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Iíve been searching for new music all wrong (Read 1316 times)
Dana
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Iíve been searching for new music all wrong
03/18/19 at 18:49:00
 
Iím experiencing an Aha Moment that Iíve been searching for new music all wrong.
First recordings are not just lies but damn lies (statistically speaking). †My favorite albums really only exist as recordings and never could be reproduced as live performances. That ďsoundĒ Iím looking for with depth, dynamics and realism are actually just snippets stitched together by a master craftsman. †Imaging is an illusion convincing but the not actually based on the position of the artist when the recording was made.

When did this aha moment occur you askÖ? †Iím constantly looking for that musical experience. †You know the one where the all the components come together and youíre transported into another state of existence. †On one of the many audio forums I read they asked what songs do you play to show off your stereo components? †As a stereo salesman in a life long ago this posting intrigued me and since Iím always looking for more music that helps me justify my stereo habit I clicked the link. †One of the repeated suggestions was a selection on the Shelby Lynn album Just a little Loviní. †Thanks to technology I was able to listen to album and they are correct it sounded great but why that one? †With a little research I found out it was engineered by Al Schmitt. †I also learned that every year the Grammys have a category for Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical (thanks Wikipedia). †Since 1962 Al Schmitt has had 29 submissions including some of my out of body experiences Steely Dan Aja and FM (No Static at All). †Also Al Schmitt has engineered the albums of Natalie Cole, Diana Krall, Toto, Dr. John, Melody Gardot and Ray Charles which were all nominated for best engineered albums.

Another example is Danny Kopelson who wasnít nominated but was the engineer for Casandra Wilson, The Be Good Tanyas , Holly Cole, Liz Wright, Bill Evans and Art Pepper.

So now Iím using the Discogs search function and selecting technical contributions. †Going to Discogs and searching for Al Schmitt there are 702 technical entries. †So what Iíve discovered is that there are hidden gems of information that could help point me to toward the next great find. †With so much great music available finding next ďit albumĒ could be as simple as looking who engineered the special album you hold so dear and finding out what else they created.

For me my first example was the Natalie Cole Stardust album. †Wow
     


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Bill Murray "What About Bob" There are two types of people in this world: Those who like Neil Diamond, and those who don't. My ex-wife loves him.
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Lon
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Re: Iíve been searching for new music all wrong
Reply #1 - 03/18/19 at 19:22:19
 
That's interesting Dana. I have a very different sort of music I'm enjoying I guess, and music made in a different way.

In my youth albums like Aja and other studio produced rock albums enthralled me but I rarely listen to anything like that these days. I did a little bit of recording myself and have an idea of the skill and equipment needed to make those kind of recordings.

Honestly though I think I prefer recordings made BEFORE the 'Seventies and that sort of big studio engineering, and I am drawn to recordings that are much more simply engineered. For example live recordings done with just one to half a dozen microphones. Even one microphone stereo or mono recordings done live or "live in the studio."

To me some of the greatest recordings were made in label studios in the 'Fifties such as the Miles Davis, Charles Mingus, Dave Brubeck, Duke Ellington et al recordings for Columbia. These recordings played back on the original vinyl are amazing! As are for example many of the "RCA Living Stereo" recordings, "Mercury Living Presence," MGM and Clef and Verve label recordings, etc. And when I do look for recordings by engineer it's recordings by someone like Rudy Van Gelder. Van Gelder began recording in the mid-fifties by building his own equipment and recording in his parent's living room while working as an optometrist. Some of the very best recordings he made were made there for labels such as Prestige, New Jazz, Blue Note and Savoy. At the close of that decade he had a studio built to his specifications in a stand-alone building in Englewood Cliffs, NJ, and he recorded there until a few years ago. Although he was pretty secretive about his methods he basically recorded live with all players in one space, no to very little editing or over-dubbing, mixing live as the recording progressed. This type of recording gives an immediate and realistic sound that I look for and crave.

I listen more for the honesty of the recording and the performance than "spectacular sound" I guess. . . though I consider an honest and direct recorded product played back actually as "spectacular sound."

