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Something To Hold On To - updated vocals

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Jenn    246

I'm a little tipsy... so I'm not quite sure how this came out...

But any critique would be amazing..

Thank you so much

 

Give me a little something to hold on to

Another kiss or another miss

Give me a little something to hold on to

Cause I need more than this

I need more than this

 

Fuel up the car

Where do we end tonight?

We drive long but never get far

Look at the stars

Are we under same skies?

We search high but we try too hard 

 

Give me a little something to hold on to

Another kiss or another miss

Give me a little something to hold on to

Cause I need more than this

I need more than this

 

Look me in the eyes

Is this what you want 

Are we just wasting time?

Give me a sign

Cause I'll let go if you were never mine

 

Then the world stops and everything in it drops away

Fades away till it's just us in our way

I want to give you the world, what's left and what has stayed

But it stays in my head with words I can't say

 

Give me a little something to hold on to

Give me a little something to hold

Give me a little something to hold on to

Give me a little something to hold

 

Give me a little something to hold on to

Another kiss or another miss

Give me a little something to hold on to

Cause I need more than this

I need more than this

 

https://soundcloud.com/jennifer-kaitlyn-doll/something-to-hold-on-to

 

 

Edited by Jenn

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Oswlek    87

I like it, Jenn.  Catchy chorus and the change to the verse is cool  As is, the transition between the chorus and verse sounds like you really have to rush to sneak a breath in and that lack of comfort shows through.  Having the two takes on separate tracks would help that, IMO.  Two other things that may just be my personal preference:

 

1 hour ago, Jenn said:

Give me a sign

 

Using "give me" in this line usurps some of the power from the chorus for me.  A simple fix would be changing it to "I need a sign".

 

1 hour ago, Jenn said:

Then the world stops and everything in it drops away

Fades away till it's just us in our way

I want to give you the world, what's left and what has stayed

But it stays in my head with words I can't say

 

Give me a little something to hold on to

Give me a little something to hold

Give me a little something to hold on to

Give me a little something to hold

 

I LOVED this bit, but it dragged for me the longer it went on into the chorus-ish part.  If this were my song, I'd drop virtually the entire second stanza and make it like this:

 

Then the world stops and everything in it drops away

Fades away till it's just us in our way

I want to give you the world, what's left and what has stayed

But it stays in my head with words I can't say

 

Give me a little something.....

 

(Pause and then kick in to the final chorus).

 

Or, said differently, jump straight from 1:29 to 1:46 with a brief musical pause in between.

 

Keep or sweep. :)

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Jenn    246
6 hours ago, Oswlek said:

I like it, Jenn.  Catchy chorus and the change to the verse is cool  As is, the transition between the chorus and verse sounds like you really have to rush to sneak a breath in and that lack of comfort shows through.  Having the two takes on separate tracks would help that, IMO.  Two other things that may just be my personal preference:

 

 

Using "give me" in this line usurps some of the power from the chorus for me.  A simple fix would be changing it to "I need a sign".

 

 

I LOVED this bit, but it dragged for me the longer it went on into the chorus-ish part.  If this were my song, I'd drop virtually the entire second stanza and make it like this:

 

Then the world stops and everything in it drops away

Fades away till it's just us in our way

I want to give you the world, what's left and what has stayed

But it stays in my head with words I can't say

 

Give me a little something.....

 

(Pause and then kick in to the final chorus).

 

Or, said differently, jump straight from 1:29 to 1:46 with a brief musical pause in between.

 

Keep or sweep. :)

I actually realized that I said "Give me a sign" as I was listening back to it.... I hadn't even realized it was the same as "give me a little something to hold on to"

I do like "I need a sign" better... and will redo these vocals as two separate tracks (sober, this time...possibly) to account for the verse/chorus break

It's not too difficult to do.. but I can see how it would come off rushed

 

I'm not sure I can hear the song how you do with your other suggestion. I kind of like how it is right now. I do want to add more backing vocals and hopefully that would help with the monotony as well as the build up to the chorus. However, when I was recording, I could not come up with a n y t h i n g. I mean you can see  that the most creative way I found to end this was with an exasperated sigh haha

That's actually because I kept messing up the words and was actually getting really freaking annoyed!!!

