Author Topic: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?  (Read 2869 times)

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Offline Eldomm

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #35 on: December 11, 2018, 05:05:26 AM »
Iím one of the lucky ones I guess as Iíve never come out of any DT show with any complaints about JLBís voice. Quite the opposite in fact, Iím always blown away at how well he still sings 20+ year old songs. Not saying he is the greatest live frontman of all time or anything but he has never detracted from the show at all for me. I know everyone canít be wrong and he must have some off nights but Iíve never seen one in person and I take no notice of cellphone recordings on YouTube. Not keen on his voice on OIALT or CIM but not sure if thatís his fault or a poor quality recording as he sounds fine to me on the other more polished live albums.
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Offline Robo4900

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #36 on: December 18, 2018, 04:45:28 AM »
Score was not pitch corrected either.  There was some overdubbing, but very minimal, as confirmed both by the band and simply by comparison with bootlegs.
Are you sure? A few bootlegs sometimes pop up on Youtube that sound a little rougher than the finished DVD. I know you guys who were there listened to the bootlegs and compared and all but that was a long time ago.
Noxon at one point shared some segments of Score that are commonly cited for this, with the bootleg panned to one ear, the official DVD panned to the other, and some processing to make them run at exactly the same speed. It's definitely the same recording, with only a couple of short bits overdubbed.

In fact, if you listen to Score enough, you'll eventually kind of start to notice the overdubs. It is quite noticeable when they cut in. And they're pretty brief. Honestly you could probably count on two hands the number of words overdubbed throughout Score.

The main reason Score sounds so different on the DVD compared to from a bootleg when you A/B compare them is simply the mixing and mastering; on the bootleg, you've got a pretty poor quality recording that's being blown out and doesn't capture remotely what it actually sounded like to the people at the show on the night. The recording makes LaBrie sound shrill, thin, and screechy.
Listen to the DVD, with its proper mixing and mastering, and it's much better; full, powerful, present, etc. Closer to how he sounded at the show, to the people who were actually there. Though with a few short overdubs thrown in there too, because it's a DVD and generally it's common practise to make DVDs sound perfect. Not to throw shade on Budokan, but that DVD could probably have used a little overdubbing(waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaall).

Iím one of the lucky ones I guess as Iíve never come out of any DT show with any complaints about JLBís voice. Quite the opposite in fact, Iím always blown away at how well he still sings 20+ year old songs. Not saying he is the greatest live frontman of all time or anything but he has never detracted from the show at all for me. I know everyone canít be wrong and he must have some off nights but Iíve never seen one in person and I take no notice of cellphone recordings on YouTube. Not keen on his voice on OIALT or CIM but not sure if thatís his fault or a poor quality recording as he sounds fine to me on the other more polished live albums.
Y'know, it's funny... This reminds me of something my cousin told me; he's been seeing DT live since the '80s, and what he told me is that actually, LaBrie sounds much better live now than he did in the '90s.
Sure, on recordings, his stuff in the '90s sounds mind-blowing, and tops the more recent stuff, but actually in person? Apparently he's tons better now.
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Offline bosk1

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #37 on: December 18, 2018, 09:41:17 AM »
^That.

And not related to James, but I did hear that there was some whahŪbrido pickingant added to Score in post-production.  I don't really hear it, so I'm not sure.
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Offline Bertielee

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #38 on: December 18, 2018, 11:15:15 AM »
And not related to James, but I did hear that there was some whahŪbrido pickingant added to Score in post-production.  I don't really hear it, so I'm not sure.

Don't hear it meself and yet whahibrido pickingant is vey noticeable.
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Offline DT1138

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #39 on: January 05, 2019, 02:02:31 PM »
Iím one of the lucky ones I guess as Iíve never come out of any DT show with any complaints about JLBís voice. Quite the opposite in fact, Iím always blown away at how well he still sings 20+ year old songs. Not saying he is the greatest live frontman of all time or anything but he has never detracted from the show at all for me. I know everyone canít be wrong and he must have some off nights but Iíve never seen one in person and I take no notice of cellphone recordings on YouTube. Not keen on his voice on OIALT or CIM but not sure if thatís his fault or a poor quality recording as he sounds fine to me on the other more polished live albums.
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James sounded awesome when I saw DT in Nov 2017.   I have perfect pitch and I assure you - he never missed a note.

