If you’ve heard the song, “Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger” by Daft Punk, then you know what I’m talking about. Anyway, Jeremy enlisted my help in doing a version of this song for a youth conference coming up this week. He already had an instrumental track so all we needed to do was record vocals with the new words that fit the theme of the conference and apply the right vocoder synth sound. Simple enough right? I figured a couple hours of work, but it ended up taking a weeknight and most of yesterday. At first, Jeremy actually tried to sing the part. Well, I wouldn’t actually call it singing. In fact, I was very tempted to post the audio of that first take, but Jeremy would probably kill me. After trying that a couple of times, we realized that with the vocoder synth, you just speak the words and the synth does the rest. Well, it’d be that easy if there was a MIDI track of the song anywhere in existance, but there isn’t – at least not on the WWW so I had to record it myself. Once the MIDI track was done, I broke out the EVOC 20 PolySynth that comes with Logic Studio 8 and started tweaking. I literally spent hours trying to come as close as possible to the original and learned quite a bit along the way. Here are the settings I ended up with:

evoc_20_polysynthAnother key is to use lots and lots of compression on the original audio track as well as the software synth track. I’ve read somewhere that distortion on the original track can have a nice effect as well. Oh yeah – and don’t forget about your EQ – you can really manipulate the end result with an EQ. If anybody out there is interested in acquiring the MIDI, feel free to drop me a line. I’d be happy to share it. Here is how it turned out:

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