Tag Archives: Music Production

Canadore College Launches New Recording Program

Canadore College is using a new SSL Origin analog in-line mixing console to teach students.
Canadore College is using a new SSL Origin analog in-line mixing console to teach students.

North Bay, ON, Canada (June 16, 2021)—Canadore College, an applied arts and technology school 180 north of Toronto, is using a new SSL Origin analog in-line mixing console to teach students the similarities and differences between music production hardware and software.

“A lot of our students are used to using the computer and have never worked on a console; they’re not familiar with what a console is capable of,” says Ben Leggett, professor and coordinator on the new two-year Recording Engineering – Music Production program at Canadore College. Leggett is a Juno Award-nominated producer, engineer and mixer working in music production and film post production, and also has his own recording studio in North Bay.

“I wanted to get the Origin because of the EQ on each channel, and how you can shape the sound with the four bands, just like you can in the computer,” he says. “So we’re able to show students how to apply EQ manually with a physical piece of equipment. Another big thing is getting students to understand how the routing works, and how it’s very much the same in a DAW and a console, and having that lightbulb go off.”

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For a generation of students that has only ever worked on a computer, the console also enables faculty members to highlight some of the differences between analog and digital audio processing. “Sonically, you can crank the console’s EQ knob all the way and it still sounds good, as opposed to digital, which sometimes doesn’t do the same thing,” says Leggett.

Plus, he says, “The sonic quality that the console will add when you push a signal into it is different. Depending on what you’re going for, you can push the signal louder into the SSL console and it will give you a different sound than pushing it into a computer program.”

The Origin was part of a complete studio package supplied by Studio Economik in Montreal, including an SSL Fusion processor. Leggett and other faculty members at the college installed, integrated and commissioned the new music production studio shortly before the program launched in September 2020. The new control room is housed in a former television broadcast studio on the campus that the college enlarged during summer 2020 to provide space for the recording engineering program.

Solid State Logic • www.solidstatelogic.com

Original Resource is ProSoundNetwork.com

The Record Co. Takes Different Approach to Boston Studio Scene

Boston-based recording services provider The Record Co. (TRC) opened a new facility in January encompassing four recording studios and 15 rehearsal rooms.
Boston-based recording services provider The Record Co. (TRC) opened a new facility in January encompassing four recording studios and 15 rehearsal rooms.

Boston, MA (June 16, 2021)—Boston-based recording services provider The Record Co. (TRC) opened a new facility in January encompassing four recording studios and 15 rehearsal rooms.

Founded in 2010 by Berklee College of Music graduate Matt McArthur, TRC is a 503(c) non-profit enterprise dedicated to offering an affordable and equitable music workspace and providing space and resources to the entire spectrum of the city’s music makers. The new 12,500-square-foot space in Boston’s Newmarket Industrial District is expected to host upwards of 1,000 sessions and rehearsals per month, running 16 hours a day. The various studios and rehearsal rooms are outfitted with Focusrite preamplifiers and interfaces as well as Novation MIDI controllers.

McArthur says the concept of TRC came to him a decade earlier as he was looking for a business model that would allow the greatest number of users to access a highly flexible facility that could accommodate music producers of any genre and virtually any skill level. “It needed to be a shared resource that no one really owns, a community resource,” he says. “We would need space, gear, a good attitude, and an open mind about how the space is used and who uses it. A non-profit was the way to go.”

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Focusrite solutions in use at TRC include the Red 16Line 64-In / 64-Out Thunderbolt 3 and Pro Tools | HD-compatible audio interface; the ISA 428 MkII and ISA 828 MkII devices; the RedNet A16R 16-channel analogue I/O interface; and a number of interfaces from the Scarlett Range, deployed in some of the 15 rehearsal studios in the new facility.