What is so cool about Decware equipment is it brings us closer to the recorded event and whatever type of recording we love we can really enjoy it.
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Dana
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Re: Iíve been searching for new music all wrong
Reply #2 - 03/18/19 at 20:48:48
 
Yeah, not a lot of new Miles Davis albums coming out but you should try

Fred Plaut  https://www.discogs.com/artist/384857-Fred-Plaut?filter_anv=0&subtype=Technical&...

268 technical entries.  I suspect you own most of them but they're new to me and it helps build my a playlist.


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Lon
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"Love without
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worthless!"
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Posts: 16109
Re: Iíve been searching for new music all wrong
Reply #3 - 03/18/19 at 21:34:11
 
I'm very familiar with Fred Plaut! That's what I was talking about, the 30th Street Columbia Studio recordings, Plaut was one of the engineers there in the late period and later for many many recordings in subsequent studios. And also was a location engineer for live recordings. I'm glad you are checking recordings he worked on out.

I just looked and Rudy Van Gelder has over 28,000 entries! A long career, and on his own terms for the most part.

I'm not looking for "new music" the way you are. I don't make playlists, don't have anything to play a list on. I have a narrower focus as singer-songwriters and rock and pop of the 'eighties on just don't excite me. I still find new music while discussing music on music boards and just looking at players and composers etc. I already know, building on foundations I have. And I have a troublingly big library of my own to browse. We're on different paths, and I think we like different music. And that's great! To each their own, one of the wonderful things in life is finding your own and owning it.
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mark58
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Re: Iíve been searching for new music all wrong
Reply #4 - 03/18/19 at 22:12:25
 
Hey Dana, I hadn't heard of Fred Plaut but am familiar with his work apparently.  I have pretty much every Jazz Recording he was involved with...Mingus, Ellington, Monk, Dave Brubeck, Miles Davis, JJ Johnson...they are all good if you haven't heard them yet.  Lon and I are into the 50's and 60's Jazz pretty heavy.  I'm sure I have a lot of the Classical albums too but haven't listened to them in years.

I seem to be narrowing my listening to Musicians known to me and haven't been doing much buying lately.  I do buy any One Oclock or Two o'clock lab band CDs or LPs that come up on ebay at reasonable prices...love their Big Band offerings.

I do try to add new...or should I say new to me artists in my Spotify library so when I'm streaming with the computer, I can explore.  I haven't done this in a while though.  I have been adding some of your posted artists and of course some of Lon's too.  If you are able to stream the Blue Note Jazz from the 50's and 60's, that'd be a great adventure. Those albums were usually directly recorded to two tracks...very simple...most by Rudy Van Gelder.  I could spend the rest of my life just listening to those.

Anyway, search and listen any way that floats your boat.  I've spent countless hours just wandering from track to track on youtube...I call them my Musical Adventures.  I never know where they'll take me.  Mark




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"The man that hath no music in himself, nor is not moved with the concord of sweet sounds, is fit for treasons, deceptions, and spoils;
The motions of his spirit are dull as night and his affections dark as Hell. Let no such man be trusted." William Shakespeare
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Dana
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Re: Iíve been searching for new music all wrong
Reply #5 - 03/19/19 at 03:29:51
 
I'm more team Joni Mitchell than team Miles Davis so it makes sense that this method of discovery might not appeal to everyone.

Interesting fact.  (to me anyway)  
Henry Lewy who engineered the  Joni Mitchel albums also engineered
Joe Cocker
Crazy Horse
Charles Lloyd
Flying Burrito Brothers
The Ventures
& The Monkeys
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Bill Murray "What About Bob" There are two types of people in this world: Those who like Neil Diamond, and those who don't. My ex-wife loves him.
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Geno
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Without music, life
would be a mistake.
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Posts: 527
Re: Iíve been searching for new music all wrong
Reply #6 - 03/19/19 at 12:29:26
 
Guys, Are you familiar with the recordings that sound engineer Roy Dunann made with Contemporary Records? He came to Contemporary from Capitol and made some of the best sounding recordings ever. Only a short period from the late 50ís to the early 60ís. He recorded the likes of Shelly Manne, Art Pepper, etc. The best and most natural recording Iíve ever heard was his recording of Sonny Rollins - Way Out West. When I first put this record on, I was gobsmacked! †
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mark58
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Re: Iíve been searching for new music all wrong
Reply #7 - 03/19/19 at 13:27:12
 
Dana, I'm a huge fan of Joni Mitchell, that may be an understatement. I have all the Asylum albums...probably most of the others. I have the Neil Young albums Lewy did and some Joe Cocker too. †I hate to admit it but I have those early Monkees albums from when I was 8 or 9yo...

