GO
MyTrevo

 

From Cher to Lady Gaga: The Tech it Takes to Sound Like a Rock Star

The New Ways Tech is Changing Music

Early History
When Jimi Hendrix lit his guitar aflame at the 1967 Monterey Pop Festival, he was part of an era that introduced what is known today as The Summer of Love. It was the beginning of a musical revolution that included bands like Big Brother & The Holding Company, The Who, and Jefferson Airplane. Not only were these bands wild and unafraid to share their passion on stage, they also took full advantage of the new technologies available that could make their instruments sound different than anything that had been heard of previously.
Flash Forward
If you’ve listened to music produced in the last few years, chances are you’ve heard some of the ways in which technology is changing the sound of music. From Kanye West’s use of auto-tune, The Killers’ use of Space Designer, a dynamic reverb, in their drum kit for Losing Touch, the sound of today’s music is unmistakably different from the music of yesteryear. Today, even Ellen is having fun with Autotune.

While technology has changed the way music sounds, recent advancements have also changed the entire process behind making music and today, just about anyone can grab a computer and cut an album.

Recording An Album: An Odyssey
A few years ago, if you wanted to record an album, you would first, write the songs, and then you would rehearse them with your band until you all sounded perfect. After that, if you were lucky enough to get signed by a label, you and your band would rent a studio space, which gave you access to hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of equipment. You would then spend tireless hours laying down tracks, and engineering the sound. The final result would be an album that would hopefully be sold in stores. If you didn’t have that option, you were stuck with a tape recorder, a microphone, and your will to make music.

Today however, making your own music has become easier than ever. Albums that used to require professional studios, and racks full of expensive equipment can now be recorded and mastered from the comfort of your own laptop. Even the most inexpensive Apple laptop nowadays, comes with Garage Band and the ability to record, mix, and export professional quality songs.

But what if you want to take it a step further? What if you want to do what Lady Gaga does? Well you can, and it won’t cost you nearly as much as it would have even ten years ago.

Today’s Tech in Action
For those of us who remember when Cher’s 1998 song Believe hit the airwaves, it was clear that there was something different about it. The singer we’d known for songs like I Got You Babe, and Gypsies Tramps and Thieves, had a new sound. Her powerful voice was aided by the use of Autotune, which is especially noticeable when she signs the word “believe.” The song went on to earn Cher a Grammy Award.

The sounds created by today’s artists, that make full use of technology are also gaining attention. Icelandic singer Bjork’s seventh full-length studio album, Volta was nominated for a Grammy. According to an interview between Bjork’s technical director, Alan Pollard and Dustin Driver, the tracks for Bjork’s recent work were, “created using dozens of samplers, gizmos and computers.” Bjork’s on-tour equipment list includes such familiar tools as a MacBook Pro and Airport Express.

American singer and songwriter, T-Pain, has used Auto-Tune to give his music a distinct sound. According to another interview with Dustin Driver, T-Pain, used to cart around a significant amount of music gear, but then switched to Apple’s Garage Band, and then to Logic. Today T-Pain relies on this new technology to give him a distinct sound. T-Pain explained this need to stay ahead with technology in saying, “Unless I switch it up all the time I don’t really feel like I’m standing out anymore. That’s the only way I’ll be able to make it different.”

Do-it-Yourself: Making Music Like the Pros
   
What You’ll Need: Hardware
- A computer. Just about any of Apple’s new laptops or desktops should work. PC’s work too, but they need added software and hardware like M-Audio’s FireWire 410 interface and Pro-Tools LE.
- A decent microphone. For starters I like Blue’s Snowball, it’s about $99.00 and it plugs right into your usb port.
- A good pair of headphones. I like the Sony MDR-V6’s
 

What You’ll Need: Software
- Apple’s Logic Studio
Or
- Apple’s Logic Pro (if you’re really serious)

Or
- Apple’s Garage Band (if you don’t need all the bells and whistles)
Going Gaga With Demos
If you want to make your own music, there are fabulous samples and tutorials on YouTube, that can help you get started. Here are some examples that take you behind the scenes of Lady Gaga’s music.
Lady Gaga’s Original Song, Poker Face


How to make Poker Face:


Lady Gaga’s Origional Song: Bad Romance


A short remix of Bad Romance:


If you just want to learn more about Logic, Click Here
The End Result: You Too Can Be A Star
(or at least have a great time)

My own interest in the evolution of music and technology is very personal. When I was a kid, I used two tape players to record the songs I wrote, and build tracks. Unfortunately, this was not an ideal solution as, A; I didn’t live in a recording studio, and B; every time I recorded the tape player, building out layers, the track diminished in sound quality and suffered what is known as generation loss.

