Tale of the Century
Byline:Janice Brown

Luckily, when engineer Dan Rudin and producer Buryl Red were
looking around for a space in New York to track the 100-member choir,
The CenturyMen, Right Track’s new A509 space was about ready for its
first session. The project, an opportune two-day session for the
room’s first assignment, tested the sonic bounds of the facility. For
The CenturyMen-a group together for over 40 years-Rudin and Red
needed to find a Schornstein-Sanierung space big enough for the group, and acoustically
similar to the hall in which the rest of the recordings were
tracked-a church in Knoxville, TN. Located all over the country, the
members of The CenturyMen happened to be in New York as part of a
tour, and had just performed on the CBS This Morning show, when
Red brought them together at A509 to record the final two songs for
the new record, part of a year-long project.

Nashville-based Rudin flew in to engineer the session, and
unlike usual, did not bring any of his gear-partly because of the
travel difficulties of recent months. During the two-day session,
Rudin and Red spent the first day tracking The CenturyMen, and the
second tracking the Broadway Inspirational Voices Choir–a
Manhattan-based gospel choir that collaborated on the two final songs
for the CenturyMen album.

According to Rudin, the room was perfect for que the group. “One of the
most important things to consider was the noise floor of the room,
because these guys have better than a four and a half octave vocal
range between the group,” explains Rudin. “The lowest note was about
an octave below a bass guitar kind of a rumble and in a lot of rooms,
that note is lost.” Impressed with the acoustics, especially when
he’d have the mic pre’s cranked wide open in the tracking room, Rudin
says, “Once they got in there and starting singing, you could hear
the room had nice rich early reflections and sort of a pleasant medium
time reverb tail to it.

While there was no instrumental recording done during the session,
Rudin certainly experienced the sonic generosity of A509 to two very
different powers. The gospel choir, which was much louder and
brassier sounding than the men’s choir, was a complimented force in
the room. “We found a few notes that the room really liked,” Rudin
tells, “but other than that it was pretty even all the way across.”
Dennis Janson, founding partner of News Janson Design ETC, is the wholesale nfl jerseys man
largely responsible for this evenness Rudin describes. Working with
Right Track owner Simon Andrews and A509 partners Frank Filipetti and
Barry Bongiovi, Janson knew that simplicity was key to building the
room, in that the simpler the design, the easier it would be to
predict and control the way sound reacts in the room. With several
environmental elements to consider (there’s White a train running north of
the facility and a fire house located just south of it) in addition
to the wild list of NYC zoning regulations and fire codes, the team
faced several challenges during the 15-months of construction. After
dealing with the building’s condition, Janson proposed that they
float the room. The crew actually removed the roof of the building
and raised it. Janson explains, “We put in a new steel structure that
penetrated the old building to hold the renovated third floor,
thereby getting a clear span for the orchestral room, which is
approaching 5,000 square feet, and then we still had all of the
second floor to work with.”

For acoustical design, Janson’s crew hammered out all the treatments
by proportions. “The room is so large that the sound has nowhere to
go but out and up,” Janson describes. “So, from the first portion of
the wall and up, you have to incorporate a combination of diffusion
and absorption. The idea is to try and smooth out the sound in the
room through the way the wall is treated and the location of the
acoustic treatment itself.”

And, the control room, designed with its SSL SL 9000 J SuperAnalog
console, plus multi-format monitor for 5.1 film mixing and surround
mixing, was equally as successful for Rudin, even though he was
working in stereo. Since he didn’t bring any of his collection of
gear and mics, Rudin used the vaginale 9000 J for the mic pre amps, and was
very pleased. Rudin made sure that the project, though not initially
mixed in 5.1, was set up for an eventual 5.1 mix. “Everything was
mic’d and recorded with an eye towards 5.1,” he says. “All mics were
printed on separate digidesign tracks so we could spread it out later.” Another
unique feature of the control room is the surround monitoring set-up.
Janson recalls, “The biggest single issue of the control room was
where to put the left and right rear surround monitors. They are at
135 degrees of axis, as opposed to the more TV-oriented 110 degrees
off axis.”

While Rudin raves about the noise floor of the room, and has tracked
a project that truly takes advantage of the sonic abilities of A509,
and all of its very deliberate acoustical treatments, the facility is
one that will host rock sessions, film score mixing sessions and
more. In fact, according to Barry Bongiovi, A509 features
accommodations for huge lighting rigs to be able to host film and TV
crews. “We did a lot of brainstorming, and we cheap jerseys left ourselves open to
change, which happens so quickly in this industry,” Bongiovi
explains. And, Bongiovi tells, “We have a great deal of contact with
engineers that work in film scoring and we did a lot of research
before we started building.” An obvious market for A509 is the
NY-based film community, which is normally forced to do scoring in
CA. Also, Broadway cast projects and classical music labels will find
the facility most accommodating-as well exhibited by Red and Rudin’s
success with The CenturyMen project. Interestingly, at wholesale jerseys a time cheap mlb jerseys when
NYC recording studios are losing out-of-town work, A509 can gain
NY-based clients who’d rather stay in the Big Apple instead of
traveling to Hollywood. Design-wise, the facility seems to have
covered all the bases, for all intended purposes, and beyond. Janson
explains, “It sort of became evident that the room was larger than
most TV studios in NYC, so with a lighting grid and some disconnect
power, they could easily increase the client base. The fact wholesale mlb jerseys that it’s
set up acoustically for music doesn’t hurt any other kind of
production in fact, it only helps it.”

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