Friday, 25 December 2015


as used in the contemporary recording & music production studios

In this article, the focus is on certain words that are basically used in the contemporary audio recording/music production studio. The words are not scholarly defined from the view point of a musicologist. Instead, they are locally explained in accordance with the way they are used in the contemporary music studios.
In the music studios, there is a greater percentage of the non musicologists in attendance, hence, the musical language of the music scholars doesn't seem to make much impact in their communication. Alternatively, altered version of such a language has emerged for the music scholars and the non music scholars to aid their communication in production.
Therefore, the altered version, invariably has some alteration especially in their meanings (when a music scholar mentions a word, the non music scholar may understand it differently, hence a new meaning of the word is formed).

weight: this refers to how bold, deep and heavy that any given sound feels. It tends to describe audio power as per balanced frequency material with partially squashed and smeared wave form.

beat: Beat here refers to the instrumental part of a song (unvoiced musical sound track) Hence, you may hear someone say "I made this beat myself". It may not be necessarily limited to percussive instrumental part alone.

attack: Vocal parts (esp homophonic) added to an already recorded line of vocal track to add more strength to it
2: to add attack.
3: It also retains it's other meaning; the time it take for a given sound unit to emerge from silence and attain the peak.
4 the force with which a vocal part pronounces any musical phrase.

punch this is the same as attack 1 & 2

pad: (1) a device that produces soft tone usually a MIDI device that has it's own internal tone generator. It is similar to a drum machine.

(2) to sing and record exactly the same part that has been recorded (that is a sort of double tracking) in order to add weight and effects to the vocal material. (this is similar to attack but while attack seeks to double some parts of the take, pad doubles the entire take)

pitching to transpose or to make sound shift from the original pitch. It is mostly used on individual notes to correct wrongly rendered pitches or in a phrase to achieve modulation. It's also used in parts to achieve harmony and effects.

demo a recorded sketch work of a musical composition. It can be referred to as a music compositional jot down. Whether instrumental, vocal or the combination of both.

master a musical track or album that has received final torch from the studio and it's ready for publishing.
This word also means to finalise a song and get it ready for publishing by making sure that all the necessary editing, processing, and corrections are made.

remix a different version of a completed or published work. It may only have a little change from the original version.

chorus: the refrain of a song is regarded as a chorus in the studio setting. Here, it is not necessarily the chorused part of a song. Instead, it is that part of a song that repeats often after some sort of variations. It means that in studios, even a solo voice can be regarded as a chorus once it sings the musical part known here as a chorus.

solo: solo here has two meanings
1 it refers to a part taken by a single performer. It also refers to the taking of a part by a single performer.
2 On the other hand, solo in a studio setting means verse. That is those other parts of a song outside the chorus.

verse those major parts of a song outside the chorus usually sung.

rap the vocal works consisting of spoken words that has certain rhythmical flow. These days, it may not necessarily be in a fast speed but it must be rhythmical. Though the rhythmical pattern could be indicated by the instrumental. The instrumental doesn't define the rhythmical pattern of the accompanying rap. Hence, raps can be independent of it's accompanying instrumental part.

producer: the person who directs the musical production processes. He may not only do the work of a music director in the studio but also crowns it with that of an audio engineer.

DJ the producer in a minor scale production where the instrumentals are majorly computer generated (sometimes with the help of MIDI keyboard and especially in hip hop or rap music). The producer here, with his computer and studio equipments, forms the entire instrumentalists.
(2) the original meaning of the word DJ (disk jockey) is still in the pipeline but the other one is speedily taking over in the studio arena.

(1) to balance the frequency of an audio material so that it sounds sharp without being hash.
(2)In the modern studio as it pertains to the communication between both the audio engineer and the novice artists, filter has come to mean not only the frequency based processes but also all the edits that a song or an audio material undergoes to sound perfect and sharp.

a ccapella vocal music without instrumental accompaniment.

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