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That was unbelievable! I was trying to figure out - were all those people playing together at the same time do you think or was that put together after? Everything exactly in tune and to the same beat. I could not believe it!



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Now what are you saying...


You are saying that the guys are wearing head phones to keep in sync with someone on another continent? Or they are wearing head phones to keep in sync with something pre recorded days before?


Could not be a satellite link. That would have too long of a delay.


Give boy!!! GIVE!!!



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All through the magic of SMPTE code!

All the cameras and sound equipment are electronically synchronize to 1/100 of a second.


They go to the first location and set up the cameras and sound equipment then they play a "click track" for the first musician to keep time with. Basically it's an electronic metronome. The first musician plays the song and the production team records it. They take it to the studio (which could be as simple as a bunch of equipment in the back of a van) and make a mix of the music and prepare it for the next guy.


They go to the second location and repeat the setup, playing back the mix tape that they made from the first guy for the second musician to listen to while he plays. They mix THAT down for the third musician to listen to while he plays. This process is repeated for each successive location/musician that they want to add to the production.


When they are finished they take all the tapes they made from each location and import them to computer for editing.


Now, this is he cool part... All the video is synchronized using the aforementioned click track so that all the musicians seem to be playing in time with each other. Those video clips are joined together in what's called a "multi-clip" so that, for all intents and purposes, they are one video that has several different channels.


Imagine watching TV where all the synchronized video clips were played at the same time on different TV channels. If you changed the channel you would be watching a different musician. If you flipped channels repeatedly during the song, it would look like the camera was instantly transported from one part of the world to another.


Final Cut Studio has the capability to do this kind of multi-clip editing. It only costs about $1,200 retail.


The editing and post production on this is pretty trivial. The shooting and location work are pretty involved but are not insurmountable tasks for a team of experienced videographers. It's the preproduction planning and logistics that are the killer!

You have to get all the musicians lined up, get their permission, and set up a time and place to do the shooting. Then you have to move all your equipment from one place to another as many times as it takes to shoot each segment with each musician.


Notice that they shot in several cities and in several countries! They would have had to fly their whole production team all over the world or they would have had to have two or more production teams working independently. No matter how you slice it, it would have taken hundreds of man-hours over at least a couple of weeks to pull this off. Mention nothing of the cost! Tens of thousands of dollars, at least!


Those guys were pros!

They really knew what they were doing. They made it look easy.

My explanation barely does justice!


Read about click tracks and SMPTE code at Wikipedia:


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YouTube uses Flash® to transmit video over the internet.

Check to be sure you have all the latest Flash® updates installed.


Just one quick question... Do you have iTunes installed on your computer? Even if you don't use it a lot.

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