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Why I Love Mechanical Music

Real mechanical music has the ability to get people to camp out, around the fire, so to speak. Music is unique in that it stokes so many physical, mental, and emotional triggers. It’s impressive experiencing the human mastery of a mechanical instrument, emulating nature at it’s core. Most commonly via musicians performing live, there’s something about the mechanical experience of music that makes people stop and stare – and most importantly, listen. Today, I feel like have to acknowledge vinyl playback as a mechanical live performance, as it seems to have the same effect on the community. I was at a few casual gatherings this past week, where my friends’ teenage kids had turntables and a bunch of their parents’ old records – we actually hung out together, with the kids and parents picking records, talking about the music. I was most amazed that the kids had the interest and patience to listen to their parents’ music – you tell me the last time you saw teenagers willingly hanging out with a bunch of crusties, let alone talking about the crusties’ music. The live performance of music has the ability to bring people, young and old, together – they forget […]

The Fan In Me

The other day my neighbor and I got into a discussion, and I found out that she was basically one of the biggest Beatles fans ever. She told me that she had all of their records, trading cards, ticket stubs from their last show at Candlestick Park, clothing, stickers, posters…. everything. And then she told me about her prized possession – a gold medallion with John, Paul, George, and Ringo. Mop tops and beatnik suits. She told me what made this necklace rare was not the limited edition photo on the front, but that it also had all of their signatures carved into the back. I couldn’t believe it. In this lonely digital age, I had found a super fan. I remember collecting baseball cards when I was a kid. I learned all about my favorite players that way. I based hang out sessions with my friends around talking shop and traded cards – it brought me closer to the game, and it gave me a sense of community… even if they were just cardboard cutout friends. I wonder if the digital music consumers of today know what they’re missing, not being able to touch and feel a piece of […]

We Love Our Work

Thanks again to the John Pizzarelli Quartet for visiting SnowGhost Music! A few of the best jazz musicians of our time, John and his brother Martin are two current snapshots from the past of their father Bucky Pizzarelli, a living legend within the jazz community. John and Bucky have also recorded their fair share of pop music, John playing on Paul McCartney’s last record Kisses On The Bottom, and Bucky on some of Phil Spector’s biggest hits. When you add in Monty Alexander on the Steinway, a man who some argue as one of the best pianists in the world, it’s recording days like these that we live for.

Fall Foliage and Mixing

As I work in the studio, and watch the leaves change colors here in Montana, I realize that there are obvious parallels in music production and changing surroundings. I know that the art we produce is directly influenced by our surroundings – but I’ve never actually thought about the seasons affecting mixes. Montana is gearing up for that annual white winter blanket, and I wonder if my approach changes at all. Getting ready for those SnowGhosts!

We Found More Records!

The key finds at the Rocky Mountain Audio Fest 2013 were huge collections of vinyl and turntables, and computer-based playback systems. That’s it folks, CDs are officially a thing of the past. Here is Jeff at one of the many record shops – this one was crammed into a room on the 9th floor of the Marriott – if they always had a room like this I’d only stay at the Marriott! We also listened to some super high-quality digital music off of phones and tablets. One of the coolest things we found, and bought on the spot, was the Resonessence Labs Herus. The Herus is a no frills, bite sized, DAC and headphone amp, and sounds remarkable.