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Author Topic: The Zeppelin Thread.....By Itself  (Read 11100 times)

Andi Gisler

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Led Zeppelin 3
« Reply #15 on: February 06, 2005, 07:45:26 am »

Hi Terry,

although I knew about a lot of the great records you did, I didn't know about your work on the third Zep one. I always though that 'III' has a certain 'air' to it that is quite different from the other Zep albums. Did you work on the sessions from the beginning or did you come in at a later point? Any stories, the famous squeaking kick pedal on 'Since I've been loving you'  for example? (Surely one of my 10 desert island songs!)
And lastly, does it bother you not to be credited on the record ,was it a legal thing?

Thanks

Andi

mcsnare

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Re: OK, no need to mess around...
« Reply #16 on: February 06, 2005, 09:47:05 am »

Terry,
  Thanks for taking the time to enlighten us on Zep 3. I had no idea that you worked on it!
  One thing that really caught my eye was the Andy/Glyn Johns backwards slap thing. I have never seen or heard anyone mention this effect until now, although after hearing it on old records done by the Johns', I have attempted to reproduce this effect myself (and did just that a few weeks ago during mixing the new Fab T-Birds record). I usually just turn the multi over and feed the signal to a tape slap and print that back to the multi, but I'm interested in what you mention as part 2 of the process using varispeed. I didn't quite understand that part, care to elaborate?
Mucho thanks,
Dave McNair

compasspnt

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Re: Led Zeppelin 3
« Reply #17 on: February 06, 2005, 10:11:43 am »

Andi Gisler wrote on Sun, 06 February 2005 07:45

Did you work on the sessions from the beginning or did you come in at a later point?

And lastly, does it bother you not to be credited on the record ,was it a legal thing?

Thanks

Andi


Hi Andi,

As mentioned in the original post (although maybe I didn't word it well enough), a lot was already recorded before the record came to me; I just finished it.

I'll try to find some time to think of any more "recording stories."

As for the credit, I did receive full credit on the original 12" album release.  I have been told that my credit was left off of some reissues, CD releases, etc., but was included on others.  I imagine that this was just an oversight on the part of some art department person somewhere, and not intended.

I do know that all of the compilation people at the labels, as well as the current crop of executives, never forget to put THEIR names prominently on classic product:

......THE BEST OF THE BEATLES, SINATRA, AND ELVIS....

... ...COMPILATION PRODUCED by CALVIN CORPORATE... ...

 ...  ...SONG CHOICES BY LARRY LABEL...  ...


   (original music produced by someone else)
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electrical

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Re: OK, no need to mess around...
« Reply #18 on: February 06, 2005, 02:32:52 pm »

compasspnt wrote on Fri, 04 February 2005 22:07

Then I took the masters, carefully boxed in grouped sets, and put them in the trunk of John Fry's Mercedes, and drove them to Nashville where LZ was playing their next show.  There I gave them to Peter Grant, who had them delivered by hand to the various pressing plants.  Atlantic never saw them, nor had anything to do with them, at Peter's insistence.

Some things never change.

I worked on a Jimmy Page & Robert Plant record a few years ago, and the label was conspicuously absent the whole time. When the record was finished (the afternoon after we sequenced the masters and booked the mastering session), there was a discussion about whether or not an advance copy should be sent to the label. Jimmy and Robert decided they could hear it when they went to the store and bought one.

The copper masters were cut, that was that. I never saw, spoke to or corresponded with anyone at the label throughout the whole five month process.

That's how to let them know who's boss.
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steve albini
Electrical Audio
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drumsound

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Re: OK, no need to mess around...
« Reply #19 on: February 07, 2005, 01:32:02 am »

Thanks for the great synopsis Terry!
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compasspnt

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Re: OK, no need to mess around...
« Reply #20 on: February 09, 2005, 09:37:00 pm »

mcsnare wrote on Sun, 06 February 2005 09:47

Terry,
  Thanks for taking the time to enlighten us on Zep 3. I had no idea that you worked on it!
  One thing that really caught my eye was the Andy/Glyn Johns backwards slap thing. I have never seen or heard anyone mention this effect until now, although after hearing it on old records done by the Johns', I have attempted to reproduce this effect myself (and did just that a few weeks ago during mixing the new Fab T-Birds record). I usually just turn the multi over and feed the signal to a tape slap and print that back to the multi, but I'm interested in what you mention as part 2 of the process using varispeed. I didn't quite understand that part, care to elaborate?
Mucho thanks,
Dave McNair


Hi Dave,

The way I am referring to is one that gives you total control, in the analogue world, of your pre-sound-'delay ,' doubling, or post-sound-delay time.

I will say all of the process, most of which, of course, I realize you already know, so that anyone out there who has never done any of this will understand the whole messy thing.

To start at the top, of course you have a sound at point "X"  on a track of the multi-track.  You turn the tape around backwards, and delay that sound with an in-through-out from another analogue tape machine, and record it onto a second track.  The delay is of course determined by the distance between the record and play heads, and the speed of the tape movement.   When the tape is turned back 'frontwards,' this makes the newly recorded sound in question appear before the original sound itself, by the amount of delay.  Then you take that second, new sound, and delay it again back towards it's original "X" location, through an analogue tape machine in-through-out, and vary the speed of that delay.  This allows you to control whether the new sound appears just before, right with, or just behind the original sound.  Or, rather than fixed varispeed, you can 'grab the flanges,' manually varying the delay (primitive modulation), and get a real flange sound.

