Welcome to issue #32 of Tape Op.
I'm gonna take the space here to plug what's become a major source of entertainment for me and many of my friends. At www.prosoundweb.com/recording/mm/week1/mm.php you can find what's known as The Daily Adventures of Mixerman — A Documentary. It began innocently enough as an "anonymous" engineer in the L.A. area decided to do nightly postings of his days in the studio on a new session that began July 27th. The hijinx that ensue are amazing, from the producer missing the first week to the bass player going AWOL. It now seems as if he's either not come back to this project or decided to drop the diary after a while. It's amazing to sit and read these accounts, as Mixerman is a great writer (and sounds like he's also a great engineer), but after laughing a lot and being amazed at the crazy events what finally dawned on me was that this is exactly how I don't want to spend my own time in the studio (and Mixerman questions this a lot too).
A & R guys lurking around, record label presidents throwing unlimited money at the band, a group that was forced to spend two years writing after being the object of a two million dollar bidding war, a very lousy drummer who's afraid of Pro Tools, tracks being replaced while the band is on a cruise, assistants that don't seem to have any real studio knowledge... and this doesn't even include the drug and alcohol abuse and general dysfunctional nature of the band.
I'll stick to my "non-L.A." way of making records, where $3000 can buy over a week of recording time instead of one day of people having bitter arguments and getting nothing done. I must confess that I do not understand that world, and as much as I would like to get paid what Mixerman makes I would find it hard not to walk off if I was recording projects like this. But hell, I'm glad he's doing it so we can read about this crazy shit and have a glimpse into someone else's hell. Look for an interview with Mixerman in the next Tape Op!-Larry Crane
P.S. You might notice that our hard-working "Gear Geek", Andy Hong, has pulled in more gear reviews than ever for this issue. We're curious what you, our faithful readers, think of this? Do you want more gear reviews at the expense of possibly another interview per issue? We want to know, so email me and let us know: firstname.lastname@example.org