Archive of the Album Releases Category

L.A. Reid Masters Michael Jackson’s “Xscape” at Bernie Grundman’s

Eight Previously Unreleased Michael Jackson Songs

Pictured (L-R) in session at Bernie Grundman Mastering are executive producer L.A. Reid and mastering engineer Bernie Grundman. Photo by David Goggin.

Epic Records Chairman/CEO L.A. Reid was in session recently at Bernie Grundman’s for the mastering of Michael Jackson’s “Xscape.” The collection of eight previously unreleased Jackson songs was curated by Reid, who also decided on the final tracklist.

“Michael left behind some musical performances that we take great pride in presenting through the vision of music producers that he either worked directly with or expressed strong desire to work with. We are extremely proud and honored to present this music to the world,” Reid said.

Grundman mastered most of Michael Jackson’s albums, many times with recording engineer Bruce Swedien, including “Thriller,” the most successful album of all time with more than 40 million in sales. L.A. Reid recalled that his very first mastering session was with Bernie Grundman in 1983.

Reid curated the final list of recordings to deliver to the producers, who retooled the production to add a fresh, contemporary sound that retains Jackson’s essence and integrity. It’s a process Reid calls “contemporizing.” The album’s lead producer, Timbaland was one of a handful of producers Reid believed had the gravitas, depth and range to creatively engage with Jackson’s work. Additional producers include global hitmakers Rodney Jerkins, Stargate, Jerome “Jroc” Harmon and John McClain.

For the ultimate fan experience, “Xscape” will also be available in a Deluxe Edition, which includes all of the sourced Michael Jackson recordings in their original form. The “Xscape” standard and Deluxe Edition’s are available for pre-order iTunes.com/MichaelJackson and elsewhere, and available at all retailers worldwide on May 13.

Learn More about Bernie Grundman Mastering at:
http://berniegrundmanmastering.com

The Naked and Famous Pick TELEFUNKEN M81 Mics for World Touring

Performing Coachella and Headlining America in May and June

The Naked and Famous is pictured live with their TELEFUNKEN M81 dynamic mics; (L-R) are Thom Powers, vocals, guitars; Aaron Short, keyboards, engineering; Alisa Xayalith, vocals, keyboards. Photo by David Goggin.

New Zealand’s hit alternative rock band The Naked and Famous is touring the world with their TELEFUNKEN M81 dynamic microphones. Following their performance at the Coachella Festival in April, the band tours Australia before returning to the States in May and June.

“We discovered the Telefunken M81 while rehearsing at Bedrock Studios in LA,” recalled Aaron Short, who plays keyboards in the band. “The big challenge on stage is getting the right rejection from the mic. We’re very loud onstage and the vocals can be very dynamic and then suddenly quiet. We needed to find one microphone that could be sensitive and clear, but at the same time still have very strong feedback rejection.”

The Naked and Famous formed in 2008 when Thom Powers and Alisa Xayalith recorded two EPs “This Machine” and “No Light” with Aaron Short, a fellow student at Auckland’s MAINZ music college, sharing engineering duties with Thom. The band took their name from a line in the English artist Tricky’s song “Tricky Kid,” “everybody wants to be naked and famous,” that questions the notion of celebrity.

The band settled in Los Angeles after completing the tour for their first full length album “Passive Me, Aggressive You” which featured the US Gold selling single “Young Blood”. They had performed over 200 shows in 24 countries between 2010 and 2012. Sharing a home in LA’s Laurel Canyon, they began work in earnest on writing and demoing their second album. Their intention was to record an album that could be played live, not relying on backing tracks.

“When we got the Telefunken mics we A-B’d them with our touring mics and there was just an elemental difference,” explained Aaron Short. “The top end especially opened up, almost like a condenser microphone. After rehearsing a bit we realized they really made a big difference with live vocals. We also used a Telefunken M80 dynamic on the snare drum for the album we recorded in LA with Billy Bush at Sunset Sound.”

Entering LA’s Sunset Sound studio in March 2013 with engineer Billy Bush (who had mixed the previous album), they began the process of recording “In Rolling Waves.” The album sessions were completed in a month and then in late 2013, The Naked and Famous headed for London where Alan Moulder spent a month mixing the album at his Willesden studio, Assault and Battery.

