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Youtube covers. Editting etiquette thoughts?

Discussion in 'Recordings [BG]' started by Noshtero, Mar 6, 2013.

  1. Noshtero

    Noshtero Supporting Member

    Dec 2, 2007
    Chicago, IL
    I'm just getting ready to start doing Youtube covers and I'm wondering what everyone's thoughts are as far as etiquette and possible misrepresentation.

    I've heard three schools of thought on this.

    School 1: You have to do a single take of the song, no post processing, no alteration. Anything less than that and you're a poser who's putting up something that is not what you really sound like.

    School 2: You can splice together multiple takes. They do it in actual recording all the time. It's not logical to keep playing the song over and over until you play it perfect start to finish once. You can also mix the eq, adjust the gain, etc... to make it sound as nice as possible.

    School 3: You can do whatever you want. You can lay two tracks over one another if it sounds awesome. This is true even if it's something that you can't physically do in real life. Singers do it all the time. It's called harmonizing. So if you want to have a super fast bassline that is beyond your capabilities, then record bits and pieces and splice it altogether.

    Arguments against them:
    School 1: No real argument against this. If you're capable of playing the perfect bassline in one take, power to you.

    School 2: You're making yourself sound like a better bassist than you really are.

    School 3: You're straight up lying. Especially if you play that bass track over a video where you're not even doing the same thing that the bass track is doing.

  2. Milestones


    May 28, 2012
    I've never once thought about caring what someone did on a Youtube cover, because it just doesn't matter. Do whatever you want. Doing one take of the song is best since it's more challenging.
  3. Noshtero

    Noshtero Supporting Member

    Dec 2, 2007
    Chicago, IL
    It may not matter anyway. Every damn cover I try to upload IMMEDIATELY gets dumped due to copyright infringements.

    I have no idea how thousands of covers are added every day. This is systematic. It must be Shazaming my video or something because the instant the upload finishes, I receive an email saying it's a copyright infringement.
  4. xaxxat

    xaxxat Supporting Member

    Oct 31, 2008
    Ask Constantine how he gets his uploaded. He's at 899 now.


    I would suggest that if you do covers, please show both hands. The front on view is most helpful. The side angle hides what the hands are doing. Notes/tabs are a plus.
  5. Noshtero

    Noshtero Supporting Member

    Dec 2, 2007
    Chicago, IL
    My thoughts? We're not uploading Covers. Covers means you're playing the song instead. We're uploading "play alongs". Fair use covers a bunch of specific uses, and teaching is one of them. I beleive our play alongs are, as xaxxat just eluded to, a teaching tool.

    But am I going to take on Youtube like MarloweDK did? Probably not.
  6. Chromer


    Nov 28, 2012
    Various companies will arrange licensing for covers. Unless you become huge, it's pretty chea.

    As for the other question, are you documenting a live performance or are you creating art. They have different "rules."
  7. DiabolusInMusic

    DiabolusInMusic Functionless Art is Merely Tolerated Vandalism Supporting Member

    People do edits on youtube covers? Seems like more hassle than actually mastering a song. Especially if you are making the video to say "Hey, I can play this" when really... you can't.
  8. elgecko


    Apr 30, 2007
    Anasleim, CA
    Most of the "covers" I've seen on Youtube are actually play-alongs. If you see a cover bar in a band, are they playing along to the original track? :confused:
  9. Noshtero

    Noshtero Supporting Member

    Dec 2, 2007
    Chicago, IL
    I'm doing "play-alongs" with the original track. But still getting blocked because the Youtube Shazam Content ID auto scan thing is picking up the original song in the background. An actual cover would probably pass through, as sad as that is.
  10. jweber76


    Aug 10, 2011
    Attleboro, Ma
    Apparently I'm not entirely clear on what YouTube she rules are here... I thought I was.
    My band had a live acoustic cover of Jumpin' Jack Flash up on YouTube for somewhere in the neighborhood of two years! This week it was taken down due to copyright issues!
    We were recording video live, in my living room, just an acoustic pre-gig jam. A couple of the songs we did came out pretty good so we put them up. We weren't making any money on them. We weren't claiming that they were our songs (I believe we specifically sited the Stones in the video). Who knows?
  11. Noshtero

    Noshtero Supporting Member

    Dec 2, 2007
    Chicago, IL
    It's a sticky area on actual covers.

    But play-alongs should go up with no problem. The fair use act says that teaching/commentary is allowed as long as it doesn't provide a means for someone to avoid buying the song based on your recording. These bass play alongs specifically have the bass pumped for the purpose of teaching the bass line. If you wanted to listen to the actual song, you wouldn't be able to use a bass play along instead.

    The point is, Youtube's Content ID scan is impartial. A bass play along to a song could just as easily be a commercial that's using the song as a backing track. If the Content ID is tripped, the video is blocked.
  12. Chromer


    Nov 28, 2012
    Someone playing the video constitutes a public performance of the song. The songwriters are due a payment for that, even if you're not collecting. If you haven't licensed it, they aren't getting paid.

