LATEST ADDITIONS

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Michael Fremer Posted: May 01, 2009 0 comments

Back in December of 1986, I flew to Denver, Colorado to interview the great recording engineer Bill Porter. Part II of that interview has already been published on musicangle.com.divided into multiple parts If you search Porter’s name you’ll find it. Why was part II published before part I? Don't ask! As promised, here’s part I of part I MF

Note: The intro that follows was written in 1986

Face it: Too many of today’s popular music recordings are garbage. I just slipped Bryan Adams’s new album Into The Fire on the Oracle. It’s a Bob Clearmountain co-production (with Bryan Adams). Although he’s responsible for popularizing the Yamaha NS 10M as a nearfield studio monitor (thereby earning him a place in my Hi-fi Villains’ Hall of Shame [along with Dr. Amar Bose]), Clearmountain also co-engineered (along with Rhett Davies) and mixed Roxy Music’s Avalon, a musical classic and one of the finest recordings in the modern rock ear. So I was hopeful.

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Michael Fremer Posted: May 01, 2009 0 comments

Part IV: Pet Sounds, “The Wayward Wind,” Dwayne Eddy’s “Rebel Rouser" and more

FREMER: Now, what about the Beach Boys?

ROSS: Oh, sure. “Good Vibrations.” We did some of Pet Sounds at Gold Star.

FREMER: Really?

ROSS: We did some tracks there.They vocaled elsewhere because they had the sound (they liked elsewhere), but they had their music sound at our place. He (Brian) tried out studios all over town.

FREMER: Because he liked that sound.

ROSS: Phil Spector was – he liked going where Phil was.

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Michael Fremer Posted: May 01, 2009 0 comments

Few people know this, but Orbison’s voice initially was very thin-sounding. It didn’t have much body to it. And in a mix you couldn’t make it stand out. I had to figure out a way to fatten it up. Equalizers weren’t available. Of course, you can broaden the image electronically very easily today.

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Michael Fremer Posted: May 01, 2009 0 comments

Listening session conducted at Listen Up! (thanks to Walt Stinson), 685 Pearl Street, Denver, Colorado.

Equipment:

Goldmund Dialogue Speakers
Double Kimber TC-8
Mark Levinson ML 20 amps
Mark Levinson ML 10A preamp
Goldmund turntable, T-3F arm
Carnegie Cartridge

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Michael Fremer Posted: May 01, 2009 1 comments

(Back in 1984 I was assigned to interview Don Henley, who'd just released Building the Perfect Beast his second solo album.

Henley picked me up in his black Porsche 911 and off we went to the Sunset Grill for lunch. We talked about music and life while downing burgers, fries and Cokes. Despite the classy name and the complex arrangement for the song that immortalized the place, the Sunset Grill was a tiny, hole in wall burger stand on Sunset Boulevard.

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Michael Fremer Posted: Apr 01, 2009 0 comments

The long running outfit known as Mercury Rev (first album, Yerself Is Steam issued 1991 on the UK Mint Films label and 1992 on U.S. Columbia) didn’t take its name from the liquid element. The first album’s back jacket offers a clue: with or without permission, it reproduces the ‘Stereo 35MM’ logo found on cloth-spined Command Classics LPs and that’s fine with me. “Fine”&#151get it? Fine? It even reproduces the part of the logo that says the recording was on 35MM magnetic tape, but I doubt that album really was. (Hint: those Commands were recorded by the legendary Mercury Records engineer (and mastered by George Piros for that matter).

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Michael Fremer Posted: Apr 01, 2009 0 comments

Recorded at L.A.’s famed United Recorders June 6th and 12th 1963 and arranged by Gerald Wilson (Anthony’s dad) for the spare and daring combo of organ, trumpet, tenor sax and drums, this Sarah Vaughan set of mostly familiar standards will confound your expectations with every note.

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Michael Fremer Posted: Apr 01, 2009 1 comments

Miles Davis’s major label debut, recorded with his quintet in the fall of 1955 and late summer of 1956 while he was still under Prestige contract and released early in 1957, was not particularly well-received at the time, though it has grown considerably in stature since then.

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Michael Fremer Posted: Apr 01, 2009 0 comments

Lee Morgan’s 1959 solo debut recorded when he was just 19 is aptly named. It’s an album of standards in a quartet setting designed to show off the prodigy’s ability to wrap his big, warm tone around familiar melodies.

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Michael Fremer Posted: Apr 01, 2009 1 comments

As soon as Young walks on stage and you hear the applause, you’ll know you’re in for a sonic treat. The audience has been carefully miked, which is not always the case with live recordings, even when the stage sound is good. The applause captures the hall space well too.

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