The album was mastered at Sterling Sound in New York by Joe LaPorta, who had also mastered “Passive Me, Aggressive You.” The album was produced by Thom Powers with Aaron Short. Justin Meldal-Johnsen co-produced two tracks with Thom Powers.

Learn more about The Naked and Famous at: http://thenakedandfamous.com

ABOUT TELEFUNKEN
TELEFUNKEN Elektroakustik strives for absolute perfection. By offering historic recreations of classic microphones alongside their own proprietary designs based around the distinctive tube mic sound, TELEFUNKEN has established a product line that expertly combines vintage style and sound with the reliability of a modern-day microphone design. TELEFUNKEN’s commitment to both the sonic excellence and quality of all of their products is rivaled only by their dedication to provide the best possible service to each and every one of their customers.
For more info, visit: http://www.telefunken-elektroakustik.com

Umphrey’s McGee Picks TELEFUNKEN For Touring

Variety of Dynamic Mics for Vocals and Drums

Pictured (L-R) are Umphrey's McGee FOH mixer Chris Mitchell, drummer and vocalist Kris Meyers, and monitor engineer Bob Ston.

Popular rock band Umphrey’s McGee are touring with a wide assortment of TELEFUNKEN dynamic microphones for vocals and drums. “Keeping the drum kit out of a drummer’s vocal mic is difficult.,” says FOH mixer Chris Mitchell. “The M81-SH offers great rejection while still sounding natural and strong.”

Originally from South Bend, Indiana, the music of Umphrey’s McGee is often referred to as progressive improvisation or “Improg”. Although the band is part of the jam band scene, with ever-changing setlists, improvisation, two sets per night, and open taping policy, they are strongly influenced musically by progressive bands such as King Crimson, Yes, and Pink Floyd.

Chris Mitchell elaborates on the TELEFUNKEN dynamic drum mics: M80-SH on top of the snare, M81-SH below snare, two M81-SH’s on rack toms, and M81-SH for Kris Meyers’ vocal. “The M81-SH & M80-SH can withstand direct stick hits while providing great isolation between toms and snares,” Mitchell adds. “The impact of the drum stick translates without overloading the capsule. Great dynamics.”

The band experiments with many musical genres, including funk, jazz, blues, metal, electronic, bluegrass, and whatever else may feel appropriate on a given night. Umphrey’s McGee will release their new album, “Similar Skin”, on June 10th. The record marks the first release on their new in-house label Nothing Too Fancy Music and much like the live show, use of the M-80 is sprinkled throughout.

“When used as a vocal mic, the M80 & M81 maintain great pattern control while sounding natural off axis,” explains Mitchell. “Whenever we have a guest vocalist, I pull out one of our M80′s. Always tons of gain before feedback and not much EQ needed.”

On the heels of their 8th performance at Bonnaroo, June 12-15, Umphrey’s McGee returns to the United Kingdom for the first time in four years, performing three nights at Brooklyn Bowl London on June 19, 20, and 21, at the newly opened outpost of the renowned New York venue, located at The O2 on Peninsula Square.

See Umphrey’s McGee: “Plunger” Live from the Tabernacle on Youtube:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kecGFTdQekU

ABOUT TELEFUNKEN
TELEFUNKEN Elektroakustik strives for absolute perfection. By offering historic recreations of classic microphones alongside their own proprietary designs based around the distinctive tube mic sound, TELEFUNKEN has established a product line that expertly combines vintage style and sound with the reliability of a modern-day microphone design. TELEFUNKEN’s commitment to both the sonic excellence and quality of all of their products is rivaled only by their dedication to provide the best possible service to each and every one of their customers.
For more info, visit: http://www.telefunken-elektroakustik.com

Carlene Carter Records New Album “Carter Girl” at Ocean Way

Produced by Don Was and Mixed by Bob Clearmountain

Pictured foreground (L-R) are Carlene Carter and producer/bassist Don Was; and rear (L-R) Greg Leisz, steel guitar; Wesley Seidman, assistant engineer; Rami Jaffee, accordion ; Tiffany Anastasia Lowe (Carlene's daughter); Jim Keltner, drums; Howard Willing, engineer; and Blake Mills, guitar. Photo by David Goggin.