McArthur also realized that the nature of how recording studios are utilized now had changed significantly in recent years, with the large battleship consoles of yore giving way to a plethora of software applications and digital control surfaces. “Music makers today all have their own ways of working, their own preferred software and plug-ins,” he says. “That makes RedNet and the other Focusrite technology we selected the best fit for a facility like TRC this because of its expansive interfacing options and compatibility with almost any DAW.”

In partnership with The Boston Foundation and more than 500 donors, TRC has distributed more than 750 low-barrier COVID-relief grants to local musicians, producers and engineers experiencing lost income as a result of gig cancellations due to COVID-19. To date, it has distributed more than 750 grants totaling more than $160,000

Focusrite Pro • http://pro.focusrite.com

Original Resource is ProSoundNetwork.com

Have Genelecs, Will Travel

Grammy-winning mastering engineer Gavin Lurssen
Grammy-winning mastering engineer Gavin Lurssen

Natick, MA (June 9, 2021)—Grammy-winning mastering engineer Gavin Lurssen has made Genelec’s 8341A monitors a centerpiece of his portable reference setup, which he uses to do much of his preliminary work.

Lurssen, whose credits include Queens of the Stone Age, Ben Harper and Robert Plant & Alison Krauss, notes, “I started in the early ‘90s working for the late Doug Sax at The Mastering Lab, and recording engineer George Massenburg was a regular client of Doug’s for lots of his projects; through him, I was first exposed to their 1031A and 1030A monitors. I was particularly taken with the 1030As after hearing them in a mix room at what was then Ocean Way Studios in Hollywood, so Doug surprised me with my own pair, which I still own.”

In fact, says Lurssen, “[A]fter all these miles, I just had them re-coned and the amps rec-capped, but kept the original bulletproof tweeters. Like most mastering engineers, I own multiple sets of monitors, but the Genelec 1030As have been an important reference for me over the years, especially when it comes to a mobile environment.”

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Fast-forward to a few years ago, before the pandemic: “I enjoyed going to these weekly lunches and meetups in Burbank with professionals in the audio industry; it’s a great way to see friends and colleagues and to stay on top of the latest tools and trends as well. I usually interact with the manufacturer reps that are there, and so it’s no surprise that I gravitated toward the new technology from Genelec! So that began my journey with the 8341A Smart Active Monitor,” he says.

He notes, “There are various ways in which a near-field monitor can be useful to a mastering engineer, and one of the most useful things is to be able to go mobile, while still being able to listen to and evaluate mixes and give feedback to clients with confidence, no matter where I am set up. Accuracy is the name of the game. The Genelec 8341As provide me with very, very accurate playback, even if I’m in a compromised environment.

“When you have something like 8341s, if you put them in the road case and take some computer gear with you, you can actually set up a pretty accurate listening environment. You can travel around and evaluate things that way—so if I’m traveling, I can take them with me.”

Genelec • www.genelec.com

Original Resource is ProSoundNetwork.com

A Renaissance for Rudy Van Gelder’s Studio

Legendary albums like John Coltrane’s 'A Love Supreme,' Lee Morgan’s 'The Sidewinder' and Horace Silver’s 'Song for My Father.'
Legendary albums like John Coltrane’s ‘A Love Supreme,’ Lee Morgan’s ‘The Sidewinder’ and Horace Silver’s ‘Song for My Father.’

Englewood Cliffs, NJ (June 7, 2021)—Van Gelder Studio—the legendary facility of renowned recording and mastering engineer Rudy Van Gelder—is starting a new lease on life following a recent renovation. The Englewood Cliffs, NJ facility was once described by DownBeat magazine as “a chapel-like space with a 39-foot-high ceiling made of cedar with arches of laminated Douglas fir, which created a natural reverb.”

“All the rooms where important records were made—Columbia’s 30th Street, Media Sound, RCA, A&R—are all gone,” says Perry Margouleff. A studio owner as well as a producer, engineer, songwriter, guitar collector and classic car restorer, Margouleff has been helping owner and engineer Maureen Sickler revamp the venerated facility.

