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Author Topic: Downtown: What Are PSW guys doing?  (Read 24260 times)

RSettee

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Re: Downtown: What Are PSW guys doing?
« Reply #30 on: August 24, 2010, 06:39:54 pm »

The Flood/ Alan Moulder thing sounds about right.....they've worked on alot of my favorite albums.
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Unwinder

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Re: Downtown: What Are PSW guys doing?
« Reply #31 on: August 24, 2010, 07:38:45 pm »

This is a great thread. It reminds me of the time i spent in NYC...and how much i miss it sometimes. Just when you think you've heard all of it, something really cool comes along. Never heard 'Downtown' before, but i really dig the psychedelic vibe. Kinda Beatles meets Verve...not to try to pigeon hole it though Bob, that's just what came to my mind on first listening. I'm for sure gonna pick up the record, and some of the other ones too, cause it's kinda fresh for me.

I like the heavy comp/processing used...and the upfront drums, etc with Moulder/Flood. Nice dry punch..and dark like you mentioned.

bob ebeling

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Re: Downtown: What Are PSW guys doing?
« Reply #32 on: August 24, 2010, 08:42:55 pm »

D. Uwins,, you just put a warm and fuzzy grin on my face!  Thanks for that feedback.  I do miss NYC.  I always felt so totally invisible in the best way.  Just free to be whatever freak I wanted and that can't ever be underrated for someone doing the artist thing.  You are crowded in like sardines at times, but something about that is so liberating, and sardines are so nonjudgemental.  A sardine thinks, 'whatever' and just keeps sardining.  haha!

I have had to forget about being an artist in that deep selfish way, not to say it in an 'aww sad' way, buyI made my choices, I had SO much freedom and fun, and I lived 12 years that hardly anybody on Earth has a clue how amazing and colorful and earthless that was.  I am glad to be a responsible guy, to bring something of that avant garde dude to the plate for clients, to do hunderds of other records and not have to use that crazy part of the brain constantly.  To wake up stable and straight.
Kids, super cool wife, stacks of cool gear in very safe places....but still I do miss it!

index.php/fa/15290/0/
Charles Hughes on the left,your's truly on the right.

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Bob Ebeling
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JSK73

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Re: Downtown: What Are PSW guys doing?
« Reply #33 on: August 25, 2010, 07:40:31 pm »

Wow, what a great thread. As usual, I'm just lurking around and soaking up the info. This one relates especially though since I happen to be "that kid" with the first album recently finished. Although without the excess luxuries and time, and I guess I'm kinda stretching it on the kid thing too.  Smile

Beautiful song Bob, thanks for the inspiration. I have to record because I have too. I feel guilty if I start getting lazy about it even. Besides, I got rid of the TV years ago, what else am I going to do evenings and weekends when not outdoors.

As a musician with a day job I only self record out of necessity, and whether I sell a ton of music or make any money is a distant second to what I get out of it. I just want every song to sound better then the previous one.


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Jamie K. Ya'll

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Re: Downtown: What Are PSW guys doing?
« Reply #34 on: August 25, 2010, 08:30:46 pm »

Welcome Jamie.

You are recording for the right reason.
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bob ebeling

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Re: Downtown: What Are PSW guys doing?
« Reply #35 on: August 25, 2010, 08:39:34 pm »

I really wanted to thank all you guys, especially Terry for initiating this, for giving me such a nice free feeling today where I felt that 10 plus years still somehow in whatever small way matter.

Those 10 plus years were full of heartbreak, decisions-a-plenty to walk away from large sums of cash, broken relationships, distance from family, total confusion, bad addictions, bad women, strange scenes inside the goldmine.

Being a small of 'those guys' who get alot of the guru-in-the-eyes-looks from kids approaching me with those heavy questions, the 'what should I do with my life question (and whatever you say is going to be religious)', I've had to weigh this stuff alot thru the years.

What do you tell early 20 somethings who obviously have talent and an unique perspective?  Do you destroy all their dreams in single burned out answers, no.  Do you encourage them to take the insane leaps of faith that you did, knowing inside how many times you searched out the tallest building to jump from? No.

