Monthly Archives: May 2016

Episode 37 Becky Pell

Becky Pell Photo

My special guest on the show this week is Becky Pell, a freelance live sound engineer, yoga teacher, and writer, who lives in Surrey, England.

Becky started her journey in the world of live sound 21 years ago, and over that time she has mixed sound for many top artists on major worldwide tours.  She is very proud of the fact that she has cherished and long-standing work relationships with most of the artists she mixes for, and has gotten to do multiple tours with many of them.

Some of Becky’s favorite artists to work with include Kylie, Scottish rock band Travis, Westlife, and Shane Filan.

Back in 2007, Becky discovered a real knack and passion for yoga, and has since been able to not only greatly improve her own health and well-being, but the health and well-being of others as well, as she now gets to teach yoga to the artists, bands, and crews she tours with.  Becky has delved extremely deeply into the practice of yoga and has even been to Bali to train as a teacher and further strengthen her ability to teach and help others to live healthier and happier lives.

Becky also loves to write and she has an excellent blog where she writes about life on the road, music, yoga, and how to live a more fulfilling and purposeful life, among other things, so definitely check it out!

I hope you enjoy Becky’s interview, she is a true inspiration, and a real testament to all of us who are trying to live the happiest and most enjoyable lives possible while doing what we love doing.

Thanks again to everybody who has been listening to and spreading the word about the show!

If you haven’t done so yet, please take a moment to subscribe to the show via iTunes or Stitcher and while you’re at it, please leave a rating and a review as well, I would really appreciate it!

Have a great week!

The Website of Rock n Roll Yogi, Becky Pell

Soundgirls.org

Episode 36 John Haeny, Part 2

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Greetings everybody!  I’m happy to be presenting part 2 of my continued conversation with internationally acclaimed engineer, producer, and mixer John Haeny this week.

When John mentioned that he wanted our next segment to be about why “the good ole days, were not the good ole days”, I thought what a great topic of discussion!  And who better than John to have that conversation with?  Having started his career in the late 50’s, John has witnessed every major technological advancement that has occurred in music recording and production over the last 50 plus years, and he’s a true pioneer and expert on all things audio, that’s for sure!

Before we started our discussion, John recounted the time in his childhood when, after much hassle on his part, his mother bought him his very first record player, grey and pink as John remembers it, and with that his lifelong obsession with music started in earnest.  Working under the belief that more was better, John started finding shoeboxes and old car speakers, and each time he collected a new speaker, he would hot-wire it into his hi-fi.  John told me he must have had at least 15 speakers set up in his bedroom at one point!

Eventually, John’s parents bought him a tape machine, and almost immediately, John could be found in his closet for hours at a time, with a microphone taped to a music stand, reading things into his tape recorder.  This is how he learned how to best record his own voice, and planted the seed for his future career as an in-demand audio engineer!

John’s countless hours of experimentation and studying paid off when he got his first job at United and Western under Bill Putnam.  Bill has been described as “the father of modern recording”, and he had a test that he would give all of his engineers to see if they were on top of their game in terms of knowledge, types of microphones, patterns of microphones, etc.  In his early 20’s at the time, John knocked out all of the big engineers working for Bill at the time in terms of his grade on the test.

John attributes this to everything he did back home as a teenager back in Minnesota.  For many years, John would collect every audio related article he could find – read and study all of the technical information contain within, and study all of the pictures, absorb microphone placements, and memorize any other information he could pick out.

To this day John has a photographic memory for studio setups.  On countless occasions, John has walked into a studio, rather innocently wandered around from one end to the other, and then sat down with pencil and paper and drawn out the setup he saw, including what kinds of microphones, and which way the microphones should be pointing, etc.

John truly believes that his early obsession with learning everything he possibly could about audio engineering, microphones, and mic placements, and his endless hours in his room playing with his hi-fi and tape machine gave him a leg up on everyone else and is a big part of why he went on to have the amazing career he is having.