 

Thank you so much for the listen and critique :) 

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JH Michaels    74

Ain't recording fun!?  This caught my eye:  "Another kiss or another miss" I would consider changing this to "Another kiss, just a little bliss" ..it flows a little better for me and when I sang it through.  Besides, "another miss" doesn't seem to fit the "need" imho.   What I noticed in your vocals is that you are singing with more confidence......good job!  I like the change up from your verses and chorus singing to the bridge where you're talking with the fx added.  It's a welcome break.  I also agree it goes on a bit too long and another idea would be to sing the first stanza in a different melody and talk through the second stanza......lol that's what I love about writing songs,...... there are a ba-zillion ways to do it, but what really matters is the way you want it to be. Keep writing!

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starise    396

I agree JH.

 

This was the first thing I noticed Jenn. What JH mentioned. I like his ideas to use bliss instead of miss. I thought the way you were saying " Give me a little" in the lyrics was cute until I thought it might be because you weren't sober lol.

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Jenn    246
13 minutes ago, JH Michaels said:

Ain't recording fun!?  This caught my eye:  "Another kiss or another miss" I would consider changing this to "Another kiss, just a little bliss" ..it flows a little better for me and when I sang it through.  Besides, "another miss" doesn't seem to fit the "need" imho.   What I noticed in your vocals is that you are singing with more confidence......good job!  I like the change up from your verses and chorus singing to the bridge where you're talking with the fx added.  It's a welcome break.  I also agree it goes on a bit too long and another idea would be to sing the first stanza in a different melody and talk through the second stanza......lol that's what I love about writing songs,...... there are a ba-zillion ways to do it, but what really matters is the way you want it to be. Keep writing!

I do like "just a little bliss".. I may use it if you don't mind :) 

Yeah I'm getting more comfortable with my voice... it's all I have and I can't change it! I'm glad to see you've noticed

I'll have to see what I can do about that break.. Need a moment of inspiration. Thank you so much

2 minutes ago, starise said:

I thought the way you were saying " Give me a little" in the lyrics was cute until I thought it might be because you weren't sober lol.

What do you mean??

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starise    396

I liked the way you say " Give me a little something" The pronunciation is cute to my ears. Do you say that like that ll the time ? 

15 hours ago, Jenn said:

I do like "I need a sign" better... and will redo these vocals as two separate tracks (sober, this time...possibly) to account for the verse/chorus break

It's not too difficult to do.. but I can see how it would come off rushed

I was noting this comment about being sober. 

 

 I'm just trying to interpret the data, that's all. It does sound cute. The way you say it..Before I read this comment I thought maybe it was the way you talk where ever you're from. Like the way southerners and northerners talk a little different. Don't shoot me please.:unsure:

 

 

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Jenn    246

@starise It sounds like how I would say it regularly haha! If anything its a New York/New Jersey accent 

I'll only shoot you if you claim to have better bagels/pizza

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starise    396

Whew! * wipes forehead* . I mean't no harm honest. Some people just say things a little differently. I liked the way you say it it but I never would have guessed New York or Jersey.

My wife says " Crowns" when she means to say crayons. It's cute too. I like the break in this song too.

 

Anyways. Good job on this one! I'll try to listen better to it later.I don't feel I'm really giving you  very good comments on it yet. 

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MonoStone    904

Sounds good Jenn!

 

I hear you struggle with breath as you go from section to section, sometimes... Is that something you want listeners to hear and feel? Normally I'd say you should trim your vocal track up to cut out any unwanted breaths...and if you feel like you need a breather between sections, record them separately rather than as part of one take...or practice so that you don't run out of breath...but... since you kept the breathing at the end which sounds deliberate maybe you wanted that to come across throughout the song?

 

Still a very good song and your vocals sound better every time.

 

As this stands it feels quite stripped back and raw... the breathing and the mix... a bit raw .... so if that's what you're going for then all good except that I felt your voice cuts a bit too harshly, maybe eq to soften it a touch, but it's been a long day so that could be my head...

 

 

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Jenn    246

@MonoStone to be honest I never even focused on me taking breaths between sections..But listening back now... I heard them.

It's not a challenging song for me to sing, breath-wise.... don't really have an explanation as to why they're so exaggerated 

The breath at the end is on purpose! Seemed like a good idea at the time.. And if I could make it a little quieter, I still like it

 

Thank you :) I'm definitely getting more comfortable just singing how I sing and enjoying my songs. Really happy it's coming across

 

I do want raw for this.. but I want polished too. Like.. clean grit. 

