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Mixing live crowd/congregation for CCM music (Passion/Chris Tomlin/etc)
Old 1st October 2013
  #1
Gear Addict
 
hw2nw's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Mixing live crowd/congregation for CCM music (Passion/Chris Tomlin/etc)

Hi guys, would love a little input on mixing in large crowd/congregation/gang vocals into a rock mix, specifically CCM-style (Matt Redman/Tomlin/Passion/etc). I'm trying to find balance between keeping them beefy and stomping on my mix, all the while keeping the lead vocal nice and clear.

The "congregation" vocals are overdubbed AFTERWARDS with 6-20 people doing 5-6 passes of the song- doesn't need to sound like 20,000 but 200-2000 would be nice. I've been generously hi-passing, panning away from the center and adding some quick spatial delays. Has anyone done this successfully? Would love any guidance.
Old 2nd October 2013
  #2
Lives for gear
 
dandeurloo's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Set them up on a buss and sweep the buss with a cut eq until it opens up.
Old 2nd October 2013
  #3
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BradLyons's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by hw2nw ➡️
Hi guys, would love a little input on mixing in large crowd/congregation/gang vocals into a rock mix, specifically CCM-style (Matt Redman/Tomlin/Passion/etc). I'm trying to find balance between keeping them beefy and stomping on my mix, all the while keeping the lead vocal nice and clear.

The "congregation" vocals are overdubbed AFTERWARDS with 6-20 people doing 5-6 passes of the song- doesn't need to sound like 20,000 but 200-2000 would be nice. I've been generously hi-passing, panning away from the center and adding some quick spatial delays. Has anyone done this successfully? Would love any guidance.
The thing to keep in mind is that you're simulating a congregation---generally these mics are WELL above the audience at a distance, not direct mic'ing. The best thing to do if that's the sound you're after, is to also place the mics well above your vocalists and use microphone technique. When I record live concerts, I use Earthworks QTC40's about 30-60ft up.
Old 2nd October 2013
  #4
Gear Head
 
Duesenbert's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
To simulate a live crowd singing, find the biggest good-sounding room you can and get some distance between the voices and the mics. One particular technique I'd try for this is setting up an XY or spaced pair and having the vocalists move around the room between takes, so with each pass they're in a different spot. This sounds much more like a lot of people in the same room than panning to random positions.

If there's a lead vocal the whole time in the track and the "crowd" isn't going to be too exposed, treat them more as a texture and less like you would voices (i.e. don't be afraid to HPF higher than seems reasonable, and probably raise some 800-1500). Compression is a matter of taste, but something like the CLA2A would work well.
Old 2nd October 2013 | Show parent
  #5
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Duesenbert ➡️
To simulate a live crowd singing, find the biggest good-sounding room you can and get some distance between the voices and the mics. One particular technique I'd try for this is setting up an XY or spaced pair and having the vocalists move around the room between takes, so with each pass they're in a different spot. This sounds much more like a lot of people in the same room than panning to random positions.
Agreed. Although I always enjoy a Blumlein pair as an alternative to the XY or Spaced.
Old 3rd October 2013 | Show parent
  #6
Gear Addict
 
hw2nw's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Duesenbert ➡️
To simulate a live crowd singing, find the biggest good-sounding room you can and get some distance between the voices and the mics. One particular technique I'd try for this is setting up an XY or spaced pair and having the vocalists move around the room between takes, so with each pass they're in a different spot. This sounds much more like a lot of people in the same room than panning to random positions.

If there's a lead vocal the whole time in the track and the "crowd" isn't going to be too exposed, treat them more as a texture and less like you would voices (i.e. don't be afraid to HPF higher than seems reasonable, and probably raise some 800-1500). Compression is a matter of taste, but something like the CLA2A would work well.

very cool. going to give this all a whirl tomorrow. I have some nice condensers by themselves but no pairs besides a pair of 121s...
Old 3rd October 2013
  #7
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Sometimes i'm in that same situation and I buss them to a stereo and insert a convolution reverb with a 'worshippy' sized room and adjust the mix knob, eq after the reverb; almost like you were pretending it was audience mics or a actual live, bleedy recording of the audience.
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