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Another Sound Test

Discussion in 'Works in Progress' started by fluterific00, Mar 16, 2016.

  1. fluterific00

    fluterific00 Member

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    Ok, I remembered how I used to love playing Debussy, so I pulled out my favorite book and picked out a two page piece that I could play right away with no page turning. I'm still working out sound options and on this clip I added a tiny bit of reverb to it. I know my playing of this piece still needs some work before it's put up, but I'm just wanting another opinion on my sound quality. I get a darker tone when I use my soft pedal and I have tweaked in a little to try to help the twangy sound. I hope it's better. I also get somewhat nervous before I make a recording, so if you have tips on that, that would be appreciated. Also, I noticed that my fingers tend to slip on the keys which is why some of my senior recital sounded like I was missing notes. If you think this recording is good enough for the audition room, would you let me know? Thanks.
     

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  2. Rachfan

    Rachfan Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    David
    Hi fluterific,

    I've recorded a lot and can say that having two microphones on stands pointed at the piano and me as daunting as playing for a live audience. Making a recording demands full concentration. Even a single spurious thought can derail a musical train of thought. So you have to do whatever is necessary before hand to avoid unwanted distractions.

    Using the soft pedal is fine for changing color in the score or making it a bit darker. But if you find you have to use it often to produce a darker tone throughout the keyboard, then it's time for the tuner/technician to visit for voicing the hammers such that the darkening is uniform. That will free you from that chore so that you can better focus on other points of musicality.

    It's well known that there is anxiety sitting on stage as there is sitting in front of two microphones at home. Both scenarios are about performance. The key to success is preparation. If one is truly prepared, the less the worrying. We would like our renditions to be perfect. The problem is that none of us are deities, so we will never attain perfection in our playing. We try to touch perfection, but the best we can aspire to is to almost to be perfect. Arturo Michelangeli hated his own playing!

    Slipping on the keys can result in "ghost notes", that is to say, missing notes. I believe that the most probable reason is a faulty fingering. Play the figure hands alone watching closely what the fingering is whenever you produced ghost notes. See how that fingering changed the positioning of the hand to make it awkward, thus creating the slip of the fingers. If you find a better fingering, then you'll need to practice it into the ground. The reason is that you not only have to achieve the new fingering, but also unlearn the faulty one. And there's no guarantee that the faulty fingering will never resurface when you least expect it, perhaps in a recital or doing a recording.

    I'm glad you use a low setting for reverb. If too much, it sounds "swimming".

    Usually once I'm ready to record, I do about a dozen outtakes. Then it's audition time. I sit down with the recorder and play each outtake. Out of 12 about 3 will capture my attention. I'll next erase the discards to get them out of the way. Then I'll listen to the three competitors and pick out the best performance. That's the one I'll upload here and elsewhere.

    I believe the Music Board decides which recordings can be accepted to the PianoSociety archive or that require further work.

    I hope this helps.

    David
     
    Last edited: May 5, 2016
  3. fluterific00

    fluterific00 Member

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    Yes, it does, thanks. All I have is an mp3 recorder. My brother has more equipment. Perhaps he will help me. I just had the tuner come and polish a couple of notes. He did that for free. I have since made a recording of Claire De lune, and while the playing isn't perfect, I think the sound quality is. The weather has been strange here, so partly it's because of that. I'll provide a link to my newest recording of Claire De Lune. See what you think here about the quality. https://www.reverbnation.com/hasselquistmusicstudio/song/25798208-clair-de-lune-by-debussy-final Minus the tuning issue and the hesitations and missed notes. I basically got a recording of this so I could give it to a lady at church. I tend to want to have things done quickly and if I don't do them well, I harp on myself in a bad way! I wasn't going really professional with this, but maybe this one is good enough to put up on the page, with a few details worked out. I have recorded both Debussy's several times and picked what I thought were the best ones. I will re-record the Claire De Lune if you think it might work. Also, what recording mic's are you using and what recorder are you using? This would be a big help as well. My tuner today said it was just a tuning issue. So, hopefully I'll have things playing better.
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2016

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