Here is a sample of my latest project.
This is a backing theme jingle that will play behind voice overs for an instructional video. Completely made in Garageband, which is a program I’ve long been a skeptic of in regards to it’s usefulness in professional settings. However, I think I’ve come to change my opinion. It is a wonderful program for creating simple jingles and I could see using it in conjunction with Pro Tools (or any major DAW) on a larger project. By no means do I see Garageband replacing Pro Tools as a primary go-to DAW. But, for this particular project? Garageband fit the bill to a “T”.
I found (upon several hours of digging through the midi loop library) a simplistic latin beat that I felt would not be too problematic in restructuring. I went about replacing the rythmn and the majority of the percussion instruments that came with the midi loop. The only percussion I left was the high hat and ride cymbal. Man, I love midi.
Now for a bass line to hum us along. Hmmm. Well, this is going to back a voice-over giving instructions, so we need a tone and bassline that won’t interfere with the narrator (which is me, by the way). So I started searching for the correct tone first. Stand up bass to the rescue! Why stand up? It has nice round tone you can’t get with a standard electric or picked bass line. Remember, I’m using midi here. Had I been able to record it myself using my standard electric bass, I would have been able to get what I wanted after hours of setting up mics, testing levels, readjusting levels, etc. So, the bass line I found was pretty exact to what I felt would work, with just a few miniscule changes I put here and there to the walking bassline the midi loop presented to me. Again… man, I love midi!
Now for the money-maker. A simple melody. I knew that I would not find a melody that was going to fit right over the top with all the necessities I demanded. So, I elected to create it all myself using the computer keyboard (yes, you read that correctly). Again..man, I love midi!! I put on the rythmn that I created and looped it until I figured out a simple woodwind melody. I knew I wanted a woodwind instrument to carry the tune. Woodwinds generally have a tone that can be soothing to a listener when used in these situations. They don’t tend to fight the voice actor for your attention. In this case, I was hearing in my head a flute that would carry the melody. Fortunately, I was spot on when selecting the flute as the melody maker. Nice airy tone, easy to the ears and not about to step on my voice-over. I did a few practice runs with the rythmn section, quickly found a nice melody run and recorded.
The last bit is the fun part…mixing. In this instance, the mixing is small potatoes. There were only 5 tracks. I adjusted some levels and panned the flute and some of the percussion elements in different areas of the sound field to give room for the narrator. Oila! Finished. This was a very fun project to work on.
I feel it could not only work as a backing track to narration, but I could see it as a menu jingle or pause game jingle for a game on the iPad or the like.
Until next time!
David (Cali Dingo)