
Reply #1 on: June 09, 2020, 04:17:48
Well @MotterPaul the mix sounds rich and clear and very Pro.  :praise: :praise: :praise:

The song is a delightful bit of retro pop... peppy, positive.... charming.

Great work!😎👏👏👏


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Re: The Way Love Is - Paul Motter
Reply #2 on: June 09, 2020, 04:30:07
Thank you for the kind words. I have actually been mixing for some 40 years now so I know what I am doing, but my DAW  resides in a crappy storeroom, bad for mixing so I really have to fight it all the way. I have to bring my mixes inside and listen on my stereo speakers and then go back and fix it, but I am getting used to the room.

You know mixing is not easy - there is no magic room where you can just mix what you want to hear and expect it to work on all systems. But, you can learn your speakers and figure out how to use them to make good mixes.

The song has moments. I will do more with it someday but I need to leave it alone for a while now.


Re: The Way Love Is - Paul Motter
Reply #3 on: June 09, 2020, 04:47:01
Agreed @MotterPaul a crappy room and crappy speakers make it challenging to mix. You certainly seem to have a handle on it!

Iíve learned to try several different conditions when mixing.  My good headphones (a little bass) my mediocre headphones (not super clear ... some high hiss) ear buds (you know!) and my adequate monitors in my very lively studio. Oh... and sometimes just the laptop, or iPhone speaker.


Seems like... if I can get it to where nothing is missing in all of those conditions then maybe itís not too bad.

Damn lot of hard work though... 🙄


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Re: The Way Love Is - Paul Motter
Reply #4 on: June 09, 2020, 05:24:10
Yes, it comes as a stark awakening the day you realize the room you are mixing is not going to give you what you are hearing at the time. I was a Hollywood 24-trk engineer back in the day when we all had Big Reds or Urei Time Aligns and our rooms were tuned with real-time analyzers - and it was a less than perfect environment.  People would get obsessed with running out to their car stereos, etc.

Now I know that if I set up my monitors at a certain volume level and shoot for just enough voice, and a clear bass, and a nice balance that I can usually get close.  This was after I tuned my reverb plugin which always gave me a lot more boom than I heard at my DAW speakers.

I just discovered VLC Player has a lot of cool tools built-in - equalizer, compressor,  spatializer....
You can set them up and then render a .wav file as an MP3. It works pretty well as a fake "mastering" process.


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Re: The Way Love Is - Paul Motter
Reply #5 on: June 09, 2020, 12:33:30
I hope I may ask you something.
Itís a question and not a statement. And I hope you are not angry if I ask.

Could it be you are too busy with technique and as a result could it be you donít devide you attention equally? Question mark.
Itís just an opinion, but I think you give the drums itís/their rightful place. If the drums were good. But I hear something mechanical in the drumming and therefore I would have mixed the drums further back to mask that.

If you donít agree, please ignore my comment. I donít want to ignite doubts. Itís just that after a long time listening, sometimes you lose/loose objectivity.
I am curious what you think of this. A matter of taste?
Kind regards, Gus


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Re: The Way Love Is - Paul Motter
Reply #6 on: June 09, 2020, 16:06:23
« Last Edit: June 09, 2020, 19:11:49 by MotterPaul »
I don't take any offense in the question. I guess I am just used to that drum sound and I didn't hear it as mechanical. I assume you mean the "playing" and not the sound. I did have a problem with some squeaks in the kit sound, but that is not what you heard, is it?

I actually really appreciate the comment because as I listen back I realize that I do a lot of things automatically because I think like an engineer and not a producer. I wanted the toms to come out, but you helped me realize the kit sound is not that good and I don't need the hi-hat and cymbals so loud - they actually do "sound" mechanical and not because of the playing but because the sound is not that good on them.

Not that it matters but I had recorded them with Sampletank and now I have Addictive drums which sound better but I could not find a way to midi-map the ST drums to ADD drums.

Just FYI, I just changed the link to Soundcloud, I think it sounds a little better.


Re: The Way Love Is - Paul Motter
Reply #7 on: June 09, 2020, 19:28:16
@MotterPaul NIce song. It sounds to me as if it could have been composed at the end of the 70s, but when you've mixed for more than 40 years, those may have been times that inspired you. It's a natural thing, I guess.

The sound of the drums can make a great difference indeed. I think that AD allows you to try out kit mixes in all sorts of varieties. Possibly you can add toms from different sets?

