Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Rock Happens!

Busy busy.

Wow, uh, ok, WAY too long since my last post. Here's what I've been up to.
I am continuing work with Pamela Goddard on what is turning out to be a wonderful follow up to her first CD "As Time Draws Near". Joining her are the sweet voices of Glass Of Water, fiddle and guitar from Kitchen Chair and other vocals from Jim Blake and even a cut with Diamonds In The Rough.

In contrast, the recent theme at Wilburland has been ROCK GUITARS! The Rochester band Hadlock has brought me tracks recorded in LA by Bob Kulick (know for his with with Kiss, etc) to finish recording and mix. Singer/guiratist Kris Hadlock has come down a a few sessions to record better lead vocal performances. Guitarist Richie Roccisano is replacing all the guitar leads in his home studio in Interkaken and then I get to mix it all! Yee Ha!

Richie's brother Michael has a cool heavy band called Seventh Son who recorded with Richie and brought the tracks for me to mix. The song Gone Forever came out great and can currently be heard on their myspace site (and mine) and on Sirrius Radio. I'll me mixing a few more for them soon.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Recording Mignarda

Yesterday at Wilburland I had the supreme pleasure of spending the day with Ron Andrico and Donna Stewart of the duo Mignarda. They are wonderful folks and fine musicians, and we recorded a song with lute and voice. For those of you who don't know what a lute is, it is a guitarish looking stringed instrument with a deep round back and a sharply angled headstock. It is often associated with music from the early renaissance to late baroque periods. These folks have got an amazing thing going on. Ron plays with great dynamics and finesse and Donna's voice sounds, well, perfect!

We recorded the lute and voice together in one room hoping to record not only a natural sound but also to capture the natural dynamics of 2 people playing together, the connection that happens with two people in the same space. The challenge of course was to get the right balance of blend and separation between the two. I had Ron and Donna sit facing each other about 15 feet apart so they could see each other, but also so that the mics were facing away from the undesired sound, ie lute mics facing the lute and 180 degrees away from the voice. Of course in a reverberant space like Wilburland, which I made even more live by rolling up the rugs, there is both lute and voice reverberating in the room and a bit of this leaked into each mic helping to blend the 2 sounds on the recording. I initially had a tad more of Donna's voice in the lute mics than I wanted so I created a non reflecting wall behind Ron to stop her voice from bouncing off the wall behind and into the lute mic. Perfect!

For the lute I chose 2 old Neumann KM86 mics in a stereo configuration about 5 feet away from the instrument, and I miked Donna with a Klaus Heyne modified Neumann U87 about 18" away and slightly above her. All the mics went through Pendulum Audio MDP-1 tube mic preamps which I chose for their balance of articulation and richness. The resultant recording was just what we hoped for. I can't wait for you to hear it!