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Single Most Defining Moment: What inspired you to get into the music biz? Dynamics Processors (HW)
Old 12th December 2002
  #31
Gear interested
 

It was 1960 I was 3 years old.
I was on vacation with my parents in Boys Hot Springs California.
My sister brought me down to an outside dance floor where a jukebox sat in the middle, someone dropped in a nickel and played The Ventures Walk Don't Run.
The song ran right through me, I remember it like it was yesterday I knew right then and there music was my life...
Nothing else could even come close.
Old 12th December 2002
  #32
Lives for gear
 
Curve Dominant's Avatar
Great thread! What a gas to see where everyone's coming from. Unfortunately I have to interrupt with another...

***DISCLAIMER***

I want to make sure a reference I made to Sigma Sound in my previous post was not misconstrued. Sigma is one of the best houses on the East Coast, my first choice for high-end production in Philly. The statement referred to the producer on that gig, not to the studio itself. Sigma rocks and Joe Tarsia is a local hero of mine.

Also: the #1 room has been stocked with an SSL 9064 and some modified Otaris since that last episode. And the #2 room has a VERY nice PT HD3 system now, which I hope to be raising some hell with in the near future.

Thanks for letting me clear that up.
Old 12th December 2002
  #33
Lives for gear
 
3rdpath's Avatar
not sure if it was all the records my mom bought me( beatles, who, etc ) or her playing gershwin on the piano..but it seemed inevitable that i would be a musician.

but the first band i ever saw( the renegades, red river, NM, 1969) sealed my fate. i had no idea they were playing covers...geez i remember them playing " i got a line on you" and everyone dancing on the roller rink floor so vividly. beautiful sonic overload for an 8 year old.

what else could a poor boy do but play in a rock-n-roll band....
Old 12th December 2002
  #34
Lives for gear
 
groundcontrol's Avatar
 

Went to see a friend's older brother's coverband playing outside at a summer party when I was around 8. The stage was a semi trailer platform and there were those amazing looking Cerwin Vega grey rug covered cabs with red woofers for PA. I remember them playing Styx tunes... ( ) I stood up front staring blankly in total awe. At the end of the show, the hottest chick in the place walked right to my friend's brother and off they went in his golden flake painted Nova SS... heh

My fate was sealed right there. rollz
Old 12th December 2002
  #35
Gear Head
 

played music in some format growing up (piano lessons, "strings" class like i think eveAnna said, band) and then took up guitar. went to a great teacher (robert newton) where i grew up in south carolina, and he turned me from wanting to learn "sweet child of mine" (yes i'm a little younger) to learning jazz chords! he would teach me jazz guitar, rock guitar, bass, keyboards, etc - whatever i wanted to learn. when he introduced me to the concept multitrack recording, i was amazed and i guess that's probably what got me started in this business.

incidentally, it was a random summer internship with a multimedia / video / presentation company that got me hooked on sound for picture...

-a-
Old 12th December 2002
  #36
Gear interested
 
JKadis's Avatar
 

[I swore I wouldn't join any more BBs...] I guess the first music I really wanted to be part of was about 1959. We moved to France and the only music on the radio was AFN playing The Coasters amd Kitty Wells. I wanted more rock'n'roll, but there wasn't any. Once we returned in 1961, I started on the guitar as my parents insisted we learn musical instruments. (My brother chose drums and wound up with a violin like his grandfather.) I learned a bunch of Ventures and surf guitar licks and played with anyone I could find who knew a musical instrument. I got involved with the folk singing club at my high school and wound up starting a Rolling Stones cover band that got quite popular. We opened for Muddy Waters and I got to play his guitar. In retrospect, that was it. At the time, I didn't really appreciate what had happened. Graduating from high school in 1967 in the San Francisco area meant a summer of free concerts by the Dead, Quicksilver, Jefferson Airplane, Big Brother...how could you not wind up in the music field?

We won a battle of the bands and got to record at Leo De Gar Kulka's Golden State Recorders in 1965. That was a revelation. They wore lab coats and looked like scientists. I was hooked. I was interested in science and electronics from a very early age and it eventually dawned on me that guitar amps were a fertile playground. (Installing a master volume knob on my Bassman made it an assman. Cool!) Once my dad brought home the old Revere reel-to-reel, I was also a recording engineer! It's only taken 35 years of "continuing education"...