The building was designed by architect David Henken—a Frank Lloyd Wright acolyte—and Van Gelder, opening in 1959 with a single, large live room. (Previously, Van Gelder worked out of his parents’ house, which was custom-built to accommodate his record projects.) In the 1970s, Van Gelder added four iso rooms to better suit the sonic signature of Creed Taylor’s CTI label, which he worked for often.

The Van Gelder Studio under construction in 1959.
The Van Gelder Studio under construction in 1959. Rudy Van Gelder

With the revitalization of the studio, a new generation of artists has an opportunity to record in the space that birthed such milestones of modern jazz as John Coltrane’s A Love Supreme, Lee Morgan’s The Sidewinder and Horace Silver’s Song for My Father. “Jazz is really having a renaissance, and I think there’s a huge community of young people for whom the popular music that people manufacture is not appealing,” says Margouleff.

Sickler met Van Gelder in the early 1980s, when her musician and producer husband Don was working often at the studio. She became Van Gelder’s engineering assistant, working with him for over three decades, and inherited the building when he passed away in 2016, age 91. In recognition of his lifetime achievements, Van Gelder was honored by the National Endowment for the Arts (in 2009), the Recording Academy (2012) and the Audio Engineering Society (2013).

“Rudy always was on the side of the artist,” Sickler says, and was happy to go the extra mile even when record labels had limited budgets. “Many times, we mixed with an artist present but billed the session as if he wasn’t there. And many times, Rudy spent hours fixing, editing and refining tracks that he knew he wouldn’t be paid for, but knew needed to be done for artistic reasons.”

On one of her first sessions, she recalls, she complained about the volume from the four studio monitors. Van Gelder suggested she go and listen in the live room. “It was unbelievable out there, the volume; not like music but just noise. In the control room, it was controlled and beautiful. I learned an important lesson.”

Van Gelder was a pioneering adopter of technologies such as the Fairchild compressor, EMT plate reverb and Neumann microphones. Margouleff has brought the studio’s current complement of equipment, including vintage U 47 and KM 54 mics and a Neve 8024 desk, back to full working order. The 24-input inline 8024, launched in 1972, offers limited bussing but has a direct output from every channel.

“The desk is working perfectly and sounds really great. It’s just spectacular to put a mic up in that room and listen to it. The studio has the magic combination: the right desk, the right acoustics and a good complement of microphones,” says Margouleff.

Van Gelder fully embraced digital audio technology in his later years, recording to RADAR. To better match today’s client expectations, says Margouleff, “I installed a new Pro Tools rig with an Apogee Symphony Mk II [converter]. And I want to get a 24-track analog tape machine back in there.”

Margouleff, who worked with Weezer on its new Van Weezer, recorded the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra’s woodwinds, strings and brass for the album at Van Gelder’s studio last year. And in November 2020, the Sicklers, with producer Phil Coady and talent agent Sam Kaufman, launched Live from Van Gelder Studio. The live streaming series has presented jazz luminaries such as Ron Carter and Joey DeFrancesco.

Margouleff has also been helping the Sicklers to add the studio to the National Register of Historic Places. “What happened between those four walls was pivotal for the jazz community and Black America,” he says.

Original Resource is ProSoundNetwork.com

New Detroit Studio Launches

Mike (left) and Robin Kinnie of Audio Engineers of Detroit.
Mike (left) and Robin Kinnie of Audio Engineers of Detroit.

Detroit, MI (June 2, 2021)—Audio Engineers of Detroit has opened a new recording studio offering commercial voiceover, podcast, music recording, stereo, surround and immersive mixing, audio restoration, location sound and audio-visual services, with a 32 channel Neve Genesys Black console as its centerpiece.

“Some years ago, I had the pleasure of mixing on a vintage Neve console and fell in love with the sound,” says Mike Kinnie, founder and vice president of Audio Engineers of Detroit. “We wanted that Neve sound for the new studio and we also wanted a console that had DAW control, so it made sense to us, after researching different consoles, to choose the AMS Neve Genesys Black console.