I'd prefer if he doesn't use pitch correction though.  A lot of different factors can go into why a performer makes a mistake at any given moment.   Unlike the modern internet culture, I can easily forgive anyone for making mistakes when performing.

Offline Puppies_On_Acid

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #40 on: January 09, 2019, 09:34:41 PM »
And not related to James, but I did hear that there was some whahŪbrido pickingant added to Score in post-production.  I don't really hear it, so I'm not sure.

Don't hear it meself and yet whahibrido pickingant is vey noticeable.
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Offline Setlist Scotty

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #41 on: January 10, 2019, 08:04:51 AM »
James sounded awesome when I saw DT in Nov 2017.   I have perfect pitch and I assure you - he never missed a note.
Which show did you go to?
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Offline skcubs

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #42 on: January 12, 2019, 03:30:20 PM »
I'm not much of a fan of jlb much these days . But I think people are unfair to him. Its not 1992 anymore.

Yeah hes lost a lot but it's not a total vocal blow out on the same levem as Brian Wilson 1964 comapred to 1980 onwards for example

Offline Adami

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #43 on: January 12, 2019, 03:33:20 PM »
I'm not much of a fan of jlb much these days . But I think people are unfair to him. Its not 1992 anymore.

Yeah hes lost a lot but it's not a total vocal blow out the like of a Brian Wilson etc.

I think a huge issue is that JP doesn't seem to really know (with exceptions) how to best write for JLBs voice. JLB sounds awesome on his solo stuff, because he and Matt know how to make him shine. JP either hears JLBs voice differently in his head, or just writes for something else and tells JLB to sing it. Either way, JLB doesn't shine as much on a lot of the more recent DT, and in my opinion, it's because the vocals aren't great for his voice.
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Offline ReaperKK

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #44 on: January 13, 2019, 06:11:46 AM »

Someone once told me (and I don't know if it's true) that David Gilmour has a bank of auto-tune technology so that in the unlikely event that he does play a wrong note, the computers will replace it with the correct note. I can't see the point - might as well sit at home and put the CD on, it's a lot cheaper and you don't have to battle traffic.


I don't think DG has that. I've seen many, many live DG youtube videos and if he misses a note you hear it. Now for his official live releases his playing is cleaned up, sometimes a lot ie. original Comfortably Numb solo in PULSE

Offline MoraWintersoul

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #45 on: January 16, 2019, 06:44:37 AM »
I'm not much of a fan of jlb much these days . But I think people are unfair to him. Its not 1992 anymore.

Yeah hes lost a lot but it's not a total vocal blow out the like of a Brian Wilson etc.

I think a huge issue is that JP doesn't seem to really know (with exceptions) how to best write for JLBs voice. JLB sounds awesome on his solo stuff, because he and Matt know how to make him shine. JP either hears JLBs voice differently in his head, or just writes for something else and tells JLB to sing it. Either way, JLB doesn't shine as much on a lot of the more recent DT, and in my opinion, it's because the vocals aren't great for his voice.
I'm gonna throw out a hot take here: JP doesn't really know how to write vocal melodies that are both compelling and sustainable for singers in general, not just JLB. They wrote a load of absolutely ridiculous melodies for IAW and then by pure chance found a singer who could perform all that in a way that was cool and interesting. When JLB had his accident and his voice changed, the well of ideas ran dry within the first few albums.

I still love Dream Theater but the vocals are low on their writing priority list and it shows.

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Offline SeRoX

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #46 on: January 16, 2019, 08:14:48 AM »
And I thought it's like TA was written for JLB. It's like a vocal album to me. And considering JP/JR write all the melodies including vocals every song just shines with JLB.
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Offline nobloodyname

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #47 on: January 16, 2019, 09:21:38 AM »
James sounded awesome when I saw DT in Nov 2017.   I have perfect pitch and I assure you - he never missed a note.
Which show did you go to?

