NOT QUITE RIGHT
In the article “It's Your Life, Dammit!” in the May 2007 issue, there is a factual error: The “Super Beatle” amplifier was made by Vox, not Univox. These were different companies. I believe there was a “Super Beatle” made by the English Vox company, but the only ones I ever saw in the U.S. were the solid-state versions made by the Thomas Organ company under a Vox license. They were a loud, but terrible-sounding amplifier that sounded nothing like the English, mostly Class-A, tube-type Vox amps.
The Thomas Organ Vox amps had some contributions (I think mostly speakers) from Gene Cerwinski, of Cerwin-Vega fame. I used to visit him in the ‘60s in his North Hollywood facility. He was quite a guy when it came to speaker designs. This was the first company I knew of that made a musical instrument speaker that would actually reproduce a 40Hz note (low E) without doubling the pitch.
The Tracking Station
AN ENGINEERING MOTTO
The new Paul McCartney disc sounds horrible. The recording speaks so poorly to the craft of audio engineering that when asked what I do for a living, I will be tempted to say that I hang drywall.
McCartney will sell millions of units because of who he is, and because the songs he writes are accessible and well crafted. Starbucks, in what I consider a brilliant new vehicle for music, has the opportunity to help heal an industry plagued with anger, fear and confusion on both the corporate and consumer level. What better opportunity does the audio engineering community have to shine, what better opportunity to lead and to teach? If only audio engineers had a Hippocratic Oath pledging to “Do no harm.”
Independent Mastering, Nashville
SO YOU'RE PAYING ATTENTION
The caption for the picture of Caleb Followill on page 117 (“Recording Notes,” June 2007) indicates that he sang into a Shure SM57. While the picture there is of a Shure microphone, it is an SM7, not an SM57
TIME TO SAVE THE KIDS
It was with great interest that I read Paul Lehrman's “Insider Audio” article, “The Healing Power of Music” in the May 2007 issue. I have been an audio engineer since 1970. I was the chief engineer/VP of Sheffield Audio Video productions from 1975 to 2000. I have been nominated for a Grammy for Best Engineer and have recorded more than 150 major artists, mostly live broadcast. I taught audio engineering for 25 years, created the Sheffield Institute for the Recording Arts, wrote the majority of its curriculum and ushered it through the very difficult approval process of the Maryland Higher Education commission.
More importantly, for the past 18 years, I have served on the board of directors of an international organization that treats brain-injured children. As the vice chairman of The Institutes for the Achievement of Human Potential in Philadelphia, I learned a tremendous amount about hurt kids and their parents. I had the advantage of studying with some of the greatest minds in the field of child brain development and had the opportunity to help them with my understanding of audio and video technology.
Around 1990, I began to study sensory stimulation as applied to brain injury and helped the Institutes expand their mechanical auditory-stimulation program to include Berard auditory integration therapy. However, I was not satisfied with the fit between the office-based Berard program and the parent/home-based methods. That is when I decided to do some in-studio FFT analysis of the Berard Audiokinetron to determine whether or not the output signal could be contained in the 44.1/16-bit CD format. What I found was that a 96dB dynamic range and lack of saturation at the highest frequencies was an advantage that the CD had, which would make it an acceptable platform for a portable, home-based AIT program.
I created the Transient Electronic Auditory Stimulation (TEAS) program for the Institutes around 1993. The next year, I decided to bring the technology to parents who might not be able to participate in an Institutes program, in the form of the Electronic Auditory Stimulation Effect (EASE) CD. Since 1994, tens of thousands of parents, therapists, treatment centers and non-profit organizations have used EASE CDs to help autistic children and ADD, ADHD, Cerebral Palsy and Downs Syndrome-afflicted kids. You can see more about the EASE CDs at www.easecd.com.
I loved reading the quotes from Tom McGurk. I have fought for these principles for so many years — against such incredible odds — that to see a parent so well-versed and articulate express them with such clarity was a real joy. I would like to end this with an offer of a set of 11 free EASE CDs to Tom and his wife. Many parents use them for auditory tune-ups after AIT, and they could be extremely helpful to their son.
Vision Audio Inc.
We asked you, our readers, to tell us about your pre-production style. Here's a sample ofwhat you are doing out in the field; to listento the track, visitmixonline.com/TalkBack:
This cut was pre-produced and finished in a room that is 10×10, which includes the control area and the recording area. The original rhythm tracks and horns were recorded to a PC and transferred to ADATs. The bass and drums were triggered by a Korg Triton Pro 76 through a Roland BD sound module. Horns were courtesy of a Roland Sound Canvas PC card. Vocals and additional effects were through a Helicon vocal processor and BBE Aural enhancer. All tracks were through a Tascam 32/8 board onto linked Alesis ADATs (Blackface). Limiter/compressors by dbx. An Alesis unit provided the delay and reverb. The project was mastered on a Sony PCM-R300 DAT. Monitor speakers were JBLs, and the vocal microphone was an AKG C 460 B. The project was used as an album for a children's ministry in Atlanta.
Get more trade secrets on pre-production on page 32. — Eds.
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