This is actually why they made digital delay devices and Protools.

Terry
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mcsnare

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Re: OK, no need to mess around...
« Reply #21 on: February 09, 2005, 09:50:38 pm »

Got it! Thanks so much for the clarification.
Dave McNair

Radd 47

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Re: The Zeppelin Thread.....By Itself
« Reply #22 on: February 09, 2005, 10:51:08 pm »

Holy mackerel! Recording AND jamming with the guy.
Jeez, you were almost in Led Zeplin!
Very cool story. Thanks!

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plughead

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Re: The Zeppelin Thread.....By Itself
« Reply #23 on: February 10, 2005, 01:14:32 am »

Wow,

Terry, you just made my month! It reaffirms that dedication, and building with the tools you have gets results. Also seems artist and production crew often called the shots, not always suits in the office. Very cool  Cool

Many thanks, I really look forward to browsing thru this month - a big welcome!
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N. Jay Burr
PlugHead Productions

russrags

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Re: The Zeppelin Thread.....By Itself
« Reply #24 on: February 10, 2005, 08:33:22 am »

WOW!!!  Thanks for all the tape delay info on Zep.
I always figured it was "print through" as it appeared before the direct signal.  I'll have to pull it back out and study it a bit.

Do you recall where that Led Zep concert was held in Nashville???
I moved here in 1996 and have heard a lot of stories, but none of Led Zeppelin.


Russ
http://home.bellsouth.net/p/PWP-russragsdale
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neve1073

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Re: OK, no need to mess around...
« Reply #25 on: February 11, 2005, 03:44:11 am »

I'm a latecomer to your forum Terry, but what a great treat to have you here answering questions.

The Led Zeppelin III story is really great.

A legendary engineer who can write well too...I'm looking forward to reading through all the posts!
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JGreenslade

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Re: The Zeppelin Thread.....By Itself
« Reply #26 on: February 12, 2005, 09:55:58 am »

What a wonderful thread, many thanks for your time Terry!

You are credited on both the vinyl copies of LZ III I have btw.

Justin
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Middleman

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Re: The Zeppelin Thread.....By Itself
« Reply #27 on: February 17, 2005, 11:44:59 pm »

Terry, one last question. I was driving along here in LA today and this thread popped in my head. I was listening to Zep 3 on the radio and noticed how well the kick and drums come through on small speakers. Songs from the same era and even most today don't pop up as nicely. In some cases a lot of the same era music reveals the vocal and maybe guitars as well as snare but the kick on the Zep 3 album just punches right in perfectly on small speakers.

What monitors did you use while mixing if I may ask? Just wondered if you did a lot of comparison mixes on different sized speakers or if something like the Westlakes or other large systems offered up good translation in those days.
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Nathan Eldred

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Re: The Zeppelin Thread.....By Itself
« Reply #28 on: February 18, 2005, 01:24:17 am »

I think Zep III was the most influencial album to my engineering 'style'.  LOVE the verbs...plates, chambers, rooms, combination?
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Nathan Eldred

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compasspnt

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Re: The Zeppelin Thread.....By Itself
« Reply #29 on: February 20, 2005, 07:42:26 pm »

Middleman wrote on Thu, 17 February 2005 23:44

Terry...I was listening to Zep 3 on the radio and noticed how well the kick and drums come through on small speakers. Songs from the same era and even most today don't pop up as nicely. In some cases a lot of the same era music reveals the vocal and maybe guitars as well as snare but the kick on the Zep 3 album just punches right in perfectly on small speakers.

What monitors did you use while mixing if I may ask? Just wondered if you did a lot of comparison mixes on different sized speakers or if something like the Westlakes or other large systems offered up good translation in those days.


At that time, I was using some JBL monitors, I think the model was 4320.  These were JBL's upgrade on their D50 (the speaker designed by Bill Thomas, under supervision of Harvey Gerst [sound familiar?]), which was the competition for Altec's 604/605 series.  (The 604 was an industry standard, but the 605, when introduced as an "upgrade" was not accepted, as it was really just a cheaper-to build-speaker, which didn't sound as good...so JBL got a foothold at that time, especially with Capitol Studios).

I would on occasion listen through a small, TV-like speaker in mono to hear translation, but I don't remember if I did that on this session.  I've grown weary of that exercise however, and really have almost always used just use one set of speakers which I trust.  I do not like to mix loudly, however, as (because of the effects of Fletcher-Munson curve, amongst other reasons) I don't think you get a true picture of tonal balance.  This often disappoints the client, but they are usually grateful later.  Of course, at the end, it's always fun to turn it up a bit, especially with rock music.


Nathan Eldred wrote on Fri, 18 February 2005 01:24

I think Zep III was the most influencial album to my engineering 'style'.  LOVE the verbs...plates, chambers, rooms, combination?



I only had EMT plates and a spring available to me during mix, but we also did use tape delay, tape "pre-delay" (as outlined in another post), tape flanging, and other such effects.  However, many spatial effects in those days were committed to tape during tracking, so there were already some reverbs printed to tape.  Some of these would have come from Olympic...I don't remember what they had.  There was also, as you mention, some 'room' on certain things, resultant from mic technique.

Considering the paucity of effect, this era sometimes required a bit of audio legerdemain.

Thanks for the questions!

Terry
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