[This just in from Steve Cook, session bassist extraordinaire!]
This music business is a funny one. We have our steady gigs, we have producers that like to call on us for different sessions, then there’s the ‘X’ factor: the random gig calls. Sometimes they are for a used car lot sale or a hot dog stand dedication, however sometimes they are from the largest pickup manufacturer in the world. I like hot dogs, and I like Seymour Duncan pickups a whole lot as well.
The voice on the other end of the phone was Kathy Duncan, the head of Seymour Duncan, and her request was a simple one: “Can you record samples of every one of our bass pickups? You have creative liberty to do whatever you like, we just need the samples to be consistent, and representative of the pickups their truest form.”
Well, that narrows it down a bit, doesn’t it?
There were a couple of hurdles to leap in order to make this happen. First, we needed to find all the instruments required in which to install the pickups. Second, I found a tech that would come to the recording sessions and basically work on an assembly line of removing and installing pickups. For example, as I tracked the first P-bass pickup, he would be installing the first Jazz bass pickups, then we’d swap instruments, and move on to the second in each type, and so on.
Where the logistics were a bit daunting, the one constant on which I could rely was my recording set up. For this project (and all my home recording projects), I run PreSonus Studio One through a couple of FireStudio Projects, controlled with a FaderPort. The Class-A preamps in the FireStudios sound amazing, and Studio One is an incredibly fluid and easy platform in which to work. The FaderPort made the whole process easy. I had controls under my left hand with a bass in my right. The finished files sound great, and I (and thankfully Seymour Duncan) were happy with the results.
The project was really a lot of fun for me for several reasons. Rarely do we get to sample dozens of pickups at the same time. As I go back and listen to the individual tracks, I have been able to pinpoint exact tones I like paired with certain instruments, and I know exactly which pickups to install in my personal basses—mission accomplished! I also liked getting to know my Studio One software and other PreSonus products more in-depth, and that I have great sounding tools at my fingertips.
Thanks PreSonus, for continuing to impress, and for keeping us Nashville musicians rockin’! You can hear the demos over at the new Seymour Duncan site.
[This just in from Ian Ethan Case, who used some PreSonus gear on his latest album. Check out the video preview for some of his astonishing work.]
When I first set out to record Run Toward The Mountains, I wanted to go for the absolute best sound quality I could. I had a unique opportunity to record at a new state-of-the-art recording studio where I basically had unlimited free studio time, and access to some of the best mics, preamps, and converters that money can buy. I worked with the engineer there over the course of two or three days just working on different mic setups, just working on tone.
While I was happy with the sound we got, I also did some experimenting at home where I just have two really good mics and my FireStudio Project; no preamps, rack gear or $600 direct boxes. I was pretty shocked to find that I was actually getting just as good a sound with my home setup, and actually even preferred it a little bit over the “million dollar setup” at the studio! I’d always had great results from my FireStudio interfaces but this gave me a new respect for them, and gave me a feeling of freedom knowing I could record at home and know that I was getting world-class results. It’s a good thing, because I ended up spending two years working non-stop on this album (a 92-minute double-disc), whenever I wasn’t playing concerts. When you’re not on the clock you can take the time to make things right and achieve a level of tightness that’s tough to get to otherwise, and I’m really grateful I had a way to do that for this album.
When it came time to master it, I was so happy with how the tracks had come together that I decided to bring it to the top-tier mastering house in Boston (M-Works Mastering, in Cambridge). I was expecting the mastering engineer, who has worked with his share of Grammy-winning artists and producers, to kind of complain about the tracks I was giving him, as I did all the mixing myself and I’m not a real mix engineer. But he was actually really complimentary of the mixes and only made very small adjustments. I know it wouldn’t have been that way if the raw sound of the interface I recorded everything through wasn’t solid to begin with.
At this point I’m absolutely thrilled with how the album came out and have never been so proud of something I’ve put out there. I’m grateful that I had a way to do it the way I did it, recording at home, despite not having tens or hundreds of thousands to spend on gear.
Ready to get started recording guitar? Well, for less than the cost of that ill-advised vintage true-analog quadra-flange pedal you bought a couple months ago, you can get an AudioBox iOne and Studio One 3 Artist. It’s everything you need to record guitar at home. (Everything except a computer or iPad, that is—that’s on you.)
That’s right, I said iPad—meaning after a quick install of Capture for iPad, you can record your guitar tracks the AudioBox iOne to your AppleSlab, and then beam the recordings over your wi-fi network to your main computer (where you’ve installed Studio One, RIGHT?!) to tweak, sculpt, and mix your tracks.
Oh, and here’s a great review of the iOne from Guitar Interactive Magazine:
More than just audio interfaces, the AudioBox iOne and iTwo are the heart of a creative workflow aimed at taking your inspirations and turning them into finished songs. Tightly integrating award-winning hardware with powerful software across working environments, watch recording artist The Hitchhiker (Luis Mariani) go from iPad to laptop to finished master—ready for purchase and download by your fans.