Country music legend Carlene Carter has recorded her forthcoming album, “Carter Girl,” at Ocean Way in Hollywood, with additional sessions in Nashville. The album is an homage to her Carter Family legacy for which she is now the standard bearer after the passing of her grandmother Maybelle Carter and mother June Carter Cash. The album was produced by Don Was and mixed by Bob Clearmountain, for release on Rounder Records, Carter’s first for the label.

As the daughter of country music legends June Carter Cash and Carl Smith, and granddaughter of “Mother” Maybelle Carter of the original historic Carter Family, Carter says it has been her lifelong goal to make this record. “The songs on the album cover three generations of Carter Family music,” she explains. “The original Carter Family (A.P., Sara, and Maybelle); momma’s ‘Tall Lover Man’ and Helen’s ‘Poor Old Heartsick Me’; then two of mine: ‘Me and the Wildwood Rose’ and a new song about momma and John’s passing called ‘Lonesome Valley 2003.”

Carter shares writing credit on “Lonesome” with her great uncle A.P. Carter (recently in the Billboard Top 10 as cowriter of the pop phenomenon “Cups”), and the track features vocals by Vince Gill. Other guest artists on the album are Willie Nelson on “Troublesome Waters,” Kris Kristofferson on “Blackjack David,” and “Elizabeth Cook steps in as an honorary Carter Girl,” Carlene adds, “singing harmonies on six of the twelve songs.” Family is represented by cousin Lorrie Carter Bennett (daughter of Anita Carter), and Carlene’s husband Joe Breen, each heard on two songs.

The album was produced by Don Was and mixed by Bob Clearmountain, both on Carlene’s wish list for the project, and she says “Carter Girl” has “lots of fabulous musicians: Don on bass, Jim Keltner on drums, Rami Jaffee (from The Wallflowers and Foo Fighters) on keyboards. Greg Leisz plays steel guitar, acoustic, and electric too. Sam Bush is playing mandolin on three songs. Blake Mills plays most of the stringed instruments, electric guitars, and tiple, which is a kind of mandolin. I play piano, and acoustic guitars in the style of my grandma, but it’s different from the 1920s. I’m really glad I was able to pull together all of these perfect people.”

“Cowboy Jack Clement played acoustic guitar on ‘Ain’t Gonna Work Tomorrow,’” Carlene continues, “and we used an old track for that to have Helen, Anita, momma, and me, along with Big John, singing background on the chorus. We built a new track around our vocals from the Wildwood Flower album we did back in 1986. Kind of a cool thing to have the technology to bring it as a part of this project.”

Carter reflects on her producer for the album, Don Was, “I knew that he would bring the right people to play on it,” says Carlene. “I really believe in the power of the universe, and because this particular record had such ‘heart value’ in it for me in carrying on the Carter Family legacy, I needed it to be the best it could be. Don was the right man for the job.”

“Carter Girl” will be released on April 8 to be followed by performance dates in Nashville (Station Inn on release date) and Los Angeles (Grammy Museum, April 15; Amoeba Records, April 16; Hotel Cafe, April 17).

For information about Ocean Way, visit:
http://www.oceanwayrecording.com
Contact Robin Goodchild for all booking requests.
Email: rob@oceanwayrecording.com or call 323-467-9375.

Jeff Powell Records You Me & Apollo at Ardent in Memphis

Started as a Single Then Moved to an Entire Album

Pictured in the Ardent Studios atrium are (L-R) Lucas Peterson, assistant engineer; Tyler Kellogg, drums; Morgan Travis, guitar; Brent Cowles, lead vocals, guitar; Jeff Powell, producer, engineer; Dave Cole, bass; and Jonathan Alonzo, guitar, vocals.

Popular Colorado band You Me & Apollo first visited Ardent Studios in Memphis to cut a two-song single with renowned producer/engineer Jeff Powell, but the results inspired them to return to record their new full length album.