“It does make life easier, and it makes a difference knowing that you have options in terms of the way you want to work — traditional or in the box. Most of our clients prefer ‘in the box’, but it is great that we can give them a choice. Having this console will also help our students develop their engineering skills — I know it has already helped develop mine.”

Kinnie, who began his career in live sound before moving into studio recording, runs Audio Engineers of Detroit with his wife and company president, Robin Kinnie. The company also offers an education program that teaches students the skills and techniques needed to follow a career in professional audio.

Robin Kinnie regularly speaks on amplifying diverse voices and serves as the Detroit Chapter head of Soundgirls.org. Motor City Woman Studios, of which Robin is also President, aims to amplify the voices of women and tackle themes of diversity and inclusion.

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The couple opened their first studio in 2016 after realizing the need for a quality internet broadcasting voiceover facility that was both affordable and accessible. “The studio started as a digital radio station and has now expanded to producing podcasts, audiobooks and voiceovers,” Robin explains. “We also offer digital courses, workshops and partner with the community.”

Audio Engineers of Detroit is a separate venture that has taken six years to bring to fruition. Choosing equipment for the new studio required careful thought because it had to fulfil two functions – commercial and educational. The Kinnies were guided by Dave Malekpour of Pro Audio Design, who advised them throughout the project.

“Working with Dave and his team has been a pleasure,” Mike says. “They have achieved and exceeded our goals by helping us to purchasing the right equipment for our needs. I first came across Dave in 2003 when I read an article, he wrote on how to set up a recording studio. We didn’t actually meet until 2018 and it was only when we began putting this studio together that I ran across that article and realized the Dave that I was working with was the same man who wrote the article that was so inspirational to me.”

AMS Neve • www.ams-neve.com

Original Resource is ProSoundNetwork.com

Gary Numan Returns with Intruder

Intruder, Gary Numan’s 18th solo album and his fifth with producer Ade Fenton, was produced, mixed and mastered using PMC monitors.
PMC twotwo.8 monitors have been part of Ade Fenton’s studio set up since early 2013.

Los Angeles, CA (May 26, 2021)—Intruder, the 18th solo album by Gary Numan and his fifth with producer Ade Fenton, was produced, mixed and mastered using PMC monitors.

Numan’s new album is his third to be produced using PMC twotwo.8 monitors, which have been part of Ade Fenton’s studio set up since early 2013. Fenton attributes the monitors as having played a big part in the sound of the past three albums.

At the time of mixing the new album, the world was in lockdown, forcing Fenton and Numan to work remotely, as Gary Numan lives and works in L.A. and Fenton’s studio is in the southwest of the U.K. The resulting mixes were taken to Metropolis Mastering for the final touches before release. Metropolis, located in Chiswick, London, is one of the world’s best-known mastering facilities and features PMC BB5 XBD-A speakers and extensive PMC/Bryston amplification. At the controls was three-time winner of the Music Producers Guild Mastering Engineer of the Year award, Matt Colton.

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Commenting on the mastering process, Fenton says, “To hear the tracks we produced on the PMC twotwo.8s played back through the huge BB5 XBD system was a revelation, but a very pleasant one. While the bass performance of the two 15-inch drivers is clearly greater, the clarity and detail the system presents leaves nothing masked and proves just what a fantastic speaker the twotwo.8 is to produce on. I was blown away by what I heard at Metropolis and am really pleased with the final product and what Gary and I have created with Intruder.”

PMC • www.pmc-speakers.com

Original Resource is ProSoundNetwork.com

Creation X Recording Opens Doors Despite Pandemic

Inside Creation X Recording
Inside Creation X Recording

Wokingham, UK (May 26, 2021)—Nikki McGuinness had been planning for a while to build a new hybrid studio to house her music production business, Creation X Recording. Unfortunately, the construction project kicked off in March, 2020—just in time for the first UK COVID-19 lockdown. Undeterred, she forged ahead despite the pandemic and a literal fall along the way.