Do you convert the conversation into a gear talk, yes!  Because I think this is where kids are being led astray.  Kids are promised such lies in the pages of 99% of the mags that if I can straighten them out on that, they will be better off to make a real decision from their own experience.

9 Months ago a 24 year old approached me with a great budget and 12 songs that represented his statement of life.  It was imperative to him to get me on board, but, the money wasn't enough for me to change my blissful scenario of life then.  

So I talked him out of doing drums separately at one of the many rooms in NYC he was finding websites for where honestly the guy isn't going to care (sorry if you're one of the guys that does and you should be rewarded for keeping any commercial room running now).  I talked him into rehearsing his musicians for much longer than he thought necessary.  I talked him into finding a warehouse with a good separate office section for monitoring.  I talked him into borrowing and renting great gear and only great gear.

YOUNG ARTISTS!, look into the space in which you record, look into the event in which you create,  spend time thinking about your song and your lyrics and what it is that needs to be said now.  Rebellion.  Is it too late?  Is the machine too big?

Gear.  It makes a huge difference and it always has.  Just like the USA has to keep people buying to keep the economy pumped up, so the same in certain areas of the making music biz.  But there are amazing things we didn't have then now and guys making real incredible tools and not rying just to profit.  

Here is the crux of my advice to many for many years:  

keep jobs that make real money but don't steal away your time and soul.  

Save up for a great microphone.  Think about ways of capturing things in extreme quality--whether that be Lavry converters, an Apogee thing or an Otari 1/2" machine recently tweaked and relapped.
WRITE WRITE WRITE!!!  A great song does ALL OF THIS WORK FOR YOU.  

There is alot of amazing gear available now if you've got a little more than minimum wage money.  A Vintech 428 gives you 4 channels of beautiful preamps.  Josephson sdc's are like $400.  A pair of Focal Solo 6 is like $2k.  GIKacoustics can straighten out your room usually for less than $1k.  Cool ribbons are $99.
Just buy USAInsn some cases tweaked chinese-uhg)

In 1993 we had Tascam 16 track 1/2" machines and Alesis reverbs.  We found a friend with a barn, parents with basements, friends with empty lofts, and made things sound imaginitive.  The tools you have now are incredible, but just don't believe the hype on what you read in certain mags.  They are trying to sell you shite and just keep you buying.  All you need is an SM-57 and a 4-track dammit!  Not even $100--THERE's no excude.  Quit syudying gear like it;s going to make the difference in your career.

Sample collections--erase them.  Make original recordings of original songs.  There are a thousand of spaces for free to record in.  Amazing gear is everywhere.  Decent gear is everywhere.  It's not the fear, it's the song, the feeling, the preformance.

Maybe most of all, get your damn heads out of your culture.  Turn off the TV.  Don't watch MTV.  Don't listen to the radio.  Don't think about what everyone else wants to hear.  Don't fall in love for awhile.  There seems to be this race to the great average nothingness now.  I'm 40 and I can't fight that hard anymore.  All I can do is have you come for a day or two and cut on the best.  I cnnot possibly do your entire record, unless you're go deeep pockets.  You 18 year olds have all the natural juice and energy to do anything.

Leave everyone behind and write a song that makes people cry or have a magic moment.  Take all the money you would spend on these schools that teach engineering and write and record instead. Real experience, not the theory of experience.

Make that crazy record now and if you are crazy enough, you'll stand infront of emptying bars at 2Am like I did and sell your CD's for $10 to people that have a real hard time saying no.  They drive somewhere the next day listening to you.  6 months later you sell-out 850 people in the Majestic Theater in Detroit and Ralph Valdez interviews you on the coolest indie rock show going in Detroit -three times!

I have to stop--this is too much.

