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How to record this Jazz-Combo?
Old 7th February 2009
  #1
Here for the gear
 
🎧 10 years
Question How to record this Jazz-Combo?

How would you do it?

E-Piano
Acoustic Bass
Electric Guitar
Drumset

Microphones:
Neumann:
4 KM 130
4 KM 143
2 KM 184
2 TLM 103
2 GFM 132

Gefell
2 M300

Oktava:
2 ML-52-01

Brauner:
2 Valvet


I've never done a Jazz-Recording (only Classical Music) and have no experience with electric instruments, but I would like to learn. The band are friends and they would like to make a demo-tape. And they want to play together and not be recorded seperately. So what are your suggestions?

Thank you very much and apologize for my bad english.

Gregor
Old 7th February 2009
  #2
Gear Head
 
skydog's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
o.k. I'll jump in since no one else has.if it was me I would try to get most or all of the sound from the 2 valvets(omni,if the room is good) set up in the stereo configuration of your choice.the upright bass maybe the most problematic in this case but it can be done,it will have to be pretty close to the array.a good clean high end compressor would also make this a lot easier...what do you have?
you could obviously mic each individual instrument and go through a mixer but for this type of thing ,and this is just my opinion,less is more.I think your classical chops should serve you very well for this type of gig.good luck
Old 7th February 2009 | Show parent
  #3
Lives for gear
 
staudio's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Like skydog said, set up a nice stereo pair in a nice room and physically mix the instruments to the mics. At work we only record this way and it is seriously awesome sounding if the players are good. Make sure to take advantage of the stereo field in a creative way by spreading the instruments around, don't feel like you have to lock in bass and drums dead center, at work we usually have the drums to the right and the bass slightly to the left and very close to the mic to get good presence. The electric guitar could be further left and the electric piano could be slightly right or centered. If you feel like it you could add spot mics but they are really not essential if you get the physical placement of the players and instruments right for the stereo pair. If something is too loud move it further away from the mics, conversely if something is too soft move it closer. Also you can get subtle variations in mix balance by changing the height of the mic array a couple inches at a time. When you are happy with the setup just push record and smile. As a classical cat you are probably familiar with natural/realistic sound, just continue with that aesthetic and you will make a great modern jazz recording. Good luck.


Quote:
Originally Posted by skydog ➑️
o.k. I'll jump in since no one else has.if it was me I would try to get most or all of the sound from the 2 valvets(omni,if the room is good) set up in the stereo configuration of your choice.the upright bass maybe the most problematic in this case but it can be done,it will have to be pretty close to the array.a good clean high end compressor would also make this a lot easier...what do you have?
you could obviously mic each individual instrument and go through a mixer but for this type of thing ,and this is just my opinion,less is more.I think your classical chops should serve you very well for this type of gig.good luck
Old 7th February 2009 | Show parent
  #4
Lives for gear
 
Corran's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I use an Oktava ML-52 on upright bass all the time - sounds wonderful!

I don't normally have a stereo pair and then individual mics, but that's just me. I'd throw the 184s on drum overheads, the other ML-52 on the guitar (though I prefer a single, long ribbon mic myself), and whatever sounds good on the electric piano (or DI it?). And hey since you don't have any other instruments I guess the stereo pair would be fine. I was thinking there'd be a sax or trumpet but I guess not.
Old 7th February 2009 | Show parent
  #5
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Corran ➑️
I use an Oktava ML-52 on upright bass all the time - sounds wonderful!

I don't normally have a stereo pair and then individual mics, but that's just me. I'd throw the 184s on drum overheads, the other ML-52 on the guitar (though I prefer a single, long ribbon mic myself), and whatever sounds good on the electric piano (or DI it?). And hey since you don't have any other instruments I guess the stereo pair would be fine. I was thinking there'd be a sax or trumpet but I guess not.
I would do something like this if multitracking and maybe try the GFM132 inside the kick on a small pillow and the TLM 103 on the snare.
Old 8th February 2009 | Show parent
  #6
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
After reading many threads, there seems to really be two common camps of how to record jazz. I know there are exceptions, but my observation is:

1-A pair of room mics, avoid spot mics if possible

2-Mic individual instruments, avoid room mics if possible

I think that's the difference between "you are there" or "they are here".
These can have pretty distinct sounds - you might strongly prefer one over the other. Or certain factors might dictate which approach will work better (like the room or the amount of isolation that is possible by use of mic types, gobos etc.). Picking one method over another might be a crap shoot unless you can experiment or have enough tracks to try some different things and pick later.

