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  • VI Choir & Solo Voices, are they useful for writing for live singers?

    I'm considering buying the choir and solo voices VI libraries, because I want to write for actual live singers, but I have a couple of concerns. I've spent several years as a bass in some very good college choirs, and (except for some warm up exercises) we were singing in Italian, German, English, French etc... not just a few sylables. My questions for all of you that have the libraries are:

    What is the advantage of having the extra sylables of the extended libraries? 

    Since 90% or more of the music I will be writing with them will have lyrics, and be for choir with either no accompianment, or chamber music with a few individual singers, will these llibraries let me at least make decent mock ups? Is this what they were designed for ? And how do other composers use them?

    I'm not looking to add Ahhs, Ohhs, AH, U sylabals to a Hollywood style orchestra mix. Nothing wrong with that, it's just not the style that I write. I guess my biggest concern is, I don't want to end up "writing for the samples" as opposed to writing for actual performers who will be singing lyrics. Your opinions on if these libraries would be good for me in the long run and how they would be best used is greatly appreciated. Thank you!

    Michael


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    @mschmitt said:

    What is the advantage of having the extra sylables of the extended libraries?

    My guess is that the VSL choir is a too big project that has been abandoned mid-way. They tried to sample as many articulations as possible for each vowel and syllable, and then had to discover this was too big a goal.

    What we are left with is a couple vowels (semi-open and semi-closed), with the same type and number of articulations of their musical instruments. This means that there is no better tool to make vocalizes. And they are incredibly realistic vocalizes.

    For this the single vowel you can find in the Standard library is enough. Get the Extended library if you also want semi-closed vowel.

    Consonants are an enigma for me. Pa, Ra, Sa, Ta. Maybe sort of an effort to make a sanskrit-singing choir? But let's try VSL's native language, with some Schubert. The Winterreise:

    "Fremd bin ich eingezogen, / Fremd zieh’ ich wieder aus."

    Now, the VSL Voices:

    "Ra Pu Su Sa Ta Su Ra, / Ru Su Tu Tu Ra Sa!"

    It doesn't work to well.

    Vocalizes: there is no more realistic and musical choir around. A classical chamber-light symphonic choir of extreme elegance. Shame it was not completed.

    Paolo


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    @mschmitt said:

    Since 90% or more of the music I will be writing with them will have lyrics, and be for choir with either no accompianment, or chamber music with a few individual singers, will these llibraries let me at least make decent mock ups? Is this what they were designed for ?

    In a word, no. "And how do other composers use them?" I use ahs and oohs, occasionally an 'eh', even an 'uh'. 😉


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    @mschmitt said:

    What is the advantage of having the extra sylables of the extended libraries? 

    Since 90% or more of the music I will be writing with them will have lyrics, and be for choir with either no accompianment, or chamber music with a few individual singers, will these llibraries let me at least make decent mock ups? Is this what they were designed for ? And how do other composers use them?

    I'm not looking to add Ahhs, Ohhs, AH, U sylabals to a Hollywood style orchestra mix. Nothing wrong with that, it's just not the style that I write.

    For what you are looking to do with the libraries, the extra vowel won't do anything for you.  These libraries don't do lyrics; they're wonderful at creating ambience, capturing fast melismatic runs, and realizing wordless choir beds (ala Daphnis et Chloe).  The dynamic control, legato, and fact that it's not just "men and women" allow you to mock up traditional choral music in great detail, but as far as lyrics are concerned, the libraries will serve as an intermediate placeholder for your purposes.  In short, I'd go with the standard library: your placeholders will just say "Aah" instead of "Aah or Ooh" 😊

    - Sam