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Post new topic Reaper recording with EZKeys, EZDrummer, ReaTune - Hear It!
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Author Topic:  Reaper recording with EZKeys, EZDrummer, ReaTune - Hear It!
Greg Cutshaw

Corry, PA, USA
Post Posted 5 Jun 2016 7:22 pm     Reply with quote

Here's a backing track I did for a vocal group in my church.

I used EZDrummer Nashville midi pack the the drums with a a few fills from the stock Rock/Pop patterns for fills like on the end of the song. In that case I took a Rock midi pattern that buzzed the cymbals and switched the cymbals to open high hat the song's ending. Many of the fills were hand edited. The kick drum and snare top and bottom were compressed and EQ'd using built in Reaper tools by applying a lot of the standard guidelines you see on drum compression tutorials.

The bass was a Fender Precision run direct to console through a hybrid preamp. It was compressed and EQ'd using built in Reaper tools using again pretty standard guidelines. I have found lately that uneven playing of my bass parts had been causing enormous peaks on my tracks that were robbing a lot of headroom from other tracks.

Fiddle was a 5 string electric played through a mic'd Fender Deluxe reverb re-issue using the left Bassman channel and I did compress it slightly. This amp is finally beginning to mellow and sound more like a vintage amp as it gets hours of use on it. Reverb on the electric guitar and fiddle parts was 50% Hall Of Fame stomp box set on "Church" and 50% the free stereo reverb Ambiance inside of Reaper. Acoustic rhythm guitar was picked up by a condenser mic. All mics were fed into a hybrid preamp then to a Zoom R24. The Zoom tracks were ported to Reaper to be combined with Piano and Drum parts.

Reatune (a free Reaper provided pitch correction tool) was used to manually correct 4 of the fiddle notes. Response time was set to 50ms and manually correction mode was enabled. This tool couldn't be simpler to use on single note sequences. you just add Reatune to the effects, run the track with the Reatune window open and a graph showing the whole sequence of notes appears showing time on the X axis and scale notes on the Y axis. Simply draw lines on the graph where you want the pitch of the off key notes to go and Reatune moves them, non-destructively!

I purchased the EZKeys 6 pack midi that was offered for $99 by Sweetwater. Got the 2 country packs, Boogie, piano Pop, and 2 ballad packs. Not a ton of midi patterns in the packs but what's provided is easy to edit both the keys and the structure using the EZKeys tools. The first piano backing is a straight 3/4 waltz sequence and the 2nd is more of a honky tonk classic country piano sound. I did do some manual midi edits to change and add to these patterns. I find that you can even make these patterns into great piano leads by using them for the left hand piano parts and manually adding the lead line either with a real piano or just writing the parts out in the Reaper midi editor.

The original wav file has a few less artifacts than the 320kbps mp3 file linked below but there are no major sound differences between the two on my Yamaha studio monitors.

Chord arrangement chart in pdf format

Hear the recording!
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Tim Kowalski

Illinois, USA
Post Posted 15 Nov 2016 1:53 pm     Reply with quote

Very nice, Greg. I have been using REAPER for about 3 years and it is awesome. Some comments:
1. Nice recording - good mix between instruments.
2. I could tell that you were playing a P-Bass. They are my favorite and I have a nice '71 that I would not trade for anything.
3. I wish that I could play fiddle. You did a great job. I didn't notice the retune events either. I have used it on some backing vocals and it works well there.
4. I have been tempted to buy EZ-Keys, but haven't pulled the trigger. Your track sounds very natural and has me thinking again. I usually try to play something simple and edit with REAPER midi editor.
5. I use EZ-Mix on tracks and master. There are some very good presets for instruments as well as mastering chain presets. They sound good to my ears without much tweaking. BIG timesaver for me.

Perhaps it would be possible some day to collaborate by posting .RPP files to each other and adding tracks to them. I like what you have done.
Bad wine is better than no wine.
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Los Angeles
Post Posted 25 Nov 2016 4:09 pm     Reply with quote

Were there vocals on this?

I listened to it on headphones, and during the acoustic intro I thought that I heard vocals in the background, very very faintly.
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Greg Cutshaw

Corry, PA, USA
Post Posted 25 Nov 2016 7:07 pm     Reply with quote

Just me mumbling on the rhythm track!

Thanks Tom for the comments.
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