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Rodney Jerkins Picks TELEFUNKEN for “American Idol”

Gifted Producer Chooses Matched Pair of new AR-51 Tube Mics

Pictured is “American Idol’s” Scotty McCreery with the new TELEFUNKEN AR-51 large diaphragm tube microphone.

Eight-time Grammy Award-winning producer Rodney “Darkchild” Jerkins has employed two AR-51 tube microphones from TELEFUNKEN Elektroakustic for his “American Idol” productions. Jerkins, who has worked in the past with Michael Jackson, Lady Gaga and Britney Spears, is one of this year’s top producers working alongside the contestants throughout the season.

“During my time on ‘Idol,’ I used the AR-51s,” stated Jerkins. “It helped being able to have one microphone to handle 20 different style of voices, with the ability of having 9 polar patterns at my disposal. I take these microphones with me when I travel to work with A-list artists around the world.” Celebrating his 14th year in the music industry, Jerkins is responsible, through his numerous hit

productions, for over 160 million in record sales worldwide.

“Rodney is working with the ‘Idol’ artists to develop their studio chops as well as their stage performances,” explained Jerkins’ recording supervisor Brandon Kadell, who worked closely with TELEFUNKEN artist liaison Jason Scheuner on the choice of mics. “TELEFUNKEN AR-51s have a variety of pickup patterns and their reliability throughout the season has been tremendous. We recently used this mic for Kelly Clarkson’s upcoming album, too.”

“American Idol” is one of the most popular TV shows in history. On Fridays, Jimmy Iovine, chairman of Interscope Geffen A&M Records, meets with competing contestants to go over the song possibilities and each one picks a song. Over the weekend, they track with top producers, including Rodney Jerkins, Jim Johnson, Ron Fair, Tricky, Rock Mafia, Don Was, Toby Gad, Dallas Austin, Harvey Mason, Jr., and Ryan Tedder.

“We’ve tried a number of top microphones with different vocalists,” continued Brandon Kadell. “But when we fired up the TELEFUNKEN it complemented each vocalist best overall. We have to work so quickly, so instead of setting up three or four mics to find the best texture, we just go with TELEFUNKEN and it takes care of all of them. And the quality of the sound cuts right through when we are mixing, too. Rodney has six rooms here at his Darkchild Studios and the AR-51 has the thumbs up from all of us mixers. We plan on using the TELEFUNKENs on every record we do.”

“The artists come in and record vocals for the full song version which will be on the week’s download album,” explained Chuck Reed, Interscope VP of Recording Operations and the show’s music production supervisor. “We also record stems to incorporate with the live band, which is a shorter version for on air. The full album version is mixed and then mastered on Tuesday morning at Bernie Grundman Mastering for download after each show.”

“American Idol” is created and executive produced by Simon Fuller, Founder, 19 Entertainment, a wholly owned subsidiary of CKX, Inc.; and executive-produced by Cecile Frot-Coutaz, CEO, FremantleMedia North America, Inc.; Ken Warwick, Executive Producer, FremantleMedia North America, Inc.; and Nigel Lythgoe, President, BigRed 2 Entertainment.

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