“As a recording artist turned producer / engineer, I know only too well how important the feel and position of a studio is.  Acoustics are a given, but you also need to be in a location that both sparks and conceives ideas – and we think our family farm does just that,” said McGuinness.

Outside Creation X Recording

The new room-within-a room studio, based in the grounds of 100-acre Birchin Inhams Farm in Wokingham, took 12 months to construct. McGuinness learnt what materials to purchase and built the whole thing, including all the internal acoustic treatment, with the support and expertise of her friends and contacts. Halfway through the project, however, she fell off a ladder while putting the bass traps in—the result was a 10-day stay in hospital and three months’ recuperation at home to let her broken leg and fractured foot heal.

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The 21 x 14-foot space is now up and running, offering flexibility for musicians in part through its VDC Trading custom-manufactured cables VDC built D25 multis made with Van Damme Blue 8 Pair, as well as both speaker and microphone cables of various length.

VDC created custom cabling for the facility based around its Van Damme Blue 8 Pair cables.
VDC created custom cabling for the facility based around its Van Damme Blue 8 Pair cables.

The various cables—Van Damme Blue Series 2 Pair, Blue Series 2×2.5mm and Purple and Black Quad—were chosen for their performance and toughness, and then hand-assembled at VDC using Black and Gold Neutrik connectors. All of the cables were custom-labelled to aid day-to-day use. “Once I had spoken to the team, I trusted them and it was obvious that I had to have Van Damme cables in my studio,” said McGuinness. “I am thrilled with the sound– it has a sonic quality to it and I know the cabling will last well into the future.”

“We believe that great things can be created here,” she added. “Building it was a labour of love and passion – and a lot of pain!  I did a massive amount of research into the best leads on the market and was subsequently introduced to VDC by a well-known pro-audio engineer.

VDC Trading • www.vdctrading.com

Original Resource is ProSoundNetwork.com

United Archiving Launches Video Series

United Archiving, a division of United Recording in Hollywood, has launched a video series
United Archiving, a division of United Recording in Hollywood, has launched a video series

Hollywood, CA (May 26, 2021)—United Archiving, a division of United Recording in Hollywood, has launched a video series on the preservation, management and income-generating potential of valuable audio assets.

With 35 years in the industry as a Grammy-nominated recording engineer and mixer, chief engineer Bill Smith is proficient in caring for, reviving, reconditioning and restoring audio assets, as well as computer-based data tape systems. In the introductory 3-minute episode, he explains, “Archiving is extremely important for many reasons. First off, you are preserving your music and recorded history and can be confident that you will never lose your assets due to degradation or aging.

“You can also take those assets and repurpose them into modern day usage for Dolby Atmos mixes, 5.1 mixes and stereo remixes with high-resolution delivery capability. Audio assets can additionally be utilized for sync licensing opportunities for film, television and commercial usage. Proper archiving opens up numerous possibilities for a wide array of potential income streams.”

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Upcoming episodes in the United Archiving video series focus on the archiving process, technology, gear, analog machines, digital machines, noise reduction, Pro Tools, computers, digital convertors, synchronization, monitoring and tape baking.

Smith’s experience in archiving individual tape catalogs for such artists as Natalie Cole, preserving and organizing extensive record label libraries, as well as his depth of knowledge and hands-on approach are key to United Archiving’s reputation.

“We’ve been working here at United on archival projects for some of the most well-known names and artists in the music industry,” Smith adds. “However, we don’t only cater to major artists and record labels. Our facility is open to anyone who needs transfer or archival work done with the highest quality available, exceptional service and professionalism we are known for.”

United Archiving • www.unitedarchiving.com

Original Resource is ProSoundNetwork.com