I'll post a recording from that kid Peter next, the kid who did the recortd in the wharehouse with the best gear he could rent.  I mixed it for what he could pay and I forced him to master it with Joe Lambert who I think is incredible.

index.php/fa/15297/0/
Instore at Tower Record AnnArbor 1994
 
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Bob Ebeling
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bob ebeling

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Re: Downtown: What Are PSW guys doing?
« Reply #36 on: August 25, 2010, 09:40:48 pm »

REFLECTIONS ON TRANSFIGURED NIGHT

For you deep deep guys, 'Jump on the sun' (track 3) and 'Can't You See?' (track 5) from the TranNight' LP are Schoeps 221b's withuout the rings, 934's in cardiod, about 2 or 3 feet from a $100 japanese 60's Ludwig imination kit Snare and Kick.  That's it, two mics.  Going stright to Calrece PQ 15's, Meve 32242 comps, and into the Ampex MM1200 16 track.  This WAS the bed track.  There was no click in my phones.  I remember sitting there all night 'til 2 or 4am swearing at myself (terrible words) to get the simple patterns and 60 BPM with no clock dead on.  My friends left before midnight.

The backwards blackguy voices in 'Can't You See?' are Robert Bradley, we were using their throw away tapes (from RCA's Robert Bradley and the Blackwatwer Surprise) and using them backwards knocking them down (erasing them) poorly. (actually, 24 tracks don't knock down well on a 16 track machine)

Several sections on this record are literaly 'out of sync' with the material recorded or playing back from the wrong head.  We kept it.

The control room was 7' by 10' with  a dropped ceiling and the monitors were 8" Boston HD8.  I wish I had about 4 more pair of those as they are hooked up to my Marantz 2220b in the bedroom, where all heavy and judgemental listening tkaes place lying down (eye's closed) and sound awesome.

I HATE computer screens.  The number one killer of creativity for 12 plus years.  We did this record withough one!

Several tracks ('Twinkle Little Star' and 'and I Love You) were recorded at Detroit's famous Whiteroom on the old (now?) Smashing Pumpkins API.  Dave Pietura did a wonderful job with my demand that we only use 5 mics on the drums and lean heavily on the bottom snare/kick beater mic.  What really ended up happening was me discovering a rev D 1176 and snashing the entire kit parallell with that.

This was 1996 and our first experience with a real and amazing longbody U47.  I yelled at poor Charles for half an hour to stop singing like 'Neil Diamond'.        
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Bob Ebeling
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bob ebeling

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Re: Downtown: What Are PSW guys doing?
« Reply #37 on: August 25, 2010, 10:34:03 pm »

Here is a link from the '9 Months ago record' referenced a couple posts ago.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0iYPY0MzAY0

This kid is 25 now and he's relly serious about sonics.
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Bob Ebeling
bobebeling.bandcamp.com
Virginia

samurai99

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Re: Downtown: What Are PSW guys doing?
« Reply #38 on: August 25, 2010, 11:29:51 pm »

bob ebeling wrote on Wed, 25 August 2010 20:39

I really wanted to thank all you guys, especially Terry for initiating this, for giving me such a nice free feeling today where I felt that 10 plus years still somehow in whatever small way matter.

Those 10 plus years were full of heartbreak, decisions-a-plenty to walk away from large sums of cash, broken relationships, distance from family, total confusion, bad addictions, bad women, strange scenes inside the goldmine.

Being a small of 'those guys' who get alot of the guru-in-the-eyes-looks from kids approaching me with those heavy questions, the 'what should I do with my life question (and whatever you say is going to be religious)', I've had to weigh this stuff alot thru the years.

What do you tell early 20 somethings who obviously have talent and an unique perspective?  Do you destroy all their dreams in single burned out answers, no.  Do you encourage them to take the insane leaps of faith that you did, knowing inside how many times you searched out the tallest building to jump from? No.

Do you convert the conversation into a gear talk, yes!  Because I think this is where kids are being led astray.  Kids are promised such lies in the pages of 99% of the mags that if I can straighten them out on that, they will be better off to make a real decision from their own experience.

9 Months ago a 24 year old approached me with a great budget and 12 songs that represented his statement of life.  It was imperative to him to get me on board, but, the money wasn't enough for me to change my blissful scenario of life then.  

