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Labeling Tracks

Lesson 6 from: GearGods Presents: Mastering Metal Mixing: Prep & Setup

Eyal Levi

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Lesson Info

6. Labeling Tracks

Lesson Info

Labeling Tracks

Let's talk about labeling tracks because ms leveling tracks is going to get you killed um I guess in a professional way uh I just had an experience recently where I was doing a uh mixing a death metal record and somebody was hired to do orchestra for it and they sent me forty something tracks of orchestra and they were labeled audio one through forty whatever night. So how am I supposed to work with that? Like, obviously I can sit there and listen be like ok these air strings this's percussion but like what if it's something a little bit more ambiguous like what if it's ah there three layers of percussion this was supposed to be quiet this was supposed to be a little bit above it and it's audio sixteen, seventeen and eighteen like that doesn't tell me anything and, uh, reason I said labeling in temptation and uh don't succumb is because like we were talking about earlier when you're in the heat of a creative moment it's it's really tempting to just it shift command and enter you gotta ...

track our men and go but that's just terrible you do not do that because when you open that track back up whenever it is uh you're not gonna have any idea what's going on so basically you should figure out your own your own naming convention but one thing to keep in mind is that the more organized you are with this the easier it's going to be to get through certain things like your audio files folder uh if like an issue you got some things some of the future slides but just like for instance if all your tracks all your guitar tracks no matter what they are start with capital gt r and then whatever particular information in your audio files folder all your guitar tracks are going to magically organized by gtr makes life a lot easier to have things like that of all your drum tracks of d r n at the beginning wow so like with the orchestra if I got orchestra audio you know audio one through forty seven but it's but they were labeled o r ch underscore strings one every way better o r ch underscore loud percussion way way better anything because then like I said they would organize themselves in the audio files folder on I would know what the hell's going on so one thing that's really important here is before you print anything or consolidate anything name your tracks because if you consolidate without naming it that's when you're going to get audio forty whatever like sure you know this but like uh it's like a track right here syria up uh oh just copy this two there and uh c c it's audio one because that unnamed this so let's start all over call it the right way tonight with me, I don't see, I don't know what's it going to name it the right way with me tonight. There you go. Brilliant right now. Ah, this doesn't this I need to keep saying this. This doesn't seem like, uh, rocket science or really important stuff, but believe me, it is like we were just saying, when you get a bunch of tracks from somebody and you don't know what they are and you don't know what the going on or your or you're in, the position of giving tracks is somebody else who you would like to be hired by. And ah, get have gainful employment from audio one through forty two will be a quick way to never be called again. Um, and we are talking about your livelihood there, so follow that order named the track, then consolidated and christians in the chat room about that I do have one quick one, maybe because we're about to go to lunch. I think this is actually a perfectly time to break if you're okay with that. Yeah, that's, why do you create templates for different bands or genres? Or do you use the same template for everything you mix? Everything I mix is always the same, no matter what? I'm kidding, uh, no, we've got different, basically the first song the way we mix is the first song on the album is the one that spent the most time on unless if it's one of those oddball bands that needs a different mix for every song and then that's, you know, that's its own thing but that's a very, very small percentage of bands where you just had to start from scratch with every song uh and that's that less common in metal that's, more like a rock and anything but ah, but, you know, in general metal bands kind of want the album have one cohesive, consistent sound might be an oddball track, but, you know, mel records are metal records in general, you could put on song five and copy paste one part of song five two song one and not be able to tell that it's a different song. That's just some metal is it's one long stream of noise so, uh, noise, that sounds cool, but so anyways, well, depending on what we're going for, well, kind of pick well kind of pick a template of it's something that's that we want to keep very natural. We're not going to pick the template. That's got a ton of tracks and routings for samples in it. We've got a few different ones that you know, that we just developed over the years so yeah well kind of pick one that's appropriate for the band and again these templates or not you know they're not the way and the light there just a starting point so you pick something you pull some tracks into and then you start changing it but the thing that does happen is that once you get that first song approved ah then that kind of becomes a template for the rest of the album so then the rest of the songs except for the odd balls get pulled into that template and you know we'll be talking about that on the third day like exactly how teo teo get the whole album sounding consistent but you have course not you can't do the same thing for every bandits people who do that I don't know I got a bad opinion on that way were on the topic of labeling in naming and uh I think basically what we got to was that you need tio filled people your tracks right but uh there's every software program has a different way that that it will named tracks and it it's good for you to figure out what works best um let me give you a few examples of what I mean uh and I'll show you well look at this okay never mind I thought it was going to crash because we all know pro tools likes to crash just make some tracks here make eight and uh has tried some