[ENG] Sampling the Repinique: A Journey to custom Kontakt Instruments

I’m starting on a new quest: the path to custom kontakt instruments. I’m just level 1 now, but quickly gaining valuable experience about how our sample instruments are made! I thought I’d share my progress with you. Here’s a silly little timelapse of the recording session. The session was roughly 3 hours including preparation. It may seem long but it’s only because my initial plan was way too ambitious for the needs of this instrument. More on that later.

So the instrument I’m sampling is called a Repinique (or Repique) and is used in Samba music and a few other genres. It’s played in samba schools in Rio and all over the world as a lead instrument of the batucada, the brazilian marching drum ensemble.

It’s played with wooden or nylon sticks, left hand (if you’re right-handed) or even a random stick you picked on the ground, provided it’s solid as diamond (They hit hard and often!).

The richness of techniques and timbre of the instrument is surprising. It takes full advantage of the rebound of the stick on the super tight skin (with practice you can get up to 3 notes with a single gesture and time them right)

The original plan was waaaay too ambitious with over 500 samples over 2 mic positions, 5 velocity layers and 5 or 6 round robins… Ended up doing 1 mic, 3 layers and 4 RR.

I kept to the plan regarding strokes: I recorded

– Wooden stick center, side, border, rimshots, and buzz roll (where you let the stick rebound in rapid fire until it stops, which is a technique they use a lot in Samba)

– Nylon Stick (which you slam on both skin and rim)

– Hand, finger and various hits on the metal of the instrument to have some nice SFX to go with it!

– Phrases in both 90 and 120 bpm (straight feel and brazilian swing feel, where the 2nd and 3rd 16th notes of every beat is dragging and rushing respectively, which gives a very cool swing feel!)

And it works! Still WIP though. Made 2 videos to showcase my progress. Here’s the second one:

Don’t hesitate to subscribe to the channel for more updates on the development and tell me if you’re interested to try it out!

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