So I talked him out of doing drums separately at one of the many rooms in NYC he was finding websites for where honestly the guy isn't going to care (sorry if you're one of the guys that does and you should be rewarded for keeping any commercial room running now).  I talked him into rehearsing his musicians for much longer than he thought necessary.  I talked him into finding a warehouse with a good separate office section for monitoring.  I talked him into borrowing and renting great gear and only great gear.

YOUNG ARTISTS!, look into the space in which you record, look into the event in which you create,  spend time thinking about your song and your lyrics and what it is that needs to be said now.  Rebellion.  Is it too late?  Is the machine too big?

Gear.  It makes a huge difference and it always has.  Just like the USA has to keep people buying to keep the economy pumped up, so the same in certain areas of the making music biz.  But there are amazing things we didn't have then now and guys making real incredible tools and not rying just to profit.  

Here is the crux of my advice to many for many years:  

keep jobs that make real money but don't steal away your time and soul.  

Save up for a great microphone.  Think about ways of capturing things in extreme quality--whether that be Lavry converters, an Apogee thing or an Otari 1/2" machine recently tweaked and relapped.
WRITE WRITE WRITE!!!  A great song does ALL OF THIS WORK FOR YOU.  

There is alot of amazing gear available now if you've got a little more than minimum wage money.  A Vintech 428 gives you 4 channels of beautiful preamps.  Josephson sdc's are like $400.  A pair of Focal Solo 6 is like $2k.  GIKacoustics can straighten out your room usually for less than $1k.  Cool ribbons are $99.
Just buy USAInsn some cases tweaked chinese-uhg)

In 1993 we had Tascam 16 track 1/2" machines and Alesis reverbs.  We found a friend with a barn, parents with basements, friends with empty lofts, and made things sound imaginitive.  The tools you have now are incredible, but just don't believe the hype on what you read in certain mags.  They are trying to sell you shite and just keep you buying.  All you need is an SM-57 and a 4-track dammit!  Not even $100--THERE's no excude.  Quit syudying gear like it;s going to make the difference in your career.

Sample collections--erase them.  Make original recordings of original songs.  There are a thousand of spaces for free to record in.  Amazing gear is everywhere.  Decent gear is everywhere.  It's not the fear, it's the song, the feeling, the preformance.

Maybe most of all, get your damn heads out of your culture.  Turn off the TV.  Don't watch MTV.  Don't listen to the radio.  Don't think about what everyone else wants to hear.  Don't fall in love for awhile.  There seems to be this race to the great average nothingness now.  I'm 40 and I can't fight that hard anymore.  All I can do is have you come for a day or two and cut on the best.  I cnnot possibly do your entire record, unless you're go deeep pockets.  You 18 year olds have all the natural juice and energy to do anything.

Leave everyone behind and write a song that makes people cry or have a magic moment.  Take all the money you would spend on these schools that teach engineering and write and record instead. Real experience, not the theory of experience.

Make that crazy record now and if you are crazy enough, you'll stand infront of emptying bars at 2Am like I did and sell your CD's for $10 to people that have a real hard time saying no.  They drive somewhere the next day listening to you.  6 months later you sell-out 850 people in the Majestic Theater in Detroit and Ralph Valdez interviews you on the coolest indie rock show going in Detroit -three times!

I have to stop--this is too much.

I'll post a recording from that kid Peter next, the kid who did the recortd in the wharehouse with the best gear he could rent.  I mixed it for what he could pay and I forced him to master it with Joe Lambert who I think is incredible.

index.php/fa/15297/0/
Instore at Tower Record AnnArbor 1994
 



That was an incredible post. Maybe the easy access to recording gear forces all of us to be simply better at what we do.
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bob ebeling

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Re: Downtown: What Are PSW guys doing?
« Reply #39 on: August 26, 2010, 07:44:37 am »

James K.  It made me so happy to read your post.

You are one of the real ones, and when you get that feeling that you HAVE to do it no matter what, that is true art.