I'd be interested to know this, too. This isn't intended to be a witch hunt of you, DT1138, it's just an interesting claim you made. I'd say it's almost the nature of the beast for a rock singer to miss at least one note during a show.
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Offline lucasembarbosa

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #48 on: January 18, 2019, 01:30:16 PM »
In the last days I listened to a few bootlegs from TA, and even with some moments of struggle, James nails it greatly.  The correction in live releases seems to be minimal, comparing to these bootlegs.

Offline As I Am

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #49 on: January 18, 2019, 02:22:17 PM »
I should also clarify that I didn't imply he brought click tracks as a "requirement". I think it's more of a "I am perfectly comfortable playing songs to click", and I suspect DT had been wanting to do that all along but MP didn't like it.

I think that's probably spot on.

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Offline Stadler

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #50 on: January 22, 2019, 10:38:08 AM »
I'm not much of a fan of jlb much these days . But I think people are unfair to him. Its not 1992 anymore.

Yeah hes lost a lot but it's not a total vocal blow out the like of a Brian Wilson etc.

I think a huge issue is that JP doesn't seem to really know (with exceptions) how to best write for JLBs voice. JLB sounds awesome on his solo stuff, because he and Matt know how to make him shine. JP either hears JLBs voice differently in his head, or just writes for something else and tells JLB to sing it. Either way, JLB doesn't shine as much on a lot of the more recent DT, and in my opinion, it's because the vocals aren't great for his voice.
I'm gonna throw out a hot take here: JP doesn't really know how to write vocal melodies that are both compelling and sustainable for singers in general, not just JLB. They wrote a load of absolutely ridiculous melodies for IAW and then by pure chance found a singer who could perform all that in a way that was cool and interesting. When JLB had his accident and his voice changed, the well of ideas ran dry within the first few albums.

I still love Dream Theater but the vocals are low on their writing priority list and it shows.

Take your hot take and raise you a hotter take.  One of the beefs with James (as evidenced on the doc on the Systematic Chaos Deluxe Edition) was the, shall we say, "input" that Mike and to a lesser extent John gave to James on his singing (the specific takes, not in general). James seemed to resent Mike "producing" him in that way and one of the comments James made when Mike left was that he didn't have to deal with that anymore.

Well, any athlete that has ever played for a demanding coach will tell you, sometimes you don't like to hear it, but sometimes that's what it takes to be the best you can be.  Ask Phil Simms, Tom Brady, Terry Bradshaw, etc.   

Offline Lethean

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #51 on: January 22, 2019, 01:29:40 PM »
Yeah but, there's a way to do it and a way not to do it.  And if he didn't have much of an issue with JP, that would suggest JP might know how to go about it a little better.  Add to that, I thought his vocals on A Dramatic Turn of Events and the self titled are just as good as anything that came before, and The Astonishing is perhaps my favorite vocal performance of him overall.  So I'd say, he clearly *didn't* need it - not that there didn't need to be any producing, because there was, but he didn't need someone standing over his shoulder the whole time.

Offline bosk1

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #52 on: January 22, 2019, 02:08:53 PM »
So I'd say, he clearly *didn't* need it...

Maybe.  But here's an alternate possibility (and I am merely speculating, just as much as you):  Maybe he did need it, and the reason you like his performance on ADTOE and TA is precisely because of what he gained from that experience that caused him to grow as a vocalist?

...but he didn't need someone standing over his shoulder the whole time.

Okay, but we don't have any evidence of anyone ever "standing over his shoulder the whole time."  Not ever. 
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Offline Lethean

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #53 on: January 22, 2019, 02:46:22 PM »
So I'd say, he clearly *didn't* need it...

Maybe.  But here's an alternate possibility (and I am merely speculating, just as much as you):  Maybe he did need it, and the reason you like his performance on ADTOE and TA is precisely because of what he gained from that experience that caused him to grow as a vocalist?
 

...but he didn't need someone standing over his shoulder the whole time.

Okay, but we don't have any evidence of anyone ever "standing over his shoulder the whole time."  Not ever.