Mariani left Venezuela as a political refugee and, now an American citizen, lives and works in Louisiana bayou country, where he put together a band of self-described “good ol’ south Louisiana music scene boys” and makes hard-rocking music with a message.
A great video review of the AudioBox iOne from Interactive Guitar Magazine! Thanks guys!
For more on the AudioBox iOne, click here!
From now until March 31, 2015, smart customers who buy the AudioBox iOne, iTwo, or iTwo Studio will get some great bonuses: The Ampire XT Metal Pack and the Complete Acoustic Drum Loops bundle, both for Studio One. These are valued at $29.99 and $59.99, respectively, so that’s nearly $100 in free software.
Oh, and Studio One Artist is included with the interface purchase anyhow, BTW, even when we don’t have a promo rolling—and that’s another $100 in free software. Just sayin’, that brings the total value of this deal to around $200 in free software.
In case you don’t already know, the iOne and iTwo interfaces allow you to record audio in sterling 96kHz quality. Beyond that, you can record mobile-style to your iPad into the included Capture Duo software, and then wirelessly z-z-z-zap your recorded tracks over to your main workstation for mixdown in the also-included-and-aforementioned Studio One Artist.
The Ampire XT Metal Pack features six new bröötal amp models for Ampire, Studio One’s included amp and cabinet simulator—as well as six new cabinet emulations. Furthermore, we’ve recognized that metal drums (and metal drummers) have rightfully begun to infringe on the guitar’s monopolization of the metal spotlight. As such, we’ve included a brand-new metal drum kit for Impact, rife with clicky kick drums, anvil snares, and… well, metallic cymbals. All told, this package is heavier than depleted uranium, and probably about as dangerous.
The Complete Acoustic Drum Loops Bundle features multitrack and stereo mixes of professional live drum performances, recorded in a state-of-the-art studio with world-class microphones. are ready to use in stereo and multitrack format. Each style is an entire library of matching loops that can be arranged to fit any song form, just as a real drummer would play them, and includes individual loops for verses, bridges, choruses, fills, and variations. The multitrack loops contain separate tracks for kick, snare, hi-hat, toms, overhead mics, room mics, and ambient mics so you can mix and edit to taste. Styles include:
How do you take advantage of this deal? Easy. Just buy yourself an AudioBox iOne, iTwo, or iTwo Studio and register it to your account at my.presonus.com. The software download links will appear in your account upon successful registration.
Start recording today with this complete, all-PreSonus mobile-recording package for Mac, Windows, and iPad! It’s a great choice for multitrack song production, demos and musical inspirations, live performances, podcasts, field recording for video or sound design, and much more!
Record in the field (at 96k, if you like) with the included Capture for iPad software, then wirelessly transfer your tracks to your Studio One workstation for mixing!
PreSonus is supporting schools and students in many ways, and now is the perfect time to check out our music education solutions at musiced.presonus.com.
Any student who plays an instrument, from beginner to college, can benefit from listening to recordings of their own performances. In fact, any professional musician will tell you that this is the best way to improve! We’ve put together a tutorial series called “Step up Your Practice” to demonstrate the benefits of recorded practice using our AudioBox Studio or Music Creation Suite. Check it out at musiced.presonus.com/stepup.
We’d also like you to consider Studio One and Notion for any of your recording or composition courses. Both offer highly intuitive ease-of-use that doesn’t get in the way of the most important thing—learning. Furthermore, we offer educational discounts and/or multi-seat licensing, and plenty of tutorials. For full music labs, the Music Creation Suite provides everything you need for recording, including software, recording interface, microphone, MIDI controller keyboard, and cables—and to top it off, we offer a complete school curriculum to help you get started.
Coming off the world record-setting win of the Blue Devils Drum and Bugle Corps, our marching band audio system is now stronger than ever. We partnered with our friends at Audio-Technica to provide a turnkey solution to support field audio—read all about it at musiced.presonus.com/fieldaudio.
PreSonus is the leader in music education technology presentations. As such we are excited to participate in top national and state music conferences. Check out of list of upcoming conferences and come say hello!
If you’re interested in either school or student discounts on PreSonus gear, please contact one of our education retailers at musiced.presonus.com/buy.
John Mlynczak, PreSonus Education Market Manager, is is the kind of guy who leads by example. He recently produced this incredible nine-part video series focusing on using the AudioBox Studio, AudioBox Stereo, or AudioBox Music Creation Suite with a pair of Eris studio monitors to make practicing at home more efficient. Consider these tips “best practices” for your practices. Feel free to share your success or any new ideas!
While John’s videos were designed for music educators, fact is these tips are applicable to darn near anyone who wants to get some music made. If you’re a kid just starting out, or a home-recording vet just looking to dust off the rudiments, chances are you’ll find something of value here.
For more in PreSonus in music education, visit http://musiced.presonus.com