Music You Are A Friend Virtual Chorus Project
The Basics –
Usually, two devices are needed, one to listen to the reference track (using earbuds or headphones), and another to record your video and audio. The ideal setup is to use a laptop or tablet to watch and listen to the reference track (plug your headphones or earbuds into that device), and a smartphone or tablet to do the recording. On iOS devices (Apple iPhone and iPad), use the Camera app set to “Video” and press the big red button to start and stop the recording.
Record your video with the lighting source behind the recording device, so that your face can be clearly seen but is not washed out from too much light. If you want to do your recording outdoors, find a spot and pay attention to shadows. Turn off any ceiling fans, AC units, or anything else that can cause distractions from the video and audio. Don’t worry about whether the recording is in portrait or landscape mode – all videos will be cropped to make them fit properly (and to remove any extraneous “junk” that may be off to the side).
The reference track has a 5-second countdown at the beginning. Start your recording device before starting the reference track. When the countdown reaches “2”, count out loud (in sync with the video) “2”, “1”, and then clap when the video beeps at the zero point. (It’s important that your clap is synchronized with the reference video, but don’t stress about it being perfect.) At that point, continue recording and get into position. You should be looking at the camera (and smiling) by the time the piano starts playing in the reference track.
At the end of the recording, hold your position for a few seconds before stopping your recording. After finishing, play your recording back to make sure it’s correct. The only thing you should hear is the countdown and clap at the beginning, and your voice singing your part (you should not hear the reference track audio).
Sing to the best of your ability, and remember to smile (even when you’re not singing). Don’t worry if your singing isn’t pitch perfect – when everyone’s voices get combined, it will sound just as awesome as it does when we perform it on stage.
Making a “video-only” recording –
If you’d prefer not to have your voice recorded and used with the group chorus track, you can either simply lip-sync the song, or just add a note when you send in your recording to have your audio track removed from your video. You should still do the opening countdown and clap so your video can be synchronized. For “video-only” recordings, you don’t need to use earbuds or headphones, since your audio track will not be used.
Recording multiple people –
If there are multiple people in your video, and more than one of you wants to have their singing recorded, there are a few ways to handle that. If there are two of you, and you have wireless earbuds, you can each use one of the two earbuds to listen to the reference track. A second method would be to use the “audio sharing” feature on recent iOS or Android devices. The final method that would work is to make your video recording with everyone singing along with the reference track (no headphones or earbuds), and then make separate audio recordings for each individual. (So, if you are a couple that wants to be in the final video together, you would submit three recordings, one for the video with both people, and two audio recordings.)
Additional information –
The first thing that happens when we receive your recording is that we separate the video and audio into two separate files. If you are having a hard time making a “perfect” recording for both video and audio at the same time, or you would prefer to make your video without headphones, you can create two recordings, one for the video and one for the audio. In this case it’s okay for your video recording to be done with the reference track being heard in the background (since the audio track of that recording will be discarded). When you send in your two recordings, please be sure to identify them accordingly.