If you happened to have read the previous weekend’s NY Times Magazine highlighting “25 Songs That Tell Us Where Music Is Going,” you may have encountered a short article about drummer Matt Chamberlain. You can find out more about what he’s done and who he’s played for here, and then you might be interested to know how you, too, can (attempt to) get such a sound for your recordings.
If you are not a drummer or can’t entice a good one to play for you, then you may want to use the many loops Chamberlain has made available. Alternately, should you have that drummer at hand who can play in the pocket, a quick search will reveal a series of videos featuring Matt playing for esteemed engineer/producer Bob Clearmountain as a showcase of cleanly executed recording techniques.
Taking the simplest approach, here is the two-mic technique for those of us on a limited budget and, if you’re lucky, a really stellar drummer at the kit. 😉
I’ve kinda fallen in love with this song after a bit of a courtship, having heard it repeatedly this past week on too-frequent trips to Starbucks:
“River” by Leon Bridges, from the album Coming Home.
It’s arguably his best performance. “Smooth Sailin'” is pretty cool, too, with a deliberately hyped retro production sound that defines the whole album and here it pointedly fingerprints its impression by opting deliberately for grit rather than laying out every pristine detail.
There’s a healthy influence of Sam Cooke on Bridges and similarities in delivery—the slight rising and falling slopes and curves of the notes—that he shares with Harry Connick Jr. and even a pinch of James Taylor, at least to my ears. An echo of a singer whom I can’t quite put my finger on still gnaws at me…somehow Johnny Rivers singing “Summer Rain” was my first association, but not quite, and then Sixto “Sugar Man” Rodriguez occurred to me…so I’ll have to revisit this. See if you agree by listening to this mix.
Listen to this! A great celebration of Hawaiian musical culture: so many expressive voices and instruments on this one song. And the process of multi-tracking the sound with picture—exquisitely shot, each musician on location, and creating a spectacularly coherent mix—is so well done. Nice work by sound man Dave Tucciarone and cinematographer Ruben Carrillo!
Project Kuleana: Music For The Well-Being Of Our Earth. An inter-island group performance of “Kaulana Na Pua.” Produced by Dawn Kaniaupio. For full credits, including all musicians, see the end of the video.