John continues to be very passionate about music, and working with talented artists to bring their creative vision to fruition.  After decades of honing his skills as an engineer and producer, John feels he is better now than he’s ever been and he is always open to taking on new engineering, recording, and mixing projects.  Don’t hesitate to reach out to John at his website to find out more about the possibility of working with him on your next project!

As always, I want to give a big thank you to everyone for listening and for supporting the show!  I really appreciate it!

The Website of John Haeny

Episode 35 Billy Anderson

BA by Ryan Fleming

I am happy to be welcoming acclaimed musician, audio engineer, and producer, Billy Anderson into the Sonic Garage this week!

A musician first and foremost, Billy got his start as an engineer because he wanted to record his own band’s music, not realizing until later on that he had a real knack for helping bands other than his own to create career defining albums, something which he has personally done on many occasions.

While Billy made quite a splash early on working with bands like the Melvins, Sleep, and Mr. Bungle, he has continued to break new ground in recent years working with Loss, Agalloch, Pallbearer, Acid King, and Witch Mountain, just to name a few of the many bands that Billy has had the pleasure of working with recently.

Through trial and error and immersing himself in as many challenging recording projects as possible, Billy has become a master at achieving the best results in the studio, sonically speaking, and also at inspiring all of the talented artists he works with to push themselves to their creative limits.

If one thing was made clear during my conversation with Billy it’s that having a positive, can-do attitude is a priceless trait to have, and starting with the environment in which you currently find yourself, and the tools you have at hand, great things can be achieved.

These days, Billy can be found most often mixing at “Everything Hz”, which is his home-based mixing studio located in beautiful Portland, Oregon.  When not busily mixing from home, Billy can usually be found tracking at his new favorite studio in Portland, “The Hallowed Halls”.  In fact, he’s there this week recording the band Eye of Nix from Seattle!

I hope you both enjoy and get inspired from listening to Billy’s interview this week, and thanks to everyone who has been listening to and spreading the word about the show, I am very grateful for you all!

If you haven’t done so yet, please take a moment to subscribe to the Sonic Garage Podcast via iTunes or Stitcher and while you’re there, I would also appreciate it if you could also leave a rating and a review as well.  Thanks again, and have a great week!

The Website of Billy Anderson

Episode 34 John Haeny, Part 1

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I am very pleased to announce that I have internationally renowned audio engineer, producer, and mixer John Haeny on the show this week!

John has graciously given me the opportunity to do a very in-depth and wide ranging interview with him, and today I have the first of what is going to be a 3 part interview.

John’s various careers began during his high school days as a Photographer, which culminated in his receiving a degree in Portraiture from Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara, California.  Following that, and for the next 20 years, John worked as a Recording Engineer, Mixer, and Producer in the US Music Industry.  This was followed by a 16 year career as a Sound Designer and Sound Editor in the Hollywood Motion Picture and Television industry, and in addition to all of that, he has been an Academic at a number of US and Australian institutions.

John’s sound career began during the early days of hi-fi and mono analog audio.  Working through the advent of stereo and the early days of multi-track recording, he made the transition into digital audio very early on while working in film and television at Hollywood’s Todd-AO Studios.  In the US exclusively, John has been awarded more than 20 Gold and Platinum records, and worldwide, his projects have sold well in excess of 40,000,000 units.

Over the course of John’s studio career, he has recorded, mixed, and produced hundreds of albums.  Working across a remarkably wide array of musical genres that includes artists such as Bonnie Raitt, Jackson Browne, Jim Morrison, Tom Jones, Warren Zevon and Linda Ronstadt to Weather Report, John Coltrane, Freddie Hubbard and Duke Ellington.  In addition to this he worked with Cher, Delaney and Bonnie, Arthur Lee and Love, Kris Kristofferson, Little Feat, Judy Collins, Paul Butterfield, Nico and John Cale, Bobby Darin, The Righteous Brothers, and The Everly Brothers, to name just a few.