Powell, who started out at Ardent 25 years ago answering phones, is now a successful independent producer/engineer and considers Ardent his home base. One of Powell’s specialties at Ardent is recording, mixing and mastering two songs in one day and also providing lacquer masters for the 7″ single.

“I just spent a 10-day run at Ardent with You Me & Apollo,” remarked Powell. “It all started with my one-day singles offer. if a band really has their act together, they can walk out at the end of the day with a two-song digital master and the lacquers for a seven inch.”

The group You Me & Apollo began with the musical exploration of Colorado-born Brent Cowles. His first EP, “How To Swim, How to Rot,” was released while he was attending school in Arizona. The band’s debut LP, “Cards With Cheats,” was a celebration of doo-wop, soul, blues, and alt-country. The band spent the following year touring nationally, supporting acts such as ZZ Ward, Third Eye Blind, Aaron Freeman (of Ween), and Dashboard Confessional. Following the success of the single recorded at Ardent, “I Don’t Want To Be Loved” and B-side “Finding Peace,” the band recently returned to record their forthcoming as-yet-untitled album, due out in May.

“Our experience with Jeff is hard to put into words,” commented Cowles. “We felt as a band that musically he brought out the best in us and we were just blown away when we finished the album.”

Jeff Powell’s enviable credit roster includes Bob Dylan, B.B. King, Tonic, Big Star, The Bottle Rockets, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Primal Scream, Lucinda Williams, Ryan Adams, and The Afghan Whigs. His early years at Ardent landed him sessions working elbow-to-elbow with producer/engineer legends such as Jim Gaines, Glyn Johns, Rob Fraboni, John Hampton, Joe Hardy and Jim Dickinson. Getting the call to work with legendary Tom Dowd certainly was a career highlight.

“I got to do six records with Tom Dowd,” Powell recalls. “He put me in the engineer seat for my first major label record all those years ago after having me assist several engineers on a couple of projects with Leonard Skynyrd and The Allman Brothers. He gave me my big break, really. Most of my recording is done at Ardent, so that’s my family. I love those guys and I love the studio. ”

In addition to working on numerous Gold and Platinum records, as well as six Grammy-winning projects, Powell currently chairs the P&E Wing for the Memphis Chapter of NARAS, and has been honored as a Legendary Producer of Memphis at the annual Blues Ball. Powell also been an Adjunct Professor, overseeing senior projects at the University of Memphis Recording Program.

ABOUT ARDENT STUDIOS
Ardent Studios officially got its start in 1966, when the operation moved from John Fry’s home studio to a commercial space on National Street in Memphis. From there it was only a matter of time until nearly every artist on the Stax Records roster made their way through the doors. Isaac Hayes, The Staple Singers, Sam & Dave, and Booker T & The MGs all made hit records at Ardent. The success continued through the 70′s, 80′s and 90′s into the new millennium with hits for Big Star, ZZ Top, The Replacements, Joe Cocker, REM, Soundgarden, Gin Blossoms, The White Stripes, and many more. For nearly five decades, Ardent has stayed at the cutting edge of recording technology, and currently features four full service studios with top of the line digital and analog capabilities, able to handle any and all recording needs.

Learn more at: http://www.ardentstudios.com

SONO LUMINUS PRODUCTION TEAM EARNED A 2014 GRAMMY NOMINATION FOR BEST SURROUND SOUND ALBUM

SAFETY HARBOR, FLORIDA – FEBRUARY 2014: “I had two Grammy nominations in 2013, and our company, Sono Luminus, had a total of seven,” said Daniel Shores, managing director and head engineer of Sono Luminus, with modesty and a hint of awe in his voice. “It seemed like everything was packed into last year, so we really weren’t expecting anything this year.” Contrary to expectation, however, Shores and Dan Mercerio Sono Luminus managing director/head engineer shared a nomination for “Best Surround Sound Album” at the 2014 Grammy Awards for Sprung Rhythm, a collection of new works performed by the Washington DC-based ensemble, Inscape. “It’s such an amazing honor,” continued Shores. “Not only is this the category that is so close to my heart and so identifiable with the DNA of our company, but we are included among other nominees with such legendary talent. Indeed, the other nominees included the winners, Al Schmitt and Tommy LiPuma, for their work with Paul McCartney.