Well, I'm happy to admit I was exaggerating there.  :)  But he clearly wasn't comfortable with the set up.  To the point above - anything is possible.  And I'm sure all of the experiences he's had has helped to shape him over time, so I don't necessarily think you're wrong.  At the same time, many people also prefer his vocals on his solo albums, most of which were released before the Chaos in Motion DVD, and the Frameshift album...  And, he's delivered great vocals throughout their career, including the very beginning.  There was an interview with him that made me think the SC-style producing wasn't the way it had always been.  I think he at least indicated it hadn't been like that for I&W and Awake. 

I'm not saying MP shouldn't have been involved at all.  If the melody writer (JP or MP) has a clear vision of how they want the vocals melodies to be, then certainly they're going to want that vision realized and may need to give feedback in order to get it.  On top of that they were the producers.  So some direction is normal, and even maybe a little tension now and then.  But again, I think JP's approach was probably better.  A producer acquaintance once mentioned that half the job of producing vocals was to make sure the singer was comfortable and relaxed.  JP seems to do that.  I don't think James' discomfort with what MP was doing on the documentary is a discredit to JL at all.   

Offline Herrick

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #54 on: January 22, 2019, 08:00:20 PM »
I agree on some people being extremely critical of James to the point of being completely delusional.
I'd recommend people just check Zach's live vocal analysis video, which, in my opinion, are a great piece of work.

He's a professional vocal coach and literally makes a living of analyzing voices, so he's got experience to back what he's saying.

Either way, I think it's ok, I mean, studio corrections are not such a bad thing, after all, it's a release to be heard as best as possible with the highest quality possible.
And no, he totally does not use live pitch correction.

I thought it was interesting in that live analysis video when he said there was definitely some enhancements made to the vocals in Score. I don't recall exactly what those enhancements were. I'll look at the video again when I get home in a couple hours. But what I'm trying to say is that it's interesting that people here who know way more about the band say there weren't any (or extremely minimal) vocal enhancements/corrections but there are some bootlegs on YouTube that sound very bad. I don't know what to believe.

But to answer the question, LaBrie sounded good enough for me when I saw them last November. I don't remember him sounding off key or anything. Butt I was very drunk and it was my first time seeing one of my favorite bands live. I'm curious to see how LaBrie sounds on this upcoming tour with them playing all of Metropolis Part II.

Edit: I couldn't find the time stamp from that video where Zach Ansley talks about Score but here is the page from the thread where he posts about it: https://www.dreamtheaterforums.org/boards/index.php?topic=52342.70
« Last Edit: January 22, 2019, 10:29:35 PM by Herrick »
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Offline TAC

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #55 on: January 22, 2019, 08:02:17 PM »
Butt I was very drunk

You don't say? :lol
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Offline bosk1

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #56 on: January 22, 2019, 09:36:21 PM »
But what I'm trying to say is that it's interesting that people here who know way more about the band say there weren't any (or extremely minimal) vocal enhancements/corrections but there are some bootlegs on YouTube that sound very bad.

Bootlegs of that specific show?  I'd like to hear what you are referring to.  Everything that I've heard from that specific show say otherwise.
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Offline Herrick

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #57 on: January 22, 2019, 09:55:00 PM »
But what I'm trying to say is that it's interesting that people here who know way more about the band say there weren't any (or extremely minimal) vocal enhancements/corrections but there are some bootlegs on YouTube that sound very bad.

Bootlegs of that specific show?  I'd like to hear what you are referring to.  Everything that I've heard from that specific show say otherwise.

Can I post a YouTube link to a bootleg?

Edit: On second thought even if I am allowed to post the link, it would be against the rules because this particular video is a "bashing video". Also, it was put up by a former member of this forum who seems to have a personal dislike of LaBrie and was banned. If it's not against the rules, I'll post the title for the video.
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Offline bosk1

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #58 on: January 22, 2019, 09:57:25 PM »
Since it is an officially-released show, generally not.  But I'll make an exception for "scientific purposes" for this.
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Offline Herrick

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #59 on: January 22, 2019, 09:58:46 PM »
Since it is an officially-released show, generally not.  But I'll make an exception for "scientific purposes" for this.

