an accordion/cabaret song (learning to use Ardour)
I'm still trying to get off the ground with the whole recording thing, but I feel like I've made it to the point where I could benefit from the advice of people with more experience. So please advise!
The song I'm working on is called Michael Gilhaney. It's based on a character in a novel titled The Third Policeman, and uses accordion, vocals, a tiny bit of midi tuba, and percussion (some supplied by hydrogen, some recorded live). You can listen to it here:
I bought a book called Guerrilla Home Recording, and have had a serious go at recording this song using some of the basic techniques it recommends. So I've compressed the vocals and used TAP TubeWarmth on them. I've done a little bit of stereo panning to separate the bass side of the accordion from the piano side. I used an EQ to bring down the lower mid of the accordion just a bit, so it doesn't outcompete my voice. And I've used a little fader automation to keep the vocals and accordion melody at roughly the right spot.
I'm not going for a sleek or glossy production, here. I want a sort of ramshackle sound, like some of Tom Waits' stuff, or the Denver Gentlemen. But I want it to be, you know, cool. Ramshackle, yes, but not incompetent.
Though I feel like this is a big improvement over my previous attempts at recording (where I just stacked up the tracks and tried to get their relative volumes about right) I could benefit a lot from the advice of fresh-eared people who are accustomed to using these techniques. What are the obvious mixing problems in here? Are the vocals too loud or too quiet? Too compressed? Are there other aspects of the production that are distracting, or interfere with the development of the song?
Anyway. I'm proud of the song, and would like to be proud of the recording of it. Any advice the Ardour community has to offer would be much appreciated. Thank you!