volume matching/following

I am a vocalist (Beatle vocalist to be more precise) and I am constantly adjusting volume levels within each vocal track to get the harmonies to really blend as, sometimes, adjusting the volume of each track is not enough.

Has anyone written a plug-in which will take the volume of each sample in a master track and apply it to the respective sections of the other track. I would envision it to work sort of like Noise Removal. You would select a track (or selection) and say “this is my profile”. Then, you could select another track (or selection) and say “match the volume level” using the profile. Then, the plug-in would take each sample within the track (or selection) and make it match.

Anyone know what I am talking about? Am I explaining this correctly?

Try applying quite a lot of “compression” to the vocal tracks, then balance them manually. You should find that after compressing the dynamics (which evens out the volume in each track) it is a lot easier to balance the vocal harmonies.

Try Chris’s Dynamic Compressor http://theaudacitytopodcast.com/chriss-dynamic-compressor-plugin-for-audacity/
You can probably leave most of the settings at default and just increase the compression ratio setting a bit.
Installation instructions: http://wiki.audacityteam.org/wiki/Download_Nyquist_Plug-ins#Installing_Plug-ins

I don’t want to balance it. I want the soft parts to stay soft and the loud parts to stay loud. I just want to make sure that when vocal #1 is loud, that vocals 2 and 3 are just as loud. then, when vocal 1 gets soft, vocals 2 and 3 should get soft.

Yes, that’s what I meant by “balancing” them.

Hmmm, I have Chris’ compressor (compress & dynamics 1.2.6) but it doesn’t work as well as I want. It introduces some noise during the silent sections. Perhaps I am not using it properly. What are the best settings?

Still, this won’t fix those occasions where I make mistakes with my singing volume. Double-tracking and harmony are hard enough getting the timing correct and hitting the notes perfectly. Still, is there a plug-in out there which does what I am looking for … set one selection as the master and then apply that master’s volume settings, sample by sample, to the next selection?

Try setting the “Noise Floor” to a higher level.

Not that I know of, but even if there were I doubt that it would produce good results. If a voice on one of the tracks was a fraction behind or ahead of the master track, then the start of each word would be “distorted” to match the volume of the master track, and that would sound really weird.

The plug-in would have to not only remember the volume of each sample within the master selection but the start and end times. Then, when applying this to another track, a warning would pop-up if the selection were not identical.

Suppose the plugin were called “Match”. So, in Audacity, you would select the master portion (or track) and then select the "Match"plugin. Within the plugin you would click the “Master” button. Then, you would have to hit [shift] while clicking on the tracks you want to match to the master. Finally, you would hit “Match” again while, this time, hitting the “Follow” button within the plugin. It doesn’t matter that you still have the master selected as nothing will change there.

I thought this rang a bell - There was some experimental work regarding “amplitude following” discussed here: https://forum.audacityteam.org/t/how-to-dynamically-mod-volume-of-one-track-to-match-another/11063/1