Have you ever needed to double up your vocals with some backing vocals? Ever wanted to add girth to your guitars or synths by adding a second guitar or synth track?
There’s no question a second vocal or rhythm instrument can help punch up a chorus or bridge. But I’ve found that there seems to be some confusion about what counts as a “doubled track.”
Ideally, if you wanted to double up on your main vocals, you would record another pass of vocals.
Or if the vocalist has left the building, hopefully you have a Take Folder with more than one pass. From there you could cobble together a 2nd vocal track.
What doesn’t work is Duplicating the exact same vocal region onto a new Track Lane and calling it a day. Meaning:
- We have a vocal pass in the first Chorus
- We copy and paste that vocal region directly below to add a “double” or backing vocal for the first Chorus
But why not? If I copy and paste my vocal region to a new track, don’t I have 2 vocals?
Well, technically yes I would. 1 + 1 does = 2.
The problem is, the 2 vocal regions are identical. Which means there’s nothing to differentiate these 2 takes.
When you record 2 vocal takes for the same section, they may very well be almost identical. But there are all sorts of things that make them slightly different:
- Minor timing differences
- Minor pitch differences
- The way the performer moves in front of the mic
- The push and pull of guitar or bass strings
These tiny details cause different performances to sound distinct from one another. Which helps separate the different takes.
But copying and pasting an identical region to play during the same section? All we’re doing is making that same exact vocal louder.
If any of the above confuses you, I think today’s video should help. We’ll examine the best ways (and worst way) to achieve that doubled track feel.