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Michael Fremer Posted: Jun 01, 2012 8 comments
My feelings about CDs were expressed early and often. Here with VPI's Harry Weisfeld. It’s a nerdy question, but do you remember where you were when you heard your first Compact Disc? For me it was at a Los Angeles Audio Engineering Society convention in 1982.

I’m neither a recording engineer nor an AES member. My invitation was courtesy the head of the sound department at Walt Disney, where I was then supervising the soundtrack to the movie TRON.”

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Roger Hahn Posted: Jan 01, 2012 1 comments

Editor’s note: Sonny Rollins, the last of the pioneering bebop giants and a seminal figure in modern jazz throughout the second half of the 20th century, has entered his ninth decade still blowing full force.

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Randy Wells Posted: Jan 01, 2012 1 comments

The day I learned Steve Hoffman was going to re-master Crosby, Stills & Nash for an Audio Fidelity gold CD edition turned out to be the same day he actually did it. I found out early enough in the day to secure an invitation to Marsh Mastering in Los Angeles, and because I happened to be staying with friends that day only an hour away, managed to arrive in time to witness the entire session. CS&N has been a favorite since I was a teen, so for me, this was like winning the lottery.

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Michael Fremer Posted: Jan 01, 2011 0 comments

How bad were the original Beatles CDs issued back in 1987? So bad that even the clueless conditioned to believe that CDs represented an automatic sonic step up from vinyl noticed something was terribly wrong.

Amusing to some observers was the nature of the complaints: “they sound tinny,” “they sound flat,” “they sound thin and bright,” “they’re harsh and edgy,” “where’s the warmth?” etc.

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Robin Platts Posted: Jan 01, 2011 0 comments

August 22, 1983. A packed concert at the newly constructed BC Place stadium in Vancouver, British Columbia. Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel are halfway through a set on the last leg of their North American tour, billed as “A Summer Night with Simon and Garfunkel.

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Michael Fremer Posted: Jan 01, 2011 0 comments
I wrote this article, originally published in Music Connection magazine, back in 1985 after becoming increasingly disgusted with and alarmed by the deteriorating sonic quality of new releases from familiar artists. Little did I realize then that 1985 was a 'golden age' of good sound compared to what most pop and rock recordings sound like in 2008! I remain grateful to editor Bud Scoppa for giving me the platform to spout a then unpopular view in a magazine read by Los Angeles engineers, artists and music business executives.

When The Absolute Sound's Harry Pearson announced he was looking for a new popular music editor, I applied for the job by sending him this article. He liked it enough to give me the job. That gave me an ideal platform from which to advocate saving the vinyl record and extolling its unique set of virtues, sonic and otherwise.

Watching the LP section at the huge Tower Records on Sunset shrink by the week, never did I imagine that in 2008 the LP would be back and Tower would be gone. —Michael Fremer, 1/15/08

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Keith Benson Posted: Aug 01, 2010 2 comments

Cleveland’s newest, and so far only vinyl pressing plant is open for business. Gotta Groove Records seeks to inject more life into two supposedly dormant entities: vinyl records and the city of Cleveland. While the latter has certainly had its troubles, the LP market continues to grow as young buyers discover its superiority over other formats.

Gotta Groove’s owner, Vince Slusarz, had always been into plastics (though it’s unclear how much of a role “The Graduate” played in his career).

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Roger Hahn Posted: May 01, 2010 0 comments

Our Man in New Orleans, Roger Hahn reports from the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival 2009. You'll think you went!

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Roger Hahn Posted: May 01, 2010 0 comments

Our Man in New Orleans Roger Hahn concludes his report from the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival 2009 and meditates on its future. You'll think you went!-ed.

New marketing trends had begun to establish an exploitable connection between highly educated consumers with gobs of disposable income and their fascination for the aura of “authenticity” naturally connected to the “roots” music world.

Corporate leaders began to understand this, too. In 1996, one of the world’s largest software vendors, Computer Associates, began holding its annual trade show in New Orleans and by 1998, had specifically connected attendance at the trade show with a Jazz Fest hospitality tent on festival grounds, spawning an unlikely influx of logo-bearing, polo-shirted Computer Associates employees.

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Matthew Greenwald Posted: May 01, 2010 0 comments

MG: Jumping back into some old groups that you recorded, Brazil 66....

BB: I really loved that time. That was for Herb Alpert, who was the producer. I prefer Brazil 66, the first album, over Equinox, sonically, because that was another case where it was done on four-track, tube all the way. Also the fact that it was all new to us and it was a big sound, I really liked it.

MG: Was that done at Gold Star Studios?

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Michael Fremer Posted: May 01, 2010 0 comments
(Note: over time since this was first posted, we've gotten complaints from some readers about glaring omissions in the Mog "catalog." No Kinks, among others.

We probably should have made clear that we were saying "every record every made" with tongue firmly in cheek. No doubt there are holes, some gaping, in the Mog catalog that hopefully will be filled over time by licensing deals.)—MF

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Michael Fremer Posted: May 01, 2010 0 comments
All that's left of the original Hayes-Middlesex EMI record manufacturing facility is the landmark smokestack shown in the top photo.The current PortalSpace pressing plant resides in the buildings shown on the left of the second photo.The third photo shows the busy PortalSpaceRecords loading dock.

Once inside, you come upon the packing department, where on the day of my visit, I found workers placing George Harrison's Living In The Material World LPs into jackets. The finished package is then shrinkwrapped and boxed for worldwide shipment.

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Michael Fremer Posted: May 01, 2010 1 comments
The long awaited faux lizard skin clad, seven 180g LP The Doors box set has finally arrived, two years late, at a higher than originally announced cost, and for now (May, 2008), in very short supply.
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Michael Fremer Posted: Dec 01, 2009 0 comments

An anxiety-reducing DVD that takes the mystery out of vinyl playback

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Michael Fremer Posted: Dec 01, 2009 1 comments

Can DVD number 2 match the first? Video being shot at RTI last August

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