While working as a Sound Designer for in the motion picture and TV industry, John’s credits include working on many hit films and series including Scent of a Woman, Twin Peaks, While You Were Sleeping, Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, Beauty and the Beast, The Firm, The Fabulous Baker Boys, Dallas, Benny and Joon, Major League, Max Headroom, and much more.

John’s impressive body of work has amassed six Golden Reel nominations, five Emmy nominations, an Edison Award, and a Grammy nomination as well!

John’s career as an Academic included Adjunct Professor of Motion Picture Sound at the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts, Visiting Lecturer at the University of Technology in Sydney, Australia and Head of Sound at the Australian Film Televison and Radio School (AFTRS) in Sydney, Australia.

John currently lives on a 10-acre property high in the hills of the Huon Valley outside of Hobart, Tasmania, Australia.  He has a comprehensive 5.1 Pro Tools mixing facility in his home studio where he still mixes for select artists, and he especially enjoys working with developing artists, and he is also very passionate about supporting the Australian arts and artists.  In addition, John is the co-developer of the Kramer Master Tape plugin and he is also a Waves beta tester.  When given the opportunity, John still occasionally lectures and is still active in mixing musical scores for Australian feature films and documentaries.

I really hope you enjoy part 1 of John’s interview!  Stay tuned for the next two parts of this interview, I think you are all going to not only really enjoy and be inspired by our full conversation, but there will definitely be lots of great information and nuggets of wisdom that can be applied to your daily life as well!

As always, I want to give a big thanks to everyone who has been listening and spreading the word, I really appreciate it and I am not only having a great time doing this show, I’m enjoying all of the new friendships I’m making and I’m also very excited about all of the new knowledge I have as a result of talking to and listening to all of my amazing guests!

If you haven’t done so yet, please take a moment to subscribe to the show via iTunes or Stitcher and while you’re there, please take a moment to leave a rating and a review!  Thanks again!

The Website of John Haeny

Episode 33 War Drum, Part 1

War Drum Image

This week, I’m very excited to be welcoming Ehren and Peter from one of my absolute favorite bands into the Sonic Garage,  War Drum!

It’s not very often that a new band can really capture my attention, but War Drum has done just that.  I often find myself listening to their first 2 albums on repeat for hours at a time while I work, and I find myself being drawn deeper and deeper into their music with every listen.

War Drum originates from the deserts of Palm Springs, California, and because of that, they are considered to be a part of the ‘desert rock’ or ‘stoner rock’ genre, but they’ve got a unique sound that’s all their own.   They’re a bit bluesy,  a little psychedelic at times, and if you’ve ever wondered what it would be like if surf rock got it’s start not on the sandy beaches of Southern California, but in the arid, dry deserts of California instead, than you’re in for a real treat when you listen to War Drum!

The trio of amazing vocalist and keyboardist Jack Kohler, guitar wizard Ehren Groban, and killer drummer Peter Leighton have combined all of their own personal influences and experiences into a cohesive whole that rewards their growing audience with a very mystical, haunting, and emotional listening experience that should not be missed by anyone.

With a new album coming out soon, it looks as though the sky is the limit for this gifted and talented band, and they will no doubt continue to be a groundbreaking force to be reckoned with for many years to come!

I will definitely be having War Drum back on the show in the near future, probably sometime shortly after the release of their highly anticipated third album, as there is still much I want to talk with them about!

Please visit the Sonic Garage Facebook page all week as I’ll be doing a lot of War Drum related posts, it should be a lot of fun!

If you’re enjoying the show and haven’t done so yet, please head on over to iTunes or Stitcher and subscribe to the Sonic Garage Podcast!  While you’re there I would also greatly appreciate it if you would take a moment to leave a rating and a review as well!

I want to give a big thanks to everyone who has been listening to the show, I really appreciate it and I’ve really been overwhelmed by the positive response and feedback I’ve received to date!

Please enjoy my interview with War Drum, and head on over to Apple Music, Spotify,  Soundcloud, or Bandcamp to listen to and support War Drum now!

War Drum on Facebook