Removing or isolating vocals using Adobe Audition

When creating a mash-up, as we will do for our video remix assignment, it can be helpful to begin with a base beat. Unfortunately, it isn’t always easy to find a naturally occurring sample that lends itself well to looping. Even in a song with a basic four bar structure, vocals often begin on an even beat, and drum tracks include fills that sound silly when looped. Adobe Audition makes it easy to remove specific aspects of a track (like vocals or percussive sounds), which makes every song a potential sample for our remixes. Check out the video below…

Under the fx tab, select Stereo Imagery –> Center Channel Extractor. Here you get the option of attenuating vocals, isolating them or boosting them separately. The center channel level adjustment bar (measured in decibels) makes it easy to play with the track levels until they are just right.

The purpose of the video was not to instruct on mashing audio tracks, but you can see how vocal removal can be a useful tool. Before you actually begin mashing, use Adobe Audition and Premiere to build a library of audio and video samples. When you’re working on a piece, it’s nice to have a palette of samples to choose from.  Happy Mashing!

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