-Jay Kadis
Old 15th December 2002
  #37
Motown legend
 
Bob Olhsson's Avatar
 

My sixth grade class was asked to write and produce a radio show. When I got my first look at a control room and a console, it was the end of my aspirations to become a railroad engineer.
Old 23rd December 2002
  #38
Gear Head
 
bump's Avatar
 

Cool

Ah yes, it was 1962. My buddy, Matty McHale, had an older brother who was a Beatle freak and even had a copy of "the Silver Bealtles" with Stu on the cover. Matty's folks provided some toy drums and guitars and we would play air guitar and air drums and sing along with the Fab Fouf almost every day for a while. C'mon we were 5 years old. Got a practice pad and a pair of drum sticks at age 6.

Fast forward to 1981. After years of playing clubs, putting out demos, forming and re-forming bands etc, etc, I got a little four track cassette by Yamaha and started putting my stuff down. It wasn't so much the actual recording that lit me up, it was the fact that I could realize the music in my head on my own terms.

Now jump to 1991. After not having played out or worked in a studio for 5 or 6 years, I joined a good paying casual band and the leader had a hard disc recording system. We of course laid down demos etc. Watching this guy I came to the perhaps slightly misguided realization that for relatively few bucks I could put together a working studio that was capable of turning out product. Up until that point I had always assumed that setting up a studio would have been a $200k venture. Being a long time fan of severe audio manipulation, I was floored by the possibilities available in working with even the pedestrian plug-ins this cat had in his arsenal. I started what would be two years of research into product and funding. Although the wife loved our two weeks rides across the country each year, she was keen on me getting rid of the Harley, in light of some injuries to myself and others. I made the deal that I'd sell the bike if I got the proceeds to put toward the studio. Ok, so we have some funding. Ended up spending about twice what I got for the Harley. (oops) I had an acoustician in to help with the plans and built Random Reason Studios. Haven't looked back since. It certainly doesn't pay the bills but I get to put out all the product I want, get paid to record some locals and help out the local puck scene which my older son is a part of. I'm also glad to report that my young son is now following in his older sibling's footsteps and taking up the bass guitar. I think we've got the bottom end covered.

Anyways, to make a short story even longer, I'll recap. "The Moment", musically, was The Beatles and engineering wise it was when I heard what the aforementioned band leader was able to do with his meager computer set up and realizing "Hey, I could do that". Up until then I had not even let myself dream of owning and working a studio as I had thought it beyond my means.

Thanks fer playin'
Old 24th December 2002
  #39
Gear Guru
 
Drumsound's Avatar
I like others can't remember a time when Music wasn't the plan. My Dad's Uncle Mario was a drummer and I remember being so excited that we were going to go to his house. He had drums there. I think I was three. I had to walk between the bass drum and the hi-hat. I had to jump to hit the crash cymbal. The way you could change the sound of the snare drum was the coolest thing I'd ever seen. Uncle Mario gave me a practice pad and sticks and taught me how to hold them (traditional grip, I switched in fifth grade).

I joined band in fourth grade and went all the way through a Bachelor of Music. I have played many types of music in many places.

I became an engineer and producer when a friend who owned a studio said he was thinking of hiring somebody to run the place. I became a studio owner when he realized he was too busy to have a studio.

And here I sit, hoping the room stays booked and people hear the music!
Old 24th December 2002
  #40
Gear interested
 

My inspirational moment was walking through the doorway of Air Studios #1 control room when Air was based at Oxford Circus.

I'd just left college with an electronics degree and been for interviews with Plessey, Digital, Marconi and the like. All these places had people in lab coats and brown shoes. Bad vibe!

Then a friend of mine tells me about this ad in the Daily Telegraph -a broad sheet newspaper!- for a tech @ Air. I knew nothing about the music industry and hadn't been that interested until I got the interview and saw the control room. All those knobs and lights, giant Neve board, huge tape machines and gargantuan JBL4350's, this was way cool and it was the first job I actually wanted. Plus people in 'normal clothes'.

After a week I hadn't heard anything so I called the tech manager who said they hadn't found anybody 'suitable'. I asked if they would give me a try. He called me back and offered me a 3 month trial period, no mention of money, I just said yes. Three months passed on paltry wage, I kept quiet and the rest is history.

Frank
Fx Rentals
UK
Old 24th December 2002
  #41
Gear maniac
 

Well...
My dad always had music playing while I was growing up in Germany during the 70's, he had an old reel to reel with every folk, rock and classical song you could think of. He even had underwater whale songs that I still give him a hard time about today, lol.
As the 80's came I was living outside Philadelphia in NJ going to Junior High when Electric Funk and Rap music hit, I started breakdancing, my dad was unhappy with my music taste and the rest is history.
When I was 14 he asked me what I wanted to do when I grew up, I told him " I want to make records", he laughed thinking I was joking. I'm 32 now and that's what I do, he's still laughing. It's what I've always wanted to do like Brian T.
Old 24th December 2002
  #42
Acc gtr 13th b day, I wanted a racing bike instead...




