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7 Dub Reggae secrets
If you are reading this, you are
either an enthusiast of dub reggae or you would love to know how it's done, so you can create some cool beats of
your own. Below I have listed seven dub reggae secrets or tips which will
help you to understand dub reggae a little bit more. These reggae
dub secrets are mainly for beginners but experienced folks may find them helpful
Dub reggae came about in the 1960s in Jamaica. As with many things, it was
not deliberately developed but came about through experimenting. All the mix engineers and
producers at the time were doing it, including Coxsone Dodd, Lee Perry, etc; even the sound system selectors
were dipping their fingers in dub reggae, although not as effectively as when it was done in the studio or
with a band.
Eventually these experimental dub
reggae mixes started coming out on the B side of records without the vocals and thus it became very popular,
especially with dancehall artist - they could perform over the B version live.
So how is dub reggae produced? The easiest way is to
eliminate all other instruments leaving just the bass and drums. This simple way of producing
dub reggae can have a dramatic effect especially when it's done by a band live. The next time you go to a
reggae show just observe the dramatic effect it has on the attendees and you will see what I
Another trick in achieving the dub reggae sound, is to use effects such as
reverb, echo and delay to modify the sound of say the snare, toms or hi-hat. The reverb gives this deep
way out trance like feel, while the echo and delay makes it appear like there is more going on by doubling or
stretching out the sounds.
A greater dub reggae effect can be achieved by bringing in and out the other
instruments while the drum and the bass are playing. For example, you could bring
the guitar in on every second beat of the musical bar for just one strum, while applying the delay or echo
effect set to 16 notes. This produces a very cool effect. Remember this can also
be done with the keyboard and other reggae instruments.
Some bands and producers go for an even more dramatic dub reggae effect by
surprising the listeners. This is achieved by suddenly stopping the beat, then starting it again, only this time the
drum and the bass is either sped up or slowed down. Producing reggae dub this
way always sounds interesting.
Sometimes, instead of cutting out the other instruments and leaving the bass
and the drums, the opposite is done by leaving the other instruments playing by themselves.
This can be taken further by leaving just one instrument playing.
Many times it is the guitar with wah, reverb, delay or echo added before
the other instruments are allowed back in.
In dub reggae the vocals are pretty much used the same way one uses an
instrument (and yes I know the voice is an instrument). That is, the
vocals are brought in and out while the usual effects are applied. Sometimes just one word can have an amazing effect when delay and reverb are
added and the sound tapers off in the distance.
And that's it ladies and
gentlemen! Make sure to try these dub reggae secrets, tips, tricks... out when you get the
chance. Other types
of reggae Lata!