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New George Massenburg production online Drum Microphones
Old 6th September 2008
  #1
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New George Massenburg production online

When gm was in munich - may 2007 he talked about his recent projects and played us some amazing demos from a new female artist he was producing at his new studio at blackbird.

He also mentioned his new internet promotion / distribution concept for young artists.

I wondered how the final mixes would sound + how his concepts work in the real world.

The production is now online:

Dawn Langstroth

amazing stuff with nice studio shots.

Very interesting is the song "elevator music" - which is available in 2 different arranged / mixed versions:

Version 1 is mixed by Al Schmitt
Version 2 is mixed by George Massenburg ( version 2 only available on apple itunes)

Happy listening !
Old 6th September 2008
  #2
Here for the gear
 

Wow!! Thanks so much for posting this! I love Massenburgs work! This chick sounds really great too. I love her phrasing, especially on that elevator song. I also love how lush and big the song is, especially at the beginning. What about when the drums come in though, if I could just point out one slight disagreement, or difference in interpretation. I like how they sit somewhat in the middle and drive the song behind her, but the space kind of throws me. Before they kick in, its huge and really, well, lush is the ideal word I can use, and the drums just kind of (not ruin because it's a beautiful mix) make it a little less believable, almost? I know you wouldn't want to wash it out and put it in the exact same space, but it seems they could use a different treatment. The drummer is almost playing a little too reserved as well, at least for me. It's a pretty intense, driving song. I would have liked to hear a more aggressive drummer that really cracked the snare with a slightly bigger space, or different space around the drums. What the hell am I saying though? These guys are master craftsmen. Unfortunately, I can't find the other mix though, I just see the one on her second album down. I love to listen to how another genius mixer interprets the tune.
Old 6th September 2008
  #3
Here for the gear
 

Oh wow...just listening to it again, I am starting to dig the idea more of where the drums are (they still just seem a little boring). I totally get how the spacey-ness in the beginning is being countered though. Maybe if the vocals were brought forward a bit as well when they came in it would make a little more sense in my head. Also, I can't hear the crash hits! Granted, I am listening to MP3's through a noisy output on my 002. Rad production overall, freakin awesome. I'm really getting into this chick! I still want to hear the other mix though... :(
Old 7th September 2008
  #4
Gear Guru
 
henryrobinett's Avatar
OMG. I just came back a couple hours ago from an all day hang with George in a small studio in Sacramento. He played me about 3 cuts from that record. I heard No Mercy 4 times. What a track.. What a sound. All live except for BV and a cello. Amazing stuff.
Old 7th September 2008
  #5
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BLueROom's Avatar
 

Hey Henry, I was there too... had to leave right before GM. How was that?

I must have been within arms reach of you all day, hehe.
Old 7th September 2008
  #6
Gear Guru
 
henryrobinett's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by BLueROom View Post
Hey Henry, I was there too... had to leave right before GM. How was that?

I must have been within arms reach of you all day, hehe.
Ha! Dang. I got there about 12:30 or 1-ish. I stayed until 6:15. I was basically in Georges room the whole day and was the loud mouth who seemed to ask all the question during the Q and A. You know, engineers can be kind of shy in public, so someone had to get the party started and flowing. I have no problem talking!

You couldn't miss me. I was the only extremely good looking guy there! Sorry I missed you! I saw Brad McGowan though! And Brad Lunde, Peter Montessi. Hung with Ryan Hewitt. That was cool.
Old 7th September 2008
  #7
ok.. it's a mix.. good song, good voice and?

heh
Old 7th September 2008
  #8
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blaugruen7's Avatar
and ?

... its no death metal, george.
Old 7th September 2008
  #9
Quote:
Originally Posted by blaugruen7 View Post
and ?

... its no death metal, george.
and?

if we are talking about the same thing, it's just a good pop-song, with futuristic reverb FX, good (over)production, nice voice...

not my taste.

so what is the point?
Old 7th September 2008
  #10
Gear Nut
 
Madkour's Avatar
Check out this link, it's from Dawn Langstroth's new project. recorded live at Blackbird Studio C

Mother's Child

P.S. You can watch in high quality.
Old 7th September 2008
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by George Necola View Post
and?

if we are talking about the same thing, it's just a good pop-song, with futuristic reverb FX, good (over)production, nice voice...

not my taste.

so what is the point?
The point is that this is nothing new and it may not be your taste but if you have been at one of gm´s workshops over the last 3 years you will be interested in how all the concepts he was talking about work in real life.

As you can see on the video the whole band plays in one room - which due to it´s special accoustic - mainly based on diffusion has a very homogenous sound. So he´s recording live performances, which is nothing new but very uncommon these days.

Second he tries to avoid click tracks - he has a guy playing very basic handpercussion with the other musicians and uses that track as a basis for creating a tempomap (for eventual future overdubs)

The entirely new thing he talked about is his new music marketing and distribution concept which means that the artist stays independant from any major label and reaches the public via internet (and live performacnes) - as an example he named imogen heap.

