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October 2014


October 2014 Editor’s Note: Every Page an L.A. Story

Oct 1, 2014 9:00 AM, Mix, By Tom Kenny

It’s been 12 years since the AES hosted its annual U.S. convention in Los Angeles, so we decided a few months back to put together an All-L.A. Issue to celebrate the return. Our apologies to New York, Miami, Atlanta, Chicago, Seattle, Nashville and all the other big cities and small towns where great music is made and stellar audio is produced. But this month it’s all about the City of Angels, La-La Land, Tinseltown, the Entertainment Capital of the World….


On the Cover: EastWest Studios, Hollywood

Oct 1, 2014 9:00 AM, Mix, By Tom Kenny

When Doug Rogers purchased one of the world’s most storied recording facilities back in 2006, right in the heart of Hollywood, there was no doubt rampant speculation around L.A. about what it all meant. High-end and mid-level commercial facilities had been hit hard over the previous decade, many of them shuttering in the face of lower budgets and lower-cost competition. …


Jackson Browne: L.A.’s Favorite Son Talks About His New Album, Standing in the Breach, and How He Works in the Studio

Oct 1, 2014 9:00 AM, Mix, By Blair Jackson

ackson Browne wrote “The Birds of St. Marks,” the song that kicks off his superb new album, Standing in the Breach, when he was just 18, living in New York and penning wise-beyond-his-years songs that would be recorded by such diverse artists as Tom Rush, The Byrds and Nico—years before his self-titled Asylum Records debut made him a rising star in 1972, when “Doctor My Eyes” became a surprise Top 10 hit. …

When Sessions Reigned Supreme: The Players, Studios from L.A.’s Golden Age

Oct 1, 2014 9:00 AM, Mix, By Robyn Flans

The Record Plant in Los Angeles was the place to be on Sunday nights in 1973, when owner Gary Kellgren convinced drummer Jim Keltner to host a weekly jam session called the Jim Keltner Fan Club Hour—despite Keltner’s distaste for “jamming,” and for the moniker. …

Rickey Minor & Red Lotus Studios

Oct 1, 2014 9:00 AM, Mix, By Matt Hurwitz

Jazz saxophonist Dave Koz stands beside the console, listening to a mix in Rickey Minor’s new Red Lotus Studios on the historic Sunset Gower Studios lot in Hollywood. The pair, along with engineer Allen Sides, cut six songs in one day, two weeks prior, and five more the following Monday, for Koz’s new Christmas album. “My head is still spinning,” Koz admits. …

Classic Tracks: Los Angeles Edition

Oct 1, 2014 9:00 AM, Mix, By Barbara Schultz and Blair Jackson

It was clear from his very first single—“My Bologna,” a parody of The Knack’s “My Sharona”—that Weird Al Yankovic could deliver the goods. He’s built an incredibly lucrative career cleverly sending up pop songs of every style—who can forget “Another One Rides the Bus,” “Addicted to Spuds,” “Girls Just Want to Have Lunch,” “I Want a New Duck,” “I Love Rocky Road,” “The Saga Begins” (a Star Wars parody set to “American Pie”), or this epic Michael Jackson lampoon, “Eat It” (not to be confused with his later MJ masterpiece, “Fat”)….

Brian Wilson and Friends at Ocean Way Studios

Oct 1, 2014 9:00 AM, Mix, By Barbara Schultz // Photo: David Goggin/Mr. Bonzai

Between Brian Wilson and Ocean Way Studios, Hollywood, you’ve got a whole lot of history, and a lot of musical possibilities….

L.A.’s Unsung Studio Heroes

Oct 1, 2014 9:00 AM, Mix, By Barbara Schultz

Remember when engineers weren’t even credited on albums? Labels haven’t always acknowledged the essential role players on both sides of the glass. But at Mix, it’s what we do: focus on individuals and technologies behind the scenes. With this in mind, for our L.A. issue we talked to a few of the people even further behind the music, whose names definitely don’t end up in the liner notes (inasmuch as there are still liner notes). …

Sphere Studios Relocates to L.A.

Oct 1, 2014 9:00 AM, Mix, By Lori Kennedy

After 13 years in London, Sphere Studios recently made the journey across the pond, closing up shop in the UK with plans to reopen in Los Angeles in 2015. The studio is currently under construction, with NonZero Architecture heading the design….