 

I do have an EQ on it right now ... "clear vocals" preset

 

image.thumb.png.6faa8d51500008a821d45348a65250ed.png

to make it softer... would I pull down the light blue by 10k?

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Peggy    400

Hi Jenn,

Having fun listening to your 2 songs here at home with some friends. We like both Mr. Fox and Something To Hold On To but Something To hold On To is the fav :)

Peggy

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Jenn    246
Just now, Peggy said:

Hi Jenn,

Having fun listening to your 2 songs here at home with some friends. We like both Mr. Fox and Something To Hold On To but Something To hold On To is the fav :)

Peggy

thank you for allowing me in your home :D!!!!

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Jen, is is a really fun tune with a great hook.  I certainly project it to be a song that a crowd would join in on singing the hookline.  I think I've said it before, your voice is very organic.  That's something I would hold on to if I were you.  There is a bit of appeal in that.  I wanna say the artist I have in mind is Suzanne Vega.  I'll have to double check myself--the one that sings the dootadoodoo song.  Similarly she has that organic sound.  I'll likely be back to edit if when I check, my recall of the artist isn't correct.

 

Phew!  I did get it right, except for how her name is spelled.  Susanne.  Gosh, my memory is awful--I thin the song I was trying to think of was called Eddies diner--nope.  It's Tom's Diner 😜.

Edited by Pahchisme Plaid

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MonoStone    904
9 hours ago, Jenn said:

to make it softer... would I pull down the light blue by 10k?

 

Yes probably BUT listening again I think the way your voice is eq'd is ok. I think you did a good job. The vocal is maybe a touch, a tiny bit, too loud....but...

 

two things - 

 

1. I've listened to a lot of songs lately, and this is the one that's stuck in my head. So you've achieved the most important thing...it's extremely catchy!

2. I really don't like the backing... I think there are too many claps, when actually you should use carefully placed claps in the groove to accent...

For me the plain piano stabbing away just gets too much, it's just not that pleasant for a full song. And the drums and bass are too rigid, they don't groove together in a way that feels cool... the music feels like it's attacking a lot, it feels a bit relentless.

 

For me, at the moment, the music sounds like it's kind of placeholder...like the music you've used to write the song... I think it needs some nicer sounds...more of a groove where the bass isn't so prominent but just works with the drums to feel good...and I'd just drop the piano and think of something else to use. I think your vocal performance is great, the melody is fantastically catchy (and moody and has attitude where you need it), but the music arrangement just doesn't appeal to me. I'd take this as the 'write', keep the vocals, and rework the arrangement. Hard to be specific on what to do instead, but I think the main focus initially should be on drums, bass and vocals...using some good quality claps (look up freesound.org if you need better ones, or record yourself clapping) to accent the groove..... a drums and bass and clapping song...with other musical elements just adding subtly rather than in-your-face as the piano currently is.

 

I've had time to think about it, and listened a few times, and that's my honest feeling about it. If you nail the music/beat/groove then you'll have yourself a killer song. I hope you don't settle for the backing as it stands...

 

Edited by MonoStone

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M57    259
9 hours ago, Jenn said:

@MonoStone to be honest I never even focused on me taking breaths between sections..But listening back now... I heard them.

It's not a challenging song for me to sing, breath-wise.... don't really have an explanation as to why they're so exaggerated 

The breath at the end is on purpose! Seemed like a good idea at the time.. And if I could make it a little quieter, I still like it

 

Thank you :) I'm definitely getting more comfortable just singing how I sing and enjoying my songs. Really happy it's coming across

 

I do want raw for this.. but I want polished too. Like.. clean grit. 

 

I do have an EQ on it right now ... "clear vocals" preset

 

image.thumb.png.6faa8d51500008a821d45348a65250ed.png

to make it softer... would I pull down the light blue by 10k?

 

Pulling down that 'shelving' filter at 10k will make it "darker" not so much softer.  If you're looking to soften things, try a little dip at about1k (that where the nasal sound is), and then maybe 4k, but there's a lot of presence and detail there - be careful.  6k and 8-9k is where the sibilance is.  Anyway, I think the vocal is EQ'd nicely - I wouldn't change much. That dip at 200 might be a little overdone, taking the bottom out of your voice, and maybe there's a little too much sibilance in the 9kish+ range.  But really, the way to alter these things is to use your ear.

