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Rico Belled

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  1. Rico Belled

    Live recording done with Cakewalk!

    The video was done at Jimmy's (the drummer!) house actually! The idea was to emulate the vibe of NPR's Tiny Desk Concerts and send it in as a demo to see if we can get on the show. His girlfriend used some kind of low budget steady-cam and we shot two run throughs: one while playing and recording what you hear, and then one more while 'finger-syncing' if you will the best we could. Jimmy edited the video and I took the multitrack recording home and mixed it in Cakewalk, then sent him the final mix to be synced with the picture. Thanks for the kind words everyone! It just amazes me what kind of quality we can achieve these days with the most modest of means. I mean, that XR18 cost me not even $400 brand new and gives me 18 inputs with 16 EXCELLENT mic pres, up to 5 independent stereo headphone mixes if I want... mind-blowing! R
  2. Rico Belled

    Live recording done with Cakewalk!

    It's nice huh? That was done by Steve Sykes, one of the best engineers here in L.A.! I just played bass on that one... R
  3. Rico Belled

    Live recording done with Cakewalk!

    Thanks! Yeah, that bass is surprisingly good..paid less than $600 for it brand new at the dreaded GC. Brought it to the session for Keiko's record at United (the old Ocean Way) and it just delivered in spades! The tune (Spirit Dance - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=26qR01Ghh2U) went to number one on the BDS radio chart. As far as Behringer goes: they been making incredible stuff for a while now. Years ago I bought that ADA8000 which I used extensively for my second record. It ended up eventually developing a hum on some channels that was typical of that particular piece, but sonically it was on point! This XR18 is on a whole 'nother level. I've recorded in a lot of places, from the worst to the very fanciest and this thing is as good as anything, I'm telling you. The headroom is awesome, recording clean and crisp. the flexibility unparalleled. It even has 2 Hi-Z inputs; plugged a guitar in one and put an Amp Sim on it: AWESOME. The built-in effects are stellar, and you can even record the dry signal AND route the effects to your computer on a different track. Thanks for all the kind words guys! Keeps this guy inspired to push forward! Rico
  4. Rico Belled

    Live recording done with Cakewalk!

    Thanks! Yeah, that XR18 is wonderful... R
  5. Rico Belled

    Live recording done with Cakewalk!

    Hey everybody, Did some recording with the incomparable Keiko Matsui last month at the drummer's house as a kind of demo to see if we can get on the Tiny Desk concert series and it came out pretty great actually! Totally LIVE (no doctoring later!), although we did do another run through to get some more video shots. What you hear is what we played the first time though. That's Jimmy Branly on Cajon, JP Mourao on guitar and yours truly on bass. I recorded it through my brand new Behringer XR18 (LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this thing), into Cakewalk by Bandlab on my Dell XPS 18 which makes an amazing touch control surface for the XR18 by the way. Mixed and Mastered at my place also in Cakewalk. Lemmeno what y'all think!
  6. Rico Belled

    Bandlab assistant wont let me log in :(

    I get it ALL the time, on various different machines when logging in using Google. I ended up making a Bandlab account... R
  7. Sorry, that's terrible advice. Normalize is almost never a good option! You need to learn how to use a mastering limiter, perhaps in combination with a multiband compressor. Adding some tube/tape saturation and driving them can work... there are many ways! R
  8. Rico Belled

    Lowest Latency USB interface?

    As I was saying, it was completely safe, that was the point of my whole post! I WANT to use Sonar to control the mixes for everyone, with the plugins I know and love, with the routing that's head and shoulders above any mixer that comes with your audio interface. Nobody was listening to tracks from the computer. It means when we listen back to the take, it's exactly the same as what we heard when we were recording. Did did hours and hours of recording at 64 samples at it NEVER ever even popped once. Once you get used to that it's nearly impossible to go back to having to deal with yet another separate mixer application. R
  9. Rico Belled

    Lowest Latency USB interface?