The Hollywood Bowl: A Unique Blend of Natural Acoustics and Amplified Sound

Oct 1, 2014 9:00 AM, Mix, By Matt Hurwitz

The Hollywood Bowl, that iconic Los Angeles venue so named for the landscape it occupies, not the shell covering its stage, hosted its first classical music concerts in 1922. At the time of its opening, the venue’s natural acoustics were considered perfect as is. The trademark shell, with concentric staggered rings of reflective material, first appeared in 1928 to help boost the natural sound. Amplification arrived eight years later, with a system driven by 500-watt amplifiers from Bell Laboratories, according to The Los Angeles Times….

The Grammy Museum: Spend an Evening with a Legend

Oct 1, 2014 9:00 AM, Mix, By Barbara Schultz // Photos courtesy of the Grammy Museum

“An Evening With…” at the Grammy Museum is one of the best bargains (typically priced at $25), and one of the most coveted tickets in Los Angeles. Museum members get first crack at seats in the 200-capacity theater to observe interviews and performances of artists from Fall Out Boy to Black Sabbath to Lang Lang. These special concerts are key parts of the museum’s outreach programming, in its mission to educate the public about the history and impact of popular music….

The Whisky A Go-Go: 50 Years of Rock and More, and Still Counting

Oct 1, 2014 9:00 AM, Mix, By Matt Gallagher

The Whisky A Go-Go opened its doors on the emerging Sunset Strip in 1964 just as the ’60s and counterculture rebellion were taking flight and in the ensuing years hosted many of the era’s most groundbreaking artists, including The Doors, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, and Led Zeppelin. In November 2006 the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum honored the Whisky A Go-Go as an historic rock ’n’ roll landmark. …

The Wiltern Theatre: Landmark Art Deco Building Houses Premier Live Nation Venue

Oct 1, 2014 9:00 AM, Mix, By Matt Gallagher

The iconic Wiltern Theatre has stood at the corner of Wilshire Blvd. and Western Avenue in Los Angeles’ Koreatown district since 1931, when it opened as a vaudeville and movie theater with a large pipe organ, and also housing a 12-story office building. The Wiltern suffered neglect in 1960s and 1970s and was targeted for demolition in 1979, when the Los Angeles Conservancy worked to save the building as an important part of Los Angeles’ heritage, and convinced local land developers to purchase and restore the property. It reopened in May 1985….

McCabe’s Guitar Shop: An Intimate Space for Quieter Acoustic Shows

Oct 1, 2014 9:00 AM, Mix, By Matt Gallagher

McCabe’s Guitar Shop on Pico Blvd. in Santa Monica, located two blocks west of the Santa Monica Freeway’s Centinela Avenue off-ramp (coming from the eastbound direction), is first and foremost a musical instrument store that opened in 1958 and specializes in acoustic and folk music instruments, offering sales, rentals, repairs, private lessons and classes. Since 1969, McCabe’s has presented weekend concerts in a back room with an 8-foot-deep stage, a mixing station built into one wall, folding chairs, and walls that are adorned with stringed instruments….


Robair Report: Time and Space in L.A.

Oct 1, 2014 9:00 AM, Mix, By Gino Robair

“If you’re early, you’re on time. If you’re on time, you’re late.”…

Tech Talk: 18 Years in L.A.

Oct 1, 2014 9:00 AM, Mix, By Kevin Becka

I’ve lived in Cleveland, Phoenix, Washington, D.C., and now twice in Nashville, but the city I spent the biggest chunk of time in is Los Angeles. I lived there from 1976 to 1994, which in great part set me up for careers in audio recording, publishing and education. I got my love of music from my dad, who would sing around the house and was always playing records. He wasn’t the feely touchy type, and in my kid-head, I believed I could have a better connection with him if I was excellent at something musical. …


AES 2014 Technology Preview

Oct 1, 2014 9:00 AM, Mix, By the Mix Editors

The 137th AES convention in Los Angeles will bring new products, papers, workshops and more to the City of Angels. While many companies hold their releases tight to the chest until showtime, a handful of them are sharing their new releases with Mix readers beforehand….