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Orchestration / Samplestration

So you've written this brilliant tune, but don't have the time or know-how to orchestrate it such that be shown off in it's finest colours?  - That's where HDM comes in!

As an example, here is a project we undertook recently; the input? a solo cello track of a melody (if you just have a melody, we can arrange a live player to record it for you). The task was to orchestrate it in whatever way it struck us fitted it best.

Here is the original:


Nice eh? The melody is wrtten and played by the cellist Deryn Cullen. (and subject to copyright, so don't even think about it!)

Our first thought was to treat it like Villa-Lobos' - Bachianas Brasileiras No. 5, but the thought of adding a load of fake solo cellos to a real one just didn't sit right. The vibe however did. The Villa-Lobos melody has a bit of an art-house 1970s French movies feel to it, and this lead us in the direction of maybe giving the orchestration a bit of a Poulenc feel to it. After a little thought and scribbling, we came up with this as an accompaniment:

Now the original file was recorded to a click track - which although it saves a lot of time aligning everything doesn't really fit with the style we had chosen. In addition, the harmonies we chose dictated dynamics which were different to those of the original. There then followed a little time stretching to add some rubato and some volume automation to tweak the dynamics (along with EQ, Reverb etc.), to get it to sound like soloist and orchestra were recorded in the same room - resulting in this:

Quite a complicated project as it involved an element of composition and dealt with the samplestration of quite exposed orchestral instrument (no opportunity to hide things with a few well placed rumpfs!) but we thought it was a good example of the kind of project we could deliver for you if the need arises.

In terms of workflow, we compose in Cubase 7 (if it's good enough for Han Zimmer, it's good enough for us!) and mix in Pro Tools 9 (though we do have Logic, Reaper, Studio One and Digital Performer to allow us to translate in and out where clients require it). We have an extensive 'samplestration' arsenal including libraries from :

  • Spitfie Audio
  • Vienna Symphonic Library
  • CineSamples
  • SampleModelling
  • Wallander WIVI
  • Orchesrtral Tools
  • Cinematic Strings
  • AudioBro
  • EWQL (Platinum & Hollywood)
  • 8Dio
  • Soundiron
  • Heavyocity
  • Native Instruments
  • SampleLogic
  • Assorted synths, sound design & fx, sound fx, keyboards, drums, guitars, eclectic & ethnic stuff. etc.

so hopefully we can supply you with files to allow you to carry on where we left off (including VE Pro set-ups, plug-in presets & so forth) based on the libraries you already use (including anything we might add in order to be able to fulfill the gig!).

So, if you think we can help dig you out when your client has compressed your schedule like a whale sitting on a vanilla slice - please feel free to get in touch and see if we can give you some breathing room. 


© Hidden Depths Music 2018