    For me it's two things: first off the arrogance of the typical Mac user here is quite unbelievable! "I could NEVER use Windows, it's just AWFUL!" The smugness and cockiness just begs for a dose of truth and reality. More importantly though, around here they are really starting to at least inconvenience themselves, but mostly really hurt themselves and not just financially. When you combine the insane amounts they lay down for gimped products like the iPad Pro, fancy laptops etc with the fact that almost all musicians are complaining about not having enough money it just doesn't make sense anymore. They bring all their dough to the Apple store and Guitar Center for overpriced preamps and stuff, then say they can't pay a guy to play on their records or demos! Again, if we were all flush with money, go ahead and buy that $3000 laptop, $1000 iPad. Or you can get a used Surface Pro 3 (bought an i5 with keyboard and pen for $240 shipped!) and run Ableton Live on the same tablet you read your charts from, catch my drift? An even better example of how the lovers of the fruit are hurting themselves is the XPS 18, an 18.5 inch mega-tablet that I got a few years ago. Not only is it a great machine with space for 2 internal drives, if you read music on a gig, there's simply nothing Apple makes that's even close. It's literally twice as big as the big iPad pro, which means 2 pages at the same time and anyone who reads knows the value of that. If I had a dollar for every time another musician that saw it for the first time went "Wow! Which iPad is that?", followed by me saying it's a Dell, followed by them immediately checking out and losing interest because they could never be seen with a Dell. Then end result is: having to bring a laptop to run Ableton (which needs a special stand or something) AND an iPad for on the music stand. Touch screen on you computer? Oh no, thanks to saint Steve they are forced to arbitrarily see the pad as different from a computer, while Microsoft has truly made Windows into a touch friendly OS. Amazingly, even applications that were made a long time ago still work with Touch because MS thinks way ahead. On MacOS it seems every update breaks compatibilty with half the software out there! I have a good buddy who's pretty much married to Apple, trying to replicate what I do live with my XPS 18 by running a USB touch monitor into his MacPro (paid $3000 for a 5 year old machine with graphics cards he will NEVER put to use) and it even just doesn't work very well, because the OS is not touch aware and software compatibility is a nightmare. He just can't stand it, but won't see the light. I bought another XPS 18 with the Pentium chip used for $180, put an SSD in it, 8GB of RAM, and IT runs Ableton great too, WHILE reading charts. The worst part is, and I say this because a lot of these guys are my friends and I want to help them move into the future, it's only gonna get worse. Again, it was Steve Jobs' doing to separate the pad from the computer, Cook is just running with it. My buddy was just happily telling me how they've now made a way for apps on the iPad to "talk to each other"! It's hilarious, having to learn ALL NEW SOFTWARE, for instance for writing charts, while I just put Sibelius on my Surface! You see the trend? And then they just keep saying to each other and themselves how it's easier, although when you ask how in the world it's easier to learn a program than just use the one you're intimately familiar with they have no answer. Propaganda is a dangerous thing....... Have you seen the survey on Protools users? What if Apple decides to switch its Macs to ARM chips? Is Avid gonna make ProTools for ARM? How about all you favorite plugins? I still run the Native Instruments B4, EVP73, some of the best instruments ever made in my opinion. Installed Windows 10 on a computer from 2005 for my buddy, runs better than 7 and Sonar 5 which he was using works great! To me, THAT is simple. Sorry for the rant guys, but we need to fight the propaganda if we care about each other...... R
  10. Rico Belled

    Any harm in upgrading my video card?

    GTX 660? No way man, fastest card I have is a GTX1050ti and it's great; uses less power than a 1060 (no extra power lead necessary!) and plays most games just fine. The 1060 is significantly faster though and since the crypto winter can be picked up quite cheaply. R
  11. Rico Belled

    Lowest Latency USB interface?

