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Monday, November 7, 2011

The Beatles On Record Part 1

As some of you know, I'm just about finished co-writing a book with Ken Scott that covers his career in the music business. Ken was one of the 5 engineers for The Beatles as well as producer of David Bowie, Supertramp, Devo, Kansas, Missing Persons and many others.

The book will be called "From Abbey Road To Ziggy Stardust" and will be available in April, and will cover all of Ken's time with the Fab Four. In the meantime, enjoy this video where you hear about their early recording process from The Beatles and producer George Martin themselves. There's some great vintage video to look at as well.

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Rand Bliss said...

Millions of thanks for this Bobby;-) The Beatles have always been and always will be Number 1 with me.

The most important, innovative, influential and truly magical band of all time. As musicians, where would we be without them?

The Beatles Four-Ever!! ♫

Anonymous said...

I'd like to know how they engineered those sessions. They had a big sound stage studio to work in. I don't see headphones - Did they use a PA. Did they mic a PA and add it to the direct voices? Is the reverb, such as on 'love me do' a plate or did they capture live reverb from the studio? What sort of room miking did they do? Stuff like that would be very informative. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Some of these tracks sound like there's some sort of phasing going on. What's up with that? Sounds like my DVD of A Hard Days Night.

Bobby Owsinski said...

The phasing sound could be a number of things. It could have to do with the conversion of stereo to mono, or it could have been from dubbing a better version of the song on top of one on the video.

Bobby Owsinski said...

Regarding the recording techniques of The Beatles, there's a great book called Recording The Beatles that gives a comprehensive look at how it was done. Or you can wait for my book with Ken Scott ("From Abbey Road to Ziggy Stardust") where Ken goes over a number of the methods.

But to briefly answer your questions, yes, in the very early days they did use a PA instead of headphones. No, the PA wasn't miked. Each studio at Abbey Road had it's own chamber for reverb, plus they also used an EMT140 plate. As I understand it, they never used room miking the way we use it today.


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