How to make a Dr Dre Gin & Juice-style lead sound

15th Jul 2009 | 10:03

How to make a Dr Dre Gin & Juice-style lead sound
Getting started
Opening Snoop Doggy Dogg and Dr Dre image: © Mark Peterson/CORBIS

Produced by Dr Dre, Gin & Juice is a G-Funk classic from Snoop Doggy Dogg’s debut album Doggystyle. We’re going to show you how to recreate its squealing lead line using LinPlug’s Predator, a demo of which can be downloaded here.

Step 1: Start by loading up the mighty Predator and clicking the Preset display in the channel to bring up the patch management menu. Select Default Preset, which will initialise the synth and enable us to create a sound from scratch. It opens up a sine tone patch, which is already quite close to the sound we're after.

How to make a Dr Dre Gin & Juice-style lead sound
Adding portamento

Step 2: The defining characteristic of the Gin & Juice lead line is the silky portamento that causes the synth to slide between notes. To get this effect in Predator, first click the Play Mode display (currently saying Poly) and set it to Legato.

How to make a Dr Dre Gin & Juice-style lead sound
Portamento speed

Step 3: Now, click the Port display (which is currently set to Off) and set it to Const Time. The knob to the left sets the portamento speed, which should be set somewhere between 40 and 50. Play a few trills in octave 5 or 6 to hear how it sounds.

How to make a Dr Dre Gin & Juice-style lead sound
Changing the waveform

Step 4: The sound we've got is halfway there now, but the timbre isn't quite right. The sine waveform that oscillator 1 is currently emitting is a little smooth for that Gin & Juice sound, so let's change it to SQR 4 using the Waveform knob.

How to make a Dr Dre Gin & Juice-style lead sound
The second oscillator

Step 5: Now we've got a much fuller sound, more akin to the good Dr's. We can enhance it further by activating the second oscillator, which should be set to Saw 2. This adds a little extra bite – use the second oscillator's Level control to tailor it to your requirements.

How to make a Dr Dre Gin & Juice-style lead sound
Playing the part

Step 6: To get that typical G-Funk playing style, hold down one note and quickly play another repeatedly. If you find that the slide between each note is too long or too short, adjust the portamento time. There you have it: a synth lead that's laid back, with its mind on its money and its money on its mind.

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