Plain White T’s “Live & Rare” mixing at 513 recording
Scroll down past videos for actual article…
Last week we had the pleasure of recording the PLAIN WHITE T’s at the Saguaro Hotel, in Scottsdale, AZ, for another one of Hot 97.5/103.9’s “Live and Rare” sessions (now sponsored by Bud Light). First of all, I wanted to point out that these guys were very kind, professional and as talented as any of the bands we have worked with. When their major single “Hey There Delilah” was super-popular (circa 2006-ish), I remember being totally annoyed with it; as it was playing EVERYWHERE and seemed a bit “whiny” for my tastes. Now it’s about ten years later and my tastes and experiences have matured (ha!). By the time I had finished mixing and mastering their live performance, I was very pumped with the sound and couldn’t seem to get their songs out of my head!
As usual, we setup and recorded the performance in a medium/large bar area (as seen in the video above), using a hybrid PA/recording rig that we built, developed and finally just purchased from Robin Wilson (Uranus Recording). There were no second takes, overdubs, edits or Auto-Tune and this time I chose to mix it at my favorite new studio- 513 Recording (A-Room, see pics below). I did the mastering here at the Laguna Suite a few days after the mix, and I think it sounds better than any of the other “Live and Rare” sessions we’ve done (since 2010).
I took advantage of 513’s amazing collection of analog hardware and used only a handful of plugins. In fact, that alone added a warmth and sheen I haven’t been able to achieve in the past, when I was using only digital processing. The tracks played out from Pro Tools (10) and hit numerous pieces of gear before being “summed” in their Rupert Neve Designs 5088 analog console. Here’s some pics by/with some “geek details”-
-The whole mix passed through a SHADOW HILLS DUAL VANDERGRAPH (2.5:1)
-I hit the summing buss HARD!
-Lead vocal went through HARRISON 32C and then a MANLEY ELOP
-Another vocal hit an LA-3A
-Bvox both went though DBX 160A
-Acoustic guitars were LA-3A and UA LA-610 (killer!)
-used an SSL 611EQ and FMR RNC on the Cajon
-EFFECTRON2 for room mic enhancement, and Eventide DSP4000 for ambience 😉
-printed the mix (pretty hot) through their BURL ADC
– mastered using a hybrid analog/digital chain, with very minimal processing