 

Anyway, the song is infections.  Strong, strong tune - I can see this easily breaking through in the pop world. I love the clapping "hi-hat" and the bass line, but that hook is killer. Yeah the line "another kiss or another miss" doesn't exactly work right.  You don't have to use the word "miss," and the end word doesn't even have to rhyme with 'miss' as far as I'm concerned.  A close rhyme like "Another kiss would do the trick" works much better for me.

 

Congrats on a great song. -Mark

 

The 'rap' break is a really nice arranging touch, but I find the vocal performance there is lacking in places.  I doesn't have to have that hip-hop swagger, but there are places where it just isn't "musical" to my ear.

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HoboSage    1,990

I like the song and think it has potential.  But,  since no one else mentioned it, I guess it's up to me to inject a dose of cold, hard truth as I hear it.  In my opinion, the vocal EQ isn't the big problem with the vocal - it's you going off pitch that is.  No matter what you do arrangement-wise or mix-wise, this isn't going to sound "polished"until your off-pitch singing is addressed.

 

Just my opinion.

Edited by HoboSage

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Jenn    246

@Pahchisme Plaid I typed in her name on youtube and it came up as suzanne! always go with your gut feeling. Yeah actually I can kind of hear myself in this, though I like to use a stronger voice. Heyyyyyy... Fall Out Boy sampled this...Still, you're the only one to give me the organic comment. So thank you so much :) Would be amazing to have people screaming back my lyrics!

 

@MonoStone ok ok ok I'm going to change the arrangement entirely. Start with a blank slate except for the vocals. Let me see what I can do :)

 

@M57Thank you for the advice about the EQ.... I've actually tried not to learn it any other way than just relying on my own ear.. But usually I just use to presets and they seem to do okay for my ears. Yeah, the more I think about it, the fuller the line "another kiss another miss" could be. I kind of like "another kiss, just a little bit" 

I don't have too much swagger :( but I'll definitely keep your comment in mind because I agree

 

@HoboSage I allotted you too much praise. Hahahahaa no I agree, I have pitch problems. But at least that's not too hard to fix! Thanks Hobo

 

 

Ok... so I'm gonna make a super pop one. *loses all morals* 

Thank you everyone

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ImKeN    271

Some cool tips on the EQ from @M57. Here's a link to help you further with the EQ in general.

 

The song sounds great but I agree with the others that the vocals are a bit loud in the mix.

 

Logic comes with pitch correction but I don't know if GarageBand has it or not?

 

All the best, Jenn!

 

Ken

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M57    259

@Jenn Presets are a great way to start, not to mention to learn how to use an EQ or any effect like compression, etc.   Start with the preset that sounds the best, then get in there and tweak it.  At the very least, try and figure out what you like about it.

Edited by M57

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tunesmithth    1,272

If no one's mentioned it Jenn, there's an entire section of the SongStuff library dedicated to production topics..including EQ & compression. ;)

http://www.songstuff.com/recording/article/

 

Tom

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Jenn    246

This is hideous @MonoStone hahahahahahaha... enjoy :P (I didn't even finish it)

https://soundcloud.com/jennifer-kaitlyn-doll/something-to-hold-on-to-ugly/s-aZwYl

 

 

Edited by Jenn
though I haven't been feeling super creative and I know I can do better than this...

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Jenn    246
10 hours ago, ImKeN said:

Some cool tips on the EQ from @M57. Here's a link to help you further with the EQ in general.

 

The song sounds great but I agree with the others that the vocals are a bit loud in the mix.

 

Logic comes with pitch correction but I don't know if GarageBand has it or not?

 

All the best, Jenn!

 

Ken

It comes with some sort of pitch thingy...

10 hours ago, M57 said:

@Jenn Presets are a great way to start, not to mention to learn how to use an EQ or any effect like compression, etc.   Start with the preset that sounds the best, then get in there and tweak it.  At the very least, try and figure out what you like about it.

 

9 hours ago, tunesmithth said:

If no one's mentioned it Jenn, there's an entire section of the SongStuff library dedicated to production topics..including EQ & compression. ;)

http://www.songstuff.com/recording/article/

 

Tom

Thank you everyone :D now I have some reading material as I wait for my book to ship... 

Didn't even know EQ existed before a few weeks ago

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MonoStone    904
1 minute ago, Jenn said:

This is hideous @MonoStone hahahahahahaha... enjoy :P (I didn't even finish it)

https://soundcloud.com/jennifer-kaitlyn-doll/something-to-hold-on-to-ugly/s-aZwYl

 

 

 

Not hideous but not what I imagined....