name that will try some naming options to show you what I mean uh real quick the way I usually like to name things uh would be first to give the the instrument group lake drums, guitars, bass whatever then your track name you know snare top like say it would be so d r m so that would put it you know the drums then snare top you know self explanatory but then pertinent info like say what if it's a snare top that was recorded with a fifty seven what do you have another snare top those records and high five so then that next and then side or position or whatever comes after that or maybe just a symbol and I'll show you why? Because some software will make things more organized or niedere looking if you use symbols so and you know I don't know how ah cuba is for instance handles underscores but like says saying for drums so d r em come on underscore snare top underscore fifty seven let's just see what that does drom s and fifty seven pretty straightforward. Now what if I had done this without the underscores let's let's just see, I'm just gonna tell us straight why uh why you need to kind of figure out what your software does and what works for you without the underscores something that's a little bit harder to read like imagine a bunch of tracks kind of like that I mean that you can kind of make you can make it out but it's not it's just not quite is easy and again like the idea here is to many things as navigational e efficient as possible are what thea what the word was that josh newell was saying about things being navigational e efficient do you remember the word we made up a word so yet so I use underscores in pro tools as you can see uh if I was doing a guitar so let's just say gtr for guitar and then rhythm and let's just see what happens let's just say we're just using one and so we just have left and right so let's just see left what happens whom I can make it a little bit more complex we'll just see about a fifty one fifty see now as you can see that's not going to work because you don't have the info right there aboutthe left so you find a better way to do that we'll see if that doesn't know. So maybe solution is to do this and basically I'm just showing you guys different things to experiment with till you figure out what works for you not that either I would maybe just to this or their ego so there you go so now we know that is how I would go about doing that just so that it would abbreviate properly the idea here is that different versions of pro tools actually will abbreviate things differently and you need to basically experiment you just have to experiment with how how is going to abbreviate longer titles? Because you know uh what have you have multiple rhythm tracks but if you have rhythm guitar fifty one fifty s and fifty seven left rhythm guitar fifty one to fifty four twenty one left um you have all this information that is pertinent but you need to get it to abbreviate in a way that you can just read what's there on the screen quickly so experiment with that and uh sometimes using symbols in names can help keep the tracks looking need uh it is you can see take a look at the difference between the left and the right. A little asterisk on the left first is not on the right you see that between the two columns so the right hand column is just a little bit harder to understand what's going on when you're talking about one hundred fifty tracks or something, these little things make a big difference. S o I'm not telling you guys what to do with this, but I'm telling you is figure out how you will best understand this and uh how little best abbreviate the info that you need also though however if you're preparing this for other people uh you need to know what they want like I know certain mixers that don't want any numbers in their track names and uh you know for instance I once prepped a mix for a pretty well known mixer I had numbers in the tracks he sent me back everything had to redo had to redo it all it is something so stupid he could have redone it all in ten minutes but that's the kind of stuff that gets work sent back to you and uh you know, I was lucky enough to get called again by him to do more work but you don't want you don't want to get called out for dumb stuff like that you should ask how people want their tracks organized you should figure out how they want them organized and then that's what you should deliver you're gonna get called out on something by someone further up than you or who's better than you have at least tried to teach you something cool like not not to put numbers in aa in track names that's a waste of an opportunity to learn something cool now on for those of you with uh with a quickies screenshot this real quick um you will include will include this shortcut for you guys uh in the bonuses but this is a shortcut that does a batch track rename basically say you want to make eight vocal tracks uh, and then all you have to do is hit these commands type in fox and the number of them that you want. And boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom. It'll create all the tracks and named them in a batch for you. So, yeah, this quickie command we are, including as one of the bonus materials, that those of you who are gender sums to buy the class yet. And if you don't have quick keys, you should get quickies. But more on that some other time.

Class Materials

bonus material with purchase

Eyal Levi - Mastering Metal Mixing - Mix Prep Slides.pdf
Eyal Levi - ProTools Batch Track Rename.qkmx
1-on-1 Mix Critique with Eyal Levi.pdf
Eyal Levi - Mix Template Routed.ptx
Eyal Levi - Mix Template Routed.ptxt

bonus material with enrollment

Eyal Levi - Syllabus.pdf

Ratings and Reviews

a Creativelive Student

Boring subject but Eyal delivers the material in an entertaining way. He really does a great job of showing why the prep and organization are crucial to a solid end product. This is much more important to get than the latest and greatest plugin, and is easy to implement and will ultimately save you time and money down the road. Its a no brainer to listen to what Eyal is saying and to apply it. This has been a great confirmation on some of my workflow and has revealed some new methods I had not thought of. Thanks for the great class! cant wait for the next two days. Always impressed with you and the creative live team.

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