It's a bashing video so I probably shouldn't post the link. The title is "Dream Theater's "Score" Contains Fake Vocals".
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Offline MoraWintersoul

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #60 on: January 23, 2019, 07:53:37 AM »
So I'd say, he clearly *didn't* need it...

Maybe.  But here's an alternate possibility (and I am merely speculating, just as much as you):  Maybe he did need it, and the reason you like his performance on ADTOE and TA is precisely because of what he gained from that experience that caused him to grow as a vocalist?

...but he didn't need someone standing over his shoulder the whole time.

Okay, but we don't have any evidence of anyone ever "standing over his shoulder the whole time."  Not ever.
I agree with Bosk here - we don't really know anything. The only guess I'd venture is that JLB's and MP's personalities don't jive, so that's where the problem was for JLB. Whether the coaching helped him or hindered him, we don't know. For me, JLB sounds as he always sounded on latter DT albums, free or directed he sounds the same, with the exception of TA, where the genre and the demands were different.

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Offline bosk1

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #61 on: January 23, 2019, 07:59:41 AM »
Since it is an officially-released show, generally not.  But I'll make an exception for "scientific purposes" for this.

It's a bashing video so I probably shouldn't post the link. The title is "Dream Theater's "Score" Contains Fake Vocals".

Yeah, good call.  I know there is raw footage out there where someone could do a good comparison if they wanted to.  Without going to the trouble of comparing that the audio in that one to the audio on Score, a couple of things come to mind:
-1.  Given the source, I wouldn't trust that what he is putting out there is truly raw, unedited footage (i.e., given the guy's reputation, I wouldn't put it past him to have altered the audio just to try to make his point). 
-2.  I'm not hearing much difference anyway.  There was one part that James sounded flat on a note where I'm pretty sure it was different on Score (and, again, nobody ever said there were NO overdubs), but not much else.
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Offline Herrick

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #62 on: January 23, 2019, 06:01:34 PM »
Since it is an officially-released show, generally not.  But I'll make an exception for "scientific purposes" for this.

It's a bashing video so I probably shouldn't post the link. The title is "Dream Theater's "Score" Contains Fake Vocals".

Yeah, good call.  I know there is raw footage out there where someone could do a good comparison if they wanted to.  Without going to the trouble of comparing that the audio in that one to the audio on Score, a couple of things come to mind:
-1.  Given the source, I wouldn't trust that what he is putting out there is truly raw, unedited footage (i.e., given the guy's reputation, I wouldn't put it past him to have altered the audio just to try to make his point). 
-2.  I'm not hearing much difference anyway.  There was one part that James sounded flat on a note where I'm pretty sure it was different on Score (and, again, nobody ever said there were NO overdubs), but not much else.

I haven't gone through the whole video but the stuff I compared to the Score album sounds very different. But I have to agree that this video can't really be considered an objective source.
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Offline EPIC Outro

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #63 on: January 24, 2019, 04:34:22 AM »
Do you folks tend to feel cheated if you are at a live show and the singer has an off night? Do most people get angry about that?

Just curious about other opinions. I've seen some singers have off nights live and I never felt it ruined the show, or made me upset. Sometimes I enjoy hearing something weird live, as that's part of the charm of a live show anyway.

But I see so many comments on YouTube videos and Facebook where people just seem totally pissed off and enraged if a singer isnt spot-on all the time.

But the folks on this particular forum seem to be a little more reasonable in their critisisms. But what do you guys think? Just how important is a flawless live vocal performance?

Offline MirrorMask

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #64 on: January 24, 2019, 05:03:08 AM »
Well, it's important in the sense that if you get a killer show, you walk away full of admiration, like, "wow, he/she's even better than I imagined!"... which maybe can't be said for the other players.

There are pros and cons in the end...  I mean:

Singer is great = wow, he's awesome!
Singer is bad = Damn, he must have had a cold, bad luck, at least he tried

Player is great = nice, like on the album!
Player is bad = geez, how many mistakes he did!

What I mean is that a singer can be excused for being even slightly sick, the guitar player fucking up the solo is just screwing up, it's not that he has a line of fever and that makes him forget the notes.

