Rabbits Full of Magic

30 May 2009

 

Beatles, Microphones, Metal Masters



The official Yoko Ono flickr has a really cool constant stream of new images, some of which are beautiful shots of Yoko's art and some of which are daily snapshots of little events and parties and moments in the lives of John Lennon and Yoko Ono. They seem to have been photo addicts like people in the 21st century are, and it's kind of odd to have them posting vacation photos up alongside my friends vacation photos. In the internet I guess John and Yoko live forever just like everyone else.

I downloaded this needledrop of The White Album from an issue called the Direct Metal Master, which was a late 70s German pressing using the most advanced analog processing direct from the master tapes, the master record negative being cut directly into metal rather than being cut into lacquer and then electroplated. Holy crap it sounds amazing. I just want to glue these headphones to my ears and spend the rest of my life listening to this. The acoustic guitars and vocals in particular sound like the Beatles are in your room and playing just for you, only it sounds infinitely better than even that would.

Realized that doing home recordings over 10 years and using the same microphones (SM58) for all ten years may not have been the best idea. So I'm starting to think about upgrading. It's extremely out of my price range but I really want a Neumann U47 microphone, which can switch from cardioide to omnidirectional with the flick of a switch, and is the mic that the Beatles used at every single recording session ever. Drool.

Man, I just read about this Beatles reunion that was actually going to happen and I never knew about it. Fuckin' shame:

An official documentary on The Beatles career had been in the pipeline as far back as 1970. Long time friend and Apple Corps manager Neil Aspinall had compiled footage from various sources around the world of concert, interview and television appearances. From this archival footage, Aspinall assembled a 90 minute feature film which was tentatively titled The Long and Winding Road and was completed in 1971. At this point, none of the former members had any involvement with the project and plans for its release lay dormant until 1980, when John Lennon stated as part of a legal deposition against the producers of the musical 'Beatlemania' that: "I and the other three former Beatles have plans to stage a reunion concert," an event to be filmed as a finale of The Long and Winding Road (which was now to be a television special).[1] According to Lennon's widow, Yoko Ono the concert would have been held in England: "Just days before his brutal death, John was making plans to go to England for a triumphant Beatles reunion. His greatest dream was to recreate the musical magic of the early years with Paul, George and Ringo...(he) felt that they had travelled different paths for long enough. He felt they had grown up and were mature enough to try writing and recording new songs."[2] The plans for a reunion were abandoned after Lennon was murdered on 8 December. -- Wikipedia

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Comments:
I made the same conclusion about mics a few years ago. A u87 costs more than a used car, unfortunately. I ended up getting a used akg c3000b on ebay. You can find them for less than $200 sometimes. The difference between that and a sm58 is significant and its a good affordable mic. Sounds really good on a bass amp and on vocals. I like the sm57 better on guitar amps. I haven't tried it on drums. Also I finally got a mic preamp and that makes a huge difference.
 
Cool, I will look into that! I've got my brother on the case right now, he works at guitar center so I've asked him if there have been any crazy awesome mic technology advancements lately. I recently got a Line6 amp that sounds amazingly like a number of old tube amps and it just seems like something should be available for mics.

Sm57/58 are classics tho. Yeah really good sound with guitars!
 
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