Geno, Art Pepper is one of my top 5 favorites and I have multiples of those Contemporary albums as well as those of other artists...good stuff...

PS...I looked at what I listened to yesterday and two of the few were engineered/produced by the above discussed Engineers.



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"The man that hath no music in himself, nor is not moved with the concord of sweet sounds, is fit for treasons, deceptions, and spoils;
The motions of his spirit are dull as night and his affections dark as Hell. Let no such man be trusted." William Shakespeare
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Lon
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"Love without
guts is
worthless!"
Philip K. D*ck

Posts: 16109
Re: Iíve been searching for new music all wrong
Reply #8 - 03/19/19 at 13:56:58
 
Geno wrote on 03/19/19 at 12:29:26:
Guys, Are you familiar with the recordings that sound engineer Roy Dunann made with Contemporary Records? He came to Contemporary from Capitol and made some of the best sounding recordings ever. Only a short period from the late 50ís to the early 60ís. He recorded the likes of Shelly Manne, Art Pepper, etc. The best and most natural recording Iíve ever heard was his recording of Sonny Rollins - Way Out West. When I first put this record on, I was gobsmacked! †

I'm familiar with Contemporary and have most of the label. I'm not quite as enamored of all of Dunann's work as others seem to be but it's solid.

For me it's more about music than engineering . . . I'll listen to crappy recordings to hear excellent music.
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Geno
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Without music, life
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Re: Iíve been searching for new music all wrong
Reply #9 - 03/19/19 at 17:56:57
 
Mark,

Joni is one of my favorites too. A talent like hers only comes around every 1000 years or so  ;)
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Lon
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"Love without
guts is
worthless!"
Philip K. D*ck

Posts: 16109
Re: Iíve been searching for new music all wrong
Reply #10 - 03/19/19 at 18:53:57
 
I like Joni a lot. I don't find myself listening to her that much these days. Listened to her a lot when I was a young lonely man.

Now playing
"Helen Sings, Teddy Swings" Helen Merrill with Teddy Wilson, Coalition LP

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Dana
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Re: Iíve been searching for new music all wrong
Reply #11 - 03/20/19 at 18:32:15
 
Update to the new searching technique.  I listen to a lot of streaming and the credits aren't always readily apparent beyond the performing musicians but https://www.allmusic.com/  has a credits tab that so far has provided the information I need to provide the search criteria.  What I've noticed though, is that Disccogs provides more results than the allmusic site.

Happy Hunting
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Bill Murray "What About Bob" There are two types of people in this world: Those who like Neil Diamond, and those who don't. My ex-wife loves him.
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mark58
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Re: Iíve been searching for new music all wrong
Reply #12 - 03/20/19 at 19:06:36
 
I use both those sites.  I'm listening to spotify and youtube today listening to new things.  I finally got around to listening to Jose James...this one now.  Really like his voice but some tracks on other albums where he goes a bit hip hop or rap...aren't my cup o tea Smiley

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"The man that hath no music in himself, nor is not moved with the concord of sweet sounds, is fit for treasons, deceptions, and spoils;
The motions of his spirit are dull as night and his affections dark as Hell. Let no such man be trusted." William Shakespeare
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Lon
Seasoned Member
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"Love without
guts is
worthless!"
Philip K. D*ck

Posts: 16109
Re: Iíve been searching for new music all wrong
Reply #13 - 03/20/19 at 19:53:20
 
I like all of them to be honest. . . he's got a great spin on all the genres, rarely is a fellow so good at spanning them!
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Dana
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Re: Iíve been searching for new music all wrong
Reply #14 - 03/22/19 at 20:14:16
 
https://www.stereophile.com/content/clowns-left-me-jokers-right

Recent article Stereophile magazine

"Unless you're sitting in, say, one of the first five rows at a classical concert, there's no such thing as 'soundstaging.' At concerts, regardless of the hall or numbers of musicians playing,
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Bill Murray "What About Bob" There are two types of people in this world: Those who like Neil Diamond, and those who don't. My ex-wife loves him.
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