Recording - February 2013 - 64

Recording DeVotchKa and the orchestra
In February of 2012 the Denver-based band DeVotchKa proved that it has a big enough following to fill the 2600 seats in Denver’s cavernous Boettcher Hall, home of the Colorado Symphony Orchestra. The band members are Nick Urata (vocals, guitars, Theremin, trumpet, piano), Jeanie Schroder (acoustic bass, sousaphone), Shawn King (drums, percussion, trumpet), Tom Hagerman (violin, viola, accordion, piano). This somewhat unusual instrumentation presents extra challenges that the band’s own sound crew is used to handling. On their website you can read how much this gig meant to the band members. I’m lifting this off devotchka.net: “DeVotchKa have been recording and performing for over a decade. We have been working towards this moment ever since the band began,” remembers Nick Urata, lead singer and frontman.” That’s a long time to prepare for such a gig, and the band’s own Tom Hagerman took it upon himself to write the orchestrations! With that much effort behind it, you want the gig to go right. Well, the CD came out in November of 2012 (Live with the Colorado Symphony, Cicero Recordings LTD).

Nick Urata, Lead Singer and Frontman
How do you feel the recording went? Nick Urata: We had a great team of engineers on performance night, they all had experience with the orchestra and the room. We had coverage over each section, woodwinds, brass, etc. and nicely placed room mics, to get the feel of the space and the audience. That really gave the recording some life and color. Did the band members have to make adjustments due to the orchestra? The biggest challenge was integrating the live drum kit; no matter how much plexiglass you put up, you can’t stop the bleed. To our drummer Shawn’s credit, he played as gingerly as possible, which for a drummer is the worst torture. Yes, the band’s fans sure are a lively bunch! We used just two mics, but not just any mics. It was a pair of digital mics, Neumann MZD 8000, and they live inside a “dummy head” we lovingly call Fritz. That head, the Neumann KU 100, has ear canals modeled after the human head, and with Fritz hanging above the audience, about halfway towards the back and facing the rear, we got plenty of audience ambience.

Mike Pappas, Recording Engineer
Mike, did you use your usual complement of mics? Mike Pappas: We worked together with the band’s sound crew, they brought their mics, and I miked the orchestra with ours. We also rented Countryman Isomax 2 mics, the cardioid –60 dB models, for the fiddles, and they were clipped to the bridges. Was it a problem to have so many analog mics while your main set is digital? Not at all, we had 48 channels of analog going to Grace preamps with A/D converters. Across the front of the orchestra I had 5 digital mics, the Neumann KM133D. I see that you did away with those extra tall mic stands… We bought a truss, hung it across the front of the stage, and hung the five mics from it; it cleans up the stage, while the mic locations are still what they were before, a left-center-right trio, and—because the stage at the Boettcher Hall is so extremely wide—a left and a right wide flanker. Did I see a shotgun pointed at a harp? Absolutely, and not just the shotgun but two mics clamped together for a mid-side pair, KMR 82D (mid), and KM D body with a KK120 capsule (side), so I can eliminate bleed from adjacent instruments if I need to, but go wide and full, too. [See the photo.—LzR] You captured the lively audience with just two mics?
64
RECORDING February 2013


