CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA – JULY 2009: The first of an ongoing series of seminars, presented by API dealer Eastern Acoustics and hosted at the Radio Broadcast Facilities of the South African Broadcasting Corporation in July, will mark the arrival of the first API 1608 console in Africa. Sound Sessions ’09 will feature renowned engineers Vance Powell and Fabrice Dupont conducting a two-day recording and mixing workshop in Cape Town on July 13 and 14 and in Johannesburg on July 16 and 17.
To celebrate the arrival of the API 1608 all discrete analog mixing console, API and Eastern Acoustics have also arranged special pricing on selected gear. One lucky participant in each city will also walk away with an R24 two-channel, four-band equalizer from API’s Arsenal Audio brand.
“I’ve always needed a good reason to bring an API 1608 to South Africa,” says Akbar “Aki” Khan of Eastern Acoustics. “It’s amazing to now have purchased one and actually have it under the African skies. I think it’s going to be a landmark.”
Khan and Sound Sessions ’09 co-organizer Matt Allison of Cape Town’s Ashton Audio have for some time been making a concerted effort to overcome South Africa’s years of isolation at the southernmost tip of the continent, Khan reports, visiting AES conventions, the Frankfurt Musikmesse and Tape Op magazine’s affiliated Potluck Conference to forge relationships with manufacturers and engineers. Allison, who is also an engineer, has also worked with both Powell and Dupont on various projects. The pair hopes to grow Sound Sessions into the premier annual pro audio event in South Africa, uniting the local audio community, while also attracting overseas visitors.
Vance Powell, who will be presenting the workshop on day one, won the 2008 Grammy for Best Engineered Album-Non Classical for his work with the Raconteurs. Powell is chief engineer at Nashville’s Blackbird Studio, which houses two API Legacy Plus and several 1608 consoles, and has also worked with Jars of Clay, Keb’ Mo’, Buddy Guy, and the White Stripes. His workshop will focus on the art of tracking a live band, from set-up to break down, in a real-time environment and will cover topics like mic techniques, the creative use of effects and processing, and much more.
“My workshop will present the American rock sensibility and recording techniques to the South African market,” comments Powell. “A band will set up on the stage in the broadcast studio, which has an elevated seating area and is where they typically do choral recording.” Rather than utilizing the facility’s control room, the recording equipment will be set up near the stage area: “The API 1608 will be the centerpiece,” says Powell.
Fabrice Dupont, on day two, will share tips and techniques from his Mixology workshop series, including the ergonomics of a mix room, trimming the fat (getting rid of gear you don’t use), mixing in the box versus outside the box, summing and gain staging, and patch bays. Dupont has worked with Bon Jovi, Jennifer Lopez, Toots & the Maytals, and Queen Latifah, among others.
Registration for Sound Sessions ’09 is available on a first come, first served basis and seating is limited. For further details please visit www.easternacoustics.co.za
ABOUT API Automated Processes, Inc. remains the leader in analog recording gear, with the Vision, Legacy Series and 1608 Recording Consoles, as well as the classic line of modular signal processing equipment.
PHOTO CAPTION Akbar “Aki” Khan of Eastern Acoustics (left) and Matt Allison of Ashton Audio install the new API 1608 console in time for the July 13-14 workshop, with Blackbird’s Vance Powell handling the first day of demonstrations.