Recording - October 2017 - 46

Readers'

TRACKS
BY MARTY PETERS

Listen online at www.recordingmag.com

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Jamie Robinson
EQUIPMENT: PC with TASCAM US-122 audio interface
running Steinberg Cubase 4 and IK Multimedia SampleTank
2.5 XL (drums, bass, and organ), played by Behringer UMA25S
MIDI controller. Dot On Shaft JR-7 Signature guitar through
effects on a BOSS BR-1600CD desktop multitrack recorder.
MUSIC: "Lucky 13" is a one-man-band Blues instrumental track,
"written, arranged, performed, and mixed in under an hour."
RECORDING: Jamie has submitted a short but sweet track
that is ideally constructed and arranged to show off his topnotch playing skills. Utilizing some well chosen and executed
drum, bass, and organ sounds from his IK Multimedia SampleTank software, the music bed is tight and funky.
The real star of the show, however, is Jamie's bigtime guitar
chops. The man simply owns the fretboard here, and fortunately
the tones match the quality of the playing. We love the sustained
Carlos Santana-meets-Mark Knopfler runs at the song's outset,
and thumbs up to Jamie for flipping to that bridge pickup tone
for his fiery subsequent solos! Nice.
In his production notes, Jamie tells us that he ran the guitar
through a BOSS BR-1600 multitracker for his effects. That's a
cool use of an extra piece of gear, and quite effective to our
way of of thinking. Our only quibble is the rather abrupt ending
to the track with the major seventh-ish chord, but maybe that
was us just being selfish for wanting more guitar solos!
SUGGESTIONS: As you can tell, we were pretty darn
impressed with "Lucky 13". Solid arrangement, monster
chops, what's not to like? As for suggestions, well, we'd love
to hear a few live players bringing even more energy behind
Jamie's obvious talents. Short of that, we dig it!
SUMMARY: The real deal.
CONTACT: Jamie Robinson, jamie@jamierobinsonrocks.com
46

RECORDING October 2017

Dave Simerick
EQUIPMENT: MacBook Pro with 4 GB RAM and PreSonus
Firebox interface running Apple Logic Studio 8. Audio-Technica
AT4040 mic, Behringer UB2442FX mixer, M-Audio BX8a
Studio monitors. Line 6 Variax modeling guitar, Roland VP550 Vocal Ensemble, Yamaha bass, Roland TD-12 V-Drums.
MUSIC: "A Different Kinda Perfect" is a male vocal rock
song done in its entirety by Dave at his home studio. "It's all
just me..."
RECORDING: Quite the ambitious effort here from Dave,
with plenty to look at. Let's dig in!
First of all, there are a whole lot of sound sources and
different frequencies at play. The track intros with some loose
tambourine followed by chimes that travel from far right to
far left in the stereo field. The rhythm section, comprised of a
Yamaha bass and Roland V-Drums combo, offers somewhat
mixed results to our ears. While we liked the pop of the snare,
the kick and bass guitar came across as a tad muddy through
our monitors. This dusky vibe was compounded by what
seemed to be a sub-frequency tom sound on the first beat of
every second measure during much the track, which seemed
to mask much of the rhythm section in spots.
On the flip side, we found the lead vocal to be rather thin
and distant in the mix. In our experience, Dave's Audio-Technica
AT4040 mic is not nearly as hyped in the high end as many
modern-day condenser mics, and we can only surmise that the
vocal placement was intentional.
The remaining sound sources were again a mixed bag. The
sitar-ish electric guitar was a great concept, and the backing
vocals were generally successful in our opinion. We also have
to give Dave props for his panning on the track; he managed
to give the mix a good deal of energy with his panning choices,
something we don't hear every day at Readers' Tracks.
SUGGESTIONS: In his production notes, Dave tells us that
the final ingredient in his production was lots and lots of time,
and we believe him. The panning and arrangement choices
alone would dictate that to be the case.
As for suggestions, we would urge Dave to re-examine his
mix stylistically. Placement and ambience are often signatures
of certain musical genres. Some genres, such as New Age
(think Enya here), exhibit a sonic blend where no single sound
source dominates the mix. Country music, on the other
hand, has traditionally been a vocal-forward style where
the lyric predominates.
In a traditional Rock setting like the one on this song, we
would encourage Dave to add more beater head sound to his
kick drum, more definition to the bass guitar, and consider
losing the sub tom. At that point we would lower the tambourine
and chime volumes, while raising the level of the electric guitar
and lead vocal.
No matter what style Dave ultimately lands on, A/Bing
commercial releases in the same genre is an invaluable part
of the recording process, and a good practice for all of us!
SUMMARY: Lots of great material to work with! Just
balance it out...
CONTACT: Dave Simerick, adventure572001@yahoo.com

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

Contents
Recording - October 2017 - Intro
Recording - October 2017 - Cover1
Recording - October 2017 - Cover2
Recording - October 2017 - 1
Recording - October 2017 - 2
Recording - October 2017 - 3
Recording - October 2017 - 4
Recording - October 2017 - 5
Recording - October 2017 - Contents
Recording - October 2017 - 7
Recording - October 2017 - 8
Recording - October 2017 - 9
Recording - October 2017 - 10
Recording - October 2017 - 11
Recording - October 2017 - 12
Recording - October 2017 - 13
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Recording - October 2017 - 15
Recording - October 2017 - 16
Recording - October 2017 - 17
Recording - October 2017 - 18
Recording - October 2017 - 19
Recording - October 2017 - 20
Recording - October 2017 - 21
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Recording - October 2017 - Cover3
Recording - October 2017 - Cover4
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