Recording - September 2015 - 4

PUBLISHER: Thomas Hawley
ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER: Brent Heintz

EDITORIAL

EDITOR: Mike Metlay
SPECIAL PROJECTS EDITOR: Lorenz Rychner
TECHNICAL CONSULTANT: Paul Vnuk Jr.
EDITOR AT LARGE: Beto Hale
COPY EDITOR: Diana Smethurst
MÚSICO PRO EDITOR: Fernando Curiel

Where it all comes together
Think for a moment about how the recording engineer is presented to the public-
in promotional photos, articles for the layman, advertisements. Every once in a while
there will be a picture of someone with a boom mic and a field recorder capturing
a football game or exploding building; a bit more often, there will be a shot of someone earnestly adjusting a microphone over a drum kit. But the first image that comes
to mind will always be of a man or woman sitting at a mixer.
Even today, with home studios, audio interfaces, control surfaces, and laptops in
backpacks, there is something powerful about the idea of a mixing console. It's the
centerpiece of the professional room, the huge and immovable object around which
everything else-microphones, monitors, amplifiers, racks of gear-revolves. It's a
symbol of what makes a recording engineer. We track... and we mix.
On another level, the mix is the centerpiece of the music creation process, much
as the mixing desk is the centerpiece of the studio. The mix is where every musical
idea, every piece of the puzzle, is carefully fitted together.
Maybe we're talking about four guys in a garage-guitars, bass, drums, vocals-
giving it all they've got in a single take. Maybe we're talking about a cue for a movie
soundtrack, with over 200 tracks of orchestral instruments, singers, percussion, guitars, synthesizers, loops, sound effects, coming and going, interacting with one another, constantly changing. In the intro and first verse, the rhythm guitar sounds just so;
when we hit the chorus, we want it to sound different. Then back to the original tone
for the second verse, changed again for the chorus, something entirely different for
the bridge. The guitarist had a fantastic take with two flubbed notes that she had to
overdub; make them match or the take's not believable. The lead vocal is a pastiche
of five takes comped together that has to work seamlessly. And so on, and so on.
A jigsaw puzzle isn't a perfect analogy for the mixing process... unless, of course,
you're in the habit of cutting, shaving, and gluing puzzle pieces that don't fit until they
do. The parts must all fit together, but they often need to be manipulated before they'll
fit-a little EQ sculpting here, a little automation there. But as we form each piece, we
can never get too far away from our vision of what the whole puzzle is supposed to
look like when it's assembled. The goal is a song that just works, that seems effortless.
The mixing process should lead to a song that doesn't call attention to how it was
mixed; your audience should be thinking about the song, not the fader moves.
Making the perfect mix can be difficult, and some source material can make it
nearly impossible. In this issue, two successful engineers take a hard look at the mixing process, at working methods and technologies that make it easier, faster, and
most importantly, more musical. Greg Ogan, mixer to everyone from Kelly Clarkson
to Ne-Yo, teaches us about problems that can knock us down when we mix, and how
to get back up again and go the distance. Award-winning engineer Marc Urselli discusses summing mixers-what they are, why they're useful, and what he looks for
(and listens for) in them.
We also review a wide variety of gear that's important to the mixing process,
including headphones by Audio-Technica, monitors by PMC, a powerful interface
from MOTU that doubles as a highly portable digital mixer, Soundcraft's newest console, and a variety of mix-friendly software from Toontrack and Final Mix. (There are
also reviews of mics from stalwart Royer and newcomer Roswell, soundware from
Spectrasonics and Spitfire, and a rack processor from dbx... it can't all be about the
mix, can it?)
There's lots more to read this time around; I hope you'll get a kick out of learning
new ways to put the pieces together and make them really sell the song. Your audience doesn't need to know how much work you did to make it seem like you didn't
do any work at all.
Enjoy the issue!

CONTRIBUTORS
Greg Ogan, Paul Vnuk Jr.,
Marc Urselli, Jon Hillman,
Paul J. Stamler, Allen Goodman,
Marty Peters, Frank Marra
SOCIAL MEDIA
Brent Heintz, Paul Vnuk Jr.
ART & PRODUCTION

ART DIRECTOR: Scott Simmonds
PRODUCTION MANAGER: Colin Courtney
WEB GOALIE: Colin Courtney

PLAYBACK PLATINUM SERIES
Lorenz Rychner

EDITOR/PRODUCER:

CIRCULATION
Tiffany Sepe

CIRCULATION MANAGER:

ADVERTISING SALES AND MARKETING
DIRECTOR: Brent Heintz
CLASSIFIEDS MANAGER: Colin Courtney
ADMINISTRATION
Thomas Hawley

ACCOUNTS RECEIVABLE:

EXECUTIVE OFFICERS

PRESIDENT: Thomas Hawley
VICE PRESIDENT: Brent Heintz

SUBSCRIPTIONS/ADDRESS CHANGES:
1-954-653-3927
ADVERTISING/CLASSIFIEDS/MAIN OFFICE:
(303) 516-9118
RECORDING MAGAZINE
(ISSN 1078-8352; USPS 002-298) is published
monthly, 12 times per year, by Music Maker
Publications, Inc., 5408 Idylwild Trail, Boulder,
CO 80301-3523.
Tel: (303) 516-9118 Fax: (303) 516-9119
email: info@recordingmag.com
Los Angeles Editorial Office:
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RECORDING, Subscriber Services, P.O. Box 3000, Denville, NJ
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trade by Hal Leonard Corporation. All material is subject to
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© Copyright 2015 Music Maker
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PRINTED IN THE U.S.A.
4

RECORDING September 2015



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Recording - September 2015

Contents
Recording - September 2015 - Intro
Recording - September 2015 - Cover1
Recording - September 2015 - Cover2
Recording - September 2015 - 1
Recording - September 2015 - 2
Recording - September 2015 - 3
Recording - September 2015 - 4
Recording - September 2015 - 5
Recording - September 2015 - Contents
Recording - September 2015 - 7
Recording - September 2015 - 8
Recording - September 2015 - 9
Recording - September 2015 - 10
Recording - September 2015 - 11
Recording - September 2015 - 12
Recording - September 2015 - 13
Recording - September 2015 - 14
Recording - September 2015 - 15
Recording - September 2015 - 16
Recording - September 2015 - 17
Recording - September 2015 - 18
Recording - September 2015 - 19
Recording - September 2015 - 20
Recording - September 2015 - 21
Recording - September 2015 - 22
Recording - September 2015 - 23
Recording - September 2015 - 24
Recording - September 2015 - 25
Recording - September 2015 - 26
Recording - September 2015 - 27
Recording - September 2015 - 28
Recording - September 2015 - 29
Recording - September 2015 - 30
Recording - September 2015 - 31
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Recording - September 2015 - 33
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Recording - September 2015 - Cover3
Recording - September 2015 - Cover4
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