My best recording was a piano trio with a stereo pair plus a spot on the bass. I like the "you are there" sound. I want to hear the room.
Old 8th February 2009 | Show parent
  #7
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
leddy, I like combining both approaches...

IMO, it's like the best of both worlds.
You have many options during the mix and plenty of blend possibilities.
Old 8th February 2009 | Show parent
  #8
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Remoteness ➑️
leddy, I like combining both approaches...
...
Same here. If you are multitracking and want to learn from the experience:
Set the main mic up as AB with the 130 and the 143 in parallel. (two mics on each side app. 40 cm/16 inch apart, adjust AB distance to recording angle after you found the sweet spot for best direct/diffuse mix.)
Record both pairs and decide in the mix the level relation between both. 130 gives you more ambience, 143 more focus, it gives you artistic freedom to adjust from the mixing desk what suits best a fast percussive tune on one side or a slow ballade on the other side.

The diaphragms of the 130 and 143 of each side must be as close to each other as possible.
If the 10kHz boost of the 130 is too much in that situation just EQ it down a little bit.

I also would setup spot mics (advice see previous posts) and use them only as much as neccessary.

Most important if this is not a live gig: First find with the musicians the best acoustical balance and image by arranging their positions accordingly but within their comfort zone.
Always my credo: Make as much balance as possible before the mic.
Old 8th February 2009 | Show parent
  #9
Here for the gear
 
🎧 10 years
Thanks for all the interesting responses!
What about the E-piano? Unfortunately the band doesn't have an acoustic piano. Should I record it directly (DI-Box) and with the room mics/spot mics or is the direct recording not necessary? (I don't know, how the piano sounds, but the pianist says, that the speakers aren't so good) Or can I record it it in both ways and mix it together?
Old 10th February 2009 | Show parent
  #10
Lives for gear
 
ajfarber's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
I must say that I am not in favour of the "stereo pair" method of recording jazz bands. The "1 mic for each instrument" method works better. Try to "fool" the listener into believing it was recorded with just a pair. Point source imaging of mono tracks in a stereo field is better for blend. Leddy has had god luck with a stereo pair because he has his own band that plays together all the time. This is rare these days.

Anyway, you get more control in the mix with spot mics. The leakage between the different mics should provide adequate "room sound".

My choice here would be 1 mic on the bass (an SDC or LDC should work nicely), I mic for the guitar amp, 1 or 2 OH drum mics, an SDC mic for the snare/hh combination and a bassdrum mic (optional, as there should be enough leakage). The electric piano is another story. If a Fender Rhodes "suitcase" model is used, you can mic the cabinet, otherwise a DI might be better.

Also, you might want to check out some late 60s jazz records with a similar instrumentation. Pianist Duke Pearson recorded a few records for Bluenote on the Rhodes. The Donald Byrd record "Fancy Free" from 1967 had a rhythms section of EP, guitar, bass and drums along with a 3 horn front line. Recorded by RVG. Good example of this type of group.
Old 10th February 2009 | Show parent
  #11
Lives for gear
 
pkautzsch's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Just a suggestion for spots.

E-Piano: Direct, plus maybe some mic in front of speaker if you want the "dirty" speaker sound
Acoustic Bass: KM184 (maybe suspended in the bridge)
Electric Guitar: 103
OH: 2 ML 52 Blumlein? Valvet(s)?
Kit mic: TLM 103 near drummer's right ear (Steve Remote technique has worked great on every drum set I recorded since I read about this technique - MS setup in the same position works great, too)
snare: 184 (if he uses brushes)

Lots of options with 130s, 143s, GFMs, Gefells, whatever is left, as main or room pairs, depending on room and what you want.
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