I understand how difficult it is to sing and I would never consider a bad performance a personal slight or a lack of commitment.
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Offline TAC

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #65 on: January 24, 2019, 05:45:59 AM »
Do you folks tend to feel cheated if you are at a live show and the singer has an off night? Do most people get angry about that?

Just curious about other opinions. I've seen some singers have off nights live and I never felt it ruined the show, or made me upset. Sometimes I enjoy hearing something weird live, as that's part of the charm of a live show anyway.

Well, what if you go to Broadway and go see the Lion King, and Mustafa blows the night you go? Is that OK?

I'm not a James basher, but I cannot argue with what is being said. You accept that he may not have the range he did 25 years ago, and if that's all it was, then fine. But if we are all being honest, it's more than that.
would have thought the same thing but seeing the OP was TAC i immediately thought Maiden or DT related
Winger Theater Forums................or WTF.  ;D

Offline Setlist Scotty

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #66 on: January 24, 2019, 06:30:32 AM »
Do you folks tend to feel cheated if you are at a live show and the singer has an off night? Do most people get angry about that?
For the most part, I'd say no, altho I think it would really depend on the situation. I'm usually more forgiving, and it's more likely that I'd be rooting for them to still manage to pull it off. This was the case when I saw Rush's final show in LA. Geddy really seemed to be struggling at the beginning of the show and I was more worried that he wouldn't make it thru than anything else. OTOH, if the vocalist just seems to be phoning it in, or putting in a terribly lackluster performance like what Stephen Pearcy did at a couple of recent Ratt shows, I'd be angry.

That said, if a vocalist just can't manage to sing a song like it was originally recorded, they should recognize their limitations and either alter the song - alter the vocal melodies like what Geddy did for Circumstances in 2007 or lower the key (a little - not so that it sounds like mud) - or drop the song altogether. If they consistently try to sing the vocals like originally and it's obvious they can't do it, their performance can be a turn off.
As a basic rule, if you hate it, you must solely blame Portnoy. If it's good, then you must downplay MP's contribution to the band as not being important anyway, or claim he's just lying. It's the DTF way.

Offline Stadler

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #67 on: January 25, 2019, 05:39:26 PM »
So I'd say, he clearly *didn't* need it...

Maybe.  But here's an alternate possibility (and I am merely speculating, just as much as you):  Maybe he did need it, and the reason you like his performance on ADTOE and TA is precisely because of what he gained from that experience that caused him to grow as a vocalist?
 

...but he didn't need someone standing over his shoulder the whole time.

Okay, but we don't have any evidence of anyone ever "standing over his shoulder the whole time."  Not ever.

Well, I'm happy to admit I was exaggerating there.  :)  But he clearly wasn't comfortable with the set up.  To the point above - anything is possible.  And I'm sure all of the experiences he's had has helped to shape him over time, so I don't necessarily think you're wrong.  At the same time, many people also prefer his vocals on his solo albums, most of which were released before the Chaos in Motion DVD, and the Frameshift album...  And, he's delivered great vocals throughout their career, including the very beginning.  There was an interview with him that made me think the SC-style producing wasn't the way it had always been.  I think he at least indicated it hadn't been like that for I&W and Awake. 

I'm not saying MP shouldn't have been involved at all.  If the melody writer (JP or MP) has a clear vision of how they want the vocals melodies to be, then certainly they're going to want that vision realized and may need to give feedback in order to get it.  On top of that they were the producers.  So some direction is normal, and even maybe a little tension now and then.  But again, I think JP's approach was probably better.  A producer acquaintance once mentioned that half the job of producing vocals was to make sure the singer was comfortable and relaxed.  JP seems to do that.  I don't think James' discomfort with what MP was doing on the documentary is a discredit to JL at all.

Not arguing with you, and not trying to advance my case, BUT:   whether you or I like a vocal or not is not evidence of what I am talking about ("This Is The Life" is probably my favorite James performance in the catalogue, and I'm a "James" guy; DT would not be DT without him).  Many people hated (and still hate) the growly vocals by Mike, but that was his artistic choice.   

