Start to Finish: Vocal Production & Guitar Solos with Vance Powell

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01h 30min


Learn Vance’s Unique Editing and Overdubbing Tricks

This video is part 2/3.
Here is part 1/3: Tracking Rock with Vance Powell
Here is part 3/3: Mixing Rock with Vance Powell

Between the tracking session and the mixing session is the often overlooked editing and production process that adds the finishing touches and details that can make a song stand out.

Every producer and engineer needs to help guide artists towards a cohesive vision for their records. Grammy winner Vance Powell works with the band Tyler Bryant and The Shakedown to add layers of vocals, guitar overdubs and create the final song arrangement together at his studio Sputnik Sound in Nashville, TN.

Vance demonstrates and explains his strategies for:

  • Vocal comping, working line by line, take by take, to make a good performance great
  • Recording background vocals to make the arrangement even more dynamic
  • Using Vocalign on the vocal doubles for a wide and tight sound
  • Special effects processing including reverse reverb, distortion, and delays
  • Crafting the perfect guitar solo tone from the comfort of the control room
  • Vance’s special “spin fader” trick using analog delay

Learn how to give a song both polish and attitude with clever production touches that take the record from sounding good to feeling incredible!

Equipment & Software
  • Avid D-Verb
  • Exponential Audio Nimbus
  • VocAlign Project
  • Waves L2 Maximizer
  • Waves Tune
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    Vance Powell

    Vance studied electrical engineering in Missouri and started his career in live sound as a front-of-house engineer. In 2002, he moved to Nashville in order to become studio manager and chief engineer at the legendary Black Bird studios in Nashville. In 2006, he co-founded Sputnik studios along with Grammy-winning engineer Mitch Dane, still in Nashville.

    Vance Powell has won 6 Grammy awards working with rock artists such as The Raconteurs, Kings of Leon, Jack White, Pearl Jam, The White Stripes, The Dead Weather and more.

    Powell's domain of expertise is definitely mixing and producing rock music. As shown in his pureMix videos, Vance likes to experiment and create new fuller and exciting sounds using all kinds of pedals, echos, analog outboards and plug-ins. Vance was used to recording to tape and definitely has an analog approach that makes him commit to fewer good sounding tracks rather than piling up takes in Pro Tools.

    His goal is to make something new and warm that fits the band's vision with upfront snare drums and powerful guitars. Rocking.


    Jack White

    Chris Stapleton

    The Deadweather

    The Raconteurs

    Arctic Monkeys


    Featured Artists and Musics
    Tyler Bryant & The Shakedown

    Tyler Bryant & The Shakedown is a rock and roll band born of Nashville, TN. Their sound is a soulful patchwork of roots-infused melodies and muscular riffs, all woven tightly with the thread of their alternative psychedelic mystique. It’s as rambunctious, raw and real as rock & roll gets these days.

    • Aftershock

    What do you have to say?
    Leave a comment
    Craig O
    2021 Jan 25
    Great video! Any suggestions on using vocalign where the drums are the guide and the vocals line up with the timing of the snare hit? Haven't had luck with this yet. Thank you.
    2019 Mar 05
    Routing the delay feedback through a fader was pretty genius.
    2017 Nov 25
    Love the video, Vance! Can you explain the additional processing you did on the reverse reverb, like what you were trying to accomplish and how you went about it?
    Audio Art
    2017 Oct 17
    Great video. Love Vance's Rock-N-Roll attitude and Tyler is a little freakin' rock star. Did this song come out? The stuff I heard on Spotify sounds lame in comparison. Put out the heavy riffs guys.
    2017 Oct 06
    This is awesome!
    2017 Oct 01
    Love to watch other peoples philosophy and technique for comping, great to see Vance again!
    2017 Sep 29
    great video...does this mean the mixing video is coming next?! loving the start to finish process
    2017 Sep 27
    Lots of great little tips and tricks, awesome stuff!
    2017 Sep 27
    Once A guitarist...- Always a Guitarist..- Take 57..- Classic.."Just one more take... I think I got it.....!".. Great lesson in let the Artist see, but it's great diplomacy to tame the passion of just one more take..- Warts an' all fantastic example for all of us guitarists..- Keep trying, but listen to the expert
    2017 Sep 27
    Awesome Tricks!! Thank You!!!!
    2017 Sep 26
    great teachers!!
    2017 Sep 26
    Amazing. Thank you!