Old 27th December 2002
  #43
Gear addict
 
mixer's Avatar
 

went to criteria studios in miami to loan out an acoustic with a freind who worked there...watched a recording session...put down the guitar and picked up a mic...never looked back.
Old 27th December 2002
  #44
Jax
Lives for gear
 

DISCLAIMER/Intro: Now that I've been working on this post for the last half hour, I realize it is lengthy and I give up on trying to make it short and convenient. Initially, I didn't think much of the topic until I started replying to it, and found that remembering how I got into this game was more important than making it brief and maybe more readable. I'm keeping a copy of this for my own sanity and future reference. The topic is quite timely as I needed to be my own sponge on this one and reabsorb why I got into recording. BTW, thanks to EveAnna for asking a great question. The answer to your question explains for each person WHY they are doing music.


There was no single defining moment for me. I got into the music biz through a series of experiences I've had as a drummer in bands. Starting out with a boombox in a $600/mo. (shared!) 12x15 pratice closet with three other people making incoherent noise, I wanted know what we would sound like if we could really hear eachother. Were we actually any good or was I wasting my time? It turns out that the screeching boombox tapes did actually land us some gigs, long ago. So I ask you, do bartenders and club managers really give a damn about sound quality? Well, do they?? Not back in the late 80's in SF they didn't. The tape only had to resemble music and maybe have a discernible pulse within the wall of noise.

The next step for the band was agreeing we should go somewhere and do a real recording. Because it was a well-known punk dive and it was cheap, we went to Gilman St. in Berkeley and paid some guy for recording us to skinny analog tape. What do ya know? We were actually pretty good I thought, but I still wasn't very interested in the recording process. A little, but not much.

The point to me was that I could hear what we were doing now. This was no stellar recording, but the instruments were distinct and they weren't hidden behind volume. When we practiced and thus when we played shows, we now had a source tape to reference our own songs from. As the drummer, this was kind of a revelation to me. OHHhhhh! The change is THERE and then we go into THAT part HERE! This awakened my musical interest more than I had known I had any, and I was working with the band to come up with parts and generally hearing ways to make the music more involving. Finally I was able to communicate my ideas within a context.

Jumping ahead about 5 years, I picked up a sequencer and a synth from guitar center. I grew up with a piano in the house and played it in my own odd, self-taught kind of way for many years. The Kawai K-11 and Cubase Score would allow me to capture the old phrases and spooky little riffs that had been with me all that time. Eventually I thought "Wouldn't it be cool if you could record acoustic instruments into a computer like this?" I decided that the ease of arrangement, the ability to loop and edit, and patchwork method of composing songs would be a helluva lot more fun if I could make a real band work that way.

At the time, I didn't know anything about Pro Tools or any of its early incarnations that existed back then. With the bands I had been in over the years and the various recordings we'd done at local studios, the inspiration hadn't quite clicked like it did after getting into sequencing my own stuff. Ironically, in those days I had seen recording studios and all the fancy gear they were equipped with for what they were: nothing more than tools that could be put together in the form of a vehicle for music to be captured. But you couldn't arrange on a mixing console or a tape deck. You couldn't easily patch together various sounds at will from a central brain until they even resembled what you heard in your heard. In the studio, that meant wheeling amps around, changing mics, swapping snare drums or kits, cymbals, guitars, PLAYERS! MADNESS! I saw the difference. The musical idea is perishable and must be handled like fresh food in a gourmet kitchen to get the most out of it.

Since I came from a background of playing live instruments with others doing the same all around me, I quickly became dissatisfied with the stale sounds coming out of my synth. Delving more deeply into electronic sounds didn't interest me. The excitement lived in playing with other musicians again, and showing them examples of music I had come up with. Much later I realized my compostional approach had turned me into a different musician and dramatically shifted how I played drums as well. However, the magic of developing tunes as painstakingly and patiently as I can on a synth and sequencer can only really happen with people who have enough of a level of dedication and time.

All of that translated to building my own studio when I got away from the synth thing in favor of developing music with others again. The challenge of making music from the interaction of ideas with others is far more interesting to me. The results of well-concieved and comfortable collaborations have borne this out. In all honesty, I'm doing the studio thing because music is what I've enjoyed the most out of everything else I've tried. I find it harder to function in a less familiar world and I wonder what I would happily do for the rest of my life outside of music.

There is less collaboration and more time spent trying to get bands or musicians in here just to record anything these days. Got to get those bills paid!! Having the studio environment where I can use my skills, tools and time to make music is what matters for me. Ultimately I'd like to work on my music most of the time, but it doesn't matter so much if it's mine or someone else's, as long as it's good.
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