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  • jim68848

Great Time @ Blackbird and looking ahead

The METalliance workshop at Blackbird Studio exceeded expectations. Not only was it special from a recording technology and session perspective, it also lead to meeting some new like-minded friends. Everyone I met was as excited to be there as I was and the group represented from working professionals to hobbyists.

We spend a lot of time discussing Dolby Atmos and Sony 360 immersive technologies. This definitely seems to be where things are heading in the professional mixing game and, while I'm sticking with stereo for the foreseeable future, I was pleased to learn more about the technology and especially the challenges it presents technically and from a workflow perspective.

This is Studio C and is the brainchild of George Massenburg on the right. An Avid S6 is at its center and the monitoring is setup for both Dolby Atmos and Sony 360. Facing one way, it's on the ATC monitors 7.1.4 for Dolby Atmos and facing in the other direction, it's on the Genelecs 7.1.4 and Sony360. Interesting room. Both Frank Fillipetti and George are fantastic and so willing to share their extensive experience. We did some critical listening of some great music. It was a one of a kind experience in that particular room because it's the only one in the world like it! A special guest showed up unannounced, Bill Schnee. Wow. What a career and discography! All of these guys and girl!

In Studio D, Chuck Ainlay and Elliot Scheiner tracked Jon Randall as his band on a beautiful API Legacy Plus. Another great sounding room and a phenomenal group of Nashville musicians. Can't wait to hear these songs released. Really great stuff with some A list players.

Studio F featured Jimmy Douglas and an amazing listening experience hearing the Dolby Atmos mixes he did with Justin Timberland/Timbaland tracks. While I was psyched to be in this room because they installed the same mixing console I have, we didn't really use it as everything we listened to was all 'in the box'. Still very cool and really special to hear Jimmy's work.

Then we were in Studio A, the vintage Neve and Sylvia Massy and Niko Bolas. They did not disappoint as they tag teamed the recording process of a very cool act - Zmed Brothers. An Everly Brothers style and it was shockingly good. Sonically it was superb and fun was had by all throughout the tracking and the quick reference mixes.

All in all, it was a great weekend with old friends and new. What a bunch of characters! See below:

Looking ahead - I've very anxious to start tracking new material in March to break in the new layout and work out the bumps along the way. I'm not sure what I'll be tracking yet, but am speaking with several clients and, of course, members of my own band to figure out what will work best for the maiden voyage.

Until next time.........

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