F9 Definitive Guide : Full Vocal remixing


I am a lucky man - Remixing defined my career around 2007 and sent me all over the world as a DJ and producer. Most notably my production partner Russell and I remixed several Beyonce productions and Kelly Rowland's 'Work' These were R+B originally and we took them into 4/4 club mixes just on the edge of the EDM explosion. These remixes did so well they replaced the original US productions at radio across Europe and took several of the tracks to Number 1.  We literally never looked back. 

If I can do it so can you and this is my brain-dump on this incredibly important part of modern music culture , but taken from the point of view of a full song ! 

On this post we're going to keep the words minimal - We have 3 exceptional videos for you to watch that will cover everything 

Part 1 : Intro and Prep

Remixing efficiently and creatively is all about the preparation. After years of remixing at every level I now always spend as much time at the beginning of the process setting things up correctly. It saves so much time and energy later on when you're in the middle of the creative flow.  Here we cover all these angles and I show you how to successfully time up even the hardest accapella so it's locked down to your DAW's bar structure :

Two Sample packs were used in this tutorial 

Katherine Ellis’s Diva Accapellas 

F9 Audio Drumtrax Vol iV:

Part 2 : Production and Arrangement 

Now lets start early to get basic arrangement up and running - Doing so will get you right out of the dreaded 'loop' trap  and help you flesh the whole track out in your head . As you already have a vocal you have a great starting point. Let me show you a future proof method for effecting the vocals using parallel techniques that will give you huge amounts of creative control at any stage of your remix when the tweak requests come in . Some invaluable arrangement ideas are already starting to give out track some personality 

Part 3 : Production and Mix

We start by showing you the principal musical parts as they went in from hardware and 1 F9 Bass patch and how we can use the rhythms and melodies of the vocals to set up perfect parts for the remix that re-enforce and support the vocal without ever clashing , Final arrangement changes an mix round this epic , Tip-laden 3rd and final video in the tutorial :




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  • Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge.

    DJ Mause on
  • Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge. Your videos is helping me to better understand the different aspects of music production. A little at a time I’m buying your audio libraries and all the content is of the highest quality.

    Andrea Perazzi on
  • Thanks James- great tutorial, as always. One thing grabbed my attention regarding this track, and that’s that it’s not very melodic – not a criticism, of course, you yourself said that you did that on purpose. <My question is as follows: when remixing a track and there’s no brief, is it a good idea, or not, to totally take a different melodic structure/change the key, where the final remix would have very little in common melodically with the original, bar the vocals and whatever interesting elements would be kept? Say, for example, a track was in C Major and you transform it in its melodic minor. Too much?…

    Antoine on
  • Million Thanks.. lots of stuff I can use in different genres..especially the vocal processing and balance levels..I´ve been struggling to get that clean vocal image in my mixes..this is going to be fun!!

    Frank on
  • James, you are an awesome tutor and these workflow examples are just what I needed. Also love your new Motion V1 sound packs, they are your best yet. Those foley sounds are a great addition for adding atmosphere to tracks. They’ve already helped me finish a track I’ve had trouble finishing for a long time. Thanks

    Ste on

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