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razor7music

Creating Vocal Harmonies with Melodyne

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Hey All--

Maybe you don't struggle with finding good vocal harmonies like I do, but typically if I can't sing a good harmony over my melody after a couple sessions, I get frustrated and then I know it's not going to end well.

I remembered seeing a training video on creating melodies with Melodyne, and I watched a good one last night, and so I'm going to give it a try. If it sounds good, I'll keep it in the mix. If it sounds like a robot, then I'll just sing over the part and it served its purpose of helping me create a good harmony line.

Anyone used Melodyne this way? What are your thoughts/advice?

Thanks!

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Yes i’ve tried it a few times with results varying from embarrassing to ok.

YMMV

If you can get harmonies from vocalist(s) its better IMO.

J

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2 hours ago, razor7music said:

Hey All--

Maybe you don't struggle with finding good vocal harmonies like I do, but typically if I can't sing a good harmony over my melody after a couple sessions, I get frustrated and then I know it's not going to end well.

I remembered seeing a training video on creating melodies with Melodyne, and I watched a good one last night, and so I'm going to give it a try. If it sounds good, I'll keep it in the mix. If it sounds like a robot, then I'll just sing over the part and it served its purpose of helping me create a good harmony line.

Anyone used Melodyne this way? What are your thoughts/advice?

Thanks!

I always use Melodyne to create a harmony for me to practice.  I will create a harmony from a lead that I have sung and corrected. Then I make a mixdown and practice as I drive to and from work.  I am not a great singer but after about a week I can generally sing the harmony(ies) good enough. Of course people probably think I am singing to the radio :)

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I've used melodyne for creating harmonies many times, it's great for fleshing out parts, but I usually end up re-recording actual harmony tracks based on the melodyne to get the best results. Sometimes I've had good results with a feature in melodyne editor to create "random deviations" in tempo and pitch, then adjust the formant control slightly so the harmonies sound a little less like the same singer.

In a thicker mix the melodyne harmonies can work OK, harder to notice it's faked, but in a sparser mix where you really hear what's happening, it can sound very obviously electronically duplicated, which doesn't appear to matter in a lot of today's current music, but not so useful if you like that more natural acoustic thing.

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28 minutes ago, noynekker said:

I've used melodyne for creating harmonies many times, it's great for fleshing out parts, but I usually end up re-recording actual harmony tracks based on the melodyne to get the best results. Sometimes I've had good results with a feature in melodyne editor to create "random deviations" in tempo and pitch, then adjust the formant control slightly so the harmonies sound a little less like the same singer.

In a thicker mix the melodyne harmonies can work OK, harder to notice it's faked, but in a sparser mix where you really hear what's happening, it can sound very obviously electronically duplicated, which doesn't appear to matter in a lot of today's current music, but not so useful if you like that more natural acoustic thing.

Thanks. I just tried it and it does take a little work, but it definitely helps when you're stuck like I was. I have one or two actual layers singing in unison over the melody, so the added single harmony doesn't sound too bad. When I get closer to the mix stage, if it stands out as sounding too synthetic, I can just sing over the Melodyne harmony. 

Great tool. Worked exactly as designed. 

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I've gotten as far as thinking about it. Then I saw myself creating a duplicate vocal track, breaking all the blobs down into individual notes/syllables, and moving them around to the correct harmony notes. It started to seem like too much work, so at that point I set up a microphone and sang the part. 🙃

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It seems to me that Melodyne would be a great compositional tool when coming up with harmonies, but would I keep the Melodyne-d part? Nah. I'd most likely resing the part after finalizing which notes I'd be singing.

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I've found that low and 3rd harmony's can be very transparent if the timing is adjusted a little .  5th up starts sounding artificial , above that is bad unless so far back in the mix you can hardly hear it.  Most singers can hit the 3rd above the lead vocal.  I had one guy sing the 3rd , and actually sang  the same note thru the entire track.  I then built a 5th off of that track . Not having to move it very far in melodyne made it convincing.  Also , if I have a repeating part of a track or chorus , I'll take the harmony tracks and swap them around , they start sounding like different takes instead of just building from a single performance ..    mark

 

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Yes, I saw a video or blog somewhere that talked about using Melodyne as a composition tool. It's been very helpful to me for working out harmony parts that I can practice singing until I'm ready to actually record the part.

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I use it freely. But mostly on harmonies that are too high to sing properly.

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I've too have had mixed results with creating vocal harmonies from the lead vocal part, sometimes it works well other times it adds strange resonances. I also use it to make electric guitar lead parts into some harmonies to go with the lead part, and have the same mixed results. Sometimes it makes nice tones, other times it adds strange resonances but the strange ones don't sound as bad as the vocal harmonies when they are off. I find flattening out the pitch center using the pitch modulation tool that flattens out the blob's pitch before I move it can help some. 

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  Razor , one last comment from me .  If you are in this for the long haul ,  you'll find that when you are in your mid 60's like I am , vocal range will be the first thing to go.  Melodyne and programs like it , will quickly become your friend.  If you have time , might as well learn it top to bottom before you actually need it .     Later ...    mark

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Just thinking out loud here.  How long do you think it will be before Melodyne or some new software will be able to handle the greater pitch changes without sounding off?

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2 hours ago, InstrEd said:

Just thinking out loud here.  How long do you think it will be before Melodyne or some new software will be able to handle the greater pitch changes without sounding off?

Some time in the next year or two there will be a plugin that is an order of magnitude more "realistic" than what we have now. It's a matter of processing power and "smart" modeling. This stuff just keeps getting more accurate and simple all the time. We'd have one now, probably, if there were a serious demand for it, but -- this is just my guess -- artists still want to sing their own stuff, and in the long run that's cheaper and better.

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Here's a good tutorial I found helpful. The only thing missing is how to print the track when you're all done. I just froze it, personally.

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