How Long Is This Gonna Take? asks and answers one of the most important questions that any artist must consider before embarking on a recording project. The summary is pretty simple: while recording technology has dramatically lowered the cost of recording audio, there’s a lot more that goes into making a record that just getting bits onto a disk. In the end, not much has changed in terms of overall time and cost. What has changed is the many new ways that digital technology allow you to spend your time and your money, which is not necessarily a good thing.
Definitely worth a read!
In response to a visit to our blog from Greenland, I updated all the international statistics in the post titled A Global Audience. In addition to many more hits from around the world, the world itself seems to have expanded, with more countries than ever being recognized by Google. Music is the universal language.
Before the studio opened, I had to content myself with taking photos of the construction progress and using Blender to visualize what the final studio might look like. The five years it took to open the studio gave me plenty of time to organize my photos and write stories about them. After we got the studio running, I essentially stopped taking pictures, mainly because I was busy doing too many other things. I’ve finally gotten back into the rhythm of taking photos during sessions, but haven’t had the time to write the posts that do them justice. Indeed, I still don’t really have that time. But with hundreds of photos that are begging to be posted, I have to find a way…
The first batch are from the sessions we did with Matt Phillips. Matt used Kickstarter to raise money for the recording project, a growing trend among artists who record here. In this photo, Matt’s face tells you just how satisfied he is with the sounds he is hearing in the Control Room:
See if you can hear the music in these photos:
Hindugrass will be recording next week, and they are kicking off their session with a performance on Friday night, April 12th at 8pm. If you have always wanted to be a fly on the wall of a real recording session, the band is inviting a very limited number of people to be their guests in the studio via this Eventbrite link.
Why perform before recording? Béla Fleck answers that question in this video from last year:
We live in a paradoxical age: believe nothing unless you have seen it, yet trust outside experts more than the leaders of one’s own community. All my life I have heard the quote “nobody is a hero in their home town” only to discover it’s a paraphrase of a verse from the Gospel of Luke, where Jesus says “Truly I tell you, no prophet is accepted in their own hometown.” Doubtless Plato complained about the same problem hundreds of years earlier. I believe this is due to our tendency to confuse the familiar with the ordinary. Since moving to Chapel Hill and becoming familiar with many of the great people in the region, I have come to appreciate just how extraordinary so many of them are. Including those with a musical inclination.
That is not to say that we don’t appreciate talent from other states or countries. As a board member of Carolina Performing Arts, I’m rightfully proud of the world-class roster of international talents that perform at Memorial Hall each academic year. But the greatness that comes from afar does not preclude the possibility of greatness living amongst us as well. The INDY week article is a great case in point. Yes, it may seem like bragging to use my own studio as an example of a world-class music and post-production facility in our community, but it’s true. Equally true, and perhaps more important because of the network effect, is that the local community is able to come together and celebrate that fact. Today, artists both local and global are willing to give us the nod over more established facilities in Nashville, New York, Los Angeles, and even London, which is now leading to greater opportunities for all in our growing community. That is wonderful!
When I decided to leave the certainty of multiple steady paychecks to start a new company, everybody I briefed thought there was no possible way it could succeed, and that gave me the confidence that I’d have no competition. The rest, as they say is history. But since that time, I have also come to appreciate that sometimes it is more valuable to have at least some competition proving that the business idea has at least some merit. Some percentage of a provable market is worth more than 100% of a market that simply does not exist. Enter GrooveBox Studios.
GrooveBox Studios was born of a frustration that is nearly universal among all artists I’ve encountered: bands spend too much of their own money on projects and tours that generally enrich everybody else before the band earns a dollar. Which is not sustainable. The founders of GrooveBox Studios hit the business reset button and came up with a model that is really quite analogous to what we, too derived: the co-production model. For starters, both GrooveBox and The Miraverse® promote the idea that instead of being an up-front cost that the artist must bear, the recording process is something that delivers cash and profit directly to the artist, up-front. (more…)
The North Carolina Symphony invited me to dinner on Monday, on stage with Zuill Bailey. I’ve been to fundraising events before, and often they are fun, but I was really excited about this one because Zuill was part of the first-ever session at Manifold Recording. The recording he played on, The Spanish Masters, reached the Top 10 on Amazon.com later that year. The event exceeded all my expectations.
We are so happy that the film “Dear Governor Cuomo” won the top prize for its treatment of climate change at the Wild and Scenic® Film Festival, we put out a press release:
UPDATED 5/15/2013 — We have been visited by Greenland!
WordPress has a new stats widget which tells me not only how many visitors are coming to the website on a daily basis, and what they are reading, but also where they are coming from. This is a relatively new feature, and one which as yet does not allow me to automatically share these interesting statistics. But I have been reading them with increasing interest, not least because I am not used to seeing flags from so many countries. Here’s a list of the flags and hits we have received on a per-country basis in less than 18 months:
We are very proud of the design and construction of Manifold Recording, and we’ve shared that pride in many ways. But nothing is ever perfect because nothing is ever finished. In the past year experience has taught us what no amount of planning necessarily could, and so some of the folks who helped bring this studio into existence are back, making things a little bit better.
Inside the building we added several new circuits for lighting, including a dedicated circuit for our new 2KW 10″ studio fresnel, which is powerful enough to provide key lighting for a 5-member ensemble (and then some):
Here you can see the dedicated circuit outlet here (plus all the other outlets we added for additional lighting sources): (more…)