Sprung Rhythm arose from a three-day recording session at Sono Luminus’ studio in Virginia, with all of the composers on hand to help fully-realize their visions. The number of musicians varied from piece to piece and ranged from four to twelve. “Rather than move mics to the instruments for placement during editing and mixing, we choose to set up the mics for ideal surround sound playback and then placed the instruments where they needed to be in the room,” said Shores. “I believe that things should be recorded as they’re meant to be heard, and we try to give both the musicians and our listeners the most organic experience that we can. This way of recording surround achieves that, I believe. Having the composers on hand was very helpful. They were able to help interpret their compositions spatially. Did it make sense to keep certain instruments close together? Should there be a call and response across the surround sound field? That sort of thing.”

All seven microphones were B&K 4006s, with an additional Schoeps MK2s placed on the low-frequency instruments for a direct sub channel. Because the Metric Halo ULN-8 has no fan, they were able to place it in the center of the live room, which minimized the length of mic-level cable runs. They used the ULN-8’s microphone preamplifiers and A/D converters as the front end to Pro Tools for a 24-bit, 192kHz session, and they used its D/A converters for monitoring. “The Metric Halo ULN-8 is so transparent,” said Shores. “It’s the best interface I’ve found for use with Pro Tools, and I often get praise for delivering recordings that ‘don’t sound like they were done on Pro Tools.’ Since our goal is always to reproduce exactly what we’re hearing in the room, pairing the ULN-8’s transparency with clean, precise microphones like the B&K 4006 makes for a really stellar combination.”

Shores happily admits that, from a mixing standpoint, his work at Sono Luminus is “quite boring.” “The microphones are our surround sound channels, so there’s nothing to mix,” he said. Since the label releases everything on a Pure Audio Blu-ray™ Surround Sound disc, as well as on a standard CD, the listener hears almost exactly what Shores was hearing. “I monitor during editing, mixing, and mastering using the precision of the ULN-8 to ensure that I have an accurate representation of what the listener will get,” he said.

Shores has already finished recording Sono Luminus’ second Inscape release using similar techniques and equipment, including the ULN-8. And on his way to the Grammy Awards, Shores packed up the ULN-8 to take to California so that the following day he could record the Los Angeles Percussion Quartet, the same ensemble that earned him a Grammy nomination last year!

ABOUT METRIC HALO Now based in the sunny city of Safety Harbor, Florida, Metric Halo provides the world with high-resolution metering, analysis, recording and processing solutions with award-winning software and future-proof hardware.

www.mhlabs.com

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Fall Out Boy at Ocean Way for “Yellow Brick Road” Tribute

Peter Asher Produces, Nathaniel Kunkel Records “Saturday Night”

Pictured in Ocean Way's Studio A are producer Peter Asher and (standing L-R) engineer Nathaniel Kunkel with Fall Out Boy's Patrick Stump, Joe Trohman, and Andy Hurley. Photo by David Goggin.

Fall Out Boy dropped in at Ocean Way studios to record “Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting,” their contribution to the Elton John 40th Anniversary tribute album “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road.” Nathaniel Kunkel engineered with producer Peter Asher, who also joined in on the chorus vocals. Asher, the long-time producer of Linda Ronstadt and James Taylor is also producing the re-mastered reissue of the original classic set.

Save Rock and Roll is the gold certified fifth studio album from the Grammy-nominated band Fall Out Boy and features the multiplatinum hit “My Songs Know What You Did In The Dark (Light Em Up)” and the hit “Alone Together.” Save Rock and Roll debuted at #1 on Billboard’s Top 200 and #1 on iTunes in 27 countries when it was released last April. This is the band’s second #1 debut; Platinum selling “Infinity On High” topped the chart in 2007 which followed multi-platinum breakthrough album “From Under The Cork Tree” released in 2005. Hailing from Chicago, Fall Out Boy-Patrick Stump (vocals/guitar), Pete Wentz (bass), Joe Trohman (guitar) and Andy Hurley (drums)-has appeared on the cover of Rolling Stone and other prestigious publications.

