Posted on April 21, 2016
Drum Session for Scott Lumley’s “Psalm Songs” Record
This past Tuesday, April 12th, I had the pleasure of tracking drums and some bass with drummer, Kevin Hall and bassist Chris DeMarco, for Pastor Scott Lumley’s forthcoming record entitled “Psalm Songs,” at their Calvary Capital District church.
Due to circumstances outside of our control, as mentioned in a prior blog, we had to track guitars and vocals first. This past session, we were finally able to lay drum tracks and some of the bass. Remote tracking is always very tricky, as you’re in an environment not meant for this (acoustically and logistically), however with some practice and repetition, it can absolutely be executed with desirable results.
For this particular session, I employed my faithful (and original) Universal Audio Apollo Duo interface, along with my long-time PreSonus Digimax LT 8-channel ADAT preamp and an API 3124, 4-channel preamp that a former guitar teacher was kind enough to lend me. The API was employed on kick, snare and bass tracks, though I like to split the kick and snare between multiple preamps, as I tend to at LEAST double-mic the kick and sometimes, triple-mic the snare (dynamic and condenser on top, with a third mic on the bottom). The built-in Apollo preamps mainly served on my OH and hi-hat tracks, while the 8-channel ADAT preamp handled the additional kick, snare and tom inputs.
I originally intended to make use of Universal Audio’s unison preamp technology by way of my UA 610 and Neve 1073 emulations printed to tape, however, given the nature of the recording environment, you can never get far enough away from your drummer to be able to monitor properly where you can clearly hear what you’re doing, thus these speciality ideas will have to way for the editing and mixing phase on my workstation in my treated office in my apartment. Since I had the extra inputs available, I made use of a spot mic on the ride cymbal, as well as a “mono kit” mic (pictured below) just above the ride and kick to get a close image of the entire kit that I could later crush with limiting and distortions for extra attitude, if needed. Finally, despite my initial feelings and intentions, I ALWAYS end a drum session by having the drummer give me dedicated hits of each kit component for the purpose of sampling and layering of “clean” shots later in the mixing phase…even if I wind up using third-party drum samples by companies like Steven Slate, which is an exceedingly common practice in today’s industry.
Below, I have included select images from that session:
As this project develops, I will be creating more production and tutorial content from it, so please keep an eye out here on the blog and my YouTube Channel for updates and new postings (please feel free to subscribe!).
As always, thanks so much for reading! Until next time!