By the time I was a teenager, I had a primitive PC and a very basic recording setup, (a $14 microphone, and an old Casio keyboard with no midi-output). Throughout the years, I collected, tested, and tried many different ways to record the songs I created. However, the best news came in 2004 when Steve Jobs introduced Garage band at the MacWorld Expo in San Francisco. “This changes everything,” I remember saying to myself.

After learning to use Garageband I decided to make the investment and buy Logic, and I have to say, I’ve never looked back. If I feel like singing a cover of a Janis Joplin song, I only have to hop onto iTunes, buy the Stingray Karaoke version of the song, plug that into Logic, and start singing. I’ve also made several of my own songs, including I’m Here for Me (see below).

For me, the odyssey of creating and recording music has been a fun and challenging one. I've recently taught people how to record their own songs, and create music, and I've found the experience to be deeply rewarding. I encourage anyone who has ever wanted to sing, to at least give it a try. The technology makes it easy, and who knows, you just might end up a rock star.

About the Author Jennifer L. Jacobson is Retrevo.com's Director of Public Relations, an author, and self-proclaimed music-maker. Jennifer has a Masters Degree in Broadcast Electronic Communication Arts and spends her free time recording music at her Logic Pro station, and looking for new trends in the music industry. Jennifer is on Twitter @jcommunication

My original song: I’m Here for Me


Cover of The Animals’ song: House of the Rising Sun


Related Articles

New Crop of 3DTVs On Sale Now and
More Coming Soon

Panasonic and Samsung have started selling their 3DTVs and there are many more coming this spring and summer. Here's a roundup...
Read More
Nexus One, Android Smartphone
Hands-on, In-Depth Review
If you're on the fence about getting an iPhone, you might want to learn more about the Nexus One...Read More
Don’t miss a single article from Retrevo. Subscribe to our RSS Feed.

Trackback URL for this post:

http://www.retrevo.com/content/trackback/1322
 

Comments

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

Not only were these bands

Not only were these bands wild http://www.onlypass4sure.com and unafraid to share their passion on stage, they also took full pass4sure 350-030 advantage of the new technologies available that could make their instruments sound different than anything that had been heard of previously.

zCoZzVfMoGpFbFsU

Hgmlqavkz Yekqgvc get more it Nxukgibwq Rudgh http://fantasticsale.webs.com/
Xodwalwsd Oavtealgm get more Kiasrmnxd Wvncckvv http://appealingshopping.webs.com/

Tools VS talent

Unfortunately (for me) those tools will never replace talent but I think I'll give it a try.
Lady Gaga

Nice Post...

This does not mean that minority demographics of workers won’t benefit from green jobs. Since most green jobs studies show that investing in green jobs produces more total jobs than investing in fossil fuel industry jobs (which also tend to employ many whites and males), all of these groups of people would likely have more jobs, in total, if more money were invested in green jobs.

Free Credit Score

Talent BEFORE Tools

Couldn't agree more - Cher's "Believe" was good because the tools expanded upon her talent. Even if you don't care for her voice or style, you've gotta admit that she's got vocal talent.

The glaring problem with so many of the Hip Hop folks is that Autotune IS the only talent in their bag. T-Pain may be a skillful arranger and able to deftly wield the tools, but he's no singer. Even with Pop artists, many of them are only cranking out hits thanks to digital augmentation and highly skilled producers who can shape nearly any sound into an interesting song. Case in point:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s3MSfcHv0_c

www.2012canadagooseparkasaleonline.com

пуховики canada goose 68682 Woolrich Jassen 61445 Canada Goose Parka
Woolrich Jas 99663 Canada Goose Jas 27642 Canada Goose
Canada Goose Jassen 21174 canadagoosejassenoutlet.com 33192 canada goose купить
Woolrich Jassen 46586 www.newcanadagooseonlinesale.com 46742 www.2012canadagooseparkasaleonline.com
Canada Goose Online 46328 Canada Goose Parka 15436 Woolrich Jas

Canada Goose Jacken

Woolrich Parka 67718 woolrich 45794 Woolrich Arctic Parka
Canada Goose Takki 96534 Woolrich Outlet 52727 woolrich
Canada Goose Jacken 22529 Canada Goose Outlet 14623 Canada Goose Takit
canadagoosetakit2012.com 47573 canadagoosejacken2012.com 46177 Woolrich Outlet
Woolrich Jacken 54648 Canada Goose Takit 46835 Canada Goose

Helkj Coach Outlet Store Online Rjk

Dsolwycy Canada Goose Jackor Hsfya
Qehrmliabt coachfactoryoutlet-onlineshop.com Jexnswedzm

Peters

41 Judy July 1989 prozac buy prozac