Fall Out Boy has performed on Saturday Night Live, The Today Show, America’s Got Talent, The Voice, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Conan, The Late Show with David Letterman, Jimmy Kimmel Live and many more. They wrapped up 2013 with an appearance with Taylor Swift at the Victoria Secrets fashion show in December, following their second sold out tour of 2013, performing in arenas in support of Save Rock and Roll. Kicking off 2014, the band won “Best Alternative” at the Peoples Choice Awards.

Pictured recording the chorus for "Saturday Night's Alright for Fighting" are (L-R) Joe Trohman, Andy Hurley, Patrick Stump and producer Peter Asher. Photo by David Goggin.

Other artists contributing to the “Yellow Brick Road” project include the Band Perry, John Grant, Zac Brown Band, Emeli Sande, Imelda May, Hunter Hayes, who is recording the title track, Ed Sheeran taking lead on “Candle in the Wind,” and Miguel putting his own spin on “Bennie and the Jets” with help from Wale.

“Goodbye Yellow Brick Road” was the seventh studio album by Elton John. Released in 1973, it has come to be regarded as one of his best and most popular albums. Recorded at the Château d’Hérouville in France, the album was inducted in 2003 into the Grammy Hall of Fame. The album was ranked No. 91 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time. The album has sold more than 31 million times worldwide. The re-mastered reissue and tribute double album will be released in March.

For information about Ocean Way, visit:
http://www.oceanwayrecording.com
Contact Robin Goodchild for all booking requests.
Email: rob@oceanwayrecording.com or call 323-467-9375.

Benmont Tench Masters Debut Vinyl LP with Chris Bellman at Bernie’s

“You Should Be So Lucky” Produced by Glyn Johns for Blue Note

Pictured in the cutting room at Bernie Grundman Mastering are (L-R) Blue Note Benmont Tench and mastering engineer Chris Bellman. Photo by David Goggin.

Renowned Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers keyboardist and founding member Benmont Tench has mastered his debut solo album for vinyl at Bernie Grundman Mastering with mastering engineer Chris Bellman. “Such a joy to work with Chris,” Tench commented, “and I’m thrilled with the way he mastered my album.” The vinyl edition was mastered from the original analog tapes and includes two extra tracks not available on the CD and digital versions of the album.

Blue Note Records will release “You Should Be So Lucky” on February 18, 2014. Produced by legendary producer Glyn Johns, the album was recorded to tape at Sunset Sound in Los Angeles and features Tench handling lead vocals, piano and organs, joined by a team of collaborators including a core band of Don Was, Ethan Johns, Blake Mills and Jeremy Stacey and contributions by Ryan Adams, Gillian Welch & David Rawlings, Joel Jerome, the Section Quartet, Tom Petty and Ringo Starr.

The album is available for pre-order at Amazon.com in both CD and 2-LP 180-gram vinyl formats.

RollingStone.com premiered the lead track “Blonde Girl, Blue Dress”
Click here to listen: http://tinyurl.com/nd8t2ds

“You Should Be So Lucky” is a dynamic and distinguished album of songs written almost entirely by Tench over the course of his thirty-seven year career not only as keyboardist and founding member of Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers, but as a first call musician for artists from Johnny Cash and Bob Dylan to The Rolling Stones and Elvis Costello; from the Jayhawks and Ryan Adams to Fiona Apple and John Prine. The only non-originals are covers of the traditional “Corrina, Corrina” and the Bob Dylan track “Duquesne Whistle” from 2012′s Tempest.

Tench had always intended on making his own album, but the project gained momentum when Glyn Johns encouraged him to begin recording. Says Tench about Johns: “Glyn is one of the greatest producers & engineers in the story of rock & roll. Hell, he was present at the creation. He has excellent taste, and he brooks no nonsense. He tells you exactly what he thinks, and he backs it up. I love him to death.”

With Johns on board to produce, Tench was thrilled when many of the musicians he most admires, many of whom also happen to be friends, jumped at the chance to participate in the sessions. Don Was, who besides playing on the album, signed the artist as the President of Blue Note Records, describes the artist thusly: “Benmont is the most enigmatic, mystical and delightful musician I know. He never plays the same notes twice yet the notes he plays are always perfect and loaded with soul. His artistry is utterly uncategorizable…musicians from all walks of life hold him in the highest esteem and love to play with him. His presence on a session or stage elevates everyone’s performance to new heights.”