As for "off nights", well they happen.  For me, it's less about that they happen, than what and how the band/singer reacts.   Maybe if Geddy isn't feeling good, you drop "Temples of Syrinx" and add "La Villa Strangiato", or something.  Voice aren't like hammies where you can power through them, but a singer has to know what he's working with and deal accordingly. 

Offline Lethean

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #68 on: January 25, 2019, 10:56:22 PM »
So I'd say, he clearly *didn't* need it...

Maybe.  But here's an alternate possibility (and I am merely speculating, just as much as you):  Maybe he did need it, and the reason you like his performance on ADTOE and TA is precisely because of what he gained from that experience that caused him to grow as a vocalist?
 

...but he didn't need someone standing over his shoulder the whole time.

Okay, but we don't have any evidence of anyone ever "standing over his shoulder the whole time."  Not ever.

Well, I'm happy to admit I was exaggerating there.  :)  But he clearly wasn't comfortable with the set up.  To the point above - anything is possible.  And I'm sure all of the experiences he's had has helped to shape him over time, so I don't necessarily think you're wrong.  At the same time, many people also prefer his vocals on his solo albums, most of which were released before the Chaos in Motion DVD, and the Frameshift album...  And, he's delivered great vocals throughout their career, including the very beginning.  There was an interview with him that made me think the SC-style producing wasn't the way it had always been.  I think he at least indicated it hadn't been like that for I&W and Awake. 

I'm not saying MP shouldn't have been involved at all.  If the melody writer (JP or MP) has a clear vision of how they want the vocals melodies to be, then certainly they're going to want that vision realized and may need to give feedback in order to get it.  On top of that they were the producers.  So some direction is normal, and even maybe a little tension now and then.  But again, I think JP's approach was probably better.  A producer acquaintance once mentioned that half the job of producing vocals was to make sure the singer was comfortable and relaxed.  JP seems to do that.  I don't think James' discomfort with what MP was doing on the documentary is a discredit to JL at all.

Not arguing with you, and not trying to advance my case, BUT:   whether you or I like a vocal or not is not evidence of what I am talking about ("This Is The Life" is probably my favorite James performance in the catalogue, and I'm a "James" guy; DT would not be DT without him).  Many people hated (and still hate) the growly vocals by Mike, but that was his artistic choice.   
Yeah.... but I'm not really sure how that fits into this discussion.  Or maybe I do in that you're saying Mike had a certain vocal in mind that he wanted to see regardless of whether we think James was better later or not.  And I get that - and again I'm not saying he shouldn't have been doing that or shouldn't have been producing (he was one of the producers).  I just think he could have gone about it differently.

Quote
As for "off nights", well they happen.  For me, it's less about that they happen, than what and how the band/singer reacts.   Maybe if Geddy isn't feeling good, you drop "Temples of Syrinx" and add "La Villa Strangiato", or something.  Voice aren't like hammies where you can power through them, but a singer has to know what he's working with and deal accordingly. 
Maybe they should've done that, but I don't think they (Rush) did that, at least not towards the end of their career.  The setlist was pretty much established and I don't recall any substitutions. :)  In theory, it seems like a good idea, especially if a singer is sick before the show and they have time to make plans.  If he/she finds out during the show, not much you can do about that.

Offline DT1138

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Re: Your Thoughts On Live Pitch Correction for James?
« Reply #69 on: February 11, 2019, 06:27:52 PM »
James sounded awesome when I saw DT in Nov 2017.   I have perfect pitch and I assure you - he never missed a note.
Which show did you go to?

I'd be interested to know this, too. This isn't intended to be a witch hunt of you, DT1138, it's just an interesting claim you made. I'd say it's almost the nature of the beast for a rock singer to miss at least one note during a show.

Sorry guys, I'm very tardy to the party here.  No witch hunt assumed  ;D ;D.

It was Chicago Nov 3, 2017.  While I can't say I memorized every note he sang, nothing glaringly stood out as being off key (unlike a local bar band I heard recently - that lady trying to sing Adele made me want to jump out a window, Jesus H Christ). 

Regardless, James was also very engaged with the audience and full of energy, so it was a great night for him overall.  When JP came back for the G3 Feb 2018, I was first in line for the meet and greet.  I told John I thought they sounded great and he was very excited by the feedback.