You can exchange midi patterns between DAWs, so I think there might be a way to do it, even if ST is not exactly a DAW. I might be suggesting an idea you've already tried, but ST may have a folder that contains the recorded midi and that allows you to copy/paste it to another app.

Pleudoniem: composer; bass guitarist; guitarist; singer; drummer; tap-guitarist - o, and yes... erm- a bit of keys. Open for collabs.
SoundCloud Page: https://soundcloud.com/pleudoniem


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Re: The Way Love Is - Paul Motter
Reply #8 on: June 09, 2020, 19:57:07
There is a way to remap it, but you have to do it one (keyboard) key at a time. There are other ways as well such as uploading a remap text table to someplace but that was over my head. I can usually remap to ADD with a simple tool in ADD, but there isn't one for SampleTank.

Yes - I know my music sounds dated and I do like that sound.  I admit that when I hear a "modern" sound I am almost immediately turned off - especially with electronic drums or an entire song composed over one chord.

Right now, I think this song is just kind of vanilla - it could be modernized with some more synth parts, percussion and even more vocals, but I am not convinced a song has to have a modern sound to be likable, and I especially do not think just having a modern sound is enough to make a recording a real song.

Find a good song first, then worry about how it is presented.  I am still at stage one. I wouldn't mind suggestions on what to do with it.


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Re: The Way Love Is - Paul Motter
Reply #9 on: June 09, 2020, 23:14:36
I hope I may ask you something.
Itís a question and not a statement. And I hope you are not angry if I ask.

Could it be you are too busy with technique and as a result could it be you donít devide you attention equally? Question mark.
Itís just an opinion, but I think you give the drums itís/their rightful place. If the drums were good. But I hear something mechanical in the drumming and therefore I would have mixed the drums further back to mask that.

If you donít agree, please ignore my comment. I donít want to ignite doubts. Itís just that after a long time listening, sometimes you lose/loose objectivity.
I am curious what you think of this. A matter of taste?
Kind regards, Gus

You know, I just listened to the song at a much higher than average volume level for me, and in context to some other songs, and I didn't really realize how bad that hi-hat sounds. It is surprising what a change in listenings levels can do to your mix.  And for people who may be learning to mix now, one of the tricks to getting a good mix is to keep your listening levels consistent for the whole session. Don't turn your speakers up just to do the drums, for example, and then go down for the vocals.  But obviously, I would have been aided by listening to it are a louder level at least once before I posted it.


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Re: The Way Love Is - Paul Motter
Reply #10 on: June 10, 2020, 07:09:46
As a starting point I use: Ďthe best an artist can do is to organize the feelings or the listenerí. Therefor I usually stick to telling what it does for me. So as a rule I am reluctant to write about mixing things or details. More often than not that is a matter of taste. And listening to everyoneís preferences will turn you into a ball in the pin ball machine, if you know what I am talking about.

Having said that, I think the tinkering with this song freshened it all up. Like the vocals and harmonies a lot too. Lovely piece of music !
Keep on keepiní on, said Curtis Mayfield.
Kind regards, Gus


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Re: The Way Love Is - Paul Motter
Reply #11 on: June 10, 2020, 21:33:48
I appreciate your outlook, but I am largely inured to criticism.  I trust that people have the best intentions most of the time, especially in this forum (which is very friendly), so if someone makes a comment about my mix I appreciate it. Mostly because I know my mix room is awful and it helps me figure out the problems. But also, sometimes you just need to listen to what somebody says about a mix, I truly had not heard how bad the hi-hat sounded and I worked on fixing it last night.

Otherwise, I agree on the work on the song, it helped a lot (Melodyne  :thumbsup: )


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Re: The Way Love Is - Paul Motter
Reply #12 on: June 13, 2020, 11:27:34
Love the song, man. Great production. I really like your voice.......has a timbre to it that grabs.
Good song..........very nice!!
I Know The Truth By My Struggle Against It


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Re: The Way Love Is - Paul Motter
Reply #13 on: June 13, 2020, 19:46:31
« Last Edit: June 13, 2020, 20:28:24 by MotterPaul »
Thank you. Honestly, I am very insecure about the timbre of my voice. I think you are the first person to ever compliment me on it.  People have said I did a good job on the harmonies in this song and I like them. But I am just starting to get used to the sound of my own voice. I think women prefer it when you sing in a deeper voice, you know, but I have to hit the notes I hear.




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