Recording engineer Marc Fuller, owner of Edie Road Studios, who recently received a Grammy nomination for a track that he recorded for Kanye West’s multi-Platinum debut, College Dropout, is upgrading the equipment at his studio, which includes installing a TRUE Systems Precision 8 transformerless, 8-channel microphone preamplifier.
“It’s very transparent-sounding and very accurate,” says Fuller. “It’s an excellent piece of equipment.” Having used it on a drum tracking session, he’s eager to try it out on other instruments, he says. “I want to run bass through it and vocals. I’ll get to that. First, I’m taking it to a very large church to do a mobile recording of a very nice concert Steinway and a pipe organ. The Precision 8 is the only mic pre that I’m taking to do the recording.”
Situated in the foothills of the Adirondacks in upstate New York, Edie Road Studios—formerly known as Sweetfish Studios—was designed by the Walters-Storyk Design Group. The studio, previously owned by Rees Shad and originally home to the Sweetfish Records label, has produced records by a diverse client list that includes Mavis Staples and Mercury Rev.
The Grammy nod came about as the result of a longstanding relationship with the Boys Choir of Harlem, who performed on West’s album, Fuller explains. “They do a big outdoor concert every year nearby at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center, and Skidmore College puts them up. Years ago, by chance, they had to do a recording session quickly. I’m the only studio in the area that can house 26 kids. We worked really well together, and they just kept coming back.”
Back in 2002, Fuller continues, he got a phone call from West, who booked the studio to record the boys for his album project while they were in the area. “He came up with guide tracks in Pro Tools and flew them into my rig, then recorded choir parts on a bunch of different songs. A lot of the songs changed later, but he used everything we did in the studio on ‘Two Words.'”
On some projects, notes Fuller, “If you have a small role on an album, you can get left out, but he gave me a tremendous credit: got a credit and the studio got a credit. He hooked me up!” As a result, Fuller received a Grammy certificate and medallion for his contribution to a nominated Album of the Year.