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 Collaborating on distance? How to?

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treibklang
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2008 11:51 am    Collaborating on distance? How to? Reply with quoteBack to top

Hi all,

working together often is quite a lot of work. I still found it hard, when trying to compose with a schoolmate (hm, must have been back in ages): finding dates to meet, getting a common line, switching roles etc. In live, one can easily discuss things or try out stuff.
So nowadays, as many things take place "online" (and by getting older), distances between friends seem to increase, but the wish to collaborate is still there. I saw a (quite deserted) forum for collaboration on this board.

How do you collaborate with far away partners? Sending Midi-files? Mixed-down parts? Do you manage to have the same recording hard-/software? Discuss stuff via mail or phone? Or do you manage to have music session phone conferences?

Cheers, Stefan

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dronescape
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2008 2:09 pm    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

Sending CDRs around certainly is no bad thing. If and when both parties involved are using the same type of audio or sequencing software, one might even want to exchange data this way. On the other hand, I don
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Phrozenlight
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2008 3:01 pm    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

just share wav or flac via internet, no mp3 or ogg Wink

sending cd-r takes to much time, and they can arrive broken Mad

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bewoest
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2008 6:07 pm    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

When musicians start to think of a distance collaboration there is often just too much discussion about using the same software, operating system or other technical details.

Here is my recommendation:
If you like to exchange music-files which are still in progress just render the separate tracks out of your preferred sequencer software and name the resulting WAV- or AIF-files simple and self-explanatory like "bassdrum", "snare", "bassline", "leadline" etc. Do it without any effects, if that is possible. This leaves more mixing possibilities to your partner. Also: Avoid to use compression on the separate tracks, even when they are sounding too low then. It is better to send just normalized files. It is somewhat difficult to add new material to already compressed audio-signals.

To document how you might think the final mix could sound make a mixdown of the master-track (of course with all the effects you like) and add it to the other files. Again a self-explanatory naming could help your partner to recover those files out of the heap of all the others.

Put all the files which belong to the piece you like to share in one folder, name the folder with the number of BPM to set-up the other sequencer properly in sync to yours, like this: "track01_124bpm". If you like to be a bit more kind to your partner you can even add the key of the track to it, too: track01_124bpm_c-minor". :wink:

This folder you can easily compress to one ZIP-file and transfer it via FTP or services like http://www.yousendit.com/ to almost every place in the world which has more than only a modem dial-up internet-connection. Of course you can send the (uncompressed) folder just as a DVD- or CD-R or whatever.

In my opinion it doesn't make sense to really think about using the same software or software-version. There is so much very different software in use, that it seems to be hardly possible to set up two different systems in a way that you eventually just can double-click on a sequencer-file, that you might have got just by e-mail or so. In fact even when would use the same software and the same version all the used (VST-) plug-Ins need to match to each other.

I suggest just to concentrate on a precise communication and of the artistic aim your collaboration probably might have. Sometimes it is even better to make a phone-call, although having everything written down in the last e-mail.

Of course this all doesn't replaces a real encounter and the experience of making music together in a jam session and having the feeling to perform as a "band". But at least you can just pretend to sound like that... Wink

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treibklang
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2008 7:31 pm    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

Thanks, for the open responses Smile
So it's all about exchanging recorded fragments or sections of music. Doesn't that restrict the partner wrt. modifying the tracks/sequences etc.? Do you share notes, too? Either in written or Midi form to allow the co-composer do variants.
I wonder, if any tried to realize an online session, i.e., midi via internet connection and/or using remote desktop applications. Will the latency be too high to make it worth a try? Or is the hardware/software to limited to realize such connections?
I assume, there will have to be regular real life meetings in the end, to compile all the ideas, but on long distances, this might be rarely possible (imagine a european and an american composer working together). Or would this be doomed like most long-distance relationships?

-Stefan

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Phrozenlight
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2008 7:49 pm    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

well the way Eppie and I work for "Dutch Space Mission" is normally that Eppie asks me to play some pieces in a certain key.
(very difficult for me Wink )

Than he plays something over it, or has already something recorded, and mixes everything together.

When he is ready he send me the track and I give my opinion, sometimes we change it.

no real life relation is involved Wink

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Russell Storey
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 21, 2008 9:21 am    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

well as all my collaberations except one have been distance out of neccesity i have found WAV files on cdr to be the best option backed up by email chats.i agree there is very little point trying to use compatable software as there are so many options and everything will eventualy become a stereo WAV in the end.
so far i have added to others works/sequences as well as providing some base pads and atmospheres for others to use. it can be challenging but very worthwhile.

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REWO Records
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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2015 9:35 pm    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

Create together a Box.com or Google Drive account and you are on the go. Last year I worked together with Perceptual Defense this way and it worked great.
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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2015 10:38 pm    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

I did a project with a friend in other country a while ago,
and we sent each other the "24 bit" files through services like
WeTransfer.com

I recorded over these tracks,
He agreed to do the mixing and mastering,
The Piece of Music was finished...
but we never talked to each other again, haha

The most difficult part was to agree on what we wanted
when we sent the tracks back and forth...

Wish you good luck on your projects, but most importantly
communicate clearly your ideas to each other from the beginning.
My 2 cents... Greetings!
Wink

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