 

Should be like... Gimmee little something to hold on to . .  Clap . another kiss or another miss . Clap Clap  Gimmee little something to hold on to . .  Clap . another kiss or another miss . Clap Clap Clap

 

Using real sounding drums, percussion, claps ... rather than an electronic pop song.

 

But ... only my opinion...only in my head.... 

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MonoStone    904

Also think it needs shouted backing vocals. Distant... shouted not sung. In an answering way I mean, not singing along with you... so the shouts become part of the groove.

Edited by MonoStone

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Jenn    246
2 minutes ago, MonoStone said:

 

Not hideous but not what I imagined....

 

Should be like... Gimmee little something to hold on to . .  Clap . another kiss or another miss . Clap Clap  Gimmee little something to hold on to . .  Clap . another kiss or another miss . Clap Clap Clap

 

Using real sounding drums, percussion, claps ... rather than an electronic pop song.

 

But ... only my opinion...only in my head.... 

 

Just now, MonoStone said:

Also think it needs shouted backing vocals. Distant... shouted not sung. 

ok ok ...... i hear it... yeah. ok hang oN

and I'm throwing that link into the fire ^

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Jenn    246

Ok ---

I changed the bass to a muted bass

I took the piano riff into vibraphone and piano and then simplified the block chords

I redid the claps

And added a slight crash

Lowered vocals and made them blend a little better

Same vocal recording until I can do more..

 

 

https://soundcloud.com/jennifer-kaitlyn-doll/something-to-hold-on-to-vocals/s-VpscM

 

I have mixed feelings about this... I feel like it's getting too pretty, when it's supposed to be somewhat aggressive cause boys suck

 

Edited by Jenn
but I do kind of like it

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MonoStone    904
9 hours ago, Jenn said:

Ok ---

I changed the bass to a muted bass

I took the piano riff into vibraphone and piano and then simplified the block chords

I redid the claps

And added a slight crash

Lowered vocals and made them blend a little better

Same vocal recording until I can do more..

 

 

https://soundcloud.com/jennifer-kaitlyn-doll/something-to-hold-on-to-vocals/s-VpscM

 

I have mixed feelings about this... I feel like it's getting too pretty, when it's supposed to be somewhat aggressive cause boys suck

 

 

Yeah that chorus arrangement isn't working. I didn't imagine anything so delicate/fragile sounding. 

 

It's hard to explain exactly so best to ignore me on this :)  seriously.

 

Verses sound good though.

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There's a lot of sass when you speak.. but it sounds softer/lower in volume than the sung part.. need to hear you better! Also the part where you're giving the speaker sound effect sounds a little muffled (which is how it's supposed to be, I guess), but now it's low + muffled... so a little more challenging to the listener :lol:

 

I don't mind if it's a pretty song.... it has all the pretty, pop formula with the added lyrical theme about pretty girls fed up with pretty boys ;)

 

The claps can be a little bit crisper.. the way I hear it.

 

And yes, pitch please... you already know which parts they're in :001_smile:

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Jenn    246
2 hours ago, MonoStone said:

 

Yeah that chorus arrangement isn't working. I didn't imagine anything so delicate/fragile sounding. 

 

It's hard to explain exactly so best to ignore me on this :)  seriously.

 

Verses sound good though.

sorry Dek :( I'm not sure how you're hearing this....

I think I may stay with the original piano and play more with the mixing

Though I think I like the muted bass better

I might ask someone to collab for the piano??? that might make it sound better

Thank you for so much help though..

40 minutes ago, Sreyashi Mukherjee said:

There's a lot of sass when you speak.. but it sounds softer/lower in volume than the sung part.. need to hear you better! Also the part where you're giving the speaker sound effect sounds a little muffled (which is how it's supposed to be, I guess), but now it's low + muffled... so a little more challenging to the listener :lol:

 

I don't mind if it's a pretty song.... it has all the pretty, pop formula with the added lyrical theme about pretty girls fed up with pretty boys ;)

 

The claps can be a little bit crisper.. the way I hear it.

 

And yes, pitch please... you already know which parts they're in :001_smile:

Ok! I gotta work on the mixing a little better. I actually really liked the mix in the "pretty" version.. but I need to redo vocals anyway so it doesn't matter much.

I agree about the clapping, and I will probably look at the link Dek gave me or record it myself

Thank you so much!!

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