Juan's World

Guitarist, Composer, Writer, Publisher

Recording at Airshow

The recording studio is where creativity and work meet, aspiring to a magical outcome.

In the midst of holiday craziness (the holidaze!) I spent some time recording at Airshow’s Takoma Park Studios.

 My recording setup in Airshow's Studio A

My recording setup in Airshow's Studio A

I worked with engineer Don Godwin, who recently moved to the area from Brooklyn to be a staff engineer at Airshow.

For microphones, we used a matched pair of German Schoeps MK 4 (cardioid) capsules with CMC6 microphone amplifiers, approximately two feet from the guitar, combined with a pair of Neumann TLM 170R microphones in the far corners of the room. A variant of ORTF stereo placement known as NOS stereo, the sound quality was remarkably precise.

 Schoeps MK 4 capsules with CMC6 amplifiers

Schoeps MK 4 capsules with CMC6 amplifiers

 Neumann TLM 170R—so sensitive!

Neumann TLM 170R—so sensitive!

I recorded on my new Geronimo Mateos guitar, which proved to have an excellent, balanced tone during recording. I also recorded one piece using the Mini O from Cordoba Guitars.

 Geronimo Mateos guitar, fresh from Madrid

Geronimo Mateos guitar, fresh from Madrid

 

I recorded 14 classical guitar pieces over four days, including nine of my own compositions and five other works by Baden Powell, Antonio Lauro and others. Among my own compositions were some new works as well as a few pieces that are more than three decades old, which I recently revamped and revised.

Though I have performed live on the guitar in a variety of situations and countries over the years, I had not previously spent very much time in the recording studio. The prospect made me a bit nervous, frankly, but I warmed up by recording at home and by trying to maintain a positive attitude. Don helped by making me feel as comfortable as possible and making frequent pots of java.

 Concentrating on getting those high notes!

Concentrating on getting those high notes!

 View from the control booth

View from the control booth

I’m looking forward to working with the mastering pros at Airshow during the next few weeks, and hope to have my CD available soon (March?).