Benmont Tench will celebrate the release of the album with three intimate shows at Largo at the Coronet in Los Angeles on February 20, 21, and 22.

More info at Blue Note: http://tinyurl.com/otkx22v

Grammy Award-winners Chris Bellman and producer/engineer Francis Buckley are conducting a two-day vinyl mastering seminar at Bernie’s on February 22 and 23: http://cbmastering.wix.com/vinyl-mastering

Learn More about Bernie Grundman Mastering at:
http://berniegrundmanmastering.com/

End of Love Tracks at Ardent Studios in Memphis

Jay Deegan and Irwin Menken Reunite with Big Star’s Jody Stephens

Pictured at Ardent Studios in Memphis are (L-R) Irwin Menken, bass; Jody Stephens, drums; Pete Matthews, engineer, and Jay Deegan, guitar.

A chance NYC meeting by Irwin Menken, founder of the group End of Love, and Jody Stephens, founding drummer of Big Star, has led to the rebirth of the band End of Love. Tracking has already begun at Ardent Studios in Memphis, where Stephens is studio manager.

The first meeting took place while Menken was on a 2012 international tour with the Lee Ranaldo Band. “I’ve been a Big Star fan for a long time,” explained Menken, “and when I met Jody while on the road with Lee last year I knew that if I got the chance I would love to work with him.”

End of Love was initially formed by Jay Deegan, Irwin Menken and Jennifer Groves in the early 2000′s. The original material developed by the group was played in New York City clubs between 2002 and 2005 and the band gained a significant following among local club goers. In 2005, the band members went their separate ways to work on other projects.

In 2007, Menken met Lee Ranaldo from Sonic Youth because their sons had become friends at school. For several years Irwin and Lee saw each other at Little League games, took the boys skiing, and in general became friends, discussing music and spending time together with their families.

In 2011, Ranaldo asked Menken to come into the studio and cut some demos for his forthcoming solo album, “Between the Times and the Tides.” The demos went well and Menken returned to the studio to contribute bass parts for the majority of the album. At that point Ranaldo asked Menken to tour with him after the album’s release the following year.

From October, 2011 to August, 2012, Menken contributed bass and backing vocals to the Lee Ranaldo Band while on tour throughout Europe, playing a variety of festivals and club shows, and in the U.S. opening for both M. Ward and Wilco.

Upon returning home, Menken reassembled the End of Love team and with new material began to plan for an album. Menken drew upon his experiences and contacts on the road with Ranaldo and reached out to Jody Stephens of Big Star fame to play drums. Also joining the project are Wilco guitarist Nels Cline and John Stirratt, Wilco’s bassist, who contributes both as a player and as producer. Plans call for Ranaldo to guest on the album.

The album has been recorded in both New York and Memphis with sessions taking place at Room 17 in Brooklyn and mixed by Ted Young, who has mixed both of Lee Ranaldo’s most recent solo albums as well as Kurt Vile’s most recent album. The Memphis sessions were engineered by Pete Matthews at the famed Ardent Studios in Memphis with Jody Stephens on drums.

“I ran into Jody again in New York this year,” explained Menken, ” just as this project was coming together, so we were able to do it. The tracks sound great and an added bonus was to to record at Ardent in the same rooms used to cut the iconic Big Star classic ‘Number 1 Record.’ The folks at Ardent did a great job and really made the recording experience very powerful.”

Learn more about End of Love here:
http://www.endofloveband.com

ABOUT ARDENT STUDIOS
Ardent Studios officially got its start in 1966, when the operation moved from John Fry’s home studio to a commercial space on National Street in Memphis. From there it was only a matter of time until nearly every artist on the Stax Records roster made their way through the doors. Isaac Hayes, The Staple Singers, Sam & Dave, and Booker T & The MGs all made hit records at Ardent. The success continued through the 70′s, 80′s and 90′s into the new millennium with hits for Big Star, ZZ Top, The Replacements, Joe Cocker, REM, Soundgarden, Gin Blossoms, The White Stripes, and many more. For nearly five decades, Ardent has stayed at the cutting edge of recording technology, and currently features four full service studios with top of the line digital and analog capabilities, able to handle any and all recording needs.

