How To Get A Good Sounding Soul Bass

Posts 1 - 11 of 11
  1. 2276282
    neuromancer56 : Sat 12th Aug 2017 : 3 years ago

    I'm trying to create a decent sounding Soul bass using a free VST. I googled best free bass VST's and Stienberg Model-E jumped to the top of the list. But I wasn't able to make it make a good sounding Soul bass. Are there some settings I could make that would make a good bass? Should I scrap it and look for a different vst? I downloaded Grace by One Small Clue and it looks like it might work for this and much more. But I still need to know what settings make a good soul bass.

  2. 186161
    Spivkurl : Sat 12th Aug 2017 : 3 years ago

    Scrap the VST's and get the cheapest four string bass you can find. As long as you have a decent audio interface and/or a DI box, you will get far better results with practise. VST's did not exist when soul was prominent in popular music.

  3. 1041668
    wikkid : Sat 12th Aug 2017 : 3 years ago

    When you say "soul bass" can you be more specific?
    James Jamerson played some of the best bass lines for artists like Marvin Gaye (What's Going On)
    Here's the isolated bass track:

    Or do you want more slap bass?
    I'm just trying to get a handle on the sound you want to imitate.

  4. 2276282
    neuromancer56 : Sat 12th Aug 2017 : 3 years ago

    @Wikkid: More like James Jamerson. I'm just trying to be able to do something like this the Fugee's Killing me softly. I'm kind of embarrassed to admit it, but I always find myself singing along with this song even though it is from a female viewpoint. But if I died and in the afterlife I could only listen to one song over and over again forever, it would be this song, and I'd be happy.

  5. 2276282
    neuromancer56 : Sat 12th Aug 2017 : 3 years ago

    @SpivKurl: Alas I took guitar lessons for years and sucked. I do think I have a knack as a composer, pulling stuff together and just feeling what works and what doesn't. If I really worked and got a vocal coach I might have a shred of talent as a singer. I also have enough technical smarts as a software developer to understand VST's and mixing. If I do practice an instrument, it would be the piano, just because that would work best for capturing midi stuff. However I do get what you are saying. I will never get the real amazing sound of a Soul or Funk bass using VST's. I'll just have to settle for good enough for now. If I ever become a decent composer, I'll have to rely on others to play the instruments.

  6. 1041668
    wikkid : Sat 12th Aug 2017 : 3 years ago

    Okay, if you keep the bass line simple but effective, like in Lauren's version of Killing me Softly, then you should be able to do it yourself (or you could come up with the bass melody on the keyboard and get a bassist to play it)

    Use your cell phone to record ideas as they pop in your head. Sometimes inspiration can come at the times you least expect it. Notice how in Lauren's version, the drumbeat and her vocals drive the song, then the bass comes in, basically bouncing on single notes. There's no runs or harmonics or anything fancy until about 2:59 in.

    Never throw anything away. Even if you think it won't work. Sometimes a song comes in pieces and parts during the creative process, like a puzzle. You'll have to figure out which parts belong in the beginning, the middle and the end.

    Lauren's version of Killing me Softly is deceptive, because the vocals are doing a lot. This is a fave of mine also, along with the original by Roberta Flack.
    The lyrics are deep. A perfect combination of a great vocal with meaningful lyrics.

    Oh, and by all means, work on your vocals. Even Lauren Hill was booed at the Apollo, until people really settled down and listened to her sing. It's your tone, your conviction, hell, selling a song is half the battle. No one can do you, like YOU.

    I wish you the best with this.

  7. 186161
    Spivkurl : Sat 12th Aug 2017 : 3 years ago

    "Killing Me Softly" is a cover song. Do someone else's thing, which is doing Roberta Flack's thing, would make you along the lines of an impersonator... like Elton John or Simon and Garfunkel in "Flight of the Conchords."

    Seriously a VST with soul, is something I have yet to find.

  8. 2276282
    neuromancer56 : Sat 12th Aug 2017 : 3 years ago

    @Spivkurl: Don't get me wrong I love Roberta Flack's original, but the Fugee's version was the rare instance where a cover took a song to a whole new level. I get what you are saying about VST's, but sometimes you got to do the best with what you've got. I'm not going to do cover songs or even try to do what the Fugees did. I'll find my own sound, but they certainly are an inspiration.

  9. 186161
    Spivkurl : Sat 12th Aug 2017 : 3 years ago

    Hey, "do what you can, with what you have" was a long time mantra of mine. I get it. I suppose I also used to consciously represent certain artists, and now anything is unconscious. My wife and I are also working on a cover album, so I can understand that as well. Emulation is different from unfettered respect though.

  10. 1069771
    hyster1a : Sat 12th Aug 2017 : 3 years ago

    That bass in "fugee - killing me softly", its just a simple bass but try this free vst 4front bass. And low pass it, compress it and after distortion maybe. There is also another vst, ABPL II you will get some good results for those kind of basses.

  11. 1041668
    wikkid : Sat 12th Aug 2017 : 3 years ago

    There is a fascinating history to the song "Killing me Softly" (all three versions) that is documented here:

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