[78-L] The cylinder is coming back

Royal Pemberton ampex354 at gmail.com
Mon Apr 11 17:30:01 PDT 2011

I mean, for example, what if someone could thus recreate the Victor mobile
recording unit Ralph Peer used to make the first Jimmie Rodgers and Carter
Family sides, and use it to record some of today's country or bluegrass

On Tue, Apr 12, 2011 at 1:27 AM, Royal Pemberton <ampex354 at gmail.com> wrote:

> I wonder if anyone's managed to collect all the componentry to rebuild and
> restore a complete electric recording system from the 1920s, and put it to
> use to make the odd retro record?
> On Mon, Apr 11, 2011 at 10:28 PM, David Lennick <dlennick at sympatico.ca>wrote:
>> http://www.catherinenorth.com/
>> Real vintage analog rules at Catherine North
>> by kathleen on April 1, 2011 · 5 comments
>> 4retweet
>> Artists who are seeking the ‘ultimate vintage analog recording experience’
>> will
>> now be able to take advantage of Catherine North Studios’ exclusive new
>> direct-to-wax cylinder recording service.
>> “We’re really excited to be bringing back a recording technology that
>> hasn’t
>> been used in almost a century,” says studio co-owner Duke Foster. His
>> business
>> partner, Michael Chambers, agrees. “Analog tape is great, but the ability
>> to do
>> multiple takes has really been abused in recent years,” says Michael.
>> “Recording directly to wax cylinder is a more honest, artist-oriented
>> approach.”
>> Sound purists will appreciate the complete absence of all electronics in
>> the
>> signal path. “At first, I was a bit concerned when Michael and Duke told
>> me we
>> were getting rid of all electronics at the studio,” explains Catherine
>> North’s
>> house tech Tristan Miller. “But when I realized the fidelity of sound
>> transmission through mechanical coupling, I was completely blown away.”
>> The process offers many advantages from a production standpoint. “What’s
>> really
>> great about wax cylinder is the speed and simplicity of the process,”
>> explains
>> producer and artist Marcone. “You just basically position your musicians
>> around
>> the recording horn, get them to play the song as loudly as they can, and
>> you’re
>> done. My upcoming EP, Wax Cylinders From The Flood, took only 17 minutes
>> to
>> record.”
>> Jordan Mitchell, one of Catherine North’s in-house engineers and member of
>> indie band The Rest, is also a fan of the wax cylinder approach. “After
>> doing
>> an A/B comparison between wax cylinder and digital recording, I was
>> completely
>> sold,” explains Jordan. “Our band is super excited about the sonic
>> possibilities.”
>> Though wax cylinder playback machines aren’t currently available on the
>> market,
>> Tristan expects this to change soon. “Since there’s nothing left to repair
>> at
>> the studio, I’ve been able to devote more time to designing my TM-1200 Wax
>> Cylinder USB Phonograph,” adds Tristan. “This device will provide an easy
>> way
>> for music lovers to transfer their wax cylinder collection to MP3 format.
>> We’re
>> hoping to start shipping units to retail by June 2011.”
>> "Finding NOS Edison cylinder blanks has been a challenge," explains
>> Michael
>> Chambers of Catherine North Studios.
>> Michael Chambers admits that the transition to wax cylinder hasn’t been
>> easy.
>> “Finding enough blank recording media to meet the growing demand from our
>> clients has been a real challenge,” explains Michael. “NOS Edison cylinder
>> blanks are really hard to find. But it’s worth the hassle, given the
>> quality of
>> the final product. You just can’t match those pure wax tones.”
>> In-house engineers Dan Hosh and Patrick Sirrs agree. “I can’t wait to get
>> into
>> the studio to record to wax cylinder,” explains Hosh, whose own band 1951
>> expects to release some exclusive wax cylinder recordings soon. “The
>> artists we
>> work with are just chomping at the bit to ‘cut some wax,’” adds Patrick.
>> Even Catherine North’s student intern, Sean Thompson, is excited about the
>> shift to wax cylinder. “One of the first things I had to do here was test
>> every
>> single cable in the studio. Man, what a hassle… wax cylinder is really
>> going to
>> simplify things around here.”
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