PHILLY SOUND, PHILADELPHIA
Inside an old, stone church in South Philadelphia, Philly Sound Studios caters to local and international musicians. Studio partner and house producer Drew Raison, who also owns and operates the city’s Modern Media Academy and South Philly School of Music & Arts, reports that recent sessions have included rapper Andy Mineo working on new material for his upcoming release; and Baby Blue Sound Collective completing their second release, Home, Tonight, Forever (engineered by Rich King and mastered by Raison).
Also, “Members of many classic rock acts pulled together to create an amazing backing band for a remake of the classic ‘Brother Louie’ by Joey DiTullio. The song was mixed by Mariano Mattei and mastered by Paul Hammond. David Uosikkinen [The Hooters, In the Pocket], Kenny Aaronson [Bob Dylan, Joan Jett], Steve Butler [Smash Palace] and others provided a killer performance.”
In addition to production work, Philly Sound Studios has also hosted numerous live radio and broadcast events with acts such as Steve Aoki, Fall Out Boy, All Time Low, We the Kings, Kris Allen, Phillip Phillips and Ingrid Michaelson.
L-R: Studio partners Mike Lawson and Matt Teacher, Steven Tyler, singer/songwriter Katie Barbato, Sine Studios engineer Taylor Kogut.
Sine Studios, Philadelphia
Sine Studios has been owned and operated since 2006 by Matt Teacher and Mike Lawson—friends and business partners who have been making music together since middle school. Offering a Sony MXP-3036 console, Pro Tools 10 HDX, Reason 6, and a wide variety of modern and vintage mics and outboard equipment, as well as plug-ins, Sine serves music-production, filmmaking and audio book-production clients.
Recent projects at Sine have included sessions with Boyz II Men, a listening party for Steven Tyler’s new album, and mixing B-sides for Philly rock band mewithoutYou. “We also continue to mix—and sometimes remix—records from the Motown vault alongside Universal VP Harry Weinger and engineer Obie O’Brien,” Teacher says. “We just completed sound design and mixing for the new Bon Jovi documentary about Camden, New Jersey, as well.”
Work on the Bon Jovi film included altering and placing clips and samples from Bon Jovi’s new album into the film music bed, as well as field audio clean-up and final mixdown for sync-to-picture.
Another music-meets-film project that Teacher was excited about: “We, along with Obie O’Brien, transferred, cleaned up, and mastered all of Larry Kane’s original quarter-inch interview reels from the time he spent touring with The Beatles in ’64 and ’65. A majority of these previously unreleased interviews were used in Ron Howard’s recent documentary The Beatles: 8 Days a Week.”
But there’s nothing that Teacher is more fired up about than the studio’s recently launched label, The Giving Groove. “It puts a philanthropic twist on the traditional record label model,” Teacher says.
The plan for Giving Groove was borrowed from Teacher’s father and stepmom, Buz and Janet Teacher, who founded a cookbook-publishing company, Burgess Lea Press. “The Burgess Lea Press model was this: 50 percent of all after tax profits go directly to the author, the remaining 50 percent go to a non-profit, food-related charity.
“The Giving Groove will operate under the same model within the music industry: 50 percent of all after-tax profits go directly to the artist; the remaining 50 percent goes to a 501(c)3 non-profit, music-related charity that we work alongside the artist on selecting. Two of the initial charities that will be beneficiaries are MusiCares and Girls Rock Philly.”
The first three bands signed to The Giving Groove Label are The Dead Milkmen, Decontrol and Oolala. “We knew we wanted to do something that was artist-friendly and socially conscious,” Teacher says.
L-R: Graham Maybe (bass), Rob Sansone (Guitar), Benny Kohn (keys), Matt Cimini (artist), Kenny Aronoff (drums), Will Schillinger (producer), Pat Waltman (assistant).
PILOT RECORDING, HOUSATONIC, MASS.
Will Schillinger’s Pilot Recording has hosted many music-recording sessions in recent months: Matt Cimini completed a new album with a star-studded band, including Kenny Aronoff, Graham Maybe, Benny Kohn, Rob Sansone and Peter Stroud; Schillinger produced and engineered. Musician Robbie Lee was also in, mixing with producer/engineer Joe Blaney and assistant Adam Tracht.
And apart from his work with music artists, Schillinger also recently mixed a short film, the directorial debut of actress Karen Allen (Indiana Jones films, Scrooged). The project is an adaptation of an early Carson McCullers story, “A Tree. A Rock. A Cloud.,” which, set in 1947, is about a meeting between a young boy and an older man in a roadside café.
“We just finished mixing the film,” Schillinger says. “We recorded some ADR and some Foley, but primarily my gig was mixing the film, including dialog and music. Some of the music has been written by a local composer named Mark Kelso.
“When my studio was in New York, where it was for 15 years, we did a lot of films—I’d say one every couple of months,” Schillinger continues. “But now it’s a little more rare. We focus primarily on music, and we continue to design and build some of our own gear, including our line of mic preamps.”
L-R: Engineers Randy LeRoy and Charlie Pilzer, studio manager Mike Petillo, and engineer Don Godwin
Photo: Michael G. Stewart
Engineer and studio co-owner Charlie Pilzer at Airshow Mastering’s East Coast facility (Takoma Park, Md.) mastered the Smithsonian Folkways album Spiritual and Shout Songs from the Georgia Coast by the McIntosh County Shouters; this album was produced by Daniel E. Sheehy and Art Rosenbaum, and engineered by Pete Reiniger, who was assisted by Shane Baldwin. Randy LeRoy mastered Colin Hay’s Fierce Mercy, which had been mixed by Vance Powell and Gordon Hammond. And Don Godwin mixed The Priests’ Nothing Feels Natural, which was recorded by engineer Hugh McElroy and producer Kevin Erickson; the album was mastered by T.J. Lipple.
The Thoreau Piano Trio
BLINK MUSIC STUDIOS
At Blink Music Studios (Cambridge, Mass.), producer/pianist Paul Jacobs and engineer Tim Lukas captured audio and video of The Thoreau Piano Trio performing the third and fourth movements of Shostakovich’s Piano Trio in E Minor, Op. 67. Lukas also captured a contemporary instrumental project, “First Year,” for Greg Notaro, who self-produced.
Bob Ludwig and Adam Ayan
Just a few sessions from each of the always busy engineers at Gateway Mastering (Portland, Maine). Adam Ayan’s recent projects: Lady Antebellum’s single “You Look Good,” Shakira’s song “Chantaje” and Reba McEntire’s Sing It Now. And from studio founder Bob Ludwig: Bruce Springsteen’s Chapter and Verse, Sting’s 57th and 8th, John Legend’s Darkness and Light, and Moana: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack.
Owner/engineer/producer Andrew Ha of Repercussions Studios (Philadelphia) upgraded to a new 900-sqare-foot space that he built from the ground up, to accommodate recording live bands. Repercussions caters to hip-hop artists, focusing on vocal production, mixing, and mastering. Ha recently completed recording, mixing, and mastering an EP for rap duo Main Topic.
Gillian Anderson visited Cybersound
Jordan Knight of New Kids on the Block was in Cybersound Recording Studios (Boston) with Danish producer Lars Jensen. Perry Geyer (owner of Cybersound) finished up his production for the latest single by J-Pop star Mai Other sessions at Cybersound include rapper Sammy Adams recording his latest single, a remix for Grammy nominees Flume, and X-Files star Gillian Anderson reading for her audio book The Sound of Seas.