    Arguments about "the Stones have plenty of cash already" can be made, but are secondary to the general issue of songwriters being compensated for use of their work.
  13. Here are my repsonses to the questions in the OP.

    First, I don't see anything wrong with post processing, meaning EQ, compression, cropping the video so the hole in your pants doesn't show, etc.

    As to splicing, speeding up, overdubbing, etc., I would just ask, what is the purpose of the video? If it is to show people how well you can play (in hopes of getting an audition or maybe just to show how much progress you've made in studying music), then I don't think it's in your own interest to give the impression that you can play something that you really can't. When you get to the audition they're going to find out how you really play, so you might as well represent it honestly.

    If, however, the purpose is to present your own interpretation of the song, then by all means, have at it. Loop, sample, overdub, use whatever tools fuel your creativity.
  14. Alvaro Martín Gómez A.

    Alvaro Martín Gómez A. TalkBass' resident Bongo + cowbell player

    Making a play-along video usually means spending a long time in such task to me because I record all of my videos in one single take, but the definitive one is never the first. I start playing over the recording and, if I make a mistake, I simply stop and start all over again. When I feel satisfied with a take (usually after many, many ones), I spend some more time editing the video since I replace the camera's audio track with another direct-to-PC one recorded at the same time (absolutely live, of course) via amp's line out > sound card auxiliary input. Of course, synchronizing the video to the new (non-camera) audio track, adding titles, video fade in/out effects and (in some cases) split screens is another time-consuming task. I enjoy it a lot, anyway. :)
  15. xaxxat

    xaxxat Supporting Member

    Oct 31, 2008
    Yeah, play-along lessons are more of what they are.

    Here's several more guys with hundreds of up loads. You should pick their brains on how they do it.




  16. BassMom88


    Oct 17, 2011
    It can be pretty daunting just starting out for sure (I'm just the "videographer" -and I use that term loosely). The channel I help manage is http://www.youtube.com/user/bassgirl5809
    We don't edit - tried once for better sound, but then it was out of sync with the video. She just plays straight through and we post, nothing fancy and it's mostly live performances nowadays anyway. As someone else said, it really depends on the purpose of your channel. We were just setting up a video diary to keep track of progress and have something ready when it comes time to apply to colleges - it just kind of took on a life of it's own and has been a great experience!
    So...fwiw - here's what I've learned...

    1. Look at all the links people have provided here and look at different ways people have set up their channel and see what you like/don't like to create yours. Upload every so often to keep subscribers interested.

    2. Search on YT for the song you're thinking about posting. Chances are, if there's a few other "unofficial" versions out there, then yours will probably make it through the copyright check-system too.

    3. We always received copyright notices for play-alongs, but you can pretty much proceed until apprehended. IIRC, they send a blurb about what it means. They'll often just tack on ads or provide a link to download the original tune. I used to think it was a special thing to have the Amazon or iTunes link under your vid...nope, pretty much an "if you can't beat'em join 'em and hopefully make some money" response from artists/publishers. It's a nice compromise imo. Some artists have embraced it, and some have shut it down - just check/google to see where you might stand before taking a chance.
    Even some actual "covers" will get that notice too. Anyway - within your settings you can view your copyright scorecard and see if you have any major infractions.

    4. One suggestion for gaining views is to find videos of your same song or the same artist, similar vibe etc...pick the one with the most traffic, subscribe to that person's channel (it's just good etiquette), and then post your video as a Video Response. If it doesn't approve automatically, give it a few days and if it still doesn't show up, try another one to post to (you can only video respond once per upload - you remove by just posting to a different one - or if you decide later you don't want it attached to any, just respond it to your own video and don't approve it).

    5. Post your YT channel link on your other sites (Create a Twitter account if you don't have one already) and vice versa to improve traffic.

    Most of all...have fun with it!
  17. ekikoo


    Apr 4, 2010

    The meaning of this post is not to mainly advertise my channel, but I might go under Shool 2... I've done bass playalongs too but since deleted them, i dunno why ;B Nowadays I like to do somewhat produced videos with all (but drums and vox) played myself... I pick songs that are possible for me, but I focus on making "from a fan to fans" videos, with flaws... The stuff on video is the actual take. The point however is not to show how I play the whole song, but to improve my mixing and just record tribute stuff. Because the chosen media is Youtube, a video gives something to watch instead just audio files,l it's too much trouble to film whole songs on guitar/bass/keys x--D

    What I'm trying to say, I know pretty well what I can and can't do :b The videos are produced and the viewer hears that, if he wants one-take-only, I suggest a different channel :)
  18. I recording just whith my camera and nothing else,no computer effects, i just play en enjoy.

    like this

    saludos from Spain!!
  19. if you're playing over a track personally i want a faithful recreation of the original line down to every detail. i don't want audio editing post either because it probably won't match up with the video.

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