To help the new media appearances he allways has some guys filming the recording sessions on hd video for later use.

So if you sum all these little approaches I would say in times of ****ty american superstar productions and wannabe A&Rs this is PRETTY DAMN AMAZING

Quote:
Originally Posted by log62000 View Post
Unfortunately, I can't find the other mix though, I just see the one on her second album down. I love to listen to how another genius mixer interprets the tune.
Go to her first album (the one with the green backround) and select "elevator music"
Old 7th September 2008
  #12
Lives for gear
 

Damn every time gm´s side racks appear in the video the editor is crossfading
(as if there would be something more important than gear...hrhr)

I got this poor screenshot non the less.
I´m a gml slut - I know

Someone knows how he is using those two gml mixers ?

It´s funny that gm is using only the main block of his ICON while the fader block stays in the corner for tracking...
Old 7th September 2008
  #13
Gear Guru
 
henryrobinett's Avatar
The point, for me, it was recorded entirely live, all at once. He has a video tape of the session he showed yesterday. Seeing all the guitar players lined up, drums, Dawn standing behind a bunch of his sound diffusers. It was exciting. And listening to this session there on those speakers (whatever they were), directly from Sound Blade and his Orpheus was the ****. All the frequencies, the dimension, the song, the performance and the mix. That was the point. What else is there?

What, you don't like Massenburg? That's OK. To me he represents the ne plus ultra of audio engineering. He he's a GREAT guy willing to help anyone who asks.

These tracks excite me because it's done at once. I'm exciting that in some few places, probably mainly only in Nashville, sessions are done like the olden days, not cut and paste, with precious few overdubs. Man, it makes all the difference in the end to me.

That's the point, for me.
Old 7th September 2008
  #14
Gear Guru
 
henryrobinett's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by George Necola View Post
and?

if we are talking about the same thing, it's just a good pop-song, with futuristic reverb FX, good (over)production, nice voice...

not my taste.

so what is the point?
Man. I just can't get over this, these comments.

OVER production? I don't see that at all. No auto tune, drum replacement, no chopping up the drums or quantizing. The devil is in the details and the details are in the arrangements. If that what you mean by production, maybe. But it seems to me the engineer, in this case, recorded it, added some sweetness and got out of the way, unlike the busy body-ness of so many guys today.

About "not my taste." You know, we all have our own aesthetics. But to learn, improve and just understand it takes exposing yourself to all kinds of music. At least it does for me.

It's not necessarily what I would have turned on immediately, or played a "station" that might have played it, but DAMN that's some deep ****. "Dark and Twisted" knocks me out on multiple levels. YMMV and obviously does. And that's OK.
Old 7th September 2008
  #15
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colinmiller's Avatar
 

Looks like a pretty expensive recording session. If there's no label, who's paying for all of this?
Old 7th September 2008
  #16
Here for the gear
 

She has management, and I'm sure she has a backer of some sort. It's funny how money plays a role in the making of music. It falls in the laps of some and others have to fight for every penny, just luck and positioning.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Shaman View Post
The point is that this is nothing new and it may not be your taste but if you have been at one of gm´s workshops over the last 3 years you will be interested in how all the concepts he was talking about work in real life.

As you can see on the video the whole band plays in one room - which due to it´s special accoustic - mainly based on diffusion has a very homogenous sound. So he´s recording live performances, which is nothing new but very uncommon these days.

Second he tries to avoid click tracks - he has a guy playing very basic handpercussion with the other musicians and uses that track as a basis for creating a tempomap (for eventual future overdubs)

The entirely new thing he talked about is his new music marketing and distribution concept which means that the artist stays independant from any major label and reaches the public via internet (and live performacnes) - as an example he named imogen heap.

To help the new media appearances he allways has some guys filming the recording sessions on hd video for later use.

So if you sum all these little approaches I would say in times of ****ty american superstar productions and wannabe A&Rs this is PRETTY DAMN AMAZING



Go to her first album (the one with the green backround) and select "elevator music"

That's the one I was listening to. I can't find the other one...
Old 7th September 2008
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by log62000 View Post
That's the one I was listening to. I can't find the other one...
Oh sorry - my fault - it´s not on her website...go to itunes and type in her name-
it´s the song "elevator music" on her second album (with the black/white cover)
mixed by gm

Quote:
Originally Posted by log62000 View Post
It falls in the laps of some and others have to fight for every penny, just luck and positioning.
I don´t believe in this.
It´s Karma.
But that´s probably just me.
Old 7th September 2008
  #18
Gear Guru
 
henryrobinett's Avatar
Well her mother is Ann Murray. She has a big career herself. So I'm sure there's capital and friends in the business to help.
Old 7th September 2008
  #19
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shaman View Post

The production is now online:

Dawn Langstroth

amazing stuff with nice studio shots.

