audacityWarning: This post is a bit geeky…

Today I have achieved greatness! I love audacity – a great programme which I can do so much with. I usually edit my audio in Final Cut Pro but yesterday decided to simplify things by recording directly into audacity with my H2n Handy Recorder (another cracking piece of kit). I played the track to my chosen song (Lily Allen’s ‘The Fear’) on my retro iPod mini (£25 on eBay forever ago) through headphones so that I could hear it but it wouldn’t;’t be picked up in the recording. I first sang the whole song with Lily – so just the main tune. I then sang the whole song again, creating an upper harmony. I played them together so that I could hear how they worked – at this stage, there was no backing just my acapella voices. Next, the lower harmony was recorded and finally an additional frilly wafty top line. I needed to sync these all up so that they matched using the editing tool in audacity.

So, I’m now hearing 4 of my own voices (quite scary, but I’ll get over it.) Next I needed to add an instrumental track of the song underneath and move it so that it was in sync with the voices. This was a little tricky so I adopted my usual strategy. I went to bed, thought about it, then looked it up on You Tube this morning – and found a way to pick up the audio and shift it along the timeline. Love solving a problem!

Done! I have a version of me singing the whole thing. The question might arise – but why would you want to hear your own voice 4 times over? The answer, actually, I don’t but I DO need to hear what my choir arrangements are going to sound like. I can sing over an original song easily and hear if it works. Then I can sing over it again differently and it works, but do the 2 parts work together?! This isn’t a quick way to find out, but it’s an accurate one. And now, I can export the whole track so the the choir can hear it. I can also make their ‘part’ louder so that they can hear it and export that for them to listen to in their own time.

I always like to hear where I’m trying to get to first. I may not always share this with the choirs as I like them to hear the build up but as their leader, I need to know.

Here’s the track – do tell me what you think!?