Francois Eckert interview (Part 2 of 2) [Listen 40:30 min]- Listening To Intelligent Music With Francois Eckert And His Girlfriend S03 Ep07
Special Guests: (Audio) Francois Eckert (Artistic Director and Tonmeister) (Part 2 of 2): is a Tonmeister (a recording master) who is responsible for that title of the best sounding recording album in my collection or any of my friends' collections. A recording that not only has captured phenomenal music (the Arditti String Quartet playing a variety of 20thCentury composers), but a perfect recording that truly sounds as if the Arditti String Quartet is in your room giving a private performance. François Eckert has worked with all the greats in classical music with composers like Luciano Berio, Karlheinz Stockhausen, and György Ligeti, and conductors like Pierre Boulez, and Daniel Barenboim, and the list of talented people could go on and on.
In this podcast we talk about some of the difficulties recording specific instruments, recording Debussy, being nominated for a Grammy for his recording with Monica Haggott, his opinion on having the composer in the room when recording, and where 20th Century is today...and much much more
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Getting Technical with François Eckert
I was really curious about some of the equipment that someone of Francois Eskert’s station would use today in the studio. To my surprise, he sent me an email listing all the equipment and software that he uses with a brief description of it. It's so impressive that I thought it would make a great blog entry as well as a great read for audiophile fans and studio engineers.
- I use Pyramix as a recording and editing system, and Altiverb, Renovator (from Algorithmix) Flux (Alchemist, EQ) and Sonnox (Eq and Limiter) as plug ins. Preamp Ads are the wonderful DAD AX24 (Danish Audio Digital). I have bought recently a small digital recorder (6/2, but can be expanded) from us manufacturer Zaxcom called Nomad. Great stuff, no computer any more on site !
-Mikes : As main mikes, I use 2 very different sorts of mikes : DPA4006 (I have 2 4006A and 2 4006TL), and/or tlm 50s from Neumann, sometimes mk21 (schoeps) if the room is too reverberant for omni use. Spots and other mikes : Schoeps (mk21, mk8), neumann km140 (I love this mike as an all purpose spot mike).
St John's Passion with Portland Baroque Orchestra and Monica Huggett (Recording March 2011) :
- Well, first of all this piece is so great.... Just the entrance choir, some of the greatest. So I was extremely lucky when Monica asked me to record it. And when I was told that all the musicians would have a couple of days rehearsal, 3 concerts in Portland, then 6 days recording, and later on 2 concerts in Canada, that they would all be in Portland all the time, I thought : well, maybe there is something unusual and promising we could do. In fact, usually an oratorio or an opera is recorded like a movie film, in a lot of sequences :
- You put all choirs together, all recits, the Evangelist, the chorals, the arias, and record in order to keep costs down as much as possible. So you'll have the evangelist day, where he sings all he has, even when it's just 2 words then the choir day'(s), chorals, all the bars with choir the recit's day, etc...
All is recorded completely out of context, which makes it very difficult to record with musical feelings. (except for the arias who are not part of the "action", like I called it). So what did I suggest:
For the bits called by me "action", where the story is told, to have everyone on stage, and to record, as much as possible the "story" in order. So everyone would understand what it is about, and play and sing accordingly. And that's what we did, and that's one of the reasons why I think this recording sounds almost like live (a concert), but produced with the quality of a studio recording. And I love it... That's it !