You rule!
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Bob Ebeling
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bob ebeling

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Re: Downtown: What Are PSW guys doing?
« Reply #40 on: August 26, 2010, 10:27:13 am »

Forgive my neuroticism but I want to state the important fact of artistry versus buying gear.

If you are driven internally and automatically, like angels are filling songs into your head, then DO NOT THINK ABOUT GEAR.  Those like me will find you and gladly offer up our collections to you.  Our collections only exist to capture your songs.

If you find yourself just wishing to record bands and having very little motivation to write or express anything, but love great music, then DIVE INTO GEAR.  Cool preamps, mics, a tuned room and spend crazy amounts on monitors.

We are at an unfortunate spot in time where the true artist feels compelled to play multiple roles, work, pay for gear, and write. Excuse my french, but F%*K THAT.  

Write, write, write.  If people with the studios hear you, they will not even think about dollar signs, they will only imagine the resolution of recording you on their gear.

So amazing voices of future generations, please ignore gear, just write songs and go out get your heart broken.
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Bob Ebeling
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Virginia

bob ebeling

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Re: Downtown: What Are PSW guys doing?
« Reply #41 on: August 26, 2010, 09:56:19 pm »

Elliott Smith recorded most of his first two records on a $75 guitar he found at a pawn shop.  The vocal mic was some radio shack thing.  He found a nice sounding area under the stairway of his then girlfriends house.

If it were 2010 he wouldn't have recorded those records because he'd be convinced he needed to wait until he had Neumann mics and an 1960's j45 acoustic.
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Bob Ebeling
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JSK73

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Re: Downtown: What Are PSW guys doing?
« Reply #42 on: August 27, 2010, 01:17:20 am »

Bob, spot-on and timely advice from the perspective of where I sit regarding my "craft" right now, I use that term humbly BTW.  Either way, thank you again kind sir.

What I mean is, I have been kicking around gear purchase ideas for a bit because I want to expand on a couple "essentials" in the near future. What you are talking about with the whole "do-everything artist situation" is the crux of the confusion-blender in my head right now. Fortunately, the advice I get around here helps morph the whole blender question into a complete answer mix. (grin)

Anyway, your gear advice does pertain to me particularly and here is how so.

As romantic as it seems for me to think about recording some other people's tunes the reality is that over the years I've learned that I do in fact have to be very selfish with my time regarding this music stuff. Selfish does seem harsh, but I mean it in an honest way. How much spare time does anyone have?

For my situation, here are the questions you have answered in your much appreciated rantings.

-Do I need a fancy-pants analog mix buss? NO!
-Do I need to drop a bunch of coin on a crazy nice converter rig with tons of in/out so I can do the whole mix buss thing, then I could expand the hardware and all that fun stuff to oblivion etc. etc. etc.? NO! NO! NO!

With or without meaning too, what you have solidified is that I NEED to keep it simple. Of course obviously of the best quality I can achieve.  

So what I have decided is that any money or time spent from now on for my little recording space, is for expanding my front end capabilities. Then I will take my mostly mixed stems of twelve or less tracks to you for final mixing. It makes perfect sense, and I would be honored. (We can negotiate when the time comes.Very Happy)  

And if I do feel the need to record some other people's stuff, I should probably opt for a very nice remote stereo rig so I can go around this region and document some southern gospel, and other regional stuff.

Since this is the "and what are you guys doing?" thread I figured it wouldn't be out of line to post some songs that I have recorded and play mostly everything on. I don't have any videos or anything, but here are some tunes.

http://www.tunecore.com/widgets/show/27407
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Jamie K. Ya'll

bob ebeling

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Re: Downtown: What Are PSW guys doing?
« Reply #43 on: August 27, 2010, 08:30:36 am »

Cool Jamie!  In our own little way we are widdling down to some strengths here.

I listened to your mixes about 2 1/2 times this morning.  I don't feel like you need stems, just a nice mastering.
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Bob Ebeling
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bob ebeling

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Re: Downtown: What Are PSW guys doing?
« Reply #44 on: August 27, 2010, 08:47:49 am »

"I don't wanna go bowling with you anymore.... "

I love it.

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Bob Ebeling
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