The Spencer Davis Group are really quite something. I'd never really known anything about them other than their couplea hits.
I was always a big fan of The Animals version of House of the Rising Sun, and you know, Nina Simone does a pretty good version herself. ;-) But I gotta give it up to the live version on Live at Blues Garage. Contrary to what you might imagine from the cover art, it was recorded in 2005. The sound of the song is very like the sound coming straight off the mixing board. Because you'll tend to mix drums a bit lower in a live environment (drums usually being plenty loud all by themselves) the mix might sound a tad old fashioned coming straight off the board (because records used to be mixed with quieter drums than they are now).*
As it turns out, Spencer Davis can play guitar.
*And yes, there are tricks you can use to get a direct mix off the board to sound like you want it to rather than "off the board" but they involve auxiliary sends.
So I'm listening to my buddy Chance's band, Delicate Cutters, on Spotify (because my CD and T-shirt haven't come in yet.)
I'll probably never open the CD case and just listen to them on Spotify.
But that's not the only thing I was thinking.
Female vocals are a funny thing. Like violins.
They sound they typically make doesn't "develop" until you get a few feet away from them.
But the popular way to record female (and, well, all pop vocalists) is to close mic them. And then kittywhump them with more compression than your grandma knows what to do with.
The effect of this is to make it sound like you're way down the vocalist's throat. You hear every tiny noise they make. This is especially true on ballads. I suppose it sounds "sexier". Perhaps that's because you never hear a woman's voice like that unless she's whispering in your ear in bed.
But Delicate Cutters don't do that super close-mic sound (which is frequently marked by pops on the letter "P" which sound -- to me -- like someone's kicking a mic stand). If I were producing a record like that I'd be inconsolably terrified of not sounding "professional". Which is ironic because even super-expensive albums by Sarah Mclachlan have both that "in your face" sound and some low frequency whumps that seem designed to smash your stereo.
So where was I?
Oh right, Delicate Cutters. They don't get too close with the voice. And it sounds great that way. The band itself sounds like it's in a "room" and not in the sort of fake bombastic space most pop records seem to exist in.
Stick-on customizable skins for drum heads. Chance says our drummer may want the option to remove the T-Mouse logo for some reason. I can't imagine why.
For our Tyrannosaurus Mouse concert I think we will end up performing at a volume level of around 85dB SPL A-weighted. That means we won't have to wear earplugs but the drummer will be "restrained". I don't know if that means brushes or not.
I need a way to let the guitar amplifiers drag on my signal. I'm finding that the buffering from my MXR analog delay is "hyping" my guitar sound too much for my pleasure. I might end up doing something strange there, I don't know what yet.
The evidence demonstrates that the first time Tyrannosaurus Mouse ever got together was Monday, September 21st, 2009.
I'm still looking at Napoleonic Jackets because, you know, other people need groovy jackets too. How much does it cost to make a hit song? About a million dollars. About $78,000 of that is in actually making the song.
I find it fascinating that there is a vocal producer. I've always suspected that. It explains the vocal style of (especially female vocalists) where the singer runs through a range of styles (baby-talk, belt, soft+whispy, etc.)
Katy Perry's music, which I find to be amongst the absolute worst of modern popular music, is not the issue here. As completely contrived as the lyrics and melodies are in this style of pop dance music (reaching their nadir in Rebecca Black's "Friday"), the current Internet kurfuffle is about her tour rider.
And honestly it doesn't seem like a very big deal. The rules that the driver has to not talk to the passengers, and not be security, seem... well... reasonable. There's an effort to make them seem "diva-esque" but as the rider repeatedly states, the reasons are for safety.
Sure, she wants some stuff in her dressing room. But for the sheer size this tour is (apparently the tour is a good 50 people minimum, it may be more) it's a fairly small effort on the promoter's part compared to all the things they likely have to do with the load-in and other logistics.