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Vocal enhancements / effects Digitech Workstation

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(@blutic1)
Reputable Member
Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 280
Topic starter  

Growing up I wanted to be the next Steve Vai or ________ (insert guitar god here).  Ten years and two kids later, I have changed my aspirations to merely wanting to play and sing for friends, family, neighbors, my wife's girlfriends  ;).  I put down the BC Rich loaded with EMGs and picked up the acoustic.  Problem: this Yank cannot sing.  Well maybe a little country, since I have this West Virginia hick accent.  So I head that the pop divas aka Brittany Spears, and her clones cannot really sing either and they use electronic devices.  So, I bought the Digitech Workstation.  It has not arrived yet, so I have not messed with one other than the demo at the music store.  It has a 5 part harmony and a gender bender so you can sound like you are singing with a group or with someone of the opposite sex.  Also, you can cut your voice and only hear the higher or lower harmony.  Additionally, it has auto pitch correction so it will bend your voice to the proper pitch if you go flat or sharp.  Does anyone have any experience with such a device?  Any tips on how best to use it?  Thanks.  
P.S.  Please dont critize.  I am truly ashamed to admit I rely on electronics to sound good.  But you know what -
Chicks dig it!!! 8)


   
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(@forrok_star)
Noble Member
Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 2337
 

I'm not real familiar with it. but like anything you'll need to spend time working with it to dial it in to do what you want it to do.

I once worked with a singer that had something similar to that,don't remember the name of it, but he ended up spending more time messing with it that it was worth during a show.

What I'm trying to say is have it all programed and know how it operate it long before you decide to take the stage with it.

I experiment.
On the direct out for my mic,I use a tube guitar pre-amp, stereo out to a compressor,stereo out into a exciter,stereo out into a digital fx, 2 wet and 2 dry outs back into the board on different channels.
I also have the headphone out from the pre-amp mixed back into the board and the side-chain of the compressor I have an Eq looped in,along with a vocal enhancer, split in the effects loop of the board.
Vocal Sub-mixer is then connected multiple outs to the main console.

Don't think I missed anything on the set-up, it should be pretty close.
I'v spent many moons searching for a sound and experimenting for my vocals and guitar.

Hope this helps...joe


   
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(@jonnyt)
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Joined: 22 years ago
Posts: 336
 

Hey Blutic1,

Let us know what you really think about the workstation once you've had a chance to really play with it.  I know I'm interested in such a device... if it really helps.

Thanks!

Jonny T.

E doesn't = MC2, E = Fb

Music "Theory"? "It's not just a theory, it's the way it is!"

Jonny T.


   
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(@greybeard)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 5840
 

At the risk of obliteration:

You've wined her. You've dined her. You've taken her for a long romantic drive in the moonlight. She gently kisses you on the neck and suggests going back to your place.
You dim the lights, draw the curtains, open a bottle a champagne - you are in the mood for lurrrrrve.
"You know what attracted me to you? I heard you singing those romantic songs. Will you sing one for me now?" she whispers. "Hey...............Where are you going, do you need a......?" "No" you interrupt "I have got to, er, ... "
"It's OK, I've got some in my...." she says.
"No" you interrupt again"I have got to get my Digitech set up"

Sorry, couldn't resist it  
:)

I started with nothing - and I've still got most of it left.
Did you know that the word "gullible" is not in any dictionary?
Greybeard's Pages
My Articles & Reviews on GN


   
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(@wailingalleycat)
Active Member
Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 7
 

Im not trying to belittle you here or anything but i always hate to hear singers on the radio or TV with there voices synthesized so much that theres nothing left of their real voices.

If you do need to alter your voice with a machine to sound good maybe you shouldnt be singing and be concentrating more on the guitar

Anyway its up to you

-Paul

Always remember that feedback is verypainful to the ears and should not be used against someone for a joke. HAHA


   
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(@blutic1)
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Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 280
Topic starter  

My wife and I recently had a son.  Let's look into the the future:  The boy becomes a fairly decent baseball player.  His team does well.  He wins a trophy or two.  One day he says "Daddy I want to learn to play golf."  We go out get some clubs.  He gets a few lessons.  He progresses ok, but it is clear the kid will never be that good.  Let's say he just lacks the kind of coordination golf requires.  Sure he can practice, but he will never be as good at golf as he is at baseball.  Should I tell him to quit golf and only play baseball, if he loves both sports?


   
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(@danlasley)
Noble Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 2118
 

Golf may be a bad example, because it's supposed to be more fun if you're only average - at least that's what they tell me. ;D

But to your point, each of us has to decide whether we have enough ability to pursue our desires at a level that makes it rewarding to ourselves.  I've known guitarists who will spend mega-$$$ on gear and can't play worth a dime.  

So if a vocalist can stay in tune, and has the interest and energy, I don't have a particular problem with using an enhancer to improve the tone.  Enhancers can't repair being way off-key.

Many of the current bands use distortion and compression on their voices, and people seem to like it.

By my count, there are more guitarists than singers, so we should encourage vocalists whenever we can.

-Laz


   
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(@blutic1)
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Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 280
Topic starter  

I bought the harmonizer, tried it out, and decided it was not what I wanted (later I sold it on ebay for a profit).  I really want to try an effects unit that will fatten up the voice and add a little distortion.  I know that boss and digitech have processors, but I was wondering what people used before these devices came out.  I know they have not been out that long.


   
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(@hueseph)
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Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 1543
 

Before these devices People would've used:

1-practice
2-practice
3-practice

And if these all out failed they might have simply used some chorus and tape saturation. Don't mislead yourself. Brittany Spears, Christina Aguelera and yes even Celine Dion despite her funny accent can actually sing. Strangely enough those american Idol shows actually displayed some truth as to how producers choose their projects. Weeks of interviews, months of refinement, training and mind numbingly repetative rehersal. Superstars aren't discovered anymore. They're made.

https://soundcloud.com/hue-nery/hue-audio-sampler


   
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(@Anonymous)
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    .....but, please correct me if I'm wrong, tubes, EQ and compression have been used for decades by people to prettify their voices.  Certainly they can't sing for you, but you sound better coming out the other side.  Sting can sing, but he wouldn't sound as even without all that compression


   
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(@wes-inman)
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Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 5582
 

Blutic- You are wrong! You can sing. If you can make noise come out of your mouth, you can sing.

What you probably mean is that you cannot sing like your favorite artists. Join the club.

I sing, and I sing pretty good. No brag. But, I have a secret. I look for songs I can sing well. For instance, I have found I can sing Doors songs very easily and well. I must have close to the same range as Jim Morrison. So I sing several Doors songs in my band. I like Elton John, but I can not sing nearly that high. I've tried. So, you won't hear any Elton John songs at my gigs.

Even the greatest professional singers cannot sing every song well. They are VERY CAREFUL to select songs that fit their voice.

I bet you know several songs that you've always felt you sang pretty good. That's a good start. Keep looking for others. You'll find them.

There are some good free sites that give advice on singing. They really help. I know from experience.

http://www.voicelesson.com/

http://www.vocalist.org.uk/

With a little practice, and carefully picking the right songs you may find out you are a great singer!

If you know something better than Rock and Roll, I'd like to hear it - Jerry Lee Lewis


   
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