Learn more at: http://www.ardentstudios.com

Stephen Arnold Music’s ‘The Six Strings of Christmas’ — Featuring Virtuoso Guitar Performances of Holiday Classics — Again Benefits Little Kids Rock™

DALLAS, TX – Little Kids Rock™ really does rock. A national nonprofit organization that’s been going strong since 2002, it transforms children’s lives by restoring and revitalizing music education in disadvantaged public schools — and in a repeat performance that everyone will appreciate, Stephen Arnold Music is once again releasing The Six Strings of Christmas for the holidays. An instant classic when it debuted in 2012, 100 percent of the proceeds will once again support Little Kids Rock.

Click here to watch video of Stephen Arnold performing Deck The Halls

The Six Strings of Christmas is an unforgettable spin on classic holiday songs — one that has already raised thousands of dollars for Little Kids Rock. Rooted in the company’s years of experience creating sonic branding and original music, the collection presents a welcome way to enjoy 16 essential holiday season tunes.

Each track is a virtuoso guitar performance – four, six, eight, and 12-string instruments are all represented – arranged and performed by top studio musicians and talent that work with Stephen Arnold Music throughout the year on their many demanding projects.

The result is fresh renditions of “Joy to the World,” “Ave Maria,” “Little Drummer Boy,” “O Come Emmanuel,” “The First Noel,” “Auld Lang Syne,” and ten more that are magical to listen to. Recorded at Stephen Arnold Music’s studios in Dallas, TX, each track captures the nuanced performances of some of the world’s top musical craftsmen.

Available on Amazon, iTunes and CD ($9.99), all of the proceeds from The Six Strings of Christmas go to Little Kids Rock, an organization that partners with school districts to train public school teachers in their innovative curriculum, and donates all of the instruments and resources necessary to run full-fledged music programs.

“It was thrilling to see the strong response to The Six Strings of Christmas last year,” Stephen Arnold, President of Stephen Arnold Music says. “Music lovers the world over helped us to raise thousands of dollars and get it directly to a very deserving organization.”

Stephen Arnold Music’s work has been central to the identity of such clients as Nexstar Broadcasting, Fox Business Channel, CNN, The Weather Channel, and a full 35 percent of all US local TV markets. With The Six Strings of Christmas, the company realized it had an opportunity to make a difference through music.

“In 2013, we aim to build on that success,” Arnold continues. “Little Kids Rock is an all-volunteer organization, and they make the most of every dollar. Underprivileged children across America need music in their lives. Every copy sold of The Six Strings of Christmas brings Little Kids Rock closer to achieving that goal.”

With its highly-efficient use of funds, here’s what Little Kids Rock can accomplish via each sale of The Six Strings of Christmas:

1 CD = One “rock band” lesson for an entire classroom of students.
2 CDs = An entire year of music lessons for one student.
5 CDs = One brand new acoustic guitar into a classroom.
10 CDs = One brand new electric keyboard and amp into a classroom.

To purchase The Six Strings of Christmas, or to help spread the word, please visit: http://www.stephenarnoldmusic.com/thesixstringsofchristmas/

About Stephen Arnold Music:
Often referred to as the most-heard, least-known composers in America, Stephen Arnold Music’s creativity is experienced every day in more than 100 million homes throughout the U.S. Based in Dallas with offices in San Diego and New York, with additional recording studios in Santa Fe, “The World Leader In Sonic Branding™ has more than 20 years of success delivering impactful, brand-defining music that makes a difference for today’s top broadcast networks, cable channels, television stations, film production studios and advertising agencies. With multiple Emmys, Addys and Promax Golds to their credit, Stephen Arnold Music’s specialized approach and commitment to the power of sonic branding, state-of-the-art production and unparalleled customer service is at the core of its promise. Stephen Arnold Music continues to set the creative bar in a highly competitive content landscape. For more information, please visit http://www.stephenarnoldmusic.com

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