How to Remix a Song without Stems
Working on remixes contributes to learning music production skills. You can practice all the skills already on a finished project, instead of wasting time creating a track from scratch. In this article, we will look at ways to create a remix without acapella stems.
Methods to receive stems
We have prepared for you some examples of how you can get vocal stems from a finished track. Of course, faint sounds of other instruments can be heard along with vocals, but during the creation of the track, they will most likely be hidden by the instruments that you yourself will add to your song. If you don’t have a studio-quality vocal track, these methods will get you started.
Use Music Rebalance
Let’s start with an example of using one function in the Isotope RX. Thanks to this feature, you can control the volume in different export modes. The sensitivity setting allows you to determine which part of the spectrum is attributed to a particular instrument.
Use phase cancellation
Let’s move on to the second method. If we manage to remove the instruments, we can get a separate acapella.
To accomplish the task in this way, we also need an instrumental track beside the full version with vocals. In this case, both files must be the same in sampling rate. Load your file into the plugin and use the Phase tool.
Next, you should export the file with an inverted phase from the plugin. Now move the exported version to your DAW and add the full version to another channel. Now the instrumental part will be almost inaudible and we have only vocal.
Remember that this method will not give you an accurate result. We can slightly hear some instruments in the resulting acapella.
When you add drums, strings, etc to the resulting acapella, they will block out extraneous sounds and will be almost inaudible. But it still won’t sound as clean if you were using a separately recorded acapella. But our version is also suitable for remixing.
What to leave and what to change?
To stand out from other artists, you need to show something individual. There is no need to create a remix that will closely resemble the original song. It is necessary to maintain a certain balance: leave enough sounds from the main song to recognize it, but also bring in enough new so your remix song reflects a fresh idea and sounds interesting and new.
Then decide on the approximate structure of your remix. This will help you better navigate the project.
Each genre has a specific structure and this helps you in working on a project. As a result, this will make it easier for you to arrange the elements in the required order to match the right structure you need.
Regardless of which structure you use, it’s better to set marks in your project to understand the positions of the elements. It resembles a well-structured plan so now you can work more efficiently and avoid many mistakes. When we have a structure and it is marked in the workspace of the program, creating a remix may resemble assembling a constructor from parts.
Your project will definitely have versions of stems that are not used. To ensure that they do not interfere during work, simply combine them into groups and turn them off. Thus, you have in your field of vision only the stems of the project that are needed at the moment, and all the rest will be hidden. If you need these versions, you can always enable them and continue using them.
There is a way to remix based on vocals. This means that we leave only the acapella and create the entire instrumental part from scratch. It gives more imagination and creativity.
Another way is to work on the sound and processing of all the instruments from the original song. For example, place the accents of some parts in a different way, highlight some of them, push the other into the background and add a different effect with another plugin. The listener will recognize the original, even if there is no vocal in it, and he will hear the author’s idea of the producer who made the remix.
In this case, you may not need to work on a new structure or selection of tools. You will only have the task of being creative and creating innovative sounding instruments and transmitting a new idea to the listener through the remix
Remixing work is a great way to learn music production. You can already have the parts written, the vocals recorded, you just have to create a new atmosphere for this song, and this may take less time than if you created all the parts from scratch.
Of course, you need to know how to create music from the very beginning, but working on a remix will help you to plunge into the whole process faster and in a shorter time. You can take part in contests or just download remix packs – all this will allow you to gain new experience and knowledge.
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