    My uninvited 2 cents: Most of my Mac buddies with overpriced Pro-Tools setups on their overpriced MacBook Pros never understood why I kept saying that once you go full input-monitoring you can never go back... until we did the sessions for my album XR7. I built a machine specifically for that record; had little money so it was a first gen i3 with 4GB of RAM, MOTU PCI-424 and a 2408 MK3, a 2408 MK2 and a 1224 that I got for less than the cost of a headphone amp. We recorded 4 or 5 guys at a time, with 4 independent headphone mixes, eqs/compressors/verb at 44.1K 24 Bit at 64 sample buffer size for days, not a single glitch ever. I'm talking 8 or 9 mics on the drums, 2 or 3 on percussion, bass, guitar and keys in stereo. This on a machine that even at that time was low end! Sonar was flawless and these dudes could finally see the power of it. Listen, if you're an amateur or even a pro with let's say more 'relaxed' sense of time latency is not as big a deal. If you have a real master drummer, anything over 5ms is just not gonna work; a lot of singers are the same. When Jim says 1ms my heart jumps! I don't wanna drop that kinda cash, because of you know, priorities, but I very much look forward to an even lower latency future. As I write this, I'm thinking of the effects of a latency that's too high. What happens is that, just like on a big stage, a great musician will automatically start playing a little early, just so his part sits right in the mix he's hearing. When you play it back it's actually rushed! Finally, the bandwidth increase in USB3 compared to USB2 has absolutely nothing to do with latency. The latter has enough to do hundreds of tracks. Overall system latency is a very complex interplay of factors, how hardware behaves, quality of drivers etc. Case in point: as long as you set sample rate to 48K, my Surface Pro 3 is amazingly stable at 64 sample buffer size with ASIO4ALL. I tried for a while at 44K and it just crackled but I guess that's because the built-in audio device always runs at 48 and the resampling the driver does causes problems. R
  12. Rico Belled

    Live recording with Cakewalk!

    In case anyone is wondering: the overhead used was a Studio Projects C4! I have two of them myself and these are just excellent mics! R
  13. Rico Belled

    Live recording with Cakewalk!

    Thanks Grem! Jeff sings so great that a little distortion doesn't matter! And the Drum Replacer was just for the kick, but yes it worked AMAZINGLY! Yes sir ! Dave does a lot of recording at his house so he knows what he's doing. It's just a single small diaphragm placed right over the middle. Thanks for the kind words guys! Make me want to do more of this! Rico P.S. Attached a picture from my end! That's the Kronos 61, a Korg Taktile 49 and one of my beloved XPS 18s for charts and Ableton .
  14. Hey y'all, We did our first test recording at my regular Friday gig and it came out great, wanted to share it! I brought my XPS 13 (oldie, model 9333) and a Roland VS100; we ran a kick mic and overhead for the drums, stereo for the keys and I grabbed a send from the main PA for the vocal. Jeff is such a powerful singer I think he's peaking the pre on this POS mixer they have there so it's a little... well, let's say it's dirty! All recorded into Cakewalk, which recorded flawlessly for 75 minutes at a time both sets; no overdubs, every note you hear was played live, no tracks, no click (obviously LOL). Full disclosure: I did have to use drum replacer for the Kick because the mic moved right against the head. I did NOT move any notes and DR actually was amazing: had to remove maybe 10 double triggers that shouldn't be there, and add just 1 extra trigger that didn't show. Finally, as I recorded the midi from my Kronos as well, I was able to separate the bass from the rhodes, and send the data from the latter to a Lounge Lizard, just to have a little more options to mix. No quantizing or moving of notes though. Eventually I might use the Midi to perhaps trigger Trilogy and really mix this thing! Lemmeno what ya think! R
  15. Rico Belled

    AIR DB-33, Boom, Loom Classic, Mini Grand $19.99 ea.

    Thanks for those tips! Pianissimo is impressive for how small it is, but I don't love it. In sustained notes you really hear the lack of 'information' if you know what I mean. The Mini Grand is head and shoulder above it... Now that mda ePiano is pretty awesome! I still prefer Lounge Lizard 4 and the EVP, but it's really quite good and much more playable than just about any sample based instrument. Even with the GUI is barely more than 1 Megabyte! It just goes to show how inefficient rompling really can be, doesn't it? Are you hip to the MiniMogue 2? R
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