The Solway Band: “Ranting Rovin’ Robin”

I suggested doing the song “Ranting Rovin Robin” for the next Solway Band lockdown session. In previous sessions I had only contributed the music. I was listening to a lot of Robert Burns’ and watching a few documentaries on his life and this songs. I had heard the Battlefield band doing this version in the 1990s, I always loved their arrangement. There are 2 versions of the song and I wanted to try and do this melody version but with our arrangement.

Being in lockdown meant I was able to attend, on Zoom, a few lectures on Robert Burns and I was learning a lot of things I never knew before; and since I live not too far from Dumfries it had a “local” feel about doing the song.

It has been the first time I have mixed a song with data from other people. I was sent video and mp3s from the band members who had recorded their sections on different equipment, mainly smart phones. Extracting the audio did not work on Reaper, so I used Audition CC. Just a straight conversion from Mp4 to WAV files, I then inserted them into Reaper.

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The Layout of the original tracks in Reaper DAW

The editing, mixing and mastering music from other people was new to me, but as a project it was interesting to do. You have to sculpt from something you had no control over. This created challenges but also it turned the music into something that I could never have achieved. It is the beauty of playing with other people… not just doing a solo recording. The sound quality was all different, the original click track was only a metronome and a basic mandolin track, which the musician either sang or played against, and from that I had to piece everything together. The whole process/project lasted 1 week, from receiving the mp4 and mp3 tracks to arranging, mixing and mastering, to the final/finished render.

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The layout of the mixed track before Mastering

The final Mastered track was added to the video.

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Image of the final Mastered track

An mp3 version of the track is heard here:

Video

The video was created by my partner, Leila; we used all the people/instruments used in the audio recording. Leila, used Camtasia to make the video. She inserted the Mastered audio track into Camtasia and then by using the different video files that were sent, she made the video over 2 days. The arrangement is hers.

I certainly want to do more video work in the future, perhaps use it more creatively with more effects.

The Solway Band’s video of Ranting Rovin Robin

Author: ethnopiper

A Ethnomusicologist and musician of traditional music, Small pipe maker, teacher and workshop presenter ... https://ethnopiper.wordpress.com/

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