Lifting out vocal tracks

Discussion in 'Recording/Live Sound' started by guitargypsy, Apr 13, 2008.

  1. guitargypsy

    guitargypsy Member

    Feb 11, 2008
    Dallas TX
    Ok, I'm a guitarist posing as a recording engineer. Question: is it possible to rip a vocal track out of a recorded song? Is there some form of a commercially available song that I could purchase if I wanted to use certain tracks on it (like if I wanted to remix it), or use it to karaoke or re-record a new vocal track, etc?

    I kid you not, someone asked me this and I immediately said no but that I would ask a panel of experts, so here you go...;)

  2. MichaelK

    MichaelK Member

    Jan 7, 2002
    Fort Mudge
    There's the old trick of reversing the polarity on one side, which eliminates anything panned dead center. Most lead vocals are. Unfortunately so is the bass, most of the time. If there are stereo effects on the vocals they will stay in. You don't really end up with the music minus the voice, it usually sounds pretty thin and crummy.

    Some shareware does the same thing with just a mouseclick or two, but I don't know which.

    Maybe when the new Melodyne comes out it will be able to do that??
  3. PosterBoy

    PosterBoy Member

    Oct 18, 2007
    Galway, Ireland
    A lot of the guys who do Mashups and really good ones just manipulate the eq with something like Cooledit.

    Every Car You Chase by Party Ben was done like that
  4. slhguitar

    slhguitar Member

    Dec 1, 2005
    Newmarket, Ontario
    Yeah, theres a bunch of resources out there from people doing mashups. was one of the online communities that I learned a lot from. There are also a lot of instrumental versions of popular songs floating around the internet, if you have the patience to sort through search results.
    Cheers, and good luck!
  5. Anchorage42

    Anchorage42 Member

    Nov 1, 2007
    Thornton, Co
    A lot of the guys doing mashups actually buy the singles on vinyl. On a lot of those vinyls, the radio single will be on side A, while on side B, you'll have a lot of options:

    Remix versions
    Instrumental (no voice)
    A Capella (Only the vocal tracks)

    and so on.

    I don't know if this is any more help for you but I hope it is!

    Best luck
  6. Eganmedia

    Eganmedia Member

    Apr 17, 2008
    Burignton Verrmont
    Reversing polarity and summing to mono effectively removes anything panned center. With a HPF you can keep some of he kick ad the bass, but other stuff in the center gets lost. Pus, vocal reverb and panning effects will still be present in the collapsed mix.

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