Very interesting is the song "elevator music" - which is available in 2 different arranged / mixed versions:

Version 1 is mixed by Al Schmitt
Version 2 is mixed by George Massenburg

Happy listening !
I guess I'm stupid. I can't find the two versions you are talking about
Old 8th September 2008
  #20
Gear Maniac
 

Very Cool! Nice depth. I like the contrast of the 'up close and small' vs 'far and wide' sounds, the combination of close and distant miced sounds. LOVE the drum sound on elevator music - anybody know how this was achieved? Go George and Dawn!!!

M.
Old 8th September 2008
  #21
Here for the gear
 

Haha, great stuff! GM's mix is a lot drier, but more along the lines of what I was hearing as far as the drums. There is a lot more separation in GM's mix which in my opinion doesn't work as well as the blended, orchestral arrangement. It seems a bit more sterile. The one thing that glaringly turned me back onto the website version was how the bridge was done. Holy crap, those guitars come out of nowhere and kind of step on her voice a bit. I wasn't a huge fan of that. They were placed right in the pocket but there was nothing there for a solid minute so my ears were a bit stunned (or maybe that's what he was going for to grab the listener before hitting the finale). I think they are both amazing, but I have to give the nod to the website version. Lush, emotional...it just fits the vocal and the song.
Old 8th September 2008
  #22
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bcgood's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by henryrobinett View Post
OMG. I just came back a couple hours ago from an all day hang with George in a small studio in Sacramento. He played me about 3 cuts from that record. I heard No Mercy 4 times. What a track.. What a sound. All live except for BV and a cello. Amazing stuff.
Dammit! I was supposed to go to this. Someone, (I forget who it was maybe from Tape Op) emailed me an invitation to go and I totally forgot about it. That sucks

Old 8th September 2008
  #23
Gear Guru
 
henryrobinett's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by bcgood View Post
Dammit! I was supposed to go to this. Someone, (I forget who it was maybe from Tape Op) emailed me an invitation to go and I totally forgot about it. That sucks

I saw your name tag. I wondered what happened.
Old 8th September 2008
  #24
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by anseo View Post
I guess I'm stupid. I can't find the two versions you are talking about
version 2 - massenburg mix is only available from apple itunes
Old 8th September 2008
  #25
Jai guru deva om
 
warhead's Avatar
 

Alan here was asking from around the corner "is that a new Sheryl Crow track?" during one of the more upbeat tracks.

It sounds good in a modern, safe way to me.

I like the sounds etc, except this streaming mp3 is pretty crunchy (especially through cheap PC speakers!).

I wish bands that came in my place had that kind of arranging skill, it's so nice to hear well arranged material even if it's not exactly my favorite style of music. Good music is good music though.

War
Old 8th September 2008
  #26
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ElMosca's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by henryrobinett View Post
Well her mother is Ann Murray. She has a big career herself. So I'm sure there's capital and friends in the business to help.
What is the difference then, between this "new" financing/distribution model and the "old model"? Is there a link where I can learn more about this idea?

Cheers,
++aldo

P.S. Hi Henry. We met last Saturday at the Hangar. I was the *other* loudmout.
Meeting Massenburg, Geoff Dakine, Peter Montessi, David Bock, the guy from True (forgot his name again), Ryan Hewitt (great guy, by the way. Really down-to-earth, despite his credits) and Wolff was the highlight of the year.
Old 8th September 2008
  #27
Gear Guru
 
henryrobinett's Avatar
Yes, yes! With the Chihuahua! It was great meeting you. That was a wonderful thing.
Old 8th September 2008
  #28
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wildpark's Avatar
 

i was also there really cool music

thx for the info



Quote:
Originally Posted by Shaman View Post
When gm was in munich - may 2007 he talked about his recent projects and played us some amazing demos from a new female artist he was producing at his new studio at blackbird.

He also mentioned his new internet promotion / distribution concept for young artists.

I wondered how the final mixes would sound + how his concepts work in the real world.

The production is now online:

Dawn Langstroth

amazing stuff with nice studio shots.

Very interesting is the song "elevator music" - which is available in 2 different arranged / mixed versions:

Version 1 is mixed by Al Schmitt
Version 2 is mixed by George Massenburg ( version 2 only available on apple itunes)

Happy listening !
Old 9th September 2008
  #29
Gear Addict
 
ToddP's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by henryrobinett View Post
And listening to this session there on those speakers (whatever they were), directly from Sound Blade and his Orpheus was the ****. All the frequencies, the dimension, the song, the performance and the mix.
The speakers were ATC SCM16s. I agree, it sounded very nice.
Old 10th September 2008
  #30
Gear Addict
 
bonne's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by henryrobinett View Post
The point, for me, it was recorded entirely live, all at once. He has a video tape of the session he showed yesterday. Seeing all the guitar players lined up, drums, Dawn standing behind a bunch of his sound diffusers. It was exciting. And listening to this session there on those speakers (whatever they were), directly from Sound Blade and his Orpheus was the ****. All the frequencies, the dimension, the song, the performance and the mix. That was the point. What else is there?
Hi Henry

Was the Orpheus used for playback only or was it (they) used for recording as well? In that case what mic pre did George use on Dawn?

Thanks
JB
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