How do you create harmonies from an existing vocal?

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How do you create harmonies from an existing vocal?

Post by charleskasler »

I had high hopes for izotope nectar because it's so well thought out, but the harmonies are just not very good. I think it's the formants that sound tinny. I used to do it in melodyne, but now it's destructive regional effects in Cakewalk and that makes it harder. Any suggestions are appreciated. Thank you.
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Re: How do you create harmonies from an existing vocal?

Post by resistorman »

Wouldn't it be easier to just sing the harmony?
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Re: How do you create harmonies from an existing vocal?

Post by charleskasler »

Yes but my voice isn't what it was, and I want to go back and work on a lot of old tracks.
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Re: How do you create harmonies from an existing vocal?

Post by resistorman »

I see. If Melodyne works for you, can you copy the track and process it in Melodyne in standalone mode, render it and then import it into the project?
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Re: How do you create harmonies from an existing vocal?

Post by charleskasler »

Gd idea, I forgot about standalone. Thanks.
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Re: How do you create harmonies from an existing vocal?

Post by resistorman »

Happy to help :D
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Re: How do you create harmonies from an existing vocal?

Post by Zukan »

I can't sing for s*** so I use tools like this:
https://www.eventideaudio.com/plug-ins/quadravox/
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Re: How do you create harmonies from an existing vocal?

Post by charleskasler »

Thanks I'll take a look.
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Re: How do you create harmonies from an existing vocal?

Post by sonics »

I've used many tools over the years including (TC vocal processors for live use) but currently use software by Melda, Eventide, Antares, Celemony (Melodyne) and Waves. There are dozens more!
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Re: How do you create harmonies from an existing vocal?

Post by Martin Walker »

Zukan wrote: Mon Mar 13, 2023 8:33 am I can't sing for s*** so I use tools like this:
https://www.eventideaudio.com/plug-ins/quadravox/

Thanks for reminding me about this Eddie - I've had it for ages (Eventide offered it as a freebie many moons ago), but I've never got around to using it.
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Re: How do you create harmonies from an existing vocal?

Post by MarkOne »

Just an idea, you could get EMVoice and Jay (their male vocalist)

I've posted a bit about it here. In isolation as a lead vocalist their voices aren't 100% convincing (But my last Keela demo sounded quite authentic, maybe like a non-english speaker singing the song)

But as backing vocalists in a mix with a real lead vocal, all the voices are very good indeed.
https://emvoiceapp.com

...and Here's my tune with Keela:
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Re: How do you create harmonies from an existing vocal?

Post by Drew Stephenson »

In the same vein there's Dreamtonics' Synthesiser V, reviewed in the latest mag and sounding very interesting.
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Re: How do you create harmonies from an existing vocal?

Post by resistorman »

Also, just posted in this very forum, the Antares Harmony Engine Evo is on sale:

https://www.soundonsound.com/forum/view ... hp?t=85899
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Re: How do you create harmonies from an existing vocal?

Post by Domenico »

In Cubase, there’s a neat way to do it:
https://youtu.be/N0UOjmwOWAQ

However, singing the parts still remains the best option. :)
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Re: How do you create harmonies from an existing vocal?

Post by Philbo King »

I guess I might be a bit old-school or something.

How I generate vocal harmonies:
- Learn the original vocal melody on an instrument, usually piano or guitar.
- Keeping in mind the songs chord progression and harmony theory, create another compatible melody that meshes with the original melody in a pleasing and engaging way.
- Learn to sing the new harmony melody and record it.
- Repeat the prior 2 steps until you have enough harmonies to suit the song.

The benefit is that you sharpen your singing chops, your knowledge of harmony theory, your vocal timing (assuming your harmony timing tracks your original vocal), and recording and mixing skills. AND you get vocals that don't sound synthesized and artificial.

In my humble opinion, what you do the most is what you get better at, whether it is taking convenient shortcuts, or gaining singing / musical / recording / mixing skills.

But, hey, do what works for you...
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Re: How do you create harmonies from an existing vocal?

Post by charleskasler »

Well said!
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Re: How do you create harmonies from an existing vocal?

Post by MarkOne »

Philbo King wrote: Thu Mar 23, 2023 4:59 am I guess I might be a bit old-school or something.

How I generate vocal harmonies:
- Learn the original vocal melody on an instrument, usually piano or guitar.
- Keeping in mind the songs chord progression and harmony theory, create another compatible melody that meshes with the original melody in a pleasing and engaging way.
- Learn to sing the new harmony melody and record it.
- Repeat the prior 2 steps until you have enough harmonies to suit the song.

The benefit is that you sharpen your singing chops, your knowledge of harmony theory, your vocal timing (assuming your harmony timing tracks your original vocal), and recording and mixing skills. AND you get vocals that don't sound synthesized and artificial.

In my humble opinion, what you do the most is what you get better at, whether it is taking convenient shortcuts, or gaining singing / musical / recording / mixing skills.

But, hey, do what works for you...


Well, yes I kind of agree.

But the OP did say

Yes but my voice isn't what it was, and I want to go back and work on a lot of old tracks.

So a vocal harmony plug-in might be the only answer for them
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Re: How do you create harmonies from an existing vocal?

Post by paul tha other »

im one of those annoying buggers that can sing vocal harmonies till im blue in the face (and I often do) ..I just hear it... tc helicon have got a few little stomp boxes that do vocal harmonies that I sometimes (if im feeling lazy )use in the studio to get the idea then I go and sing it, if my range allows.
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Re: How do you create harmonies from an existing vocal?

Post by DC-Choppah »

Collaborating with real humans is the way to go for me. Lots of folks have a knack and know how melody and harmony work. Like the poster above ^^^

I find a singer I like, and send them the project and ask them to contribute a harmony line. I have them come over for snacks, and let them sing in my project studio for the final takes. Many talented musicians do not know how to record, but they do like snacks.

Using a plug in to make a harmony is cool in some cases too, but real people are just way more fun and inspiring.

If you are asking about the musical aspect of this, it involves voice leading and counterpoint. If those are new ideas, take some time to study them by listening to music that uses voice leading and counterpoint. Voice leading means multipart harmony where each voice spells out the harmony of the song (vertically) but also plays their own melody (horizontally). Listen to Bach.

Counterpoint means that the voices compliment each other in every dimension of music. When one plays the other is silent. When one is fast the other is slow. When one moves up, the other down, etc...
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Re: How do you create harmonies from an existing vocal?

Post by charleskasler »

Thanks for all the ideas!
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