http://www.devotchka.net

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Recording - February 2013

Recording - February 2013
Fade In.
Contents
Talkback.
Fast Forward.
The Production Of Clare Fischer’s CD ¡Ritmo!
Big Money Drums.
Recording Fundamentals. Chapter 14: Sweet Spot Conundrums—Part 1.
Sonodyne SM200Ak Studio Monitors.
AKG D12 VR Reference Kick Drum Microphone.
Shure KSM9HS.
Radial Engineering Firefly Tube DI.
Audio-Technica AT4047MP.
Zoom Q2HD Handy Video Recorder.
iOS Music Tools: Take Control!
Emotiva Pro airmotiv 4 and airmotiv 6 Powered Studio Monitors.
DPA Microphones Reference Standard Mics.
Sony Creative Software Sound Forge Pro Mac.
Lewitt DTP 640 REX Dual-Element Kick Drum Mic.
Readers’ Tapes.
Miking An Orchestra—Rock Band And Symphony.
Stereo From A Mono Mic.
Advertiser Index.
Fade Out.
Recording - February 2013 - Recording - February 2013
Recording - February 2013 - Cover2
Recording - February 2013 - 1
Recording - February 2013 - 2
Recording - February 2013 - 3
Recording - February 2013 - Fade In.
Recording - February 2013 - 5
Recording - February 2013 - Contents
Recording - February 2013 - 7
Recording - February 2013 - Talkback.
Recording - February 2013 - 9
Recording - February 2013 - Fast Forward.
Recording - February 2013 - 11
Recording - February 2013 - 12
Recording - February 2013 - 13
Recording - February 2013 - The Production Of Clare Fischer’s CD ¡Ritmo!
Recording - February 2013 - 15
Recording - February 2013 - 16
Recording - February 2013 - 17
Recording - February 2013 - 18
Recording - February 2013 - 19
Recording - February 2013 - Big Money Drums.
Recording - February 2013 - 21
Recording - February 2013 - 22
Recording - February 2013 - 23
Recording - February 2013 - 24
Recording - February 2013 - 25
Recording - February 2013 - Recording Fundamentals. Chapter 14: Sweet Spot Conundrums—Part 1.
Recording - February 2013 - 27
Recording - February 2013 - 28
Recording - February 2013 - 29
Recording - February 2013 - Sonodyne SM200Ak Studio Monitors.
Recording - February 2013 - 31
Recording - February 2013 - AKG D12 VR Reference Kick Drum Microphone.
Recording - February 2013 - 33
Recording - February 2013 - 34
Recording - February 2013 - 35
Recording - February 2013 - Shure KSM9HS.
Recording - February 2013 - 37
Recording - February 2013 - Radial Engineering Firefly Tube DI.
Recording - February 2013 - 39
Recording - February 2013 - Audio-Technica AT4047MP.
Recording - February 2013 - 41
Recording - February 2013 - Zoom Q2HD Handy Video Recorder.
Recording - February 2013 - 43
Recording - February 2013 - iOS Music Tools: Take Control!
Recording - February 2013 - 45
Recording - February 2013 - 46
Recording - February 2013 - 47
Recording - February 2013 - Emotiva Pro airmotiv 4 and airmotiv 6 Powered Studio Monitors.
Recording - February 2013 - 49
Recording - February 2013 - DPA Microphones Reference Standard Mics.
Recording - February 2013 - 51
Recording - February 2013 - Sony Creative Software Sound Forge Pro Mac.
Recording - February 2013 - 53
Recording - February 2013 - Lewitt DTP 640 REX Dual-Element Kick Drum Mic.
Recording - February 2013 - 55
Recording - February 2013 - Readers’ Tapes.
Recording - February 2013 - 57
Recording - February 2013 - 58
Recording - February 2013 - 59
Recording - February 2013 - 60
Recording - February 2013 - 61
Recording - February 2013 - Miking An Orchestra—Rock Band And Symphony.
Recording - February 2013 - 63
Recording - February 2013 - 64
Recording - February 2013 - 65
Recording - February 2013 - 66
Recording - February 2013 - 67
Recording - February 2013 - 68
Recording - February 2013 - 69
Recording - February 2013 - Stereo From A Mono Mic.
Recording - February 2013 - 71
Recording - February 2013 - 72
Recording - February 2013 - Advertiser Index.
Recording - February 2013 - 74
Recording - February 2013 - 75
Recording - February 2013 - 76
Recording - February 2013 - 77
Recording - February 2013 - 78
Recording - February 2013 - 79
Recording - February 2013 - Fade Out.
Recording - February 2013 - Cover3
Recording - February 2013 - Cover4
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