Make it dirty

Some things are better with a little dirt on them. Whenever I buy a new pair of white sneakers, I feel the need to step in a some mud. Steaks seem to taste better when cooked on a grill that hasn’t been totally scrubbed down. But you also have to be careful. Sometimes making things dirty can go terribly wrong.


I first discovered The Eels while on tour a few years ago. We were zig-zagging our way up and down the West Coast and the album, Souljacker, was put into heavy rotation. I was immediately drawn to the interplay between dirtiness and lushness in the production. Not only from song to song, but within the tracks themselves. Clean, acoustic guitars intertwining with fuzzed out bass. Expansive strings arrangements bumping up against distressed vocals. Dirtiness and pureness living in perfect harmony. Much like 5 dudes traveling inside of a smelly van littered with In-N-Out remnants.

Loop #6

For this track I held a jingle stick in my right hand and went for a wide open, ringy snare sound. To dirty things up, I bus’d all of the drum tracks to an aux tack and inserted Logic’s guitar amp plug-in. With clean drums on the original tracks and the “re-amped” drums on the aux track, I was able to mix to the desired dirtiness. Who wants to FedEx me a double-double, animal-style?
Preview Here:


Download the Logic files here. (12MB)

100 BPM

3 thoughts on “Make it dirty

  1. justin

    this is a great site, lots of good loops and, of course, lots of how-i-got-to-this-sound background information. obviously, you didn’t “re-amp” the drums, but i notice in a couple other posts where you mention re-amping.

    are you always using plugins for reamping, or do you use a reamp box on occasion? i think that adding a tag for reamping or outlining your specific/general re-amp techniques would be a boon for a certain kind of reader out there. yes, it means more work for you, but we’d love you for it.

    at any rate, this site is going on my RSS reader.

  2. Ryan

    thanks justin! great question…. and this is something I should address in the FAQ page I haven’t got around to creating. yes, I’m only using plugins for reamping… not any live amps or external effects.

    I’m trying to use only effects and plugins native to Logic… so anyone with the program will be able to open up the sessions without problems. I figure it defeats the purpose of sharing the session files if a bunch of plugins are missing and the sound of the original mix can’t be recreated.

    thanks for reading… and for the suggestions!


  3. justin

    thanks for the reply! kudos to you for doing this site as well. and the logic beyond your file formats is great. TRUE open source music. i can’t say enough how great it is.

    i’m a DP guy and i got a UAudio card recently so that is where i come from on the gear-level. but i have NO idea how to play actual drums. i have some pride in my programming skills (not great, but theyve come a long way since quantizing beats in Reason 1), but hearing how a real, mindful drummer *thinks* is a nice point of reference.

    i guess i dont need to get the Chad Smith instructional DVD boxset.

Leave A Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.