Welcome to issue #55 of Tape Op.
Making records is lying. Recordings are fake performances.
Even when they document a live performance, the reproduction over speakers in a listening environment is nothing like the live event. If they are creations of overdubs, edits, fixes and mixing, then of course they are lies — these are events that never happened. We are lying to the listener, asking them to believe in our recorded lies, to imagine that a recording communicates what music really is.
The other day I edited a drum overdub in a manner that created a weird artifact — a swooshing cymbal hit cut off at an odd time. Initially I laughed and reached for the mouse to clean it up. Someone said, "No! Leave that." I did. Now I eagerly anticipate this mistake as it comes up.
The art of recording music is full of lies and mistakes. What we take for granted as a "good" drum sound has been determined by years of listening to other people's lies and mistakes. What is right or wrong? Nothing. Just keep churning out more of these fantastic lies and mistakes.
Larry Crane, editor and liar