Recording - January 2017 - 16

When you have multiple mics on the toms, they
should all point in the same direction as much as
possible, so that no mics are pointing at each
other. If I do that, I find that I can get the phase
to align really well, and then I don't have to
measure or anything and the drums will
sound deeper and punchier.
Funny you should mention that, as I've
been doing it in every session since
reading the book!
It really works and it's a simple thing to do.
And if I have a mic on the top and a mic on the
bottom of a drum, I usually flip the bottom mic out of
phase and the drum will come to life.
Come mix time, do you find yourself using all of the mics in
the mix?
If I am doing analog recording, I'll sum the tom mics together to two tracks. Whether I have three toms or six toms, I make
the decisions on placement in the stereo field while I'm recording and I commit to that to tape. So when I'm mixing, a lot of
those decisions have already been made.
What I've found recently, when doing digital recording or mixing, is that if the mics are kept on separate tracks I might not use
the bottom mics at all and just go with the top mics. Often the

uncombined mics don't sound as good if you combine them digitally later. I often find that when people send me tracks [to mix]
that that's usually the case and I'll take away mics. That's why I
try and make the decisions early when I am tracking, so the mix
engineer doesn't have to make the decisions.
It doesn't even have to be just analog anymore, either,
because there are changes in [digital] technology that allow
you to do the summing on the way in. I've found on the latest
Dishwalla project, I was able to use the summing in the
[Universal Audio] Apollo 8 interface. UA has a virtual console
with buses so you can combine the top and bottom mics and
make some commitment before it is actually recorded. You don't
have to have all these separate tracks with one mic per track.
When you get tracks to mix, what are some of the biggest
mistakes that you see relating to drums?
Phase! One of the biggest mistakes that I've found is that people record mics separately on separate tracks, but they don't
take care to look at the phase differences between the mics. I
suppose you can just use phase alignment and fix it in the mix,
but sometimes I don't know if it's just laziness, or... I'm afraid
16

RECORDING JANUARY 2017

that some of it comes from the knowledge of proper phase alignment being lost, because no
one is being taught about that.
It sounds like you like to get the sound
you're going for as you're recording it. Do
you EQ and compress to tape, or track dry?
I strive to have all the drums' sound finished,
and I try to create a room sound that is pure and
natural, so that you don't have to add any more
later. I don't usually use compression on anything but
the room mics during recording, but I will commit compression onto the room mics, and sometimes the overhead mics, just to give the kick more excitement.

Old Gear And New
One of the things that I like, that you have touched on both
here and in your book, is that you like both classic gear and
modern gear equally, and you seem to be a champion of the
newer companies and technology. I guess I would call you
pretty "gear agnostic" in that regard!
I do love the vintage microphones, but Mojave makes great
tube mics. Also a company called Soyuz, a Russian company. I
really love their SU-017 mic, which is a hand-built tube mic that's
great on vocals. I'm very excited about the Virtual Microphone

System from Slate. This is a great departure from the mics that I'm
used to; it's an analog mic and it's matched with an analog mic
preamp that comes with the mic, yet you can select between virtual mics in software. It's just so convenient.
I am a big fan of the Slate software and use the Virtual Mix
Rack on almost every mix, and I'm excited to be trying out
the VMS for an upcoming review. Even more than how it
captures the sound of this or that vintage mic, is that you
have a single microphone that you can get 12 different
sounds from... that's exciting!
The thing that I love about the Slate line is that you can directly
understand the differences between all these vintage mics that
everyone loves, because you can switch from a 251 to a 47 to a
67 to a C12 and you can hear where the curve changes. On a
C12 you're going to get a little higher shelf, and there's a little
more body out of a 47, and you can understand why vintage
mics have their thing. It's fascinating and it's also really useful.
Just like many plug-in emulations, it can be educational and
useful.



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Recording - January 2017

Contents
Recording - January 2017 - Intro
Recording - January 2017 - Cover1
Recording - January 2017 - Cover2
Recording - January 2017 - 1
Recording - January 2017 - 2
Recording - January 2017 - 3
Recording - January 2017 - 4
Recording - January 2017 - 5
Recording - January 2017 - Contents
Recording - January 2017 - 7
Recording - January 2017 - 8
Recording - January 2017 - 9
Recording - January 2017 - 10
Recording - January 2017 - 11
Recording - January 2017 - 12
Recording - January 2017 - 13
Recording - January 2017 - 14
Recording - January 2017 - 15
Recording - January 2017 - 16
Recording - January 2017 - 17
Recording - January 2017 - 18
Recording - January 2017 - 19
Recording - January 2017 - 20
Recording - January 2017 - 21
Recording - January 2017 - 22
Recording - January 2017 - 23
Recording - January 2017 - 24
Recording - January 2017 - 25
Recording - January 2017 - 26
Recording - January 2017 - 27
Recording - January 2017 - 28
Recording - January 2017 - 29
Recording - January 2017 - 30
Recording - January 2017 - 31
Recording - January 2017 - 32
Recording - January 2017 - 33
Recording - January 2017 - 34
Recording - January 2017 - 35
Recording - January 2017 - 36
Recording - January 2017 - 37
Recording - January 2017 - 38
Recording - January 2017 - 39
Recording - January 2017 - 40
Recording - January 2017 - 41
Recording - January 2017 - 42
Recording - January 2017 - 43
Recording - January 2017 - 44
Recording - January 2017 - 45
Recording - January 2017 - 46
Recording - January 2017 - 47
Recording - January 2017 - 48
Recording - January 2017 - 49
Recording - January 2017 - 50
Recording - January 2017 - 51
Recording - January 2017 - 52
Recording - January 2017 - 53
Recording - January 2017 - 54
Recording - January 2017 - 55
Recording - January 2017 - 56
Recording - January 2017 - 57
Recording - January 2017 - 58
Recording - January 2017 - 59
Recording - January 2017 - 60
Recording - January 2017 - 61
Recording - January 2017 - 62
Recording - January 2017 - 63
Recording - January 2017 - 64
Recording - January 2017 - 65
Recording - January 2017 - 66
Recording - January 2017 - 67
Recording - January 2017 - 68
Recording - January 2017 - 69
Recording - January 2017 - 70
Recording - January 2017 - 71
Recording - January 2017 - 72
Recording - January 2017 - Cover3
Recording - January 2017 - Cover4
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