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This Year, we were honored to compose and produce all the music for two new SeaWorld events; Pop, a bubble art show featuring 19-time Guiness World record holder Fan Yang and Electric Ocean, a night-time EDM event featuring Cirque style acts and a Fireworks spectacular.

Pop was a great team effort… composition by Chris McDonald and Kurt Goebel with composition design by me and orchestrations by Chris. The score features harp and a 16 voice choir with synth and a 64 piece orchestra.

Here’s a video of the show

Electric Ocean features original EDM compositions by Josh Harris, Russ Macklin, Josh Hawkins and Worldwide Groove Corp. Ignite, the 10 minute night-time spectacular features Fountains, Lasers, Fireworks and Flame Cannons, all set to the score Kurt Goebel composed and Chris orchestrated – it’s epic! All produced and recorded here at DRR&P. The soundtrack will soon be released for sale… stay tuned.

Check out this video

Some cast and creative team recording James and the Giant Peach

Some of the cast and creative team recording James and the Giant Peach Photographer:cousindaniel.com

Along with the announcement that the James and Giant Peach cast album I produced is now available for free download HERE, a few behind the scenes videos were released… like this one

The show, based on the Roald Dahl book, was adapted for the stage by Timothy Allen McDonald with music and lyrics by Pasek and Paul (Dogfight, A Christmas Story, Dear Evan Hansen.) Get a copy!

Recording  James and The Giant Peach at MSR Studios

Recording James and The Giant Peach at MSR Studios Photographer:cousindaniel.com

2014 was such a wonderful year for us. Among the many, many wonderful projects, The Chris McDonald Jazz Orchestra’s No Pews Required and two big album releases in Latin music, Oscar d’Leon’s Classicos de Big Band and Ricardo Arjona’s Viaje were especially fun to contribute to. Read the rest of this entry »

Thought I’d share this fan video of the Christmas parade I just did in September. Though it’s hard to discern the individual float audio, you can get a rough idea of how complicated the audio production for a parade can be. There are looped sections for marches, and each float has it’s own unique overlay music and voice playback that has to be perfectly synched to the underlaying music playing through speaker systems along the parade route.

Caution: the first section loops until around 5:09… this may cause you agony, so feel free to skip ahead!

The Chris McDonald Jazz Orchestra

The Chris McDonald Jazz Orchestra

It is with great pleasure that I share the release of a new big-band jazz album from composer/arranger Chris McDonald. The album, which I co-produced and engineered, features a burning hot ensemble of many of my friends and colleagues and was just a blast to create.

I recorded the album at my studio, The Tracking Room, and Ocean Way Nashville and mixing was done at my studio (that console re-furb was money well spent!!) Noteworthy mics for the sessions were the c-12’s and U47’s on the saxes (I like the bite they deliver without too much harshness) and the fantastic AEA stereo Ribbon on the brass room. I captured the string section in OceanWay A with a decca tree of M-49’s and U67 spots.

Jazz Times has said No Pews Required is “some of the most powerful and exhilarating big-band music you’re likely to hear anywhere… and the emphasis is first, last and always on jazz.”

Here’s the EPK video from the sessions

You can hear a couple of the tracks on my work page, and you can buy No Pews Required by The Chris McDonald Jazz Orchestra here, or on iTunes and Amazon.com

No Pews Required - Cover

A Show at the Shamu Stadium, Sea World San Diego

We recently completed work on a new Shamu show for SeaWorld San Diego, Shamu’s Christmas, opening this November for the holiday season. DRR&P worked directly with the creative team at SW San Diego and composed, arranged and produced all the music for this production.

The show features Orcas (of course), live male and female host/singers and a live sax player. As the directors wanted a spectacular show that featured exciting animal choreography yet still retained a warm holiday and family spirit, we felt it called for a score that combined both classic orchestral moments as well as driving percussive, rock and pop elements. Read the rest of this entry »

Pro Tools HD I/O converters in recording studio

New Pro Tools HD I/O converters

Doing the right thing is rarely easy. But,”Am I doing the right thing?”… this was the question that plagued me as I broke the seal on my new Pro Tools HDX card. But let me back up a bit.

I’ve been running a Mac Pro 8 core with a PT HD3 system (48 ins 40 outs) since 2008 and it was a beast of a system. I do mostly audio production (most all of it being done at 96k,) but also do a fair amount of programming and composing so I run Vienna Ensemble Pro with a bunch of high quality (resource hogging) virtual instruments. The 8 core, running PT 8.1 on OS 10.6.8, did a great job keeping up, so I put off upgrading to PT10 as long as I felt I could.

Dan Rudin's Pro Tools HD3 system

Old Pro Tools HD3 system with 192 I/O’s and 8 core Mac Pro

Pro Tools 10 is sexy. I’ve been using it in other studios for quite a while now and while it didn’t blow me away running on an HD system, it is near unstoppable on a good HDX rig. Tracking an orchestra at Ocean Way Nashville recently, Read the rest of this entry »

Dan Rudin marking a score

Producer, engineer Dan Rudin make notes in the score while tracking a recording session

Over the years, I’ve printed a few audio recording, midi and music business tutorials and “how to’s” that have received much positive response from readers. The other day I was having a difficult time locating one of the older posts for myself, so I decided to put together a short list of links to the favorites.

Thanks to those who’ve taken the time to email and continue discussions on these topics.

Midi and Tempo Mapping:

– Midi: Four Letter Word or Composer’s Best Friend?
– Are You Leading or Following
Read the rest of this entry »

James Febris tracking in Nashville

How do you cut tight, rocking tracks with great tones? Simple… have KILLER players.

To record a few more tracks for Ecuadoran singer James Febris’ debut album, I returned to The Tracking Room studio with producer Rodolfo Castillo, executive producer Jaime Araque, Arranger/Contractor Chris McDonald and an amazing bunch of musicians. Read the rest of this entry »

The Diamond Horseshoe creative team


2013 started off with three non-stop weeks of show production and recording – five different shows! I’ll try to re-capture some of the fun for you.

I recorded and mixed a score for Disney Land Tokyo’s Diamond Horseshoe Dinner Theatre. A Vaudeville show with a western flavor, composer/arranger Greg Smith wrote for a 10 piece band contracted by accordionist Jeff Taylor (The Time Jumpers, Elvis Costello) that featured a “western swing-horn band” with some killer players like guitarist Bryan Sutton, trombonist Barry Green and fiddler Matt Combs.

After recording the orchestra at The